How to Affix a Fence Post to a Deck

drill image by Albert Lozano from

When installing fencing, the fence is only as strong as the posts it is hung on. Typically, fence posts are installed in concrete footings in the bottom of a hole. In some installations, your fence may cross a deck. In these cases, the post must be mounted on a post bracket. Post brackets are made of galvanised steel and can be mounted flush on the surface of the deck and will support the post firmly if correctly installed.

Measure to locate the correct position for the fence post, using a measuring tape. Use the fence post bracket as a template to mark the outline of the post on the deck. Mark the deck through the fence post bracket with a permanent marker. Mark each hole clearly.

Install a 1/8-inch bit into your drill and tighten the chuck. Drill a pilot hole in each marked location. Set the point of the bit on the mark and start the drill. Apply steady pressure to keep the bit from walking across the surface of the deck. Drill each hole to a depth of ½ inch. Blow the dust from the holes.

Position the bracket in place on the deck and line up the holes in the bracket with the pilot holes you drilled into the deck surface. Drive one 1 5/8-inch treated deck screw through each hole in the fence post bracket into the deck surface. Tighten the screws firmly to pull the bracket firmly down to the deck surface.

Mark the fence post at the proper length. Use a quick square to mark all four sides of the post. Cut the post to length, using a circular saw. Set the saw's blade to its full depth. Cut across the post on one face. Turn the post over to the opposite face of the fence post and cut the post the rest of the way through.

Stand the post in the fence post bracket. Mark the screw holes through the bracket onto the post. Lay the post on a firm, level surface. Install a 3/16-inch bit in the drill and tighten the chuck. Drill a pilot hole in each marked location to a depth of 2 inches.

Set the post in the fence post bracket. Install a nut driver in the drill and drive one 1/4-by-2-inch lag bolt into each pilot hole through the side of the bracket. Drive the bolts in firmly to support the post.

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