Simpson Strong-Tie Dealer Sales Representative Andrew Slezak spent his weekends for the past five months working on building the deck of his dreams using our Simpson Strong-Tie hardware. Learn what went into his DIY deck build and how he can’t wait to spend more time outdoors this summer.
It all started when my fiancée, Hannah, and I moved into our new house. The old deck was old and needed to go. As a semi-professional DIY weekend warrior with one too many projects at one time, I told Hannah, “Pff, babe, it’ll take like a weekend or two. Three weekends at the most …” Well, five months later, I can finally say the deck project was finished and Hannah is very excited.
I have been with Simpson Strong-Tie since March of 2020 and I can truly say that I like being part of a company that has great values, gives you a work/life balance and makes you feel like part of a community. I have learned so much since I have been here and have met a lot of fantastic people. As a dealer sales rep, I love interacting with customers and educating people about our products. So I was excited that I got the opportunity to use a wide variety of our products for my own deck build.
For planning this build, I used our free Deck Planner Software™ to take the vision I had in my head and bring it to life. I liked using the software; it was easy to use, and it gave me a good idea of what I wanted my deck to look like. I also had some outside help as well from my uncle and Simpson Strong-Tie reps (thanks, Jonathan).
As for the build itself, I fastened all of the deck boards on my deck with our Quik Drive® auto-feed screw driving system. I was able to fasten down 140 square feet of deck boards while standing up within two hours in one weekend. Without the Quik Drive, it would have been at least two weekends of intermittent work (let’s be real, probably three).
For the paid professional whose time is money, using the Quik Drive is a no brainer. I utilized our Outdoor Accents® products, including the decorative post caps (APDPC), T strap (APT), L strap tie (APL), flat strap (APST), and 90° angle (APA), for some critical connection points. The connectors made joining everything quick and easy. I also used the deck tension tie (DTT2Z) to secure my guardrail post to the deck.
The Outdoor Accents post bases (APB) are secured with the 5/8″ x 5″ 304SS Titen HD® bolts. One of the most common failure points on a deck is the guardrails, because they’re just lag-bolted together. However, my guardrails are incredibly stiff with the deck tension tie connection, and I absolutely love it.
Now that the deck is done, we’re excited to have so much more outdoor living space to entertain with and to enjoy. Built with Simpson Strong-Tie hardware, I know this deck is safe, sturdy and built to last a long time. My dad jokes about how, if a tornado ever hit the house, the house would be gone but the deck wouldn’t move. As for my next project, I have a few in the works. I’m working on building a retaining wall and parking pad. But what I’m most excited about building is a sustainable butterfly garden. So stay tuned!