Attention, Central CT homeowners: This message is for you, and acting on it can save you money. If you are thinking about hiring a contractor to design and build an outdoor living project at your home, the time to take action is now.
First, you have to decide if you want to work with the most professional, high-quality deck designers and builders in the area. If you do, then you will want to work with Archadeck. We don’t just build outdoor living structures, we custom design and build them. While it may sound like a small distinction, it is not. The right design will determine whether your deck becomes a little-used appendage … or your favorite place to relax, grill, dine and entertain outdoors.
How you can save money by signing with Archadeck before year end
Yes, we mentioned saving money on your upcoming outdoor living project. If you follow this blog, you know we’ve talked about this before, and always at this time of year. The outdoor living season has peaked and you’ll be spending less time outdoors as it gets colder here in Connecticut. Many homeowners believe they should wait until after winter weather has passed before talking to a deck builder about building their deck project. That belief will increase the cost of your project.
There are several reasons your new deck might cost more if you wait until after the year’s end to schedule your free design consultation with Archadeck of Central CT. The first and most predictable reason for higher costs is that manufacturers of construction materials tend to raise their prices in January. We see this pattern every year.
Clients who heed our call to move ahead and meet with us to begin planning now are the ones who will save money on their outdoor living projects. In contrast, if you wait until 2019 to meet with our deck designers, you will likely end up paying higher prices.
6 steps to locking in cost savings on your deck project
In order to lock in 2018 prices for your deck materials, you need to take the following actions:
1. Call us as soon as you can (this week, if possible!) to schedule your design consultation
2. Gather all your ideas about what your dream deck or other outdoor living project will look like – and all your questions.
3. Meet with your Archadeck design consultant to begin planning the project. Be prepared to answer questions about how you and your family want to use this outdoor living space because your answers will influence the design we create for you. Every deck we build is custom-designed for one client, so each design is unique.
— Fiberon custom deck in Cromwell, CT.
4. Consider the various decking materials available – such as wood vs. low-maintenance composites and synthetic options – and choose the materials you want for your deck and railing. Your Archadeck design consultant will guide you through this process and show you samples of various materials. If your project includes other elements such as a pergola, patio, screened porch, etc., you will need to select materials for each element.
5. Review and approve the professionally-designed plans Archadeck’s drafting team creates for your project. We may take the design through several iterations before we arrive at the final design.
6. Sign a contract with Archadeck prior to December 31, 2018. A portion of the price we agree upon will be payable at signing.
Does this process seem too complicated?
The way we’ve laid out these six steps may make the process sound more complicated than it really is. What we’ve described are the steps that take place from the time you call us to schedule your design consultation to the time you approve the final design and sign the contract.
All of these steps need to take place regardless of what time of year you start your design-and-build process with Archadeck. The difference is that if you complete these steps now, and sign a contract before year end, you will save money by locking in 2018 prices.
Follow the same process for a new deck or redecking
If you already have a deck and want to replace it with new materials, your deck may be a candidate for redecking. We can’t confirm that until we examine your existing deck, including the substructure under the decking boards. In many cases only the decking boards, railing and stairs need to be replaced, and we can use your existing substructure. That’s another way we can lower the cost of a replacement deck! Whether we are starting from scratch or redecking, the process will be the same in terms of choosing materials, approving your design and signing a contract before 2019 rolls in.
If you are interested in saving money on your new deck or other outdoor living space, contact Archadeck of Central CT today at (203) 793-7142 or email us at a [email protected].
Sometimes the more you know about an outdoor living project, the more beautiful it appears. How can we say that about this stunning deck in Farmington, CT? It is already beautiful. Its beauty doesn’t need to be enhanced, or explained. Ah, but just wait until you read the rest of the story.
— Stunning new Farmington bamboo deck with unique custom glass rail by Archadeck of Central CT.
These Farmington CT homeowners knew the time had come to replace their older deck made of pressure-treated wood. It had seen many good years, and its appearance was dated – especially those wood balusters in the railing system. Today’s railing designs include several alternatives to wooden balusters (pickets) that can block so much of the view! Slender metal balusters, horizontal cables and glass panels are a few of the modern alternatives.
— These Farmington homeowners knew it was time to replace their PT wooden deck, shown above.
Archadeck of Central Connecticut designed a fabulous deck that retained some of the original features –like the multi-level layout and two sets of stairs to the yard – while changing other features significantly.
Extra-Sturdy Support That Stands Up to Freezing Ground in Winter
First, let’s look at the posts supporting the new deck. They look like other posts until you see the base of each post, capped with wood. What’s going on there? These are not just any posts. Traditional support for a deck includes digging a deep hole, pouring a concrete footing and setting the posts into the concrete. No concrete was used here.
This new deck features wood posts attached to helical piers for additional strength and durability. The helical shape is like that of a screw – a spiral or coil. The steel piers are screwed into the ground deep enough to pass weak and unstable soil until they reach firm soil where the pier is solidly anchored. Then the wood support posts are attached to the helical piers. We added the wood cap around the base of the post to conceal the metal joining.
We like to work with helical piers as deck support for two main reasons. First, using this screw-like anchor eliminates the need for pouring concrete footings, which also eliminates construction delays while waiting for the concrete to set. Second, the steel piers are not affected by the frost heave sometimes created by the ground’s freeze/thaw cycle in winter.
When is a Wood Deck not a Wood Deck? When it’s Bamboo!
Next, can you tell what material these homeowners chose for their deck surface? It may look like an exotic hardwood, but it’s bamboo, which is actually a grass. The carbonized, fused bamboo boards we use for decking are highly stable, stronger and more durable than most wood, even most hardwoods. Bamboo doesn’t swell or contract in response to moisture; it has a hard exterior, and the cellular interior of bamboo decking is flexible and elastic.
— In progress images of deck addition.
Choosing a green decking option like bamboo for your Connecticut deck offers even more advantages. Bamboo is environmentally friendly and sustainable. It matures in 5-7 years and absorbs 35% more carbon dioxide per acre than trees do. Bamboo is resistant to insects so it doesn’t require pesticides or other harmful chemicals for protection as it grows. And bamboo does not contain rays or knots commonly found in wood.
The bamboo decking boards come with a factory-applied coating that, over a few months, lightens up a little, creating natural-looking variations. It can then be re-coated, but most folks don’t do that because it looks really nice as is. You can re-coat bamboo at any time in the future and it will come back to the original deep brown color.
In this project we clear-coated the cedar rail components and used dark stain on all of the support columns and beams made of traditional wood. We stained any wooden framing materials that were visable. The only wooden element of the project that was not stained or coated were the joists, which are hidden from view under the deck.
There’s something else you should know about this bamboo deck: there are no visible screws anywhere on this project. We used hidden fasteners to connect the decking to the wooden support structure. We counterbored and countersunk every screw used to fasten the stair treads and all the screws used to fasten the bamboo rail cap to the cedar rail components. For the ultimate smooth and polished look we then used bamboo plugs to fill the holes over the screws and sanded them so they are virtually invisible. We are proud of our workmanship, and we know work like this is the exception rather than the norm.
An Ultra-Modern Railing System with the Clearest View Possible
Finally, we get to the glass-paneled railing system. Beautiful, right?! Deck builder Archadeck of Central CT custom engineered the glass panels to set off the posts for added flair instead of having the glass completely fill the space from post to post. We also used 1/4" glass instead of the typical 3/16" thickness.
— Railing prior to installation of glass panels.
Glass provides maximum visibility as you look out over the yard, much more so than those old wooden pickets. This is tempered glass, which is required by code any time glass is used within 18" of any walking surface, whether it is a room or deck. Tempered glass is four to five times stronger than regular glass. It is more resistant to breaking and shattering, and, if it does break, tempered glass will shatter into small pieces. The chance of injury from broken tempered glass is lower. Also, the edges of the tempered glass are polished to protect anyone from being cut.
Finally, we included LED integrated stair lighting for safety on the deck stairs. The homeowners are thrilled with the updated look of their new deck, especially the bamboo and glass.
If you are ready to replace your aging deck with one featuring a fresh design and 21st-century technology, Archadeck of Central Connecticut is the deck builder you have been searching for. We will design and build the perfect outdoor space for your home. Call us today at (203) 793-7142 or email us at a [email protected].
Break out the hot dogs and fireworks! The coming week is one of the most festive across this great country, and Connecticut is not about to fall short when it comes to celebrating our Independence. The Summer of 2018 has made itself known and is forging full-steam ahead. July 4th will be here in moments, it seems. Are you “backyard ready” with your deck and screened porch? Does your grill or smoker need an outdoor kitchen upgrade?
How will you and your family spend your July 4th holiday? Having it fall in the middle of the week presents an interesting challenge for many. If you can take the entire week off, that’s great!! We are always in favor of longer holiday celebrations, and a whole week sounds just about right for this one.
Food, family, friends and fireworks … and decks!
Celebrations across central Connecticut will certainly feature food, family, friends and fireworks. Oh, did we list those in the correct order? Food first, right? This is the holiday that cookouts and barbeques everywhere have been waiting for. It’s the big one, and it only comes around once a year.
This may be the time of year when you wish you had a bigger deck, perhaps one with several levels or different areas for hanging out and dining, for example. Do you look at your deck and wish it were a screened porch instead? Do you look at your deck and think, Wow, if I turned this deck into a screened porch, I could add a bigger deck!
Deck-and-screened-porch combinations are perfect for holiday celebrations because, while everyone loves being outdoors, those quick summer showers have been known to dampen a backyard barbeque. With a screened porch or three-season room, you can move the party from the deck to your covered porch if necessary. Screens keep out the pests that can torment us during an outdoor meal, so it makes sense to plan your meal for the porch and enjoy the deck before and after eating.
Do you see an outdoor kitchen in your future—as in, your future July 4th holidays?
At times like this, when you’re entertaining a horde of folks and you’re the grill-master, you may think (again) about adding an outdoor kitchen to your outdoor living space. In-between major backyard holidays, it’s easy to put off planning a bigger and better deck or the outdoor kitchen you’ve been wanting. Then, another outdoor holiday rolls around looking for a barbeque and you wish you had already completed that upgrade to your outdoor living space.
Archadeck of Central Connecticut wants to wish you and your family a fantastic 4th of July, wherever you celebrate. We also want to encourage you to start putting your plan into action for a new or improved outdoor living space as soon as Wednesday, July 4th, has passed. Or, even better, call us today!
This you know: every summer, these three occasions roll back around: Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day. These are the days you most want a beefed up outdoor space for grilling and entertaining. What you may not realize is how much you will enjoy that bigger deck, screened porch and outdoor kitchen every day—or at least every weekend—spring, summer and fall. Why put it off any longer?
If we could start building your project tomorrow, we would! This is our busy season, and we have projects on the calendar. The sooner you call to schedule your free design consultation, the sooner we can get you on that calendar as well. We want to help you become the envy of your neighbors with a new or bigger and better outdoor living space, not just for major holidays but so every day can be a celebration.
If you are considering upgrading your deck, adding a screened porch or adding an outdoor kitchen, custom fire feature or more at your Avon, Cheshire, Farmington, Guilford, Madison, Woodbridge-area home, call us to talk about your ideas and see how we can serve you. Call Archadeck of Central Connecticut at (203) 793-7142 or email us at a [email protected].
If your family is going through changes, take Archadeck of Central Connecticut with you! Whether it’s a physical address change or a lifestyle change, we want to be right there.
— Cromwell, CT, deck by Archadeck of Central CT
An excellent example of how this works is the story of a family for whom we built a Fiberon low-maintenance deck in Middletown, CT, several years ago. They loved the work we did there. They felt strongly about the level of service we provided and the high quality of the outdoor living space we designed and built. Because they were so pleased with the job, when they moved they called us again. Not only did they want us to return to design and build their new outdoor living space, they wanted to use Fiberon as their decking material again. Repeat performances all around!
New deck above; re-deck below
When the clients moved from Middletown to Cromwell, they decided to refresh the existing deck at their new home, and they wanted to link the house deck with the pool deck. This home had decks attached to the house at two levels—a second-story deck and a ground-level deck below it—and a pool deck that was completely separate. The lower deck didn’t need to be completely replaced, so we kept its existing substructure and only redecked the surface with new decking boards.
Connecting the multi-level deck to the pool deck
Our redesign of the upper deck includes a landing partway down the new stairs that connects to the pool deck. This design is a huge improvement for the homeowners. The previous configuration had them walking down the deck stairs, through the yard, and up another set of stairs to the pool deck. Now they have a choice when they start down the stairs and reach the landing from the upper deck. They can either continue down the stairs to the yard, or they can follow the landing across to the new gate for the pool deck.
The Fiberon color our clients selected for their upper deck replacement Ipe (pronounced ee-pay, the color of an exotic hardwood), and they selected vinyl railings. They are fully invested in the low-maintenance outdoor living lifestyle.
Grilling in the shade
Beneath the upper deck, the homeowners have a shaded area with comfortable seating on the lower deck. The grill can be positioned right at the edge of the lower deck so the grill isn’t under the covered area, yet the grill master can remain in the shade while grilling.
If you are considering a new deck, replacement deck or redecking at your Middletown, Cromwell or Central CT home, call us to talk about your ideas and see how we can serve you. Call Archadeck of Central Connecticut at (203) 793-7142 or email us at [email protected].
Is 2018 the year you’ll add or improve an outdoor living space at your home? Don’t miss the Spring Home Show where you can see examples of our work and talk with us about your ideas for a project at your home! We want to hear what you have in mind. Even if you’re in the very beginning stages of looking at ideas and talking about potential projects, this is the time to stop by Booth 133 and introduce yourself. Our professional design team will be on hand to discuss your outdoor living needs.
Home Show Details:
2018 HARTFORD CONNECTICUT SPRING HOME SHOW April 6-8, Booth #133
- The 24th Annual Spring Home Show
- Location: XL Center
- 1 Civic Center Plaza
- Hartford, CT 06103 – Get Directions
- Adults $10
- Seniors $8
- Ages 12 & under $5
Home Show Schedule, Friday-Sunday, April 6-8, 2018
- Friday: 5pm to 9pm
- Saturday: 10am to 6pm
- Sunday: 10am to 5pm
Archadeck of Central CT is your Central Connecticut designer and builder for decks, porches and deluxe outdoor living spaces combining more than one structure. We design and build whatever it takes to make your outdoor living dreams come true. When we work with you to design your project, you’ll appreciate our thorough process, and you’ll know we hear you when you talk about your priorities, likes and dislikes for your outdoor space.
The possibilities for your outdoor living space are unlimited. Whether you’re starting from scratch with your home’s first outdoor living project, or you’re looking to revitalize your outdoor space, Archadeck of Central Connecticut is the company to work with. We focus on beautiful and functional custom designs created specifically to meet your needs. Fall in love with your home all over again.
Don’t miss this show! This is the largest Spring Home Show Expo in New England, conveniently located at the XL Center in Hartford. We love meeting homeowners at the Home Show each year and look forward to talking with YOU.
If you can’t make it to the 2018 Hartford Connecticut Spring Home Show April 6-8, please call or email Archadeck of Central Connecticut today to start a conversation at (203) 793-7142 or [email protected].
Across central Connecticut, we have left a trail of happy clients who love the outdoor spaces we’ve created for them including decks, screened porches and patios. In each of these cases, the new structure we designed and built was attached to their home with a door leading from the main house to the new addition. The exceptions are gazebos, pavillions and in some cases patios, which you could argue are not attached in that way.
— One of our recent open porch additions serves this family well for outdoor entertaining.
Currently, we are exploring the concept of building an outdoor structure on the client’s property but not directly attached to the client’s house. We’ve all seen this in the form of a detached garage. Some detached garages are built with an apartment or some type of living quarters above the garage itself. We want to take that idea to another level, whether it is for recreational purposes or for workspaces.
— Imagine your own space just for exercise or yoga…
The purpose of a detached structure on one’s property has never been limited to living quarters. Several examples come to mind. Besides the garage, the earliest use might have been the woodworker’s workshop and the garden shed. In both of these examples, the intent would have been to build a structure in which the woodworker or gardener could store tools and supplies. They also needed a workbench or table, basically, a place to work.
— Imagine a space for sewing, crafts and cherished hobbies…
Next comes the “she shed.” In contrast, we typically think of a man cave as being inside the house, usually in the basement or a spare den or bedroom. Women must have an inherently greater need to get out of the house because we’ve come to think of their escape structure as being detached from the home: the she shed. Maybe it was the garden shed that first morphed into a she shed. Somewhere a woman decided she could use that shed however she chose, and that usage did not have to include gardening — or any work, for that matter. Ideas like this spread like wildfire now in the electronic age where we share so much through social media. Just search Pinterest for “she shed” and you’ll see what we mean.
As soon as you start to think of additional uses for a detached building at your home, quite a few very appealing possibilities come to mind:
- Art studio
- Craft room
- Writer’s studio
- Sewing room
- College suite
- Theatre room
- Yoga room
- Weight room
- Cigar room
And, of course, we would include she shed, man cave, workshop and garden shed on a list of potential uses for a detached building at your home.
Some of these uses seem purely recreational and some seem work-related. Who’s to say which is which (besides your tax accountant when you’re looking for deductions)? Is the art studio of a full-time attorney who dabbles in painting landscapes any different from that of a working artist totally self-supported by her artwork? Her sewing? Her writing? At what point do crafts stop being recreational and start paying the bills? If you call it an outdoor living space, must you only dabble in hobbies there, or can you perform “real work” there, too?
As designers and builders, it’s not for us to say that any one use for a detached outdoor living structure is more legitimate than another. At Archadeck of Central Connecticut, we design and build outdoor living structures. We don’t tell you what you can or can’t do with them. It’s our job to ask you how you want to use your outdoor space — and then to collaborate with you in designing it to meet your needs. We’re simply suggesting that you might want to consider adding a detached outdoor living structure at your home for any number of leisure or professional purposes.
If you’re interested in talking with us about your ideas for a new detached outdoor living structure at your home, contact us to learn more about how we can exceed your expectations. Call (203) 793-7142 or email us at [email protected].
Archadeck of Central Connecticut is thrilled to have been awarded an Archadeck Customer Satisfaction Achievement Award at the Outdoor Living Brands Annual Meeting recently held in Scottsdale, AZ. Recipients of this award are chosen based on their Net Promoter Scores (NPS).
The Net Promoter Score is a customer satisfaction, customer experience and loyalty indicator measuring how likely customers would be to recommend a company, product or service to a friend or colleague. The Net Promoter Score is derived from asking customers one question and rating responses based on a 0-to-10 scale. Archadeck customers see this question after their outdoor living project has been completed. The question asked of these customers is this: “How likely are you to recommend [this company, this product, this experience, this representative] to your friends, family or business associates?” The Net Promoter Score is used across industries as a way to quantify customer satisfaction.
We’re proud to announce that we finished the 2017 calendar year with a perfect Net Promoter Score of 100, the highest possible score! We want to thank all of our 2017 clients for entrusting Archadeck of Central Connecticut to design and build your outdoor living projects. Knowing you will recommend us to your friends, family and colleagues means the world to us.
By definition, a Net Promoter Score of 100 also means we achieved the Best-in-Class customer satisfaction rating based on the NPS system. All scores over 50 are considered “Best-in-Class.” Many of the top Fortune 500 companies use this metric to keep track of their customer loyalty and retention. Examples include Apple with an NPS of 72, Southwest Airlines with an NPS score of 62 and Amazon, which also has an NPS of 62.
Archadeck of Central CT owner and General Manager, Phil Brown, and the entire Central CT team are dedicated to providing superior service and great results for all our clients. Some of the key service elements we believe in are the driving factors behind achieving this exemplary Net Promoter Score. These include:
• Our commitment to communicating with the client from start to finish
• Sending out a welcome package so each client knows what do expect during the construction of their project
• Consistently proving to the client that we deliver on what we say
• Taking time to make sure we get feedback at the end of each project and making sure the client understands the value of their feedback
We are proud of the hard work our entire team puts in every day, because that certainly contributed to Archadeck of Central CT winning this customer satisfaction award. You can rest assured we are the company you keep and we’ll still be around years down the road. This is because we offer quality products and strong warranties, use highly-skilled carpenters and craftsmen and know what it means to keep our customers happy.
— Our goal is to make all our customers happy, even the 4-legged kind!
Contact us today to learn more about working with a Best-in-Class outdoor living company! You can reach us at (203) 793-7142 or send us an email at [email protected].
Archadeck of Central Connecticut will be at the 71st Annual Connecticut Home and Remodeling Show this weekend, March 2nd– March 4th. If you’ve been thinking about adding to or revitalizing your existing outdoor living space, you won’t want to miss this event.
As the area’s premier choice for custom outdoor living structures, Archadeck of Central Connecticut will be there, located in booth #630, where our professional team will be on hand to discuss your outdoor living area needs. We specialize in custom designed and built decks, porches, 3 & 4 season rooms and outdoor living combinations in central Connecticut.
Sometimes it can be difficult for homeowners to imagine the full potential of their outdoor living space. You can get your creative juices flowing for upgrades and improvements to your home by spending some time at home shows. The Connecticut Home and Remodeling Show provides a fantastic way for homeowners to learn from experts from the very best of central Connecticut’s leading general contractors and remodelers. We enjoy being a part of this show because it grants us the opportunity to meet face to face with homeowners, like you, to talk about the unlimited possibilities for their outdoor living space needs and dreams. Best of all, we know we can help you revitalize your outdoor living area so you can fall in love with time spent in your backyard all over again.
This awesome event will be held at The Connecticut Convention Center, located at 100 Columbus Boulevard, Hartford, CT. Admission to the show is $12 for adults, $9 for senior citizens and children 16 and under get in free. Be sure to stop by our booth #630 to explore the endless choices available in our design combinations.
71st Annual Connecticut Home and Remodeling Show Hours:
If you are ready to transform your backyard into the custom-designed outdoor living environment of your dreams, let us show you how we can do that for you, just like we have for hundreds of other satisfied central Connecticut homeowners! Don’t miss this great event, because we look forward to meeting you at the Connecticut Home and Remodeling Show or you can call or email Archadeck of Central Connecticut today for more information at (203) 793-7142 or [email protected], you’ll be glad you did!
If the image of jalousie windows stirs up your good memories of a simpler time, you are not alone. At Archadeck of Central CT, we have seen these retro-vintage-inspired windows increase in popularity lately. Specifically, clients adding a 3-season room or sunroom have been asking for them.
— Image courtesy retroenovation.com
Not everyone can remember what they’re called, because the name is not something you hear every day, but almost everyone recognizes the jalousie window in a magazine or photo online. They give your room a retro look — some might call it whimsical. Perhaps your grandmother or great aunt had these windows on a porch or 3-season room, and seeing them now reminds you of your visits as a child. Today’s jalousie windows do come with a side order of nostalgia.
The jalousie window features a column of parallel glass or acrylic slats, like louvers, and the column of slats runs all the way from the top of the window frame to the bottom. The angle of the slats is adjustable by a crank on the side of the window. All of the slats move at the same time, in the same direction, when adjusted. The difference between slats and louvers is that louvers (on a louver door, for example) are stationary while a jalousie window’s slats are adjustable.
When the jalousie window is completely open, the slats are positioned horizontally, and there is a gap of a few inches between each slat. When the jalousie window is closed, the slats are tight and almost straight up-and-down. What keeps them from closing completely flush is that they overlap. The top of one slat rests on the bottom of the one above it.
Besides the retro appeal, why do our clients request jalousie windows? First, it’s all about the breeze! No other window allows as much airflow, so these windows were treasured for maximizing ventilation in the days before homes had air conditioning, especially down south. Today they can remind us of days spent in Florida, Hawaii or the Caribbean.
In our New England climate, we enjoy 3-season rooms because, when the temperature is right, we can open the windows and bask in the fresh air. But modern window systems only allow some window panels to open while others stay shut, so you never achieve maximum airflow. The jalousie window, on the other hand, opens fully, providing as much airflow as a screened porch.
— Tafco jalousie windows
Speaking of screens, today’s jalousie windows can include screens so you don’t suffer pesky insects while you’re enjoying the fresh air.
As Central Connecticut’s premier designer of sunrooms and three-season rooms, Archadeck of Central CT has found four additional benefits to using this gem of a window style:
Price: Jalousies are more cost-effective than many other window systems.
Inexpensive to repair: If one slat is damaged, you don’t need to replace the entire window, just the one slat.
Keeping rain out: With jalousie windows, you can leave the windows open while it’s rainy outside, as long as it’s not raining extremely hard. Because you can position the slats at a downward slant, the rain will not run into your home through the open windows.
Unobstructed views: These windows allow the least-obstructed view compared to any other windows except the picture window.
If you prefer a window that doesn’t require curtains or blinds for privacy, you can select jalousie windows with wooden slats instead of glass. Closing them will keep the light out, and opening them will let light in — as well as the outside air, of course. For a compromise between light and darkness, you can choose frosted glass slats; these provide some privacy while allowing some light into the room as well.
Are there drawbacks to jalousie windows? We’ve found two drawbacks the homeowner needs to consider:
Not completely watertight: If a heavy, driving rain is aiming right at your windows, these windows are not sealed as completely as others. During a torrent, rain may seep in even when the windows are closed.
Not airtight: The construction of the jalousie window does have some gaps, so these windows will never seal a room as completely as other types of windows. Homeowners find these windows are best suited for a room they’re not trying to heat and cool throughout the year.
— Image courtesy retroenovation.com
Archadeck of Central CT can help you determine whether jalousie windows will be right for your outdoor living space in Avon, Farmington, Cheshire or anywhere else in Central Connecticut. We are the designers that build, as opposed to builders that design. Call us at (203) 793-7142 or email us:.
Sometimes you just need to see your surroundings with fresh eyes.
Picture this: you’re on vacation or a business trip and you’re enjoying top-of-the-line accommodations. You admire the resort’s elegant cabana overlooking the indoor-outdoor pool and its terraced surroundings. You especially admire the multi-level deck that starts near the pool and goes off in several directions. With short stairways leading from one level to another, each landing on the deck is comfortably furnished as an alcove for conversation, private dining and relaxation under the stars. Subtle lighting nestled among the deck’s many planter boxes offers an ambiance of casual luxury.
It feels good to get away, but it always feels great to get back home again. And yet, the feeling you had at the resort lingers. Can you recreate this at your home?
Oh, yes you can, if you know the right people … someone to listen carefully as you describe not just the physical characteristics of the place, but the way it made you feel. Someone who can take what you describe and come back with three-dimensional renderings that bring your vision to life on the page or screen. An experienced designer of outdoor living spaces who can create designs, indoors and out, that will allow you to experience nature’s beauty at home while keeping you snug in the winter, cool in the summer.
You’ll want a designer who can recommend the best materials and explain the differences when it’s time to make your selections. Would you prefer top-quality, exotic hardwood decking or the newer low-maintenance decking products that offer incredible endurance and always look new? Would you prefer a screened porch with open rafters or beadboard ceiling — or one that lets in the sun’s sensuous rays through carefully-placed skylights? Will your new sunroom dazzle you with craftman-inspired tile or the warm glow of polished wood?
You’ll want someone who can custom design an outdoor living space that’s just right for your family no matter how many contradictions that embraces. Someone who has enough experience with innovative design features that they can design what you ask for … and take it a step or two further in ways you may not have imagined.
That designer of the perfect upscale outdoor living spaces is Archadeck of Central Connecticut. We know how to listen, so you’ll get the unique deck, porch, sunroom, 3-season or 4-season room that fits your family’s lifestyle, not a tired design out of a book. We have mastered the art of deluxe outdoor living spaces, too, so as to combine structures that complement each other while making your home a welcome retreat or a vibrant showplace. Maybe it’s a new, bigger sunroom with French doors that open onto a screened porch with a massive stone fireplace. Or a great wrap-around deck opening off of a 4-season room that becomes a sports oasis where friends and family always gather to watch the big games.
Archadeck of Central Connecticut listens to you and what you want in an outdoor living design. We communicate with you at every step of the design and building processes to eliminate surprises. We hire skilled craftsmen who always exceed expectations. We help you select the quality of materials that you want in your home. The outdoor living spaces we build appear original to the home, not something “added on” as an after-thought. We know you are an exacting client, and we will not disappoint.
— Luxurious outdoor kitchen and custom pergola in Cheshire, CT.
What’s more, we know you can hire anyone you want to design and build your central Connecticut outdoor living space. When you choose us to bring your outdoor living ideas to life, we want you to be so pleased — yes, thrilled — that you recommend us to your friends and colleagues at every opportunity. Quality is important to you, the homeowner, and it is equally important to us.
If you want to recreate a luxurious experience you had while traveling, or you’re ready to re-imagine your home’s outdoor living space with fresh eyes, contact us to learn more about how we can exceed your expectations. Call (203) 793-7142 or email us today!
Archadeck of Central CT designed and built this custom outdoor living combination to speak to the individual needs of this Durham, CT, family. The space includes a paver patio, screened porch and spacious deck. Each of the structures was designed to work in unison, much like one large outdoor room with different areas to enjoy various functions.
The homeowners are musicians and they wanted a space for family and friends to gather for playing music and outdoor entertaining. The entire design is low-maintenance so more time can be spent harmonizing in the space rather than maintaining it.
We used Fiberon Ipe decking on the deck, stairs and screened porch. The screened porch features a tempered glass knee wall and gable end queen fan trusses so the view into the spacious backyard is never obscured.
Part of the ease of this design is the way Archadeck of Central CT built the stairs wide enough to serve as seating. This element makes it easy to play musical instruments within the space as no constraints are present.
The homeowners are elated with their new space. There is no denying the appeal of an outdoor living combination design. Outdoor living combination spaces, such as this project, marry the function and aesthetic elements of two or more outdoor structures allowing them to function as one large space.
If an outdoor living space is part of your plans for the upcoming outdoor season ahead, consider the benefits of a combination space. Contact Archadeck of Central CT today to add harmony to your outdoor living lifestyle. Call (203) 793-7142 or email us today!
Bamboo is gaining popularity in the realm of outdoor living design and building. Bamboo itself has been used to create everyday objects for over 4000 years. Often being considered a scourge in a landscape, the plant we have taken for granted for so long is quickly becoming the center of attention as a durable, attractive material for interior and exterior home use.
This tough material has a long life and is honored as the Chinese symbol of longevity. Most people try to classify bamboo as a hardwood, but it is actually a natural grass. A highly stable material, it is stronger and more durable than nearly all wood. All of these desirable attributes combined with its amazing longevity make it an ideal building material for outdoor living spaces, such as decks and porches. Not to mention the luxurious and exotic aesthetic it adds to any setting.
The bamboo we use at Archadeck of Central CT for building decks is stronger than most hardwoods. We buy high-quality bamboo decking boards from MOSO®, a company that specializes in carbonized, fused bamboo decking. MOSO® uses a patented process to alter the hardness, dimensional stability, fire safety and durability of their product to a level superior to the best tropical hardwood species.
Bamboo decking is very resistant to all kinds of weather. This includes the wintery conditions that are common here in Central CT. In contrast, most wooden deck boards will show the effects of weather over a period of time. For example, after each rain, wood can swell because it absorbs water, and then it shrinks as it dries out. If you’ve had a wooden deck, you know that those boards can eventually warp and twist. Some types of wood stand up to the wrath of Mother Nature better than others, but bamboo beats them all. Bamboo does not swell or contract in response to moisture. Bamboo decking has a hard exterior, and its cellular interior is flexible and elastic. As a homeowner, you can rest easy knowing your bamboo deck will stand up to whatever Mother Nature throws at it.
Did we mention bamboo is beautiful? Bamboo lends an exotic flair to your outdoor living project, yet it will look right at home on your Woodbridge, Guilford, Madison or Cheshire deck or porch. Because it can be stained in a wide range of shades from light natural to dark chocolate, bamboo is a versatile exterior design element. The freedom of bamboo allows you to easily coordinate with your home’s exterior color palette. To keep its exotic appeal over the years, bamboo requires no more work than you would need to do for a hardwood deck; the actual maintenance is very similar.
Last but certainly not least is the sustainability aspect of bamboo. Bamboo is environmentally friendly and sustainable. When looking at the green aspect, it is the best choice for your deck or porch.
- Bamboo matures in 5-7 years, so crops are replenished constantly. Most hardwood used in the US comes from South America, where deforestation is a severe problem. It takes at least 50 years to grow hardwood trees.
- In terms of a carbon footprint, although we think of bamboo as mainly growing in Asia, it is also grown in the United States and South America.
- Bamboo is resistant to insects and doesn’t require pesticides or other harmful chemicals for protection as it grows.
- Bamboo absorbs 35% more carbon dioxide per acre than trees. (Remember: bamboo is not a tree; it is a grass).
If you are considering bamboo for your new Avon, Farmington, Cheshire, Guilford or Woodbridge, CT area deck or porch, contact us to learn more about this amazing material by calling (203) 793-7142 or email us at [email protected].
At Archadeck of Central Connecticut, customer service means doing our very best to ensure you’re satisfied with our work at your home. Great customer service is one of the things that sets our business apart from other builders of outdoor living structures in the area. (In addition to our quality craftsmanship, of course!)
How do we know this? Our customers tell us.
How do we do it? Over the years, we have developed a design process that works every time. One of the most important steps in that process features our 3-D architectural design renderings.
3-D renderings provide much more insight than a traditional plan.
When we are working with you, clear and direct communication is vitally important. We’re only going to be working at your home for a number of weeks, but the work we’re doing there will affect your daily life for years. Without clear communication, we may not succeed in building the perfect outdoor living space for you and your family. You are expecting a lot from us, and we want to live up to those high expectations.
Our 3-D design renderings stimulate clear and direct communication in two ways.
3-D design renderings keep us talking
Once we get a good sense of what you have in mind for your new outdoor living space, we translate that into a visual interpretation, a set of computer-generated 3-D architectural renderings. Each set of renderings shows you at least three different points of view and one overhead floorplan layout.
We may go through a number of iterations of the design renderings and we’ll talk with you about them at each phase. Keeping that line of communication open means we encourage you several times to share your feedback and ideas — and any misgivings, if you have them. We want to know! We won’t be satisfied until you are thrilled with the design.
For example, here you can see 3-D drawings for one of our recent outdoor living projects. It’s a screened porch/deck deluxe outdoor living combination project in Woodbridge, CT, with skylights in the roof of the screened porch. In the Early Design image, the skylights were smaller. As we reviewed the drawings with our client, they mentioned that they thought the skylights should be bigger.
That’s great information!
It is far easier, (and less expensive), to change something during the design phase (IE. the size/type of window rather than making a “field change” during construction). It may not seem like a big deal, but if the client had not felt comfortable speaking up, we might have installed smaller skylights. Our collaborative process allows us an opportunity to provide a Revised design for consideration. Our goal is to avoid a situation where, every time that client went out onto the screened porch and looked up they think, I really wish those skylights were bigger. That’s not the feeling we want to leave any of our clients with!
3-D design renderings keep the ideas flowing
The first set of drawings presents a basic visualization of the project. Subsequent versions are collaborations working toward finalizing the design you’ll love. Clients consistently tell us that, looking over the renderings after each time we fine-tune them can trigger new ideas.
You can see intricate details in a 3-D design rendering that you cannot see in an ordinary 2-dimensional drawing. With a 2-dimensional plan, you can miss small things that may turn into big things once the project is completed. Looking at a 3-D rendering, we encourage you to visualize traffic flow from the house to the outdoor living space and throughout the outdoor space itself. We can place furniture in the rendering, to scale, so you can see what pieces will or won’t fit into your new deck and/or screened porch design.
If we are discussing alternate design ideas, we can use two sets of 3-D renderings to compare them and see which option is closer to what you have in mind. Or, the drawings could lead you to ask you about a third option we’ve not yet considered.
Take another look at these renderings of our recent project in Woodbridge, CT. We tried different ideas for the under-deck skirting. The client asked us to change the skirting from brown lattice to white after they saw a 3-D rendering of how the brown would look against the backdrop of the home’s siding. One idea leads to another. For helping you get a clearer view of how the finished project will look, one 3-D rendering is worth any number of words.
Using these computer-generated design renderings plays a huge role in the way we deliver exceptional customer service. Every version of the design carries us a step closer to our goal: making the client happy — from the initial design discussion to the completed project and for years to come.
If you’re ready to let us turn your ideas into 3-D design renderings for an outdoor living space at your home in Woodbridge, Farmington, Cheshire or anywhere else in Central Connecticut, call us at (203) 793-7142 or email [email protected] to get started. We promise you’ll appreciate our version of great customer service.
The answer: When you want to see through it!
Today’s featured project in Colchester, CT, combines a re-decking with a conversion from deck to screened porch, and it is a stunner. Two aspects stand out on this project. First, in replacing the original deck wall with tempered glass, we have opened up a whole new world for these homeowners. Second, the porch addition blends in so well with the cedar home, you would swear the porch had been there all along.
The Colchester homeowners had a wooden deck along the side of their beautiful, rustic cedar home. Since the deck was aging, it was time to have it re-decked or replaced. The homeowners wanted to turn most of the deck into a screened porch, and in the process they wanted a railing or wall system that they could actually see through. Archadeck of Central CT worked with them on a design to make that happen.
The original deck railing topped a wooden wall instead of pickets or balusters — great for privacy, but terrible for enjoying the outdoors. While the deck was lined with shrubs, the view was completely obscured, so people on the deck could not see them. They could only see the wall straight ahead and the sky above. The overall feeling on the original deck was that of being penned in.
The new design is something to celebrate. Most of the deck is now a porch with tempered glass below the railing where a wall once stood. Above the railing is screen. Anyone on the deck can now look out over the landscape, communing with nature while staying dry and protected from insects. The porch is light and airy with a ceiling fan to create a breeze when there is none.
A lot of work went into improving this Colchester outdoor living space, and the results were well worth the effort. First, we took the existing wooden deck apart and added necessary footings to make the deck level again. We also brought a beam up under the deck for additional support. In some projects, the entire deck needs to be removed, but in this case the footings and framework did not need to be replaced, just reinforced.
Once we had repaired the deck framework, we resurfaced the deck, replacing the original deck flooring with new material. The homeowners chose low-maintenance Fiberon Symmetry decking in the Cinnabar color to match the home. Fiberon Symmetry decking boards look and feel much like natural wood, but they are more durable. The outer layer surrounds all four sides and resists fading and staining; the durable composite core means no splintering, cracking, insect infestation or decay.
With the new deck surface in place, it was time to add the porch over it. We left a portion of the deck open for a barbecue grill, but most of it is now enclosed. A tempered glass wall makes up the lower portion below the deck railing, and we used ScreenEze screening to fill in above the railing — all the way up to the vaulted ceiling. For the railings we used western red cedar stained to match existing home.
Speaking of the vaulted ceiling, we designed it with the rafters exposed, so no one will feel penned up on this porch! A ceiling fan completes the scene.
The homeowners are elated with the new porch and the magnificent way it ties in to the cedar home and looks original to the home. You would never know it had been added on if we had not told you. It’s our secret.
Can we create a dream deck, porch or combination outdoor living space for you? If you are thinking about converting a deck to porch at your home in Colchester, Shelton, Avon, Farmington, Cheshire or anywhere else in Central Connecticut, call Archadeck of Central CT at (203) 793-7142, or email us at [email protected] to schedule your no-obligation consultation today.