Wood Deck and Composite Decking in the Upstate of South Carolina and the surrounding areas.
Exterior Escapes LLC’s builders have offered high quality custom decking in upstate South Carolina, including Greenville County and surrounding areas for over 10 years.
We specialize in building a deck that meets all of your needs, from new construction to additions and renovations of your current deck. We also offer patio decks to expand your back yard patio into a deck area with options of raised sections, custom railings and benches. Our decks meet all building code regulations to ensure your safety and needs are met.
A deck can be the perfect place to spend time enjoying the weather with friends and family. A well-built and maintained deck offers a safe haven for outdoor living but all decks are not built equally! When hiring a deck builder, there is more to consider than just price… Reasons for a deck collapsing can range from age of the deck, poor maintenance and exceeding load capacity to improper building methods. Deck failures can be avoided. It’s a matter of being aware of the necessity of choosing a professional deck contractor, regular maintenance and inspection, and knowing the limits of the deck structure. With Exterior Escapes LLC you get superior service and materials along with quality craftsmanship. We are a licensed specialty contractor in the state of South Carolina and are properly bonded as required by the state.
Our Deck Services Include:
- All sizes and styles
- Renovations and extensions
- Patio decks
- Durable composite materials
- Wood treatments, sealants, stains
Code Requirements: Each Deck is built by North American Deck and Railing Code (NADRA), International Residential Code (IRC), American Lumber Standard Committee (ALSC), and American Wood Council (AWC) recommendations and requirements, as well as county/city requirements to ensure proper support for the structure and railing. We also abide by manufacturer installation instructions to ensure quality and not void your warranty.
- Support Structure, Ledger Board, and Footings: Deck Beams, footings, ledger boards, and post supports are determined by the ALSC Policy of Recommended Spans for Span Related Decking Products by the style of deck to be built, wood type, and the final use (i.e. how much weight will the deck be required to support). Cantilever parts of the home cannot support the weight of the deck independently and separate support must be installed. Ledger bolt spacing is also determined as per ALSC recommendations and minimum requirements.
- Flashing: Is a corrosion resistant metal with a thickness no less than .019” and approved for direct contact with Pressure Treated lumber. Flashing is very important to make sure no water enters the home and adds a protective barrier between the Pressure Treated Ledger and band joist of the home.
- Joists and Rim Joists: Joist size, length, and spacing are determined by the ALSC Policy of Recommended Spans for Span Related Decking Products and the type of decking boards used (i.e. 5/4 boards, 2×6 decking boards, and composite and vinyl materials), wood type, and the style of deck built (i.e. cantilever or end-post supported).
- Railing: Railings are required for decks more than 30” off the ground and are required to be at least 36” in height with spacing between baluster no more than 4”. Vertical weight load capacity must be at least 200 lbs. or more. Steps require railing if 3 or more steps.
- Fasteners: All Fasteners should be at least Hot-Dipped Galvanized or appropriately coated with ring or spiral shank as per ASTM standards to resist corrosion. Lag Bolts are also appropriately coated or LedgerLoks® by Fastenmaster® are used, also per ASTM standards.
- Stairs: All stringers should be a minimum of 2×12 stringers with a maximum 7-1/2” rise and 11” tread length and meet IRC and ALSC recommendations.
Wood Decks: All wood decks are constructed with the highest quality lumber. Our standard decking boards are #1 Prime 5/4 MCA (or comparable) Pressure Treated Decking board that adds longevity and quality to your project. Depending on the railing style, #1 Prime MCA (or comparable) Pressure Treated or Kiln Dried lumber is also used in our standard wood decking to ensure sound support and aesthetic value. Exterior Escapes LLC strongly urges the use of screws for wood decking boards for a stronger, more durable hold, screws are standard with Exterior Escapes LLC when attaching wood decking boards.
What types of wood options are available?
- Kiln Dried (KDat) or Air Dried (ADat): wood dried in a kiln after being treated, it is a better grade of lumber due to warped boards being removed as they dry. It has less instances of shrinking and warping due to being dry (“wet” Pressure Treated” boards can warp during the drying process after installation)
- Pressure Treated: “PT” Southern Yellow Pine (SYP) lumber is the most widely used and lowest cost of decking materials. SYP is a “softer” wood but it’s treatment allows it to be termite and wood decay fungal resistant. During the drying process, the intrinsic properties of pressure treated lumber (like twisting, warping, checking, cracking, etc) are common.
- Cedar: naturally rot resistant and a harder wood than pine, Cedar does require regular maintenance to maintain color but since it is not treated (less “wet”) is has less instances of warping so it will you will get a higher percentage of it staying straight and strong.
- Redwood: This hardwood is naturally termite and rot resistant requires yearly maintenance to maintain color but stays very strong with a long lifespan.
- Ipe (Brazilian Walnut), Tigerwood (Brazilian Koa), Cumaru (Brazilian Teak): Like Redwood, these South American hardwoods are naturally termite and rot resistant and requires little maintenance to retain color, yearly recommended.
Ask your sales representative about wood types available and the differences to meet your decking needs.
Composite, Capstock, and PVC Decking and Railing: Today’s Composite, Capstock, and PVC Decking material is a low maintenance alternative to wood. These materials are superior to wood in water resistance, color retention, no rotting or cracking, resistance to mold/mildew, no painting or staining necessary, and stain resistance. They also come in a variety of colors and textures. Upgrades include hidden fastener systems and a variety of railing options.
Exterior Escapes LLC is proud to be a Certified TrexPRO® Contractor and recommends Trex® decking products including the Transcends® and Accents® decking and railing lines. Trex® carries a 25 year limited warranty. Please visit the following website for more information on their products.
The Transcends® is a new and highly recommended product installed by Exterior Escapes LLC from Trex® that is a new form of “Capstock” composite decking with a 25 year warranty against staining and fading (see Trex Transcends® Fade and Stain Warranty). With 5 base colors and 3 exotic colors you are sure to find a style and color combination to suit your needs.
AZEK® offers a different approach to low maintenance decking with PVC decking. Also strong and durable with all the benefits of composite decking with a comparable warranty, it is generally “cooler” on the surface than standard composites. AZEK® decking also has a wide variety of color options to choose from. Please visit the link to AZEK’s website for more information and colors available.
In addition to the more economical product lines Trex® and AZEk® offers, Exterior Escapes LLC offers other composites to meet your budget and lifestyle including such recognized brands as TimberTech® and Fiberon®
Fasteners: Exterior Escapes LLC offers a variety of fasteners and most up to date current hidden fastener systems to enhance the beauty and stability of your deck. Ask your sales representative which is the best choice for your project.
Cable Rails: Cable Rails systems can offer a more contemporary feel to any deck including wood, Composite, and PVC decking. This railing comes in a wide variety of colors and options to suit every need. Exterior Escapes LLC recommends and installs Atlantis Rail Systems (http://www.atlantisrail.com), Feeney Architectural Products® (http://www.feeneyinc.com/Architectural), as well as other manufacturers. Ask your sales representative which product is best for your decking application.
Glass Panels: Glass panels are an increasingly popular railing option that doesn’t take away from your view of the lake or mountain side (or the kids in the backyard) while offering a refined aesthetic appeal to any deck.
Vinyl and Aluminum Railing Systems: These railing systems offer and stronger and low maintenance alternative to wood and composite railing systems. A variety of colors, textures, and design options are available to meet the homeowners’ needs that best compliments their lifestyle and aesthetic appeal.
- Trex® Reveal™ (aluminum)
- Fortress™ Railing Products: including Fe26 Iron and Al13 Aluminum, http://www.fortressrailing.com/
- Vinyl Railing systems by Bufftech®, www.bufftech.com
Exterior Escapes LLC proudly installs and recommends Evernew® railing products by Certainteed, Trex® and Trex® Transcends® Railing systems, as well as Fortress™ Railing Products. Ask your sales representative the best railing products to suite your safety needs and decking design.
Wood versus Composite: There are differences to take into consideration when deciding between the materials used in the installation of your deck. Budget is obviously number 1 but while taking budget into consideration the customer must consider the long-term budget which includes maintenance involved in each type of material. Softwoods like Southern Pine require the most maintenance and the longevity is limited. Hardwoods have a longer life expectancy but still require yearly maintenance. While composite decks can have larger initial costs, the product requires very little maintenance. Wood, even with all the different types, are still wood and will require maintenance in the form of staining/sealing and eventual replacing boards damaged by the UV rays and general wear. After a period of time, costs of maintenance can make a wood deck more expensive that the initial cost of a composite deck.
Outside of the budget, aesthetic value is another consideration. In my opinion, nothing can match the warmth and grain qualities of wood but composites and PVC decking are developing more options all the time and have virtually no maintenance. Each piece is different and the design possibilities are almost endless. Ask your sales representative about the differences and which product is right for you.
Deck Accents: decking accents can include flower boxes, benches, and even lighting. Flower boxes can add and integrate nature to your deck while benches can give more integrated seating. Trex® has a full line of lighting products to accent the beautiful deck you have to enjoy after the sun has set. Ask your sales representative for design ideas.
Under Deck Drainage Systems: We offer several options of under deck drainage systems for higher decks that can keep the water off and make the area under your deck into a useable space.
Lockdry® is an aluminum decking product that channels water to a side of the deck and keeps the area underneath completely dry! It is a “One Step Roof Deck System” with very little maintenance, if any, needed. Please visit this website for colors and options: www.lockdry.com.
Other deck drainage systems we have used include quality products like Underdeck® (www.underdeck.com), Drysnap® (www.drysnap.com), The Haven Underdeck from Southeastern Underdeck System LLC (http://www.havenunderdeck.com/), and Trex Rainescape® systems.
Why Exterior Escapes LLC? We offer a variety of options in deck materials including low/maintenance-free options that are long lasting and affordable. Our licensed and insured professional deck builders ensure the safety and quality of your deck by exceeding state, county and city codes and regulations. We are fully insured and all of our employees are covered by workman’s compensation. We do provide a one year warranty on craftsmanship.