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How to Lay up a Decking Board right?

  • M. John
  • July 15, 2021

If you are new to building decks, laying a decking boards might be difficult. You might be confused about whether to face the decking groove up or down. Deck installation requires some skill if you want it to last long. You have to lay the board so that it will make the board last longer. How can you lay up the decking board, right?

The Right Way to Lay Up a Decking Board

When installing composite decking boards, you may be confused about whether you should have the groove side up or down. Grooved decking boards are beautiful; the hollows in the decking can provide functionality and aesthetics.

When installing decking boards, you may be confused about whether you should have the groove side up or down.

When laying the board, you might want to face the grooved part upward if you are the kind that values aesthetics. Some homeowners may also think that the ridges can increase traction and prevent the decking from slipping when it is wet. But is that the right way to lay up your decking board?

If you face the grooved side of the decking board up, moisture will accumulate on your decking board. The grooved part will collect moisture and lead to mould build-up on your decking. Mould can damage decking, especially wood decking boards and composites. Besides that, when your decking board absorbs moisture, it can make the wood rot in time.

When contemplating the right way to lay up your decking board, it is advisable to always stick to the manufacturer’s instructions. The groove on the decking board helps to extend the lifespan of your decking. How then should you lay up a decking board?

Deck experts, therefore, recommend facing the grooved side of the decking down during installation. This is because the groove improves air circulation, thereby keeping the decking board dry. And when the decking board is dry, the decking won’t be moist. It, in turn, will also keep mould from growing on the decking.

Steps on How to Layout Decking Board

Layout decking boards and gather the material and equipment you will use ready. Laying decking boards will require a hammer, spade, fasteners, strings, weed control fabric and gravel. You will also need treated planks, wood or composite decking boards, drills, and handsaws.

1 Prepare the Area

Start by preparing the deck area. If there is grass, stones, and debris in the area, clear them away. Once you have done that, proceed to level the area if it’s uneven. You can now spread weed control fabric over the area to keep weeds from growing underneath your decking. Add the gravel on top of the fabric and hold it in place.

Next, lay out the area by using pegs to mark the spot. Then tie the strings around the pegs. You can now make a hole around your deck area to insert the post. The post will serve as a support for your decking.

2 Build the Substructure

After installing the post, start connecting planks from one post to the other. Then start making a joist for your decking. It is on this joist that you will lay your decking board.

3 Lay out the Decking Board

Proceed to lay up your decking board by facing the grooved side down. Lay the decking board from the side of the building until you cover the whole area. Grooved decking requires a hidden installation method. Use starter clips at the beginning before switching to hidden fasteners or the new Ultra Clip for Ultra Decking boards. Fasten the clips to the decking frame and use the edges to hold the decking by its sides. Ensure you leave a gap of 3mm to 6mm between the decking boards.

4 Finished the Edges

You can now finish the edges by painting them with a matching colour as the wood decking. Additionally, you can also add composite trims or fascia boards to the edge of composite decking boards.


The right way to lay up a wood decking board is to face it downwards. Facing the board downwards will prevent moisture build-up and will keep your decking from moulding and rotting.

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