This Outdoor Living Combination in New Albany, OH, Gives New Meaning to Backyard Bliss!

New Albany OH Paver Patio BuilderOne of our most recent completed projects took us to beautiful New Albany, OH, where we total transformed the backyard and outdoor living potential for these amazing homeowners. Their journey to fulfilling their wish for a new and improved outdoor space began by contacting Archadeck of Columbus.

Before
Before:

When we initially met with these New Albany, OH, homeowners for their consultation, their existing outdoor living space consisted of a painted wooden deck. The deck, in itself, was not complimentary or scaled to accentuate to their home or their landscape. The main concern expressed by the homeowner’s was their desire to have more outdoor space to entertain, and a space to provide shade on those hot summer days. With this in mind, our talented design team went to work on coming up with a multi-faceted design that would address the clients needs and deliver a new & improved look and feel to the backyard!

New Albany OH Before and After
Amazing before & after images of this project.

The new outdoor living space combines all the function, beauty and versatility the homeowner’s had in mind, and much more. This outdoor living combination includes a new deck, paver patio surround with a shade pergola, custom fire pit and a seating/retaining wall. Archadeck of Columbus also designed and installed the landscaping as the perfect finishing touch to the outdoor structure additions.

 

 

Here’s an in-depth look at each of these outdoor living structures which together, comprise a total package delivering enjoyment and fluidity:

  • New Albany, OH, Paver PatiosThe Paver Patio encompasses and blends the entire space from the moment you enter from the rear of the home, or step off the deck. The patio was built using Unilock Beacon Hill pavers in Sierra with a Holland Stone soldier course border in Charcoal.

New Albany OH Paver Patios

  • New Albany OH TimberTech Deck BuildersThe Deck was built using a low-to-grade design providing a seamless transition from one space to another in low-maintenance TimberTech in Pacific Rosewood. This beautiful color was recently discontinued from the TimberTech line, so Archadeck of Columbus diligently searched to ensure the needed materials were within our reach as we began the project. The railings used on the deck were powder-coated aluminum and we also integrated deck lighting into the design to enhance evening functionality and ambiance.

New Albany, OH, Low Maintenance Decks

New Albany OH Fire Pit BuilderThe Fire Pit delivers extended enjoyment for the homeowner’s to gather with family and friends for conversation, or even s’mores! The retaining wall helps define the area and adds additional seating when entertaining a crowd. The fire pit and wall were built using Brussels Dimensional pavers with a ledgestone cap and accent banding within the seating wall to unify the color used along the patio’s edge and for added visual interest.

New Albany OH, custom backyard fire features

  • New Albany OH pergola buildersThe Pergola adds the shade qualities these homeowner’s wanted while adding beauty to the entire project. The pergola is made of low-maintenance vinyl and is constructed with angled lathing to deliver additional sun-blocking benefits.
  • The Landcaping/Softscaping is last but certainly not least, as it serves as the perfect finishing touch to the entire outdoor living space. Archadeck of Columbus carefully hand-picked select perennials that would work best in this backyard and to compliment the design elements of the new outdoor space, and the homeowner’s personal tastes. Softscaping is the pièce de résistance to many of our projects and it adds a signature flair and seasonal color.

New Albany OH Softscaping

If you are ready to transform the way you live outdoors through the addition of a singular or combination outdoor living space, contact Archadeck of Columbus today to get started! We would love the opportunity to work with you on your anticipated outdoor structure project. You can reach us at (740) 879 – 3730, or via email at westcolumbus@archadeck.net.

Archadeck of Columbus team
The Archadeck of Columbus team.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Archadeck of Columbus proves good things come in small packages, such as this unique custom fire pit which is part of the bigger picture of outdoor bliss

A deck, patio and fire pit combination outdoor space is just what these Granville, OH homeowners had in mind.

Granville OH patios and hardscapes
This new outdoor space gives the rear of this Granville, OH home new direction.

Our featured project this week proves the power of adding a quality designed and built outdoor space to your backyard. This relatively new home only had a small concrete landing. When we met with these Granville homeowners, we discussed adding a larger and more usable outdoor living space. The existing area had stairs that led to the home’s upper level. They also had a door outside their basement that sat at a lower grade. Their desire was to add two outdoor living spaces to extend their backyard enjoyment. They were also certain that they wanted a fire pit with a seating wall.

Granville OH before
This image shows the backyard area before we began the project.

Archadeck of Columbus headed to the drawingboard to design a space that would meet their needs and fulfill their wishes. We came out with a combination outdoor living space that includes a low maintenance deck and new patio complete with the fire pit and seating wall.

The deck was built with TimberTech Evolutions decking in walnut. This choice ensures the authentic look of natural wood but requires minimal maintenance to stay looking great for years to come. We wanted to tie the trim color of the house into the space so we used white vinyl railing. The contrast between the walnut deck and the white railing is clean and crisp. We also recommended TimberTech rail camp on the vinyl railing to allow a flat surface. Normal vinyl railing will not allow for this feature since they are often rounded. The rail camp adds another layer of aesthetic to the space.

Granville OH TimberTech decks
Notice how beautifully the Walnut TimberTech Evolutions decking compliments the whote vinyl rail and rail camp.

In addition to the new TimberTech deck, we removed the existing concrete patio and replaced it with a nice curvilinear patio with a retaining wall that also serves as a seating wall. We then integrated a wood fire pit within the seating wall. This design includes a retaining wall next to the house. This small retaining wall is both functional and attractive. Archadeck of Columbus constructed the hardscape components with Unilock‘s Brussels in the Sierra color. We also added a soldier course with an Il Campo charcoal colored border. For the retaining walls we used Unilock’s Brussels dimensional stone which is typically used for walls since it is a larger sized hardscape medium.

Granville OH custom fire pits
The fire pit’s unique design is functional yet unobtrusive.

We included Unilock Ledgestone as a decorative cap, and carried the same cap throughout the seating wall. We designed the custom fire pit into the retaining wall so it becomes one with the wall. For a relatively small space, the fire pit doesn’t take up a lot of functional, usable space. In addition to the deck and hardscape area, we also installed an extra column to support the stairs. This is our protocol with any set of long stairs such as this. This is to alleviate movement and bouncing, which will not occur with the additional support we installed.

These Granville homeowners are elated with their new space. They hosted an outdoor party last weekend where they were able to use (and show off) their new outdoor oasis! They are looking forward to the spring and summer season to have more opportunities to utilize their new space.

If you would like to learn more about improving the beauty and function of your backyard, contact Archadeck of Columbus. No dream is too big, or too small, for us to make a reality. Call today for a free consultation (740) 879 – 3730
westcolumbus@archadeck.net

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

You can see more examples of our low maintenance deck designs and out patios and hardscapes by visiting our composite and PVC deck gallery and our patio and hardscapes gallery, located on our website.

Archadeck of Columbus is now an authorized Unilock contractor!

Archadeck of Columbus is proud to offer Unilock products to their already extensive line of high-quality hardscapes.

WallAccents Unilock
This outdoor oasis was built using Unilock wall accents- photo courtesy of Unilock.

Archadeck of Columbus is now an authorized contractor for Unilock pavers. Unilock has been a great product for us but we are happy to have recently been approved as an authorized contractor. In order to do so, candidates must be verified as a reputable company in regards to warranties, proper installations and correct certification. This invitation is only granted to a select few and we’re honored to be chosen.

Unilock is an international company with a wealth of great products. Some of their new products to keep an eye out for include their new wall product, Rivercrest™ Wall. This product offers the character and flexibility of natural stone with the durability and affordability of concrete. Another newcomer to the Unilock family is Thornbury™pavers. These pavers are ideal for both standard and permeable installations. It delivers a modestly textured surface and three compatible sizes allowing for a pleasing look. Unilock also introduced a new paver called Belpasso which is one of the most durable pavers available today because of its ability to resist stains.

OutdoorLiving elements by Unilock
Outdoor Living elements by Unilock- photo courtesy of Unilock

Among the most favored characteristic within the family of Unilock products is their use of EnduraColor products. EnduraColor is a unique pigment process. The process utilizes more than just a top-color only process but allows pigment to go deep into the paver. Unilock has been manufacturing products with the EnduraColor and EnduraColor Plus features for twenty years. First introduced in 1992, both technologies are exclusive to Unilock. EnduraColor uses high quality surface aggregates for increased durability. It also incorporates additional cement within the top layer of their product for reduced water absorption. What this means to the homeowner has a surface which is smoother, has more color stability, and wears better than traditional pavers.

Unilock offers a huge selection of products featuring extensive color selections to suit any taste. They are also cutting edge when it comes to their designs such as offering the same color schemes for vertical products as they do pavers. Their palette is always evolving. Unilock also offers transferable lifetime guarantees which is another plus for us in the way Unilock solidifies its commitment to providing an outstanding product and promise to the customer.

You can view photos of gorgeous Columbus hardscape projects from our extensive portfolio by visiting our hardscape and patio photo gallery and our outdoor fireplace and fire pit photo gallery located on our website.

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

To learn more about the Unilock line of superior hardscape products  and how they can enhance your outdoor living design contact Archadeck of Columbus today for a free consultation (740) 879 – 3730 or email us at westcolumbus@archadeck.net.

 

The sense and sensibility of creating a dry space that delivers function and beauty under your Columbus second story deck

Archadeck of Columbus explores that area under your 2nd story deck and the ways we can transform that unused space into a covered outdoor oasis.

DrySnap rain deck
This gorgeous Columbus under deck space was created by using a DrySnap system.

Whether you have an existing 2nd story deck or are considering adding one from scratch, taking advantage of the area below your deck can be a great way to get two outdoor living spaces out of one. Normally, the spaces between the deck boards will cause water to drip down below which can keep you from enjoying the space under your deck in wet weather. We are able to add an under decking system to your deck that prevents any water from dripping down through the decking boards. This is critical when creating a under-deck outdoor living area but also when building a porch under a deck.

Columbus screen porch dry roof
This Columbus 2nd story deck contains a lovely screened porch underneath.

There are several different ways to make your under deck space watertight. If you have an existing deck, there are products that we can retro-fit to your existing structure to ensure no water gets through your decking. Keep in mind when you retrofit that it will not always be a 100% solution, but it will be 99% effective. The idea behind using a retrofitting system is to create a slope which feeds water down to a gutter to drain the water. When using retrofits, theses systems have components that create the slope needed to divert water. This means you will not have a flat roof, it will be slightly sloped. The slight slope is hardly ever noticeable. Some of the retrofitting products available are InsideOut, DrySnap, and Dry Space by TimberTech. Inside Out is a high-end premier aluminum product that comes in a variety of colors. Dry Space by TimberTech and Dry Snap are both plastic products, with a more limited color palette of white, bone and off-white. We have used each of these products to retrofit and each has shown beneficial results. You can even retrofit lighting and ceiling fans to keep the wiring safe and dry, but the key is to make sure it is done right.

If you are starting your structure from scratch then you will have the ability to install a rain deck. With a rain deck, there are layers built within the structure with a slope that will divert the rain and water away from the deck. Comparatively speaking it is more expensive to install a rain deck than it is to retrofit an existing deck, but it is easier. By installing a full-fledged rain deck you take care of the cavities that are in-between the layers of the structure. You are able to create the slope needed and use rubber roofing and a cavity under which is the non-sloping ceiling. Because you have this cavity and layers of framing, there is more flexibility with adding accoutrements. Rain decks make the most sense when you are considering a finished lower level such as a porch or patio underneath your deck.

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

If you are thinking of adding a second story deck onto your homes, or if you presently have an existing second story deck we can create an under deck space that will double your outdoor living enjoyment. Our outdoor living combinations make all other “two for one” deals in your life  pale by comparison. Call Archadeck of Columbus for a free consultation today (740) 879 – 3730 or email westcolumbus@archadeck.net

See more examples of outdoor oasis project that are a result of using the area under a second story deck by visiting our covered patio gallery and our screened porch gallery, both located on our website.

When is the best time of the year to build my Columbus, OH deck?

Archadeck of Columbus ponders the ideal time to build your deck and discusses the many benefits of choosing a fall or winter construction.

Columbus, OH deck with built in fireplace
This Columbus, Ohio deck has a built-in fireplace that would make the perfect accompaniment to your deck for those chilly fall and winter evenings.

We are often asked the best time of year to build a deck. The answer may be more surprising than you may think. Many homeowners are under the impression that outdoor structures such as decks are best to build during the spring and summer months. The truth is that anytime that best suits your circumstances and budget can serve as the right time to build.

There are many advantages to building in the cooler months. Along with shorter lead times you will also get a space that is up and running in time to enjoy for spring and the beginning of the outdoor living season.  Since the humidity level is much lower during the fall and winter, any wood used in the construction of your project will season quicker. Seasoning involves the drying out of wood making it ready to accept stain or paint better. When a project is built during the warmer, humid months the usual wait time to stain or paint is a few months.  Another plus to cooler weather construction is productivity. A crew that is working in the humid 95 degree weather of the summer is less productive than one that is working outside during milder weather. Less heat means more stamina and less Gatorade breaks for the crew. This translates to the likelihood that a job that is completed sooner.

Columbus custom cedar deck with floating bench
Building your deck during the fall and winter will ensure a timely application of stain or paint to have your outdoor space all set for spring.

Our Columbus climate allows us to build your project during the harsher part of the winter months. In some cases inclement weather can complicate timing on a project but not dramatically. The frost line in our region lies between 32″ and 36″ which is the depth from the ground required to install footers which serve as the base for concrete which supports your deck project. The frost line is determined by calculation of average temperatures and the hundred year freeze. They make the frost line deeper by a dramatic margin to ensure in case of a hundred year freeze occurrence, the foundation of your project will not be affected. The problem that can occur from freezing temperatures is the expansion that takes place with freezing. If you have an expansion into the footer on your project, then it will move. Typically, in our experience the ground only freezes within the first few inches during the period of December through February. In order of us to install footers, this is not a big deal once we get through the frozen ground to an area where the soil temperatures are relative to 50 degrees.  Other than having to dig through a couple of inches of frozen ground the only other obstacles that could directly affect your construction are mud, sleet or snow. Our guys can work in snow but not rain. Rain can damage some of the tools that are required for building. In these cases it may take us a little longer to finish the project but on average only by a few days. Whereas an average project may take 7 business days, during a rough winter it may take us 9 business days.

Westerville, OH pressure treated deck
Choosing to build your deck during the cooler months has its benefits.

Since our average temperatures are above freezing in Columbus most of the winter the chances of inclement or freezing weather impacting your project are minimal. The advantages of autumn and winter construction outweigh any deficiencies brought on by Mother Nature. As with any construction project there will be damage to the turf caused by foot traffic. In a fall/winter project the turf is more apt to recover quicker because it has the time to overwinter in time for spring taking in valuable nutrients present in precipitation. Some turfs are dormant during the winter and this will aid in quicker recovery as well.

Columbus open porch with deck
Have your dream outdoor space ready and waiting on you this spring.

If you are on the fence about deciding when to start your deck or other outdoor structure project, keep in mind that lead times during the outdoor living season can be in excess of 8-12 weeks. In the winter it may be 4-5 weeks at the most.  This quick turn-around will ensure you get the full benefits of your outdoor space when you are ready, and the timing won’t interrupt your outdoor activities. Contact Archadeck of Columbus to schedule your free consultation today and get the ball rolling on your outdoor dreams. (740) 879 – 3730
westcolumbus@archadeck.net

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

See more gorgeous Columbus area decks by visiting our wood deck gallery, our composite and vinyl deck gallery and our Ipe deck gallery located on our website.

Help! Where do I put my grill?

Archadeck of Columbus welcomes the season for grilling with designs especially suited for grilling out on your deck, porch or patio.

TimberTech deck with grill area under cover
This TimberTech deck has a special covered area perfect for grilling out when summer showers arrive to keep the cook dry.

With the season of outdoor living in full swing many of us look forward to the smell of delicious food cooking on the grill and the camaraderie that so often comes along with it. If you want your grill to be part of your new outdoor living area, you need to take some serious considerations into account when designing your new area. You want the location of your grill to be extremely convenient. You can either allocate space on your deck, porch or patio for a grill. Another viable option is to actually add space by extending an area for your grill on your deck, porch or patio such as a deck bump-out or a grill rack.

A few helpful hints to remember if you are planning on incorporating your grill into your deck or patio is that sizes of various grills can differ. A typical gill is 4.5′ wide, but larger models can span from 5′ to 5.5′. With this in mind you want to consider the amount of space the grill will take up and allowing enough space for walking room and maneuverability around the grill. If you have a smoker, or are planning on getting one you will also need to allocate enough space for it as well. You will also want to leave a 2 x 6′ area for the grill and additional room for any accompaniment pieces, such as a smoker.

Low to grade deck and patio with built-in bend seating next to grill
This low-to-grade deck and patio has built-in bench seating near the grill area to add comfort and convenience for the cook!

Deciding what functionality you want your grill area to serve is important to confirm when planning your deck, patio or porch addition. Decisions such as whether or not you are intent on “hanging out” around your grill while entertaining, or whether you will need or want a seating area next to the grill will help determine what type of space you need. If serving food right from the grill is something you  like to be able to do, then a nice sized rail could be the perfect place to put serving platters or rest dinnerware while you and your guests are filling your plates. If you entertain often, you might consider a buffet table in close proximity to your grill that can also hold serving platters.

Open porch with deck tucked aways on one end
The design of this open porch allows the grill to be “tucked away” and out of the flow of traffic.

Key considerations include having the grill out-of-the-way so it doesn’t inhibit traffic flow, or maybe you want the grill area close to the kitchen to make bringing stuff back and forth more convenient. You don’t want to design a grill area that is too close to the house because the heat is a safety concern and can also discolor your siding or home’s exterior materials. But you do want to design it close enough that you aren’t “running your legs off” when you grill or entertain. If you entertain often then maybe an outdoor kitchen would fit your needs better than a grill area. Outdoor kitchens can be outfitted with anything from grills and food preparation areas to refrigerators, food warming drawers and much more.

Outdoor kitchen
Maybe an outdoor kitchen is the best choice for your deck, porch or patio?

If grilling during inclement weather is a concern you might consider creating an outdoor structure that would allow for you to grill regardless of rain or snow such as an open porch. A key consideration for grilling out when weather is an issue is the location of your grill in relation to the prevailing winds. If the prevailing winds are West then you would want your grill to be located in the opposite direction. Food stains are also a key point to consider. Many decking materials will stain from food grease spills such as barbecue sauce or wine so it’s important to try to clean them at the time of the stain just as you would inside your home.

No matter what your pleasure, Archadeck of Columbus can make the grilling experience a more enjoyable and convenient one by designing your outdoor structure to best suit your lifestyle. Grill on, and contact us to make the most out of your deck, patio or porch this grilling season. Bon Appetit!

Call for a free consultation: (740) 879 – 3730
westcolumbus@archadeck.net

A design conversation with our own design expert sheds light on creating good overall space design for your outdoor living structure

Our own design and installation expert, Rob Mitchell, discusses the elements of creating a memorable outdoor structure, or combination of outdoor structures, in your backyard.

Patio, deck and fire pit combination in Dublin, OH
This patio, deck and fire pit combination in Dublin, OH shows the use of curves to achieve harmony, flow and beauty in the overall design.

Recently, our resident patio and hardscape expert shared some of his thoughts on the fundamentals of hardscape design.  Rob Mitchell is our patio and hardscape expert and is truly a craftsman.  He shared with me the basics that go into creating a magical outdoor space, and also the key elements that need that go into the recipe for aesthetic appeal, good function and convenience. In many instances our customers bring some of their own ideas to the table, Rob is able to take these ideas and translate them into the design in ways that are quite impressive. In design, every space is different, and should be treated as such.  We like to see something develop and enjoy working with homeowners through the entire process.

Archadeck_Columbus_paver_patio_architectural_Rendering
No stone is left unturned when we prepare your architectural rendering.

How arc and tangent play a role in good design

The initial thing we try to do with the design of each outdoor structure is to create a grand entrance into the structure, or a grand entrance exiting the structure. This goes back to the old cliché’ that ” first impressions mean everything”. This could not be more true, the first impression sets the tone and expectation for the design in its entirety. We usually achieve this through the staircase that leads you into the structure itself.  We use a great deal of arc and tangent design that incorporate the use of curved lines. Curved lines soften the back of your home, are more intriguing than straight lines, and offer more opportunities within the design to serve specific function. For instance, using curves and circles within the areas that you wish to designate for living and conversation areas versus dining areas. The decks from the past were squares and rectangles, using arc and tangent leaves more room for open creativity and lends the design to connect the curves with no flat spots so the design is seamless and continuous. Arc and tangent promote flow and harmony as you move from one structure to another, or from each area of designated function into another. Circles and curves are more relaxed and easier and more visually appealing to connect to.

The hot new trends are destined to become timeless classics

Design statements can also be made through the use of colors and textures.  Most of the time our customers allow us to pick the colors. In general, with patios and hardscapes, earth tones are very popular right now. We are seeing a trend towards the use of larger pavers with natural stone texture, similar to a rock texture on the top. One of the ways in which we like to add drama to  our hardscape designs is to change direction in which we lay the materials for our patios. Often times, we will lay the pavers soldier course around the patio and have a 45 degree angle. This spices the design up a bit. We also like to use seating walls with lighting and banding. The use of  retaining walls and planters blend especially well with a patio/deck combination structure because it adds height without creating a stark contrast. Thinking “outside the box” , by using arc and tangent when it comes to outdoor living designs offers more flow and harmony within the structure itself and makes it a joy to look at as well.

Columbus_paver_patio_plan
This paver patio design shows the way in which we use arc and tangent.

We are also building a large number of outdoor fire pits and fireplaces to partner with our deck and patio combinations. Letting Archadeck of Columbus design a custom feature such as this promotes continuity of the custom feel and we can pull accents from your home to make it a cohesive design. Rob said, ” if he won the lottery himself, he would build a deck/patio/outdoor fireplace combination in his own backyard.” This speaks volumes on the impact adding an outdoor fireplace or fire pit can make in your own backyard!

The only thing we would like to see people do more with is integrated patio lighting.  Good lighting creates an ambiance, not necessarily in areas that it would perform function, but to create more mood. Adding light to areas such as risers in stairs, beneath seating walls, or even as a banding in the border of a patio will create mood. Unilock pavers actually offer a glowing luminescent  paver to use in borders or as banding, it is not cheap, but the effect is well worth the cost.

Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus
Michael Reeder, Archadeck of Columbus

If you are ready to design an outdoor space that fulfills your every want and need, contact Archadeck of Columbus to design your backyard masterpiece. (740) 879 – 3730 westcolumbus@archadeck.net

See more of our patio and hardscape designs and outdoor fireplace and fire pit designs by visiting our patio and hardscape gallery, and our outdoor fireplace and fire pit design gallery, both located on our website.