• 25 Year Guarantee
  • Latest ECO Friendly Technology
  • 35+ Branches Nationwide
Get a FREE quote

decking tips for beginners


What tools do you need to start decking?

The most important thing to remember when setting up before you begin decking is that safety comes first. Before you gather all your tools and equipment, having the right gloves, knee pads, dust mask, and eye protection will ensure you prevent any unnecessary injuries. It’s also a good idea to have a friend help you out (and hopefully get the job done quicker!). Below are some of the basic tools you will need:

• Tape measure
• Spade
• Trowel
• String and pins (for the layout of your decking)
• Hammer
• Joists
• Saw – this could be a panel saw, jigsaw, circular saw, or a mitre saw (if you are laying larger decking)
• Sandpaper or, if you have one, a sander
• Pencil
• Edger (for cutting lawns, if required)
• Decking boards




How do you prepare the area for decking?

In order to be as prepared as possible and follow a template, setting out the layout of your decking is the best starting point. Use your tape measure, string and pins to create a visualisation of the area and then you can begin.

Dependent on the surface you’re building on, will change what tools you need and how you need to prepare it. If you’re building on a lawn or grassy area, ensure the surface is clear of any shrubbery, leaves, or mulch. You can then cut the grass quite easily with an edger, removing the pieces of lawn with your spade.

If you wish to build straight onto the ground, ensure you cover the proposed area with weed protection fabric, as well as a layer of gravel. This way of creating the foundations for your decking is much simpler, and would be perfect for a beginner or smaller project.

Alternatively, you can build on concrete pads, which have the benefit of added stability, as well as increasing the lifespan of your decking.




How should you cut the boards for the best fit?

Again, preparation is key, so ensure you measure your decking boards accurately for the best fit. Marking with a pencil will give you the best indication of where to saw, without damaging or permanently marking the wood.

Always ensure you use the right saw for the job, as this makes the whole process smoother and easier. A mitre saw will enable you to make as many cuts as you need, so this is particularly useful for a tricky layout, and if you have some difficult cuts to make, take advantage of a jigsaw too.

However, if you are just starting out and don’t want to make things too complicated, use a panel saw. Ensure you clamp the wood securely onto a workbench when using a panel saw; this limits the possibility for error, as well as preventing any injury.


decking tips


What is the best technique for laying decking?

Create a framework or sub-frame for your decking to sit on. A great tip to build this is to lay it out first, so you can see exactly which pieces of wood go where – and whether or not they’re long enough. For a more in-depth guide on how to create a sub-frame, check out B&Q’s website for more information.

Once your frame is assembled, you can then start to lay the actual decking boards. Mark where the drill holes should go, so you don’t make any unnecessary mistakes and so that the holes are a suitable distance from the edge of the decking. You should also ensure that you mark where each board should sit, with a gap of around 3mm in between each one.

After all your preparation, this should be a simple process of placing each board down and drilling appropriately.


Getting the best view of your decking

To ensure that you can enjoy all of your hard work from your home for the perfect view, make sure the positioning of your decking is in the right place to make it an extension of your home. Don’t let blown or cloudy double glazing ruin your view of your new decking area either. Our expert engineers can repair your double glazed units so that your perfect view remains and you can enjoy your decking to the fullest. Contact them today for a free, no obligation quotation from our friendly, local experts.