Adding a Lattice to a Deck

These days, many people have decks in their yards. And, typically, they are several feet above the ground; both for storage and to keep the underside dry. Adding a lattice to the deck is also an excellent way of dressing it up.

Getting Started

First off, you’ll need some 1” by 1” framing wood to hold the lattice in place. With a countersink drill bit, make holes in the wood at 4” intervals. Next, cut the wood into 6” segments; be sure each piece has two holes, and that they are about 4” apart.

Using galvanized deck screws, attach each block to the floor joists on the underside of the deck. Be sure to recess them back about half an inch; that way the lattice will end up flush with the deck.

Do You Need a Bottom Edge?

If the only thing under your deck is earth, adding a lattice to the deck is easier; there won’t be any connection along the lower edge. On the other hand, if you’ve got concrete under your deck, it’s best to add a lower framing member. It’ll strengthen the lattice against wind, rain, and the elements. So, place a straight edge against the outside edge of the floor joist and make the concrete below it. This will insure adding the lattice to the deck at a ninety degree angle.

Once you have the ground mark, make a new one and a half inches behind it; remember you want the lattice flush with the outside of the joist. If you have a chalk line, use it to strike a nice continuous line along the concrete. Now you can place the framing pieces wherever you want.

Next, place one of the framing blocks along the line you’ve marked, and fit your drill with a masonry drill bit; a 5/16 is typical. Drill into the concrete just a little bit, enough to mark the places for the anchors. Then remove the block.

It’s best if you don’t drill the holes too deep; so a good means of insuring that is wrapping some electrical or duct tape around the drill bit at the proper depth. After that, it’s a simple matter to drill the holes.

Attach the Lower Members

Before you put the lower framing members in place, treat they will water sealant. After all, they’re going to be on the ground. Last thing you need is for them to rot away. Once that’s done, line up each block with a pair of holes, insert the anchors, and secure them.

The Vertical Members

Now you’re ready for the vertical supports. Take some of the 1” by 1” wood and cut it to fit snugly between the upper and lower framing pieces. You’ll probably have to use a hammer to get them into their proper locations. If not, they’re not tight enough. After that, use a drill to make pilot holes (at an angle) at the top and bottom of each piece. Then secure them to the top and bottom framing members with deck screws.

Adding the Lattice

Now for the final stage; adding the lattice to the deck. Measure each opening to be covered by the lattice, and use the chalk line to mark each segment of lattice. If the lattice isn’t pre-treated, cover it with a water sealant. Once each piece is cut, put them in place, and attach them to the vertical, lower, and upper supports with deck screws.