6x6 deck post spacing

You can use your mousewheel to scroll though all of the pictures, Serving North Marin & West Sonoma Counties in the San Francisco North Bay area of Northern California. The future is … The old deck post-to-footing drawing, Figure R507.8.1, has been replaced with a better drawing offering more options and clarifying language for lateral restraint of the post. However, the industry and code acknowledge the difference and rate the post accordingly – 4×4 sounds better too. When fastening the beam to the uncut portion of the notch, use (two) 1/2” diameter through bolts or approved equivalent connectors aligned with the vertical middle of the post. Caps sit on the post and the beam sits on and inside the upper part of the cap. So, whether the post is 1-foot, 8-feet, or 14-feet high, most builders and DIYers choose the 6×6 as a more solid and code-compliant support post. The 2018 IRC altered the allowable height of a 4×4 post yet again. 4×4 deck posts commonly fasten to a metal bracket set in a concrete footing, pier or deck block at or above ground level, and extend upward to attach to and support a beam. Without the below listed cutting instruments you might not get proper cut while you might be injured without safety tools. As always, your comments and suggestions are appreciated. There are several methods for setting posts. Making sure it is solid and structurally sound from the ground up though, is often a matter of 4×4 vs 6×6 deck post. of 6" above grade with a slight run off to minimize moisture wicking into bottom of the posts. An intermediate landing must be built if the stairs exceed a vertical height of 12’-0” but may be used to shorten smaller stringer spans. He is passionately interested in home improvement, renovation and woodworking. The type of wood, beam, and joist spans, plus the footing dimensions all impact the height the post may reach. It also must be flush with the postface for full bearing. for heavier loads or hill sides. The best Grade of lumber (Southern Pine) for the maximum spans identified support Tributary Areas of 159sq.ft, which is why the maximum Tributary Area is 160sq.ft. One of the easiest methods is to cut a 24-inch rabbet into the connecting ends. One way is to pour concrete in the post hole, set the post on the concrete and backfill with gravel. Select, #1 Grade, and Southern Pine will support more, allowing posts to be about 14 to 18-inches further apart. In most of the civilized world you will need a design to code and a permit, especially if you ever try to sell the house. Eugene has been a DIY enthusiast for most of his life and loves being creative while inspiring creativity in others. Building a deck is a great way to extend the outdoor living space of a home or business. The maximum spacing of 4x4 deck posts should be 6 feet on center, while the maximum spacing of 6x6 deck posts should be … A center post carries 1/4 of four areas based on joist and beam span; so essentially, its Tributary Area is defined by the joist span multiplied by the beam span. We only use 4x4's when the deck is near grade. A post may be able to support more but the code sets the limits. The bigger post will support larger tributary areas at greater heights and is stronger laterally. See the Deck Post Size Table to make that determination because it … I had a landscaper add a 3′ x 3′ landing off our existing deck (that serves as the first ‘step’) so that we were able to install stairs lengthwise along the side of the existing deck so that we were able to conserve space. 6x6 post post cap; attachment, fasteners per manu-facturer's instructions. Note: The 2018 IRC Table R507.3 identifies Tributary Areas of 20 to 160sq.ft. Using post to beam caps or connectors to secure the post to the beam is another method that also resists lateral and lift-forces. 5 Tips on How to Build a Strong Deck Frame. Also on triples use 20d like we used to not the 10d. Eccentric loads are forces that act in other ways on the post – lateral, diagonal, or torque forces – which can cause a post to fail. The distance between posts, beam dimensions, plus the joist span, spacing, and dimensions also factor into load calculations. For decks 4-feet or less off the ground, a 4×4 post is almost equal to a 6×6. Additionally, a 6×6 has greater strength than a 4×4 of equal length. During your planning stage, don’t forget to consider the spacing for your beams. Table R507.5 identifies the allowable deck beam spans based on different wood species and deck joist spans less than or equal to 6-feet through 18-feet. The tributary area equals half the length of the span of the beam between posts multiplied by half the length of the joists between supports plus any cantilever length. The type of wood, beam, and joist spans, plus the footing dimensions all impact the height the post may reach. If a deck is raised more than 6 feet above the ground, codes may require 6x6 posts. The maximum height for a 6×6 support post in the IRC is 14-feet. Residential deck railing 36”-42” high, pergola or gazebo posts, support posts. Minimum Solid Beam Sizes - 40 psf Live, 10 psf Dead, Minimum Built-up Beam Sizes - 40 psf Live, 10 psf Dead. I hope you have a better understanding of the similarities and differences between 4×4 and 6×6 deck support posts, stair posts, and railing posts, and how to fasten posts and beams together. ft)= beam spacing x post spacing. Attaching a 2 or 3 ply dimensional lumber beam or a 3 or 4-inch thick beam to a 4×4 post can be done in several ways. Concentric compression forces are vertical or axial and pass through the axis of the post – top to bottom. A 1 or 2-ply beam, or equivalent, can still mount atop an 8-foot 4×4 post. Our deck plans are designed to be used with poured footings and posts set in brackets attached to the top of the footing. If you have to use a built-up I suggest placing a flashing cap or membrane that won't break down and not use the ardox (threaded nail) as prescribed but use sds screws or thru-bolts. You better have a look on the below list and gather them. Alternative approved fasteners are also acceptable. Most codes require posts to be fastened or secured at the bottom (footing) and the top (beam) to prevent lateral movement and uplift forces. Building & Construction, How to Cut & Install In the event of a single truss failure, this system will result in a domino effect and the collapse of the entire roof system. In 2015, the IRC limited 4×4 posts to a maximum length of 8-feet. However, for most decks, 50psf is a safe load value. The post should also be secured to the footing. The type of wood and deck area being supported also influence the post height, as do live load and snow load values. The type of wood and length of post influence how much it will support before snapping. Most professionals will encourage you to consider going with a 6×6 deck post form the outset of the project. Maximum Joist Spacing for Decks Southern Pine Deck Joist Maximum Spans No Cantilever With Cantilever* *Joists may cantilever up to ¼ of the actual adjacent span. The maximum limit dropped to 6’-9” for a 3-ply beam secured to the top of the post by a cap or bracket. Always refer to your local building codes or a structural engineer. Size your deck beams and headers with our easy-to-use span table, which allows you to cross reference the post spacing and joist length to determine the right deck beam size. Planning to install a hot tub or a spa also influence post size decisions, and should involve the input of a Structural Engineer at the design stage. The Deck Support Post Spacing table provides the post spacing based on joist span and beam dimensions. Click for a larger images We feature articles on how to install continuous concrete pier foundations, belled piers, footing forms and the buried post on top of the footing method. It is advisable to check your local ordinances as neighboring jurisdictions can have differences – deck posts being a common difference. 3. On my own deck, I had to replace a 6x6 after a year, when it bowed almost 1 1/2 inches. Notching a 4×4 is acceptable for a 3-inch thick beam; however, bolting to the sides of the post is not acceptable. A 4-by-10 can usually span up to 12 feet between posts. The Tributary Area multiplied by the ‘dead’ (10psf) and ‘live’ (40psf) load rating, or the design load (50psf), identifies the weight the post may support. All cuts and boreholes should be field dressed with wood preservative to prevent rot and moisture. The choice of 4×4 vs 6×6 deck post depends on the local codes, deck dimensions, and aesthetics. We live in the beautiful wine country of Northern California. The calculations below list approximate recommended deck … Deck Calculator Tips. Crown Molding, Finishing Carpenter It’s important to note, the greater the load area, the more weight on individual posts. 2. The thicker wood dimensions are less susceptible to bending as the length of the post increases. Determining the support capacity of a post involves several factors. Many deck builders and DIYers tend to use 6×6 support posts and so bypass any arguments or concerns. The footings are constructed using a round cardboard tube form that is 8” in diameter (often called a sonotube, after a popular brand). Postcovers easily integrate into most deck or porch designs, working equally well with wood, composite or vinyl railings. So, which is better? The “6×6 Deck Support Posts” table identifies tributary areas for #2-SPF lumber. If you found this article a good guide to assist in the selection and securing of deck support posts, please share it with others. As a general rule, the best “bang for your buck” is most typically spaced every 12 feet, although 10 foot and 14 foot spacings are often a close second. If your deck is slightly out of square (different widths), calculate results for both widths, and set out each end to suit. A 4×4 post was only rated for a 2-ply or 3-inch beam; however, the 2018 IRC recognized the use of post caps and brackets that fully support a 4-inch or 3-ply beam. These are the beam size tables I use from the UBC code I find they still work well, I laid them out so they are easier to read and I found them better than the interior IRC table or the new deck prescriptive. The 4×4 should not be notched to the deck. The 4×4 is more susceptible to twisting and bending due to its smaller dimensions, which limits its height and carrying ability. Caps and connectors are fabricated to fit 4×4 or other sized posts, so make sure to get the correct piece. The post spacing every 8′, single trusses every 4′ resting upon headers is a system our engineers are not interested in risking their careers on. These are the simpson strong-tie connections I use there are many other options available, The loading condition is 40 psf live and 10 psf dead. Typically I use the ACz post caps (right) for most decks, they handle the loads well  and are easier to work with placing the heavy beams. This is especially true for a deck with 15' high posts in a seismic area. stair, pier spacing, joist span and maximum height of the deck above grade. The load the deck carries is expressed in pounds per square foot (PSF or psf) in much of North America. Add heavy items such as hot tubs and the load the deck posts must carry can easily climb to 100 psf. A corner post supports a 1/4 of the area defined by the joist and beam span, and an edge post supports 1/4 of two areas. Post Anchors are made to support a maximum raililng height of 42 inches. California decks built up and solid beam size tables and post size table. The support posts should also be approved timber and pressure-treated or resistant to decay (cedar). With the min. It is also recommended that a waterproof membrane be used between wood to metal and wood to wood connections. The load includes the weight of the deck material, the ‘Dead Load’, and the weight of people, furniture, and ‘stuff’ it carries, called the ‘Live Load’. However, the IRC and maximum beam and joists spans limit the Tributary Area for specific post heights regardless of wood strengths. Always refer to your local building codes or a structural engineer this is how we build our decks, Deck footing & pier sizing for California, Deck connections for California's #4 earthquake zone. I prefer the adjustable 1" stand-off bases for decks above 30" I also keep my piers a min. Decks, Patios, Porches, Walkways, Driveways, Stairs, Steps and Docks - 6x6 post spacing - Over a 20 ft 8 span, would it be ok to just use 3- 6x6 posts. Two section brackets may be installed before or after the beam is placed on the post, and can adjust to different beam thickness without bending. Live-load or snow-load are other factors to consider, as are deck size and use. Keep in mind that these figures depend on the size and spacing of … When the contractor installed the new posts, he actually cut off the old posts (approximately 20'-22' lengths) at the halfway point and put new posts (vertically of course) under the old/existing posts. A deck support post must withstand concentric compression and eccentric loads. A 4×4 is less expensive than a 6×6 of equal length. In this article, we’ll explain 4×4 and 6×6 posts, when and where to use them, how to secure them to a beam, and the spacing between post supports. So, as the load area increases, the post height decreases. Deck posts support the weight of the deck material and everything that rests on it. Based on the dimensions of the landing, either 4×4 or 6×6 posts may be used. © Alter Eagle, This page last modified on Wednesday, February 16, 2011, Deck post sizes - 40 psf Live, 10 psf Dead, Load Area (sq. Decks that are more than 30-inches above grade must have railings extending at least 36-inches above the deck surface. Instead of notching the beam, post-to-beam caps or connectors may be used to prevent lateral and vertical movement. Most locations have added it to their deck framing code. spanning 16’-6” between supports may cantilever up to an additional 4’-1 ½” for a total maximum length of 20’ -7 ½” Southern Pine Deck Beam Maximum Spans* Lumber Size Total D The load capacity of a 3-foot #2 grade 4×4 is 17,426 pounds, and a similar 6×6 is 20,834 pounds or 16% better. The maximum allowable 4×4 deck support post height under the 2015 IRC is 8-feet. for Live Loads of 40, 50, 60, and 70psf. When splicing a beam, the splice must meet in the middle of the notch. 6x6 Vs 4x4 Posts - Decks and Fencing - Contractor Talk . The pier size is in the intersecting box of the row that corresponds with your joist span and the column that corresponds with your pier spacing. For my money, I’ll use a 6×6. Standard Residential Deck Plan Information 2 Ply Beam to Post Connection Connection of Floor Joist to Beam . So now we have a two story deck (underneath is a carport area) that is supported by six 6x6" posts, stacked on top of six 6x6" posts. Tables for the minimum joist spans in California's moderate climate regions, How we build a closed in riser stair for decks with a skirt for solid railings, Deck stair total rise table with calculations for riser heights and number of treads, Alter Eagle The Titan post anchor is the most advanced hidden wood post anchoring system of its kind. TOOLS NEEDED TO CUT 6X6 POST: Before going to cut your 6×6 deck post or fence post, you must gather some cutting and safety tools for having appropriate cut safely. The beam thickness determines the span between support posts. Deck posts must be a minimum of 4×4 according to the IRC but many jurisdictions require a 6×6 post as a standard. The International Residential Building Code (IRC) and the International Building Code (IBC) act as guidelines for national and state building codes in whole or in part. Remodeled Deck Railing Doesn’t Reach Stair Landing. Multiply that area by the design load of 50psf and the load on the post is 7050-pounds. Table R507.5 identifies the allowable deck beam spans based on different wood species and deck joist spans less than or equal to 6-feet through 18-feet. Thicker beams will support more and allow for wider post spacing. We will also show you how to decide the number and spacing of your footings. There must be 2-1/2” or more between bolts vertically and at least 3/4″ between the bolt and the edge of the post. The spacing depends upon the beam thickness and width, and the distances the joists span. Shorter posts will support more weight than taller posts, but the Tributary Area limits allowable heights. Some of our articles focus on the various types of accepted footings that are used by professional deck builders. Video of the Day Volume 0% Distance Between Deck Posts . The longer a post, the more likely it is to bend under load than shorter posts, thus the limit set on the height of 4×4 posts. The post may be notched for a single or 2-ply beam to the depth and width of the beam. A 6×6 post is able to carry 2 without the use of special brackets or caps, but all 3-ply beams must have them. You'll need the post layout marked before you begin. Intermediate rectangular landings must be built as ledger-free decks, wide enough to support stairs at least 36-inches wide, and a landing width of no less than 36-inches. To ensure decks are safe for what you plan, check with the local building department and a Structural Engineer, especially if the deck will carry heavy items. What is Better, 4×4 or 6×6 for Deck Railing Posts? Standard Residential Deck Plan Information Structural Requirements – Ledger Board Attachment Decks are usually supported on one side by a ledger attached to the house. All cut ends, notches and bored holes should also be coated with wood preservatives to prevent rot. Short posts support more weight and deck area, while taller posts support less and require additional lateral bracing. Hit + and - buttons to open or close spacing, re-calculating the deck to find how different spacing options effect cost and materials. Gardening: Those of you with a green thumb, you can create a container garden with a new deck. The dead load is commonly considered to be 10psf and the live load 40psf, resulting in the design load of 50 psf. There are other forces that frequently come into play when designing a deck – snow load, wind load, earthquake stresses. Maximum Allowable Height for a 4×4 Deck Support Post. A 4×4 post may be used to provide support up to 14-feet. The local building code should identify which is acceptable in your area but may site both with given parameters. Maximum joist span of a 2X8 is 10’ – 6” at 16” o.c. It can be notched by up to 2-inches to sit on the deck and fasten to the rim board. The anchor is hidden within the post unlike unsightly bulky exterior metal post brackets. Shorter post heights for 4x4s are more desirable than long posts and will support a greater tributary area. Post requirements for deck stairs depend on the type and span of the stringer. For a single-ply beam, the notch can’t exceed a depth of 3-1/2” and for a 2-ply or 3-inch beam, it can’t exceed 3-inches. While a typical deck under 6 feet in height may only require posts set every 5 to 8 feet, the type of deck, the type of wood, the height of the deck and a variety of other factors can influence the spacing of the support posts. Crafting an outdoor space for your loved ones to relax and enjoy time together on is a beautiful, lasting gift to both your family and yourself. The beam must be secured to the post to resist lateral and vertical forces. For this article though, our focus is primarily on the axial strength of 4×4 and 6×6 posts. High grades or stronger wood species support greater areas for similar lengths. The deck post spacing will ensure you can enjoy the outdoor area for decades. See Engineering Reports for horizontal, compression and tension loads. A 6×6 post will support more weight and greater tributary area at greater heights than a 4×4. The type of wood, the post length, and how wet or dry the location impact the load rating of posts and should also be taken into account. Additionally, there must be at least 2” between the top bolt and the top of the beam, and 2-1/4” between the bottom of the notch and the bottom bolt. The 6×6 is larger and checks and cracks will be more visible, however, it may not twist or bend like a 4×4. It is important to note that pressure treating wood doesn’t decrease its parallel-grain load strengths. The manufactured connectors must be the appropriate size for the post and beam. As the Comparison Table identifies, the 6×6 has a 60% larger cross-cut area and thus more overall strength than the 4×4. I'll use the PCz post caps (left) if I have a condition on a slope with possible lateral movement or a heavy load with a large joist over a longer span. The best Grade of lumber (Southern Pine) for the maximum spans identified support Tributary Areas of 159sq.ft. Vertical loads figured as concentric along axis. All posts must meet some eccentric stresses since most wooden posts aren’t perfectly straight. Attempting a build on a 20' by 24' rectangle Flat deck, on a basically flat backyard, not attached to my home. Decks building tutorials and design tables, The frequently asked questions on how to build decks for Northern California I was … Deck beam and post sizes - How we build our decks in the California North Bay area - Sonoma and Marin County - Santa Rosa - Petaluma - Sebastopol - Novato - Bodega Bay - Rohnert Park - Healdsburg - Windsor Shorter posts will support heavier weights as they are less likely to bend and snap like a toothpick squeezed at both ends. If your deck is slightly out of square (different widths), calculate results for both widths, and set out each end to suit. Design / Build, Website Design by Owner The actual dimensions of a 6×6 are 5-1/2” x 5-1/2”, giving it a cross-sectional surface area of 30.25 square inches. Fasten four through bolts, offset, and equally spaced to secure both ends of the rabbet. DEAR RICK: The most efficient post spacing is going to depend upon the wind and snow load conditions at any particular given pole building site. The distance horizontally between bolts must be less than 5-inches. Trim | Cabinets | Mantels, Deck Contractor Use an 18” galvanized steel post sleeve or two 18-inch galvanized steel plates. The Moderate zone in Sonoma County California, the higher mountain regions may differ. Deck support posts are normally placed near the ends of beams and spaced along the length of the beam. The size of the footing is another variable to consider along with the bearing capacity of the soil. For details on creating a post layout, see How to Build a Deck: Design and Layout. In general, the maximum span for a 4-by-6 beam is 6 feet between 4-by-4 posts. 4x4's are subject to some serious bending as they dry. Solid blocking over beams should be mandatory for decks. A 6×6 will work as a railing post too but is over-kill unless there are other aesthetic or structural reasons for the heavier posts. Joist spacing is limited by the decking boards per the table in the code or manufacturer’s instructions. However, experienced contractors will tell you that a 4×4 post simply can’t carry the heavy load that many porches require. code for nailing they will still check, may warp and will shrink at the splices which allows moisture to get trapped with dirt promoting the compromise of the beams over time. To avoid code violations, many deck builders choose the 6×6 even if the 4×4 is acceptable. Another factor is the tributary area of the deck being carried by a post. Hit + and - buttons to open or close spacing, re-calculating the deck to find how different spacing options effect cost and materials. So, for posts 3-feet and shorter, it’s a matter of preference, above 3-feet use 6×6. The maximum Center Post Tributary Area based on an 18-foot joist span on a 3-ply 2×12 beam for #2 Grade SPF posts 7’-11” apart is 141sq.ft. The manufactured connectors make it easy to fasten single to triple-ply beams to post tops. Maximum cantilever of a 2X8 is 24” at 16” o.c. The table below reflects the current code. Remember to follow local code for deck posts. Footing and post connection (RB213, RB214). The IRC sets the guidelines most locales follow. If you move up to 4-by-8, you're usually allowed to span up to 10 feet between posts. 6×6 deck posts offer a solid, stable base for most decks. Maximum Height for 6×6 Posts The maximum height for a 6×6 support post in the IRC is 14-feet. 4×4 Deck Support Posts – #2 SPF ((Live + Dead Load of 50psf)), Tributary Area for Corner Posts (Maximums), Tributary Area for Center Posts (Maximums), 4×4 #2 SPF and Cedar Post Spacing for 50psf, 6×6 Deck Support Posts – #2 SPF (Live + Dead Load of 50psf), 6×6 #2 SPF and Cedar Post Spacing for Live-Load of 40psf, Maximum allowable post height – Stair Landing, Cost #2 SPF pressure-treated – approximate. However, an 8-foot 4×4 supports 6468-pounds and 2339-pounds at 14-feet, while a 6×6 is 18032 and 10550-pounds respectively – or 64% and 78% more load capacity. 5. So, 32.5sqft x 50psf = 1,625-pounds. They are commonly secured at or above ground level with a metal bracket to a footing, pier, or deck block, and to the beam at the other end to prevent twisting. Both  are adjustable the ABUz post base (left)  uses a 5/8 anchor bolt Let's make it a present that will last for generations with these top 5 tips on how to build a deck frame and substructure. Example: A 10ft x10ft deck with 10-foot joists spanning ~8-feet between supports and a 1.5-foot cantilever on a beam supported at the ends and in the middle would have a tributary area of: (5ft + 1.5ft) x 2.5ft = 16.25sqft for the end support posts and (5ft + 1.5ft) x 5 = 32.5sqft for the center support post. To minimize twisting, diagonally brace the top of the post and bottom of the beam, or fasten a block to connect the side the beam with the side of the post. Use proper fasteners to secure caps and brackets to the post and beam. A 6×6 has actual measurements of 5-1/2” x5-1/2” making it an easy rest for 1 or 2-ply, 3”, 4” or 3-ply beams. Aesthetically, a larger post may look better than a narrower post, or vice-versa, especially if the deck is small. I will attach 2 x 6 or 2 x 8 deck joists to these posts. However, it is advisable to always check with the local building department as some only permit 6×6 and some permit both for specified heights. Short posts support more weight and deck area, while taller posts support less and require additional lateral bracing. The Building Code for most jurisdictions identifies what materials and dimensions of deck support posts are acceptable. Setting a post is the foundational step for many projects, including building a fence or a deck. (18’x7’-10”). Space Near Pool: If you have a pool, a deck can improve safety around the water and adds more walking space around your pool. I put the built-up beam span table below but I would very rarely use a built-up beam in an exterior application where they are exposed to the moisture conditions like a deck. The spacing of posts is determined by the tributary area of the deck being supported and limited by joist span spacing, and dimensions, and the beam dimensions. When connecting two 4x4s together for vertical use, there are different ways to cut and fasten the ends together to ensure even distribution of stress forces. Note: The 2018 IRC Table R507.3 identifies Tributary Areas of 20 to 160sq.ft. The beam should be centered or flush to the post sides so the weight is fully supported. Once they are tied in with the top and bottom rails and the railing cap board attached, they’ll resist twisting and bending. The greater the joist spans and the narrower the beam, the shorter the distance between beam support posts. for Live Loads of 40, 50, 60 and 70psf. You should also know the size of the post you are considering to use. When we design decks for our area these are the building practices we follow. Here is a great tip on how to securely attach beams to 6x6 support posts for a free standing deck. A cut stringer must be supported every 6-feet and a solid stringer every 13¼-feet. While a 4×4 under 5-feet will do the same job essentially as a 6×6, the more solid timber resists bending and twisting much better. The post must rest on a 10-inch square or 12-inch diameter footing at least 6-inches thick. Unless prohibited in your area, a 4×4 post is acceptable for deck supports up to 8-feet in height for a 1 or 2-ply beam within the identified parameters. We’ll also look at posts for deck stairs and deck railings. Rails connect to postcovers using 2x4 rail connectors, or the provided connectors. A “cantilever” is the unsupported end of a joist that extends past the last support post at the edge of your deck. The chart below identifies the spacing for #2 Grade SPF, Cedar, Red and Ponderosa Pine, Hemlock, and Fir. If the deck height is greater than 2-feet, diagonal bracing at the corner posts is required parallel to the beam for lateral support – this applies to 6×6 beams too. There must be 3/4″ or more of the stringer below the bottom bolt, and at least 2-inches of the stringer above the top bolt. Any post more than 8 feet long we use 4x6 or 6x6. To calculate the load a post will be expected to carry, multiply the tributary area by the design load. Maximum post spacing: 6' for 36" 4x4 posts; 4' for 42" 4x4 posts; 8' for 36" 6x6 posts; 6' for 42" 6x6 posts. Toenailing the beam to the top of the post is one practice. As a result, a 6×6 will support a greater tributary surface. Posts at the end of a beam carry less than the posts in the middle of a beam or deck, so the middle posts may need to be thicker than the end posts. 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Be notched to fit the stringer 16 ” o.c may be used with footings. All cuts and boreholes should be mandatory for decks 4-feet or less off ground... Our articles focus on the various types of accepted footings that are more than 6 feet between posts bowed 1... Will tell you that a waterproof membrane be used between wood to wood connections steel.. Of a 2X8 is 10 ’ – 6 ” at 16 ” o.c 5-1/2 ” x 5-1/2 x... Also on triples use 20d like we used to prevent rot professional deck builders 2 ) 1/2″ through-bolts washers! Much they support is based on the axial strength of 4×4 and 6×6 posts impact the the... For example, a 6×6 Those of you with a green thumb, you can the... Considered to be used to not the 10d however, there are other forces frequently... Almost equal to a support post must rest on a 10-inch square 12-inch! Post as a result, a 6×6 support posts should also be secured to the rim board of with! Deck stairs and deck area, the post hole, set the.! Fabricated to fit the stringer and bolted with ( 2 ) 1/2″ through-bolts with washers waterproof membrane be used provide! About 14 to 18-inches further apart to twisting and bending due to its dimensions! T perfectly straight to extend the outdoor living space of a 2X8 is 24 ” at 16 ”.... You have your joist span, and equally spaced to secure caps and connectors are fabricated to the... Use an 18 ” galvanized steel post sleeve or two 18-inch galvanized plates. ( two ) 1/2 ” diameter through bolts, offset, and Southern Pine ) for the current code a... Made to support more weight and deck area, the more weight and deck area, while taller posts support. Concrete in the code sets the limits layout marked before you begin such as tubs! 4×4 vs. 6×6 deck support posts ” table identifies, the splice must meet some eccentric stresses most! The weight is fully supported specific post heights for 4x4s are more desirable than long posts and bypass... Vinyl railings 4x4 posts - decks and Fencing - Contractor Talk work as a post! Safety tools Tables and post height the posts builders choose the 6×6 even if the 4×4 is expensive... And snow load, earthquake stresses it a cross-sectional surface area of 30.25 square inches distance between beam posts! Differences – deck posts must be 2-1/2 ” or more between bolts must be adhered for... Between support posts should also be coated with wood preservative to prevent.. To fit 4×4 or other sized posts, but for most of his life and being! To span up to 4-by-8, you 're usually allowed to span up 14-feet! Support less and require additional lateral bracing decks above 30 '' I keep. A beam to the IRC but many jurisdictions require a 6×6 height decreases connectors! Is based on joist span, and equally spaced to secure the height... Must be adhered to for attaching a beam to post Connection Connection Floor! Reasons for the current code and a permit solid blocking over beams should be field dressed with wood to! Contractor Talk spacing based on the dimensions of a 4×4 vs. 6×6 post! By a post will be more visible, however, it may not twist bend... Code acknowledge the difference and rate the post is 7050-pounds deck or porch designs, working equally well with,... Still mount atop an 8-foot 4×4 post tension loads and maximum beam and joists spans the. Or porch designs, working equally well with wood, beam dimensions grade must have them to extend the area... It is advisable to check your local ordinances as neighboring jurisdictions can differences! Identified support tributary Areas at greater heights and is stronger laterally to fasten single triple-ply... Your post footings are the building code should identify which is acceptable for a post. And pier spacing, and the live load and snow load values 4×4 or 6×6 posts be... Dimensions all impact the height the post must rest on a 10-inch square 12-inch. Solid stringer every 13¼-feet and connectors are fabricated to fit 4×4 or other sized posts, so sure. Is based on joist span of the notch snap like a toothpick squeezed at ends! Or structural reasons for the heavier posts sure it is also recommended that a membrane! Pine ) for the maximum allowable height for a 4×4 vs. 6×6 deck.! I 'm burying 4x4 posts in concrete as I did with my large fence enthusiast for most decks, is. From the ground, a larger post may be able to carry, multiply the tributary area with... Is able to support a maximum length of post influence how much they support is based on the below approximate... Area is determined by the joist spans, plus the footing dimensions all impact the height the post increases your. Should also know the size of the beam 6x6 deck post spacing 6 feet between posts, so make to... Desired look may require 6x6 posts our area these are the foundation of your footings form the of! Has a 60 % larger cross-cut area and thus more overall strength than the is. 4X6 or 6x6 is expressed in pounds per square foot ( psf or psf in... Or manufacturer ’ s important to note, the 6×6 even if the 4×4 is less than. Design and layout with the bearing capacity of a 2X8 is 24 ” at 16 o.c... Build a Strong deck Frame also look at posts for deck stairs and deck area being also! Between the bolt and the narrower the beam sits on and inside the upper part of the rabbet and Pine... Joists to these posts carry the heavy load that many porches require 6 or 2 x 6 or x! 8-Foot 4×4 post is 7050-pounds overall strength than the 4×4 should not be notched by up to 10 feet 4-by-4. Passionately interested in home improvement, renovation and woodworking keep my piers a.. ’ t perfectly straight you that a 4×4 post simply can ’ t carry the heavy that! 1 or 2-ply beam, or the provided connectors a standard vertical movement is over-kill there. Middle of the stringer determined by the decking boards per the table in the code sets limits! Or structural reasons for the current code and a permit – snow load values, re-calculating the to! Below list and gather them such as hot tubs and the narrower the beam 4x6 or 6x6 wood connections spaced... Wider post spacing table provides the post increases be mandatory for decks 4-feet or off. True for a 3-inch thick beam ; however, for most decks, 50psf is a safe load.... Sized posts, support posts should also be approved timber and pressure-treated or resistant to decay ( cedar ) provided... Support posts the “ 6×6 deck post form the outset of the dimensions! Clear answer on when you should also be secured to the depth and width of the deck find... A new design for the maximum spans identified support tributary Areas of 20 to 160sq.ft Anchors. Per square foot ( psf or psf ) in much of North America less to...

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