Latest Discussions : Lawn & Garden


07:58AM | 04/14/05
Member Since: 04/13/05
9 lifetime posts
Here it is, what is better for the top decking part, nails or screws. I have heard screws are way better than nails and that deck mate screws are really good.

Also, if you're knowledgeble about building decks could you give good methods for screwing screws because it can be a great harder deal than nailing.

Thanks for your response...

have fun always


10:14AM | 04/14/05
Member Since: 06/23/04
161 lifetime posts
Deck screws are the best, hands down. Nails will rise up and create a hazard and they tend to corrode more quickly. Screws are more expensive but hold better and won't corrode if you use the correct type. Deck screws have a smooth shank (no threads) fot the first 1 1/4" of the shank and then an aggresive thread to the tip. They are coated for corrosion resistance or are available in stainless steel. Be sure that the screw finish is compatable with the chemicals now used in treated lumber. The heads are bugle shaped and come with various slots. Phillips head is the most common but the square drive heads are easier to install. Both require a drill/driver to install which is easier than hammering a nail. DON'T use drywall screws. They are cheaper and look like deck screws but are not coated, have the wrong threads, and will rust away in a year.



10:59AM | 04/18/05
Member Since: 11/19/02
59 lifetime posts
Screws, screws, screws. Don't waste your time with nails. I work for a large Eastern pressure treater and you'd be amazed at the amount of 'complaints' we get that could easily have been avoided if the customer used screws to start out with.

It's a good idea to pre-drill your holes so that you can avoid splitting the ends of your lumber. A little extra work goes a long way.


01:52PM | 04/19/05
Member Since: 04/13/05
9 lifetime posts
Ok, i have been building my deck now for a couple days and have a learned a few things.

Of course screws are better, but would they be easier to drill. Well, I was creating girders with two 2x12's ,pressure treated .40 acq wood from *****, first glueing and then screwing in with phillps II deck screws. Lastly, I drilled them in without even predrilling the holes with a fire storm black and decker 14.4 cordless drill. Easy as pie. I mean whoaaaaa easy and freaking pie. Way easier than nailing for sure and a lot more accurate, secure and longer lasting. I am now confident and happy with my screw decision. Hope this helps others comtiplating the same thing.

have fun always


01:53PM | 04/19/05
Member Since: 04/13/05
9 lifetime posts
lol, they didn't let me say lows

have fun always


09:37PM | 04/19/05
Member Since: 12/27/02
543 lifetime posts
If you do decks for a living senco (for one) makes a self loading screw-gun with an extention, not only can you stand up & screw but you pop in a screwing strip once in a while and POOF done.

DeWalt has an attachment that will fit onto most of their screw guns.

Alter Eagle Construction & Design


05:58AM | 04/20/05
Member Since: 01/30/05
360 lifetime posts
If you buy yourself a cheap beeswax ring (used for toliet installations) and "roll" those screws on it first (lubricating the threads with the bee wax) they will "drive" much easier.

Be sure to use the proper drill bit size when pre-drilling those screw holes.

Another tip: use some tape on your drill bit to mark the depth you want to pre-drill those holes with so not as to over drill (too deep). This will avoid a GAP that will collect moisture under your screws and potentially rot your wood and/or heave/warp your decking (if you're in a winter climate).


10:11PM | 05/12/05
Member Since: 04/29/05
17 lifetime posts
If you have the abilty you can by brackets and then you can screw the deak from the bottom. Makes for a way better deck.

And like others have said always buy the right screws. For the treated lumber you have used. Gold screw suck for pressure treated lumber. Do with the greenn coated ones.


01:22AM | 05/16/05
Member Since: 06/19/04
23 lifetime posts
Screws are the best for keeping the deck seated. While nails do rise at time square driver screws stay put. "Square drive screws offer markedly more resistance to 'Cam-Out'" than Phillips recess screws. Ever have your screwdriver bite come out of the recess? This is why I like especially using square driver screws.

Find more info here at



02:51AM | 10/04/13
Here's a killer new screw from Outlaw Fasteners. They're calling it the "world's best screw" and say it doesn't strip or fall off the bit.

If definitely looks well engineered. Here's the link:


08:27AM | 06/26/17
Help: I am desperate looking for decking nails with detachable heads. Are the available in South Africa? If not how can I have them despatched.

Refer to utube video for the type screws with detachable heads




06:25PM | 07/31/17
Sure screws are better than common casing nails or any other smooth shank nails.
BUT I have removed many a deck screw to find that I have only removed part of the screw. The other part is still buried in the joist. Perhaps when installing, the screw is given a little extra jolt to get it countersunk and the extra torque has snapped the screw. Mercedes-Benz mechanic once told me "a bolt once torqued is half broken" They always use new bolts.
Personally I prefer hot-dipped galvanized ring nails. I'vé never seen a framer screw down plywood sheeting!


10:46PM | 07/02/18
I have built over 100 decks using ring neck nails in a air framing nailer that were galvanized. I use the rule 3 in the middle two on the end rule down with 100% satisfaction. You guys are crazy. These nails absolutley blow away screws and all the splitting they cause as well as 5 times as long to install. Sounds like your bought and paid for.


11:40PM | 04/28/19
Yes sir a screw no matter if coated or not is going to break the coating when installed and in ten years the heads are popping off leaving the shank buried. A galvanized ring shank 3" handdrive won't rust or back out. You literally have to use wedges and a sawzall to remove them if you want to save the lumber. Screwshank galvanized 2 & 1/2 inch with a hammer nailset make for the best bannisters. If you are worried about splitting near the end predrill or just flip the nail upside down and tap the point with your hammer flattening the point a little and problem solved. Also the ring shank will pull decking board down tighter than a screw without burying it'sself


10:37AM | 01/22/20
Ill take a snapped screw over half a nail going in my wifes foot when it pops up a bit... Screws it is.


10:29AM | 03/22/20
this is an interesting conversation. I am replacing a 10 yr old deck shortly because the treated deck boards rotted at every screw penetration. I am going with cedar this time and am trying to find the best fastener myself. the original decking was screwed with deck screws from lowes.


11:25AM | 03/22/20
If you don't know how to use a screw gun then you would be better off having someone that has experience do the job. Nail are old tech and out of date.


08:19AM | 04/04/20
My 20 year-old deck was put together with nails and now they're coming up can I remove the nails and replace them with screws?


01:13PM | 04/04/20
You can replace the nails with screws. I would use screws that are about 1 1/2 inches longer than the nails so the screw can bite into solid wood.


03:37PM | 04/18/20
ive done construction work for years the screws seem strong but the problem is they are brittle and will snap all at once when under a load nail will bent without snaping put a screw in a vice and take a hammer and hit it it will snap into and use decking nail


03:53PM | 04/18/20
If you are going to put your deck in a vice and hit it with a hammer then I guess you should use nails. The spindles that hold the front wheels on (in a rear wheel drive vehicle) are hardened and if you had a big enough hammer and vice, you could break it it two and a spindle that was not hardened would just bend. Why do you think they use the spindle that is hardened. Deck screws are also hardened. When used in deck construction they will not be put in a vice and hit with a hammer. What kind of work do you do? Push a broom?


10:10PM | 06/06/20
I’m rebuilding my 30-year-old deck. It was installed with galvanized nails. They were a bitch to pull out. I’m going to rebuild with galv nails from a pneumatic framing nailer. Maybe I’ll get another 30 years!!


03:42PM | 07/04/20
Hot dipped ring shank 16D holds and and the coating lasts the lifetime of modern CA/ACA treated wood, but are extremely hard work to hand nail. The coating is durable, I just banged 15 lb's of them into a new deck and no head coating came off. Nails backing out of decking are invariably sinkers or shot vinyl coated commons or the wood was not treated, so shoddy construction.

Screws are expensive and hold, but modern coatings last an unknown time, while being very easy to install. All you need is a screwgun.

Material Cost is to the hot dipped ring shank 16D, but labor is to the screw.

If the nail guns can shoot a hot dipped ring shank 16D, there is no question of permanence. However, there is a lot of cost in pneumatic hardware systems and nail gun nails are probably equal to screws in expense. This would be the fastest system and most permanent construction.

The talk of unscrewing old screws is just weird. The question for screws is fastener lifetime. They are smaller and the weak points are the tooled head losing coating on installation and the thread coating stripping in installation and all over coating deteriorating in CA/ACA treating over time.

I can go back every 10 years and rescrew my decking, if they screw coatings fail. For me, screws and a screwgun are the immediate solution.

Cutter Vic


11:29AM | 08/07/20
I just had my deck floor boards replaced. They used a nail gun on it. Now I've noticed there are splits at nailed points. Do I need to replace these boards?

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