Small Decks - Small Deck Ideas - Small Deck Photos

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Small Deck Photos

We hope you have gathered ideas for small backyards from our “Small Deck Photos” Gallery. Are these some of the most inspired small deck photos on the web?  If you love the small decks that we design, please tell your friends! There are many small deck photos that we have built on this page. Click on each small deck image for the full gallery. Dig deep! Be sure to check out our large decks’ gallery for more ideas. Some of the big budget projects have features that will work fabulously on small decks as well.

Small Deck Ideas for Small Backyards

People ask us for small deck ideas for Small Backyards a couple of times a week at this point. Every small backyard is different, so small deck ideas will take many forms. Small Backyards can be a challenge to design decks in. A larger canvas is sometimes easier to work with than a diminutive one.

When it comes to small deck ideas, consider the use. How many guests will there be at events? What features do you want to include in your small decks? Here is a list of small deck ideas for you to consider.

Small Deck Ideas for Diminutive Backyards

  • Stairs take up space–so minimize the width and keep the decks as low as you can. Small decks need to maximize all usable space.
  • If privacy is an issue use privacy screens. A small deck privacy screen can be curtains, tempered frosted glass or a solid wall. There are many creative ways of creating a screen.
  • If Zoning is giving you grief about building, keep a small deck low to the ground and not connected to the home. In many areas, low decks not attached to the dwelling are seen as landscaping.
  • Pergolas for shade and privacy are wonderful small deck ideas. Add a trellis on the side and spanners up top for privacy. Add a canopy to create a dry area. Your small deck can feel like a porch.
  • Low Voltage Lighting is a great idea for small decks. The lights elevate the prestige of the area at night and it is certainly a low budget item.
  • Add a fire feature to the design and build in seating around it.


Designer’s Notes — “On Small Decks”

Some people believe that small decks are easy to design. I see them as one of the most challenging things to design. Making a small space function often involves some serious planning to make furniture fit and still allow a pathway through. The most common flaw in deck design often relates to size. Often to make a small platform work you need to downsize the furniture. Finding inspired furniture can be helpful.

Think about what you hope to achieve with your tiny deck. Will it be a kitchen? Will it be a private space? Privacy screens are really just decorative fences. Many designers are including lights and built-in seating and planters to small platforms. Lastly, what will your little deck look like from indoors? The new deck should enhance the view and hide unsightly views of your neighbors– not that your neighbors are not attractive, but you likely don’t want to be on display either.

You can find more information about decks on the decks’ blog.

FAQ Small Decks

How do you build a small floating deck?

Floating decks are decks built upon a concrete footing on grade, or deck blocks, or patio stones. As the frost sets into the ground…the deck will move with it. Depending on the soil and type of floating footings, they can be quite stable.  Simply pour a grade beam or set patio stones, or deck blocks of gravel. Pro-tip… deck blocks atop patio stones will stay level longer. A larger footprint generally keeps small decks more stable.

How far apart do footings need to be for supporting a small deck?

That all depends on the size of beams and joists. Generally, on a double 2×8 beam every 6′, on a triple every 8.

For 2×8 joists, beams should be less than 10′ apart. Remember to install blocking. Look up building code beam tables–however, we tend to up the size so that as the structure rots, you get more durability outdoors. A small 8×8 deck would have 2 footings if attached to the house– and 4 footings if unattached using this size of joists.

Where can I find more small deck ideas?

We have many more small deck ideas. The best way is to send us photos of your house, measurements and a wish list for your small deck. Have us design a gorgeous small deck just for you! Alternatively, check out google images. Just type in small deck ideas into google and click on images.

What is cheaper concrete patio, or small deck?

A concrete patio is generally a smaller investment than a small deck. An elevated concrete patio is generally more costly to build than a small elevated deck.

How deep do concrete footings need to be for a small deck?

Building code specifies that it should be deeper than the frost line. This is fairly outmoded in the days of helical footings. Even our small decks are built on helicals these days. Helical footings are engineered and resist frost entirely. They also work better in Mississippi Mud!

What is the best material for small decks on a flat roof?

The longest lasting rooftop deck will be made of aluminum framing with PVC decking. Use Bison adjustable footings rather than posts. Wood soaks up moisture and curls like a bimetallic strip. Wood sitting in water will rot exponentially faster than wood that stays dry.

Second best choice, Steel framing with composite.

Third place, hardwood tiles on bison adjustable footings. Seal them yearly!

Learn more about decks here!

Resources for Learning to Build Small Decks:

Ontario Building Code

International Building Code

Designing decks for Seismic Events

Designing decks to Resist Hurricanes