Deck Safety Checklist

Family on Deck - Archadeck
May is deck safety month. With barbecues, outdoor parties, and summertime fun around the corner, now is the time to inspect your deck and make any repairs necessary. As the saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Follow these guidelines to ensure a thorough inspection.

Boards
Look at the condition of your deck boards. Most wood will show some cracks and splits over time, but is the general condition of the boards good, or are the boards splintering and unsafe to walk on?

Every Connection
A deck should be built using a variety of fasteners and metal hardware connectors to create a continuous pathway to ensure deck stability and safety. Check to see if the appropriate fasteners and connectors were used when constructing the deck. Is the hardware in good condition or need to be replaced?

Structure
If visible, look at the posts, beams and joists that provide the structural framework of the deck. What is their condition? Is there any noticeable sagging between supports?

Attachment
The attachment of the deck to the house (at an area called the house band) is the area where most deck failures occur. Pay special attention to this area and check to make sure that the deck is properly attached to the house band with appropriate screws or bolts and that it is properly flashed for water protection. Nails should never be used for this type of attachment.

Foundation / Footings
The foundation / footings receive and support the weight (also known as the load) on a deck and the columns that bear on them. A footing that is sinking may cause a noticeable sag in an area or a column separating from a beam.

Exits
Check the areas where people exit from the deck. These exits usually involve stairs so be sure to check the condition of the material used on the stair stringers, stair treads and risers.

Rails
Look at the condition of the rail posts and sections of railing on the deck to make sure that the railing is secure. Check to make sure that the pickets/balusters are fastened securely and spaced no more than four inches apart.

If you’re not sure you want to take the responsibility of inspecting the deck yourself, look up a local company in your area and have a professional complete the inspection. Nadra.org and AngiesList.com are great places to find competent, trustworthy professionals or go to Archadeck.com to see if there are deck safety inspectors in your area.

Celebrating 10 Years!

I am one lucky man.  Outdoor living is my passion, and outdoor living is what we do.  It is a wonderful feeling to wake up each day knowing we are doing something we’re passionate about.  Designing outdoor spaces has long been my idea of fun.  Playing in our garden, designing our patio, and taking design classes at the Morton Arboretum were once hobbies for me.  I had built a good career for myself, but I was missing that passion I wanted to feel on a daily basis. So, I went on a search for a way to combine my career with my passion. This is when I discovered the Archadeck franchise.

Ten years ago, Integrity Enterprises Inc. dba Archadeck of Chicagoland was born.  On February 19th, we will celebrate our 10th anniversary.  It has been fantastic to go to work every day knowing we are sharing our passion with Chicagoland families.  We are creating beautiful spaces for families and friends to gather and enjoy the great outdoors.

Over that past 10 years, we have seen a lot of changes and faced a number of challenges.  We not only survived the worst economy since the great depression; we actually flourished.  Projects we build have evolved from decks, screen porches, sunrooms, and pergolas to include paver patios, front porches, and open porches.  Our team has grown and enhanced our capabilities, and our company now covers all of the Chicagoland suburbs.

Screen rooms, pergolas, decks, patios, sunrooms

When we first started building our franchise, we began in the northern counties of Lake and McHenry.  As opportunities opened up, we expanded to the west and south.  Today we service all of the Chicago suburbs.  In 2012, we moved our office and growing team out of our basement and into our current showroom close to Woodfield Mall.

Of course, this move coincided with one of our original goals.  My wife, Kristen, joined me in the business and became a Design Consultant.  We met at work 20 years ago and have since dreamed of working together again.  I know many people may think it would be difficult to work with a spouse, but we love it!  She has excelled, helping to push our company forward.  Our children often come in to hang out in my office while we meet with clients and prepare designs, giving them the opportunity to see firsthand what it means to own your own business.  Archadeck of Chicagoland is truly a family operation.

As we’ve grown, we have carefully selected great team members to add to our family.  Our very foundation is built on dedicated, hardworking, and talented carpenters and crews.  Without our crew leads like John, Chris, Sonny, and Manuel, our designs would never come to life.  Of course, our office team is no less important.  Wendy, Sarah, and Margo work hard behind the scenes to keep the operation running smoothly.  Alex, our newest Design Consultant, is creative and talented. Tim, our Construction Manager, ensures the building process runs smoothly each and every time.  Our team members are key to our ability to continue to create the stunning outdoor living spaces Chicagoland has come to expect from us.

Archadeck Team - Fun

One constant over the years has been our great clients!  The number of clients we design for has increased significantly over the last 10 years, and we have been blessed with really great people to work with.  They have allowed us to learn about their family’s outdoor plans so that we may offer our recommendations and ultimately build their new outdoor spaces.  We work hard to make sure the end result of each project is a happy client.  Consistent customer service awards and ‘A’ ratings on Angie’s List, as well as the Better Business Bureau, reinforce that we are getting good results.  Of course, the best feedback comes when our clients introduce us to their friends so we may build their new outdoor space.  We would like to express our gratitude for sharing us so often with your friends and neighbors.

Thank you for allowing us to design and build your backyard getaway for the last 10 years.  We can’t wait to create your next outdoor living space!

Chicagoland Event Calendar: October – December

Holiday season is coming!  The next few months will be a whirlwind of activities as everyone prepares for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  Don’t forget to slow down and take some time to enjoy the spirit of the season with your friends and family.  In order to help you do just that, we’ve compiled a list of some of the events scheduled in the Chicago suburbs and in the city.  Enjoy!

~Archadeck of Chicagoland

Chicagoland 2013 Event Calendar: October - December

Festivals & Craft Fairs

Didier Farms’ Pumpkin Fest Lincolnshire Oct 16-31
Highwood Pumpkin Festival Highwood Oct 17-19
Fall Festival McHenry Oct 19-27
Holiday Fair Trade Gift Boutique Libertyville Oct 26
Holiday Craft Boutique Lincolnshire Nov 9
America’s Baking and Sweets Show Schaumburg Nov 15-17
Santa’s Craft Corner Wheaton Nov 30-Dec 14

Farmers Markets

Hoffman Estates Farm Market Hoffman Estates Oct 17-31
Park Ridge Farmers Market Park Ridge Oct 19-26
Farmers Market: Palatine Palatine Oct 19-26
Elk Grove Farmers Market Elk Grove Oct 19-26
Wilmette Farmers Market Wilmette Oct 19-26
Farmers Market: Evanston Evanston Oct 19-Nov 2

Halloween Fun

CarnEvil Haunted Attraction Hoffman Estates Oct 17-31
All Hallows Eve Naperville Oct 18-19
Fright at Night (with a kid friendly session) Oak Park Oct 25
Cake Decorating: Scary Monster Cupcakes Schaumburg Oct 26
Halloween Bash Hoffman Estates Oct 26
Halloween Party at Northbrook Court Northbrook Oct 26
Halloween Trick-or-Treat Palatine Oct 26
Spooky Zoo Spectacular Lincoln Park Zoo Oct 26
HalloweenFest in Libertyville Libertyville Oct 29
Halloween Boonanza Schaumburg Oct 31

Holiday Events & Parades

Wilmette Holiday Parade Wilmette Nov 23
Magnificent Mile Lights Festival Chicago Nov 23
Thanksgiving Parade Chicago Nov 28
ZooLights Lincoln Park Zoo Nov 29
Little Friends Parade of Lights Naperville Dec 1
Brunch with Santa Aurora Dec 7
The Best Holiday Party Ever Chicago Dec 10
Breakfast with Santa at Lamb’s Farm Libertyville Dec 14
New Year’s Eve Rock ‘N’ Roll Ball Rosemont Dec 31

Concerts, Shows & Dancing

Dance Like the Stars Lincolnshire Nov 5
The Temptations Skokie Nov 16
Selena Gomez Allstate Arena Nov 22
It’s a Wonderful Life: Live in Chicago! Chicago Nov 25 – Dec 29
Elton John Allstate Arena Nov 30
Polar Express Deerfield Dec 8
Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Aurora Dec 14

Chicagoland Event Calendar: September – October

Fall is on its way, and with it come the many autumn festivals.  We at Archadeck love to spend time outdoors.  Come out and enjoy the live entertainment, sip on apple cider, sample the tasty fall foods, take the kids through the pumpkin patch, and much, much more!

Chicagoland Fall Festivals

Event

Location

Date

St. Michael Fall Fest Orland Park

Sep 19-22

Oaktoberfest Oak Park

Sep 20-21

Harvest Moon Bonfire Schaumburg

Sep 21

Fall Fest & Chili Cookoff Homewood

Sep 21

Norwood Park Fall Festival Norwood Park

Sep 21

Annual Autumn Fair Geneva

Sep 21

Long Grove Apple Festival Long Grove

Sep 27-29

Franciscan Fall Festival Tinley Park

Sep 27-29

Fall Family Fun Fest River Grove

Sep 28

Rogers Park Harvest Fest Rogers Park

Sep 28

Chilympics Chili Cook-Off Downers Grove

Sep 28

Fall Fest  Oak Park

Sep 29

Oktoberfest 2013 Naperville

Oct 4-5

Autumn Harvest Festival Schaumburg

Oct 6

Highwood Pumpkin Festival Highwood

Oct 17-19

All Hallows Eve Naperville

Oct 18-19

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Chicagoland Event Calendar: May – June

Spring has sprung!  Local events are a perfect way to enjoy the warm weather with friends and family.  Whether it’s in the city or the Chicago Suburbs, you’re sure to have a blast!

Summer 2013 Events Chicago Suburbs City

Event
Location
Date
Ravinia 2013 Schedule – Enjoy spectacular concerts in the park! Chicago June 6 – Sept 15
Taste of Glen Ellyn Glen Ellyn May 16 – 19
Spring Fun Fair Des Plaines May 18
Civil War Days Naperville May 18 – 19
Free Museum Day Elmhurst May 19
Red, White & BBQ Festival Westmont May 24 – 26
Young at Heart Festival Loves Park May 24 – 27
4th Annual Barrington Art Festival Barrington May 25 – 26
Piccadilly Circus St. Charles May 25 – 27
5th Annual Millennium Art Festival Chicago May 31 – June 2
First Fridays (Museum of Contemporary Art) Chicago June 7
11th Annual Promenade of Art Arlington Heights Arlington Heights June 8 –  9
Father’s Day Barbeque Brookfield Zoo June 16
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra at The Morton Arboretum Lisle June 30
Naperville Rib Fest 2013  (Carnival, food, music, and more!) Naperville July 3 – 7
Windy City Rib Fest Chicago July 5 – 7

Archadeck’s Spring Lighting Promotion – The Perfect Finishing Touch For Your Outdoor Living Space

Spring is in full swing and everyone is ready to get out and enjoy the warm, sunny days.  Pretty soon the nights will be just as warm and enjoyable.  Now is the time to start planning the perfect living space for your backyard.  What adds that perfect finishing touch?  Lighting – it creates a wonderful ambience.

We at Archadeck of Chicagoland would love to create your new outdoor living space.   To help enjoy your new space later into the evening we are offering a special lighting promotion.*

Finalize a plan and sign an agreement by June 30th, 2013 that includes a low voltage lighting package and we will double the lights.    Two lights for every one you purchase.   Adding lighting extends use, adds safety, and creates a “soft glow” to accent your new backyard space.

Let’s plan your new spaces now so your family can enjoy your new deck, patio, screen porchsunroom, gazebo, or pergola all summer long!

Deck lighting in the Chicago Suburbs

*Offer cannot be combined with other promotions, unless specified.