Monday, November 24, 2008

Give Thanks for Investment in Experience

To those of you from the United States I hope your Thanksgiving holiday is a good one. In many parts of the country it's a beautiful time of year and the holiday is always good for "relaxing" with family.

The way I see it holiday's are an investment in experience. In the long run it's the experiences - good or not so good - that we're likely to remember most. Each year Thanksgiving is one such experience - hopefully a good one for you - that you'll always think of fondly.

And that is basic value that I've tried to bring to you with this blog and our website

Whether it's the actual planning or building of your above ground pool deck... or enjoying the finished product... it's all an investment in experience.

Experience that hopefully brings good memories... or maybe good laughs in the face of innocent building mistakes, after the initial frustration... and in the very least it's a learning experience where you're challenged to accomplish something great for yourself and family.

All I've ever tried to do through this blog and our website is to help you have that kind of good experience while building your pool deck... and that kind of experience going forward when you use your pool deck.

Hopefully I've been able to do that for you. And because of people like you, I get to do something I love.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Paul Ottaviano
How to build a deck around your pool

Monday, November 10, 2008

Pool Deck Plans: Benches

If you're thinking of adding an amenity to your above ground pool deck then consider a bench.

More than likely your bench will be permanently attached to the deck, so go with this only if you're sure that you really want one and it's approved by your local building codes. For instance, codes may require a specific type of bench for your above ground pool deck.

Generally, a "backless bench" is best for a platform deck. So this option might not be compatible with your pool deck.

That said, a bench design that does have a back could possibly work for you.

This design will use rail posts you've already built for the deck as part of the bench framing. Also, the bench can fit into most rail designs and balusters can be left alone.

Here are some basic tips to remember:
  • Always be safe! Go "off the grid" at your own risk.
You may be tempted to cut corners because it's just a bench. That's understandable.

But, did you know that attached benches usually cannot have more than 4 inches of open space? Check your local building requirements before designing and building your bench.
  • Make sure the seat height is comfortable.
Remember, tall and short people will be using your pool deck bench.

Short people's feet should be able to touch the ground and tall people probably don't want their knees sticking into their chest. Heights of at least 15" and up to 18" should work fine.

  • Keep your backyard focal points in mind.
In other words, don't put your bench where your guests will be looking at a concrete wall or old fence. If you have a nice tree or rose garden in your backyard then have the bench facing that direction.

Planning for little things like focal points and seat heights can make your above ground pool deck a fun environment.

As always, enjoy your pool!

Best regards,

Paul Ottaviano

How to Build a Pool Deck