Simple Split Level Deck - Two Tier Deck with connecting steps

This split level decking system, allows more use of the steeply sloped garden with abrupt change in levels at the lower end.

The bottom deck serves as an extension to the house area - suitable for the small children, whilst the top deck allows for a slightly more 'away from it all' area - more suited to the adults (so they thought!).

It is a simple decking project that allows for safe use of the higher level, which at the start did not have any form of barrier to prevent accidental falling from the 'lawn' area down to the hard concrete lower level. The split level deck idea sorted out the problem in terms of giving usable space and also safe use of the higher level by children - and adults.

One of the first things to think and sort out, was a decking staircase to allow the deck builders ease of access to and from the split level decks.

The old method of access to the higher/lower levels was by a typical - but unsafe  - breeze block set of steps. These had not handrail or good access point at the top of the steps. It was decided that the new decking staircase would run down the side of the retaining wall after access to a small platform reaching out from the higher deck level. The old set of steps was dismantled and the resultant hardcore was spread at the bottom and top levels - to be 'lost' between the joists for the split level deck areas.


Untidy back yard - ready for deck works The line of the existing concrete steps Steps removed ready for new decking stairs

Upper deck area cleared ready for sub frame

With this type of staircase, it was decided to use ready-made pre-cut staircase stringers. These can be obtained from most good major DIY stores, and are normally cut out to allow for the use of 6in - 150mm deck boards. This would be the better use to use for decking steps anyway, because the larger size will be suitable for the stability required for decking staircases.

Staircase starting to take place - connecting lower and upper decks

Stair stringer pre-formed and bolted into wall

Here you can see the start of the of the decking staircase platform, and also the inside stringer which has been bolted through to the wall. This will ensure extra stability for the staircase and platform and gives a good datum from which to build the rest of the staircase, which will connect the split level decks.

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