Today I’ll raise the deck with a hydraulic jack, install the new 6×6 deck post with steel connectors and remove the temporary support post to repair the sagging wood deck. This project is continued from How to Pour a Concrete Deck Post Footer.
How to Install a 6×6 Wood Deck Post
I hand picked a 20 foot long #2 Pressure Treated Southern Yellow Pine 6×6 inch post at the lumber yard that was very straight with few knots. After waiting a couple of weeks for the post to dry (pressure treated lumber is wet from the wood preservatives), I brushed on two coats of Sherwin-Williams Deckscapes® Exterior Oil Toner Stain in the SW 3553 Redwood color. It’s much easier to stain the post while it’s on the ground.
After carefully measuring at least 6 times the required post height from the Simpson Strong-Tie PBS66HDG Standoff Post Base with a long aluminum straight edge held against the top of the other deck post and 5 foot long spirit level at the deck corner (a string line level will also work but I wanted greater accuracy), I marked and sawed the 20 foot long post to 14 feet 9-3/4 inches using my DeWALT compound miter saw. The saw blade wasn’t large enough to cut all the way through the thick post in one pass, so I turned the post over and completed the cut:
I brushed on several coats of Copper-Green Brown Wood Preservative (10% copper naphthenate) on both ends of the 6×6 post as required for all field cuts, notches and holes per the Georgia Amendments Prescriptive Deck Details based on the 2012 International Residential Code. I’ve partially brushed on the preservative in this photo:
Install Simpson Strong-Tie ACE6Z End Post Caps
The 6×6 corner post will be fastened to the 2×10 deck beams with Simpson Strong-Tie ACE6Z End Post Caps and SD #10 x 1-1/2 inch structural wood screws. Note the ACE6Z must be installed in pairs and come in Left- and Right-Hand versions:
The end post caps installed on the 6×6 deck post. The darker end is where I’ve painted the post with the Copper-Green Brown preservative:
Stand-up the New 6×6 Deck Post
Caution: These next steps if not done correctly or if your deck is otherwise structurally stable can result in deck collapse, severe injury and/or death. Please hire a professional deck builder if in doubt.
My helper and I set the 6×6 deck post on the Simpson Strong-Tie Standoff Post Base PBS66HDG, however the notched 4×4 guard post was blocking the ACE6Z post caps. I took a few minutes to remove the old 4×4 guard post that was nailed to the corner of the deck. You’ll see this detail in the last photo in this article.
The end post caps automatically seat the deck post with the 2×10 beams as the post is pulled inward, but I was concerned the post can tip out and fall away until the deck is lowered onto the post if we’re constantly holding the post steady. As a safety precaution, I climbed the ladder and screwed a 1×2 guard to the inside post face. The guard will catch against the 2×10 deck beams to prevent the post from tipping too far over and falling.
Fasten the Deck Post to the Simpson Strong-Tie Standoff Post Base
I hadn’t thought about the challenge of drilling an accurate hole through the 6×6 post to install 8 in x 1/2 in galvanized bolts in the standoff post base. This is one of those situations where you only get one chance to get it right and I didn’t think I could drill the holes without a drill guide. For now, I fastened the PBS66HDG standoff post base with SD #10 x 1-1/2 inch screws. This is a temporary solution and will not pass the Building Inspection because the deck building code requires 1/2 inch bolts with washers and nuts.
View of the new 6×6 deck post after fastening it with screws to the standoff post base. The deck was raised higher than the 6×6 post and is supported by the temporary support post I built with 2x6s and 2x4s:
Jack up the Deck, Remove the Temporary Support Post, Lower the Deck on the New 6×6 Post
I first removed the screws in the 2×6 brace which fastened the top of the temporary support post to the 2×10 deck beams.
The jack post is set next to the new 6×6 post then the deck is raised with the 6 ton hydraulic bottle jack only enough to take the load off the temporary support post. Aside: The cable winch is still pulling the deck together.
Closeup of the hydraulic bottle jack raising the deck:
With the jack taking the load off the temporary support post, I removed the Tapcon concrete screws from the post base and we took down the support post. I gently lowered the jack until the deck was resting on the new corner post while my helper on the ground pushed the new 6×6 post inward against deck so the Simpson post caps were flush against the 2×10 deck beams.
We next took down the hydraulic jack and jack post. I then fastened the Simpson Strong-Tie ACE6Z End Post Caps to the 2×10 deck beams with SD #10 x 1-1/2 inch screws:
Closeup of the Simpson Strong-Tie ACE6Z End Post Caps. I’d already soaked the 2×10 beams and nail holes with the Copper-Green Brown wood preservative:
Looking down from the deck at the new concrete footer, 6×6 deck post and end post caps:
Next I’ll drill and install the 1/2 inch bolts in post base in How to Drill Accurate Holes for Deck Post Bolts.