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An under-deck inspection may bring surprises

Summertime. The season when decks everywhere come alive, the perfect havens for outdoor relaxation and entertaining.

The ever-popular deck continues to be specified in nearly one-quarter of new homes built, says The National Association of Home Builders.1 And decks rank among the most popular DIY construction efforts for existing homes.

But a deck is only as dependable as the planning that went into it. A deck’s composite surface may look perfect, but if proper measures aren’t taken in the construction phase a far more troublesome scenario may brew in the lumber beneath.

Stresses caused by winter cold and spring dampness can sabotage any deck and set it up for summertime failure. Moisture infiltrates around screw penetrations in beams and joists, corroding the connectors and fasteners. Rot and mold can flourish in the understructure, within those hard-to-see areas of the frame made of ordinary wood.

Because decks old and new are subject to structural degradation, deck codes have focused more and more intensively on maintaining deck strength and integrity.

Prevent intrusion by water. Watch a one-minute install video.

As a leader in window flashing and other waterproofing solutions, the Henry® Fortifiber® line excels at preventing damage from intrusive moisture. Part of the Fortifiber® portfolio, FortiFlash® Joist Guard offers dependable, ongoing protection for a deck’s vulnerable framing structure. Joist Guard self-seals around screws and nails, blocking moisture from seeping through these penetrations.

Its advanced butyl adhesive withstands higher temperatures than ordinary tapes, and its black facer withstands UV exposure while remaining undetectable between deck boards. Joist Guard is available in a 2” width for joists, and 4” for beams.

1Share of New Homes with Decks Remains Stable (NAHB: Eye on Housing)

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