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Community and Q&A

Fastening Deck to Ledger Board

kenorakq | Posted in Green Building Techniques on

Hi, I am a long time reader and was (until last year) a member… but I’m back.

I’m in zone 7 (NW Ontario Canada)

I’m ready to tear off the vinyl siding from the 2×6 framed walls of my home. I want to add 4″ of EPS foam then vertical furring strips and then LP siding or similar.

Problem is… I have a ledger board that girdles the house now, it was used to secure a deck (which surrounded the house)..the deck has been removed and will be rebuilt as the house is completed.

I cann0t determine how best to attach the deck to the ledger since the ledger will now be embedded in the foam. I reached out the MAINE DECK BRACKET (MDB) folks and it seems its designed for “less than” 4″ of foam, their suggestion was to double up the ledger, then add the bracket…. I can’t picture the attachment, or weatherproofing in my mind…I’ll attach a hand drawn sketch from MDB they sent but it does not address any of the concerns I had (code compliance, waterproofing details etc).

Surely someone else has done this…..please let me know what the solution is.


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  1. spenceday | | #1

    You can make stand-offs out of PT blocks. You then bolt though the deck ledger to the interior and use a tension bracket to a joist.
    I think there’s a drawing and article on FHB that mike Guertin did a few years ago.

    1. kenorakq | | #6

      I'll try and locate that....Q- what is a tension bracket?

      1. spenceday | | #8

        Simpson DTT2z I think

  2. Expert Member
    ARMANDO COBO | | #2

    Is it possible to do a stand-alone deck, as in not attached to the house?

  3. Yupster | | #3

    The new Simpson BVLZ ledger connector is the perfect solution for this. See attached detail.

  4. Expert Member
  5. kenorakq | | #5

    Thanks for the replies.... ledger boards are the norm here and the existing building already has one...

    I looked at the Simpson BVLZ and note its for a brick exterior.. mine will be vinyl or LP (or Hardi)... am I misinterpreting that?

    The site is for the Maine Deck Bracket... it seems like a good solution (although pricey) has anyone used those on a building with 4" of foam...I would love to here their experiences.

    1. Yupster | | #9

      It's made to solve the problem of attaching a ledger board to brick veneer, since you can't load the brick veneer. It performs the exact same over foam. Essentially, it transfers the load past an adjustable ~4" gap to the rim board of your floor framing.

      1. Expert Member
        MALCOLM TAYLOR | | #11


        That is pretty neat isn't it?

  6. Aedi | | #7

    Fine Homebuilding published a video on this very issue a couple months back that you might find handy:

    Be sure to look through the linked resources at the end of the article as well.

  7. JFink | | #10

    Another enthusiastic vote for the BVLZ bracket - it was designed to do exactly what you are trying to do. The video above says it all!

    - Justin, FHB

  8. kenorakq | | #12

    Thanks...I'm watching the video...

  9. kenorakq | | #13

    I just watched the video and it seems to offer several solutions..I like the BVLZ solution as well but wonder a couple of things.. #1- how many are needed (the deck/walkway is 6ft wide surrounding the house) so how do I determine the spacing along the rim joist? #2- COST, compared to the other systems..MDB etc? #3 maybe its a misunderstanding on drain paths.. but in the video the drain path is between the sheathing and the foam... shouldn't it be on the exterior side of the foam, provided by furring strips? seems to me the air space between the foam and the sheathing is a thermal no-no!

    1. Yupster | | #19

      The Simpson website has a chart for selecting how many you need, or your engineer could specify it based on actual loads.
      The chart specifies 3'-0" o/c for a 6' deck joist and a 2x10 SPF rim board.
      Drainage should match wherever your drainage plane is designed to be.

  10. Jon_R | | #14

    BVLZ = Brick Veneer Ledger Connector. I'd say it's designed for brick veneer, which is not the same as compressible foam. And indeed, there is no mention of foam in the instructions or spec sheet (just brick - and death warnings about meeting conditions). Where does Simpson write it is OK for use with foam?

    1. Expert Member
      Akos | | #15


      The BVLZ is for attaching a ledger that hangs about 4" to 6" out from the structural surface. It does not put load on the cladding whether foam or brick, the load is carried by the compression strut and the screws.

      The Deckbracket does seem a sturdier solution though.

      1. Yupster | | #18

        I also participated in a webinar Simpson put on recently where they said it worked over foam as well.

        1. Jon_R | | #20

          Which raises an interesting question about building outside of manufacturer written instructions based on verbal claims. Sounds like fun for the lawyers.

          1. Yupster | | #21

            In case anyone comes across this again, here is the published Q&A where Simpson permits the BVLZ to be used over foam. If something is needed for the building inspector, I would recommend contacting Simpson or get an engineer to specify them.

  11. spenceday | | #16

    Honestly if I were in this situation I would have a local welding shop copy the deck bracket standoff in the dimensions you need. I've got a powder coat shop that does car parts that would powder coat them for fairly cheap.
    Of course there would be no engineering certs in that case but my local BI has a tendency to pass stuff if it looks overbuilt.

  12. kenorakq | | #17

    The building inspector will not allow me to use a non-commercial/documented product..

    I like the Maine Deck Bracket best of the lot and just emailed them to see if they retail in Canukistan or failing that can ship to me. I have asked for a more detailed diagram or picture (see diagram in orig post).

  13. charlie_sullivan | | #22

    Another option to consider is to have no connection between the deck and the house--just a 1" or so gap between them. You then need more posts supporting the deck and you need really good cross bracing on those posts. But then you have no thermal bridging and not tricky flashing issues that might lead to rot. It also requires that you have a lot of confidence that your footings are all stable enough that the deck won't move towards or away from the house.

    This is often a code problem, so your local code officials might reject it or might require an engineer to sign off on the plan.

  14. Deleted | | #23


    1. JC72 | | #27

      How does that compare to something such as seen in Chapter 9

  15. walta100 | | #24

    +1 for Charlie’s idea to make the deck free standing. Most modern codes make attaching a deck to an existing house cost prohibitive without your foam.


  16. Deleted | | #25


    1. Expert Member
      MALCOLM TAYLOR | | #26


      What is your relationship with the product you are writing about?

  17. Deleted | | #28


    1. Expert Member
      Deleted | | #29


      1. Deleted | | #30


        1. Expert Member
          MALCOLM TAYLOR | | #31


          I'll take you at your word - and delete my post.

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