Constructing Your Deck

Deck Construction

Dek-Master® vinyls should only be applied on solidly constructed decks. The substrate shall be exterior grade 5/8" or 3/4" sanded one side T&G plywood. Printed side of plywood must be installed facing down. Use only galvanized spiral nails or treated deck screws. A standard 2" x 1" non-return flashing should be installed around the outside deck perimeter, 1/8" EXPANSION JOINTS ARE REQUIRED between plywood sheets. Nail or screw sheets every 6" around perimeter and 12" spacing on center joists. Be sure to have adequate slope, approximately 1" in 10 ft.

Note: Keep lumber dry.  Build and finish only during a dry spell. Do not install Ducan Dek-Master® vinyl sheeting on pressure treated lumber. K-3 board, particle board and OSB are not recognized as suitable exterior sub-floor materials.

Measuring Your Deck

Dek-Master® vinyl sheeting comes in 74" width. Dek-Master® Pro 60 mil vinyl sheeting comes in 72” width. As with carpeting, fewer seams or overlaps result in a better appearance. To determine the correct amount of vinyl sheeting required allow for:

  1. Extra 1 1/2"– 2" for down the flashing
  2. Extra 6” – 8" for up the cant strip and wall
  3. Extra 1" for each overlap that's required

Overlaps may be run parallel or perpendicular to the wall with equal success. It is up to the consumer to sketch and accurately measure the deck in order to decide on the most economical way to lay the Dek-Master® vinyl sheets.

Tips to Make Your Deck a Success


Plan your deck project well ahead and make sure all materials for construction and finishing are on hand. Carefully lay out your deck area using string to be sure that it is square and level. Use the 3 - 4 - 5 squaring triangle method as shown on the construction diagrams. (Below and on our brochure.)


Make sure your site is as level as possible. Remove all organic material from the area. If the deck is within 18" of ground, a vapor barrier is required.

Attaching the Ledger

Position the ledger level at 2 1/2 inches below the threshold. You may have to remove siding to provide a flat, square surface. Take care to plan the location of fasteners and lags so they do not interfere with joist hangers. See the construction diagrams.

Posts and Footings

Review the joist/beam spacing and carefully locate the footing holes before digging. Different regions have different requirements for depth: check your local building codes. It is acceptable to use precast pier blocks and metal post connectors as described in the construction diagrams in low elevation construction. Consider burying posts for higher elevation decks.

Posts and Beams

Use a level on a string to find correct beam height to your posts. Cross check this height with a diagonal string before trimming your post. Use metal post-beam connectors if using a single beam as in beam detail D. Be sure to have adequate slope for drainage (approximately 1 inch of slope for every 10 feet).


Before attaching to ledger, sight down each joist for crown and place the crown up. Then use metal joist hanger at ledger and toe nail to beam with galvanized box nails. Be sure to maintain uniform spacing (16"). Trim joists to length, keeping in mind the width of plywood and the width of the Dek-Master® vinyl.

T & G Plywood Decking

Exterior Grade, good one side, 5/8" or 3/4" T&G, sanded one side plywood is strongly recommended. To fasten the plywood, use treated deck screws and/or galvanized nails. Angled nails provide better holding power. Set screw or nail heads just below surface. Nail or screw sheets every 6" around perimeter and 12" spacing on center joists. Stagger plywood sheets, leaving 1/8" expansion joints.

Flashing and Cant strip

A standard 2" x 1" galvanized non-return flashing should be installed around the outside deck perimeter. Install cant strip 3/16" away from siding. Using galvanized ring nails nail cant strip every 12" and flashing every 6". Work from the center out to eliminate warping.

Ducan Dek-Master® Vinyl Sheeting

Ducan Dek-Master® vinyl sheeting is an easy to install deck covering that will enhance, beautify and create dry usable space beneath your deck. The long lasting, tough, skid resistant surface will provide years of enjoyment, with minimum maintenance.

The diagrams below provide basic construction details for building and waterproofing your own deck. Please consult local building codes and/or consult with a building specialist in your area for any additional construction details and vinyl thickness requirements..

Click on images to enlarge:



  • I can honestly recommend Ducan products and by doing it myself saved nearly $5000.00 on a 450 square foot deck! Steve Anthony, Okanagan Falls, BCread more »