Sizing Deck Footings
Don’t guess at your deck footings. Dig in and figure it out.
Synopsis: Mike Guertin takes the guesswork out of deck loads in “Sizing Deck Footings.” With plenty of guides for determining beam configurations and footing size, style, load, and frequency, Guertin addresses the central concerns determining safe and accurate support.
Footings transfer the weight of a deck and its occupants to the ground. How many footings you need and how big to make them is specific to each deck. Doing the calculations takes only a few minutes, ensures that I’m following best building practices, and keeps me from digging more than necessary.
The size and spacing of footings tie directly to the maximum spacing between posts of the beam they support. A larger beam can span a greater distance, requiring fewer but larger footings. The American Wood Council publishes the Prescriptive Residential Wood Deck Construction Guide, which is based on the International Residential Code (IRC). Commonly referred to as DCA-6…