Deck screws

I was thinking about this article and the one portion on screws when evaluating a stairs. Funny thing is I could not find it in the regular Article archives of Nachi.…-fasteners.htm
This is the part I was looking for.From Deck screws - InterNACHI Inspection Forum

Screws fail in one of four ways:

  1. Failure occurs through the shank. An example of this occurs when driving screws into a hard material. Screws often snap off just below the head. Deck screws may appear to be securely in place when, in fact, the shank has snapped. Although it looks secure, the head is detached from the shank and the screw has no holding power. You might find this problem by pushing on the materials the screw is designed to join to see if they move separately.

From For Home Inspectors: Evaluating Problems with Fasteners - InterNACHI

I hope that the following information can be of some help to you:D

2009 International Residential Code
R502.2.2 Decks.
Where supported by attachment to an exterior wall, decks shall be positively anchored to the primary structure and designed for both vertical and lateral loads as applicable. Such attachment shall not be accomplished by the use of toenails or nails subject to withdrawal.

Ø Where positive connection to the primary building structure cannot be verified during inspection, *decks shall be self-supporting. *

For decks with cantilevered framing members, connections to exterior walls or other framing members, shall be designed and constructed to resist uplift resulting from the full live load specified in Table R301.5 acting on the cantilevered portion of the deck.
R502.2.2.1 Deck ledger connection to band joist.
**For decks supporting a total design load of 50 pounds per square foot (2394 Pa) [40 pounds per square foot (1915 Pa) live load plus 10 pounds per square foot (479 Pa) dead load], the connection between a deck ledger of pressure-preservative-treated Southern Pine, incised pressure-preservative-treated Hem-Fir or approved decay-resistant species, and a 2-inch (51 mm) nominal lumber band joist bearing on a sill plate or wall plate shall be constructed with 1/2-inch (12.7 m) lag screws or bolts with washers in accordance with Table R502.2.2.1. Lag screws, bolts and washers shall be hot-dipped galvanized or stainless steel.
For SI: 1 inch = 25.4 mm, 1 foot = 304.8 mm. 1 pound per square foot = 0.0479 kPa.
a. The tip of the lag screw shall fully extend beyond the inside face of the band joist.
b. The maximum gap between the face of the ledger board and face of the wall sheathing shall be 1/2².
c. Ledgers shall be flashed to prevent water from contacting the house band joist.
d. Lag screws and bolts shall be staggered in accordance with Section R502.
e. Deck ledger shall be minimum 2 × 8 pressure-preservative-treated No. 2 grade lumber, or other approved materials as established by standard engineering practice.
f. When solid-sawn pressure-preservative-treated deck ledgers are attached to a minimum 1 inch thick engineered wood product (structural composite lumber, laminated veneer lumber or wood structural panel band joist), the ledger attachment shall be designed in accordance with accepted engineering practice.
g. A minimum 1 × 91/2 Douglas Fir laminated veneer lumber rimboard shall be permitted in lieu of the 2-inch nominal band joist.
h. Wood structural panel sheathing, gypsum board sheathing or foam sheathing not exceeding 1 inch in thickness shall be permitted. The maximum distance between the face of the ledger board and the face of the band joist shall be 1 inch.
R502. Placement of lag screws or bolts in deck ledgers.
**The lag screws or bolts shall be placed 2 inches (51 mm) in from the bottom or top of the deck ledgers and between 2 and 5 inches (51 and 127 mm) in from the ends. The lag screws or bolts shall be staggered from the top to the bottom along the horizontal run of the deck ledger.

I sure hope you meant the public and a new Inspectors Frank.
However I prefer to go by the Deck codes myself and treat the Building code as a bare minimum, anything lower is just criminal.

I have seen/read some of your past comments and I certainly appreciate and respect your knowledge and expertise.

When I say “you” I’m referring to anyone who is unaware of the material and/or codes that I have bothered to look up for our InterNachi brothers and sisters.
I know that us “old guys” have been around the block two or three times and sometimes I take it for granted that “everybody” knows what us “old folks” have picked up during a lifetime of inspecting.
If I can help and or add something to the conversation I will certainly try my best to do so.
I also agree with you that the Building Codes are the rock – bottom minimum and that they should not only be met but also “exceeded”!
In the last 44 years I have found that the “manufacturers” of a certain product be it decks, appliances, etc. etc. always go above and beyond the Building Codes. No matter what I’m inspecting I always go by the “manufacturers recommendations” as they will almost always “exceed code”.
I hope this clears things up:nachi:
Warmest regards, Frank

Building to minimum code does not make for a very good home. The code should always be exceeded.