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Stainless vs Galvanized for a deck near the ocean

Canada_Deck's picture

I'm building a deck out of pressure treated wood near the ocean (about 50 feet away from the high tide mark).  Everything I read says to use stainless screws and connectors.  However, whenever I talk to any of the local lumber yards (even the big ones that cater to contractors) everyone looks at me funny and says that no one ever does that and galvinized will be fine.

What do you think?

Don't know a lot about this, (post #215840, reply #1 of 9)

Don't know a lot about this, but one thing I do know is that SS screws are soft and bend easily.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Good to know. (post #215840, reply #2 of 9)

Good to know.

Please do not use galvanized (post #215840, reply #3 of 9)

Please do not use galvanized nails on your deck. SS screws and nails meet the same codes that galvanized do and won't corrode away in a year. We do so much work at or near beaches that I don't even carry galvanized nails and screws. We just use them on all jobs regardless of where they are.  I use only SS joist hangers, clips and bolts as well.

Hot dipped galvanized nails might work but the more common electroplated nails will start to corrdoe right away. The very large liability associated with a deck is yours, the additional cost of SS is very minor and will let you sleep well at night.

 

Here's a good article about decks and fasteners. 

 

http://www.deckmagazine.com/design-const...

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.

Electroplated nails are (post #215840, reply #5 of 9)

Electroplated nails are garbage and shouldn't be used outdoors- even under roofing shingles. Hot dip Galv is a step up from electro. Stainless is the way to go. (I have never experiened SS to be soft.)

I can definately handle the (post #215840, reply #6 of 9)

I can definately handle the premium price for the nails/screws.  Where it gets really expensive is all the bigger hardware.

The deck has ten posts, five beams, five ledger boards, fifteen guard posts.

If I am going with Simpson, then it looks like almost $200/post for a base and cap (although maybe those prices are marked up quite a bit.)  That would be $2000 just for the hardware for the 10 posts.  Add in all the other pieces and it really gets expensive.

http://www.manasquanfasteners.com/Simpso...

I am thinking of going with Simpson ZMax for all the hardware and hardware connectors and then stainless screws for screwing down the decking...

Thoughts on that?

You can use ZMax  for all (post #215840, reply #8 of 9)

You can use ZMax  for all the large hardware as it's coated well enough and thick enough to last a long time. I did a piling replacement job last year where the 6 X 6" post bases were Zmax and were still $100.00 each. I do still use SS bolts on them though. I've seen plenty of beach front houses with rusted out 3/4" hot dipped bolts so don't skimp there. For joist hangers and clips stick with SS. You can usually save a bunch by buying online.

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.

stainless! (post #215840, reply #4 of 9)

I'm in Maryland by DC and not by the ocean. I used stainless. Didn't want the inevitable rusty heads and staining on cedar. I used Camo stainless screws ($$$$) to attach the cedar deck boards and all the skirting, trim, and step treads were put down with stainless 2" or 3.5" nails configured for my Bostitch framing nailer. Had zero issues with bending or weakness.

Did you have any hardware?  (post #215840, reply #7 of 9)

Did you have any hardware?  Joist hangers, etc.  What did you use for those?

what florida said... (post #215840, reply #9 of 9)

I used Zmax and have had zero issues. The coatings on that hardware is much thicker. I used a lot of the DTT2Z brackets for the posts.