My Trex deck, the squirrel and cat

My Trex deck, the squirrel and cat

So, my friend came up from Seattle this weekend and we spent about 3 hours putting in the rest of the stainless steel screws in my Trex deck.  They are now ALL in.

Unfortunately, we have a rather large box of damaged screws that will have to be tossed out.  At times, the frustration involved in so many of the screws getting stuck partway in was a real demotivator.  However, the deck looks pretty good and I am satisfied with the results.  I’m looking forward to many years of enjoying a mostly maintenace free deck. 

I would have real reservations about recommending this as a do-it-yourself project to anyone else.  The boards were not  all “square” along their length. It took 2 to 3 people to force some of them into a straight line while the first screws were put in place.

Drilling in the screws was a nightmare, until we got the hang of it, which pretty much took 3/4 of the deck to figure out how to do this without getting the screws stuck partway in and sticking up out of the deck. When this happened, it was impossible to force the screws down, as the star shaped screw head fittings were easily stripped out. 

This occurred with approximately every 8th screw; it was necessary then to get the screw back out.  At first, we tried to do this with a reversing drill, but since the screw head fittings were reamed out we had to take the driver bit out of the drill and try to get the drill to “grab” the head of the screw and then put it in reverse.

 This only worked about half the time, so I had to figure another way.I recalled a type of pliers that can be adjusted to grab different widths. So I went off to the hardware store and bought one. It was a life saver; not only did we not need to take the bit out of the drill each time, but it worked every single time it was clamped onto the head of a recalcitrant screw. 

Great tool - locking vise grip pliers

Great tool - locking vise grip pliers

I still have to cut off the deck boards on one side of the deck, they are about 18″ too long for the width of my deck.  I’ll get to that next weekend!

Hardhat hamster

Advertisements