At Archadeck of Central CT, we love it when our clients are as exacting as we are. Every detail is planned for perfection; nothing is left to chance. That’s the way we design, and that’s the way we build.

This home in West Hartford, CT, featured a smaller, rectangular deck of pressure-treated wood that needed to be replaced. The homeowners selected Fiberon composite decking from their Horizon line in a beautiful color called Castle gray. With composite decking, they will no longer need to worry about annual maintenance such as sanding, staining or sealing to keep the deck boards looking great.

The homeowners expressed a few considerations, which we were more than willing to incorporate into the deck and staircase design:

  • They wanted a landing part-way down the stairs but did not want the staircase to turn at the landing. It needed to descend in a straight shot.
  • They wanted the staircase to end precisely at the contrasting edge of the patio to be sure the deck and stairs did not interfere with the flow of the curvilinear patio, already in place.
  • We needed to relocate the gutter and downspout to make room for the railing where it attaches to the house at the top of the stairs. The downspout now drains into the gutter of the main roofline.
  • We needed to stain the wooden support beams and posts under the deck and landing to match the railings because these support elements would be visible to people sitting on the patio.

We removed the existing deck and redesigned it with multiple levels and a straight staircase, as the homeowners requested. From a design standpoint, the staircase does not need to turn in order to include an intimate landing for seating partway down. This makes a perfect conversation area away from any hubbub on the main deck.

The straight staircase design also maintains easy access from the patio, up the stairs and into the home through the French doors at the top of the stairs. It was essential to the homeowners that they have access to carry large items in and out of the home through the French doors and down the deck staircase. The Garrison ranch style home doesn’t have any ground-level doorways wide enough for this function.

To ensure that the stairs ended (or began!) at just the right point at the edge of the patio, Archadeck of Central CT began building the stairs at the bottom and worked our way up. This is a reversal of the usual process, and it worked out just right. The new stairs meet the patio at a place called the “soldier course,” which is the contrasting rim of brick around the patio edge. We installed Fortress LED lighting on the stair risers for safety after dark.

The railings that frame the deck and staircase feature white Deckorators aluminum balusters. These thinner balusters, or spindles as they are sometimes called, allow greater visibility than the wider ones used on most decks in the past. The new railings are built with cedar stained gray to match the Fiberon deck boards. And yes, they match the gray support beams and posts under the deck as well.

These homeowners love the way their new deck project has turned out, just as they pictured it would. Entertaining on this deck is a breeze with the French doors leading right into the kitchen area of the home. Having conversation areas on the deck, the landing and the patio below means guests will always be able to find a place to sit and talk.

If you are ready to redesign an older deck at your home in West Hartford, Avon, Farmington, Cheshire or anywhere else in Central Connecticut — or start from scratch to build a new outdoor living paradise! —call us at (203) 793-7142 or email

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