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Determining Deck Beam Height

In order to determine the correct height for your beam you should first install your ledger board and support posts.  Next you will run a string from the top of the ledger board to the support post with a level and mark the position for the top of the beam.  You will then need to subtract the thickness of the beam and post beam connector hardware.  Finally you should adjust your beam height by factoring in a 1/4" for every 8' pitch to slope away from the house for drainage.  Mark this height with a chalk line and cut your post for the correct beam height.


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Explore Articles by Topic

Create a free account and get instant & exclusive access to all that Decks.com has to offer:

Checkmark 1,000+ How-To articles
Checkmark 80+ Free Deck Plans
Checkmark Deck Planning Calculators
Checkmark Free & Simple Deck Design Tool
Deck Support Beams

Determining Deck Beam Height

In order to determine the correct height for your beam you should first install your ledger board and support posts.  Next you will run a string from the top of the ledger board to the support post with a level and mark the position for the top of the beam.  You will then need to subtract the thickness of the beam and post beam connector hardware.  Finally you should adjust your beam height by factoring in a 1/4" for every 8' pitch to slope away from the house for drainage.  Mark this height with a chalk line and cut your post for the correct beam height.


Popular Framing Articles
Deck Support Columns

How to Decorate Deck Support Columns

Browse some examples of decorative deck support posts for tall decks.

Deck Support Columns

How to Decorate Deck Support Columns

Browse some examples of decorative deck support posts for tall decks.

Deck Support Beams

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Learn about how to choose the correct size beam for your deck. We discuss engineered beams and "sandwiched" style beams.

Next Step: Decking Articles
Decking Installation

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Installing your decking at a 45-degree angle is a popular style for decks. This can be done to reduce decking seams or just for appearance.

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Learn about how to install composite decking. Topics include expansion and contraction issues and hidden fastener systems.

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