Reinforce Deck Railing
Home repair expert Henry Harrison shows a homeowner how to shore up a shaky banister on his deck and stairs. On his elbow grease scale of one to four, Harrison gives this job a three.
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Materials and Tools:
old-time nail puller
drills and bits
treated 4x4 post
1. In this instance, the railing was wobbly due to an undersized support post. Remove old corner support. If attached with lag bolts, chisel out around the head of the bolt enough to get a ratchet on.
2. If have rusty nails to contend with, an old-time nail puller works great for removing stubborn nails.
3. Position new 4x4 post and mark length. If necessary to fit on the deck, mark cut lines for a notch in the post.
4. Clamp the post in a portable workbench and cut to length using a circular saw. Be sure to wear safety glasses and a dust mask when using power tools.
5. If you need to cut a notch, you'll have to make several cuts with the circular saw, then use a handsaw to make the final cut and free the notched area.
6. While the post is clamped in the workbench, drill holes for the lag bolts. Use a paddle bit to carve out pockets for the washers, then switch to a 3/16-inch bit to drill through the post for the bolts.
7. Hold the post in position on the deck and using a 3/16 auger bit drill holes through the deck for the lag bolts. Drive the lag bolts through and tighten with a ratchet attachment on the drill.
8. Secure stringers to the new post with screws. For even more support, drive screws through the base of the post into the surface of the deck.
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