Building A Deck For A Hot Tub
If you are building a deck for a hot tub, there are a number of things to consider. The deck must be secure, but also needs to look attractive as it will be in a prominent place in your back yard.
Step 1 – The Planning Stage
If you are planning to have your hot tub on a deck that adjoins your property, you may need permission from your local planning authority. Check local building codes to see what you are allowed to do.
Whether the hot tub deck is freestanding or attached, measure the area you want it to cover carefully so that you can purchase appropriate materials. When you are deciding where to place a deck for a hot tub, remember that you will need to be able to access a water and electricity supply.
Step 2 – Buying the Right Materials
Do not forget that a deck for a hot tub must not only support the tub itself, but also the water, and the weight of the people who are bathing in it. Accordingly, the deck you build needs to be reinforced.
Step 3 – Stake Out
Measure a square using stakes and string on the ground. When you have marked out this area, you need to decide where to put the posts. Given that this deck has to support such a large weight, you should consider this project to be like constructing a building. Divide the square into 9 squares (a bit like a Sudoku board), and place a marker in the center of each mini square.
Step 4 – Foundations and Posts
The deck has to have decent foundations. According to where you placed each marker, dig out a foot square hole that should go one foot deep. The purpose of this depth is that the foundation posts should be set beneath the frost line. Remember that these holes will be completely hidden by the decking, so they don't need to look pretty.
In the bottom of each hole, place approximately 3 inches of fine grain sand. Level out the sand using a spirit level, and place the concrete footings in each hole, with the straps pointing in the correct direction for the first layer of horizontal planks. Next, backfill the holes to ensure that the concrete foundation blocks have been tightly packed. This is to avoid creating an area for puddles to form.
Step 5 – Laying the Posts
Place the posts into the strapping fittings on the concrete foundations. This should be a straightforward task, but don't screw the posts in until you have checked that they are all level. You can do this simply by resting the planks on top of them.
Step 6 – Laying the Beams
The last step in laying a deck for a hot tub is laying the beams and planks. Lay three beams in the same direction, then three at a 90 degree angle.
Step 7 - Lay the Decking Planks
Lay the planks on top of the beams at a 90-degree angle. Screw the planks down securely to make sure that the flooring area is safe.
Finish the deck by applying a seal or stain.