Deck Dictionary

Our Deck Dictionary is to give you a helpful reminder of the meaning of different words and terms associated with building your deck design for your home improvement project.

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Have you ever arrived at a crucial point... following instructions and wondered - 'what on earth do they mean by that'!, or an elusive term that you just can't recall the meaning of... maybe this list will help.

Abut; Abutted; Abutting

Adjoin, touch or lean upon a part of a building, with a projecting end. e.g. the shed abutted on the side of the house.


1) Lateral supporting structure.
2) The point of junction between such a support and the thing supported.


Each of a series of ofter ornamental short posts or pillars supporting a rail or coping.


A railing supported by balusters, for example, forming an ornamental parapet to a balcony, bridge or terrace.


A long sturdy piece of squared timber spanning an opening to support the stucture above.


Any spreading evergreen conifer of the genus Cedrus, bearing tufts of small needles and cones.   In full cedar wood = the fragrant durable wood of any cedar tree. Cedar lumber provides one of the best choices for deck construction - although more expensive that the cheaper options - it will last much longer because of its natural decay resistant and insect repellant properties.

Canadian Western Red Cedar

Of the genus Thuja Plicata, found in the coastal forest region of British Columbia. A durable low density, long lasting softwood.

Composite lumber

A synthetic lumber material made from wood wastes like wood fiber or sawdust and recycled plastic. Composite lumber is becoming more popular for decking because it is often more stable that wood as it doesn't expand and retract as per the weather. It is also a very durable choice and is available in different colors and not-slip textures.


1) A platform for sunbathing
2) A platform or level of a ship
3) The floor of a bus
4) A pack of cards

Deck Chair

A folding chair of wood and canvas, of a kind used on a deck.


Having a specified number of decks or layers.


Shedding its leaves annually.


1) The face of a building, especially its principal front.
2) An outward appearance or front, especially a deceptive one.


Any evergreen coniferous tree, especially of the genus Abies, with needles borne singly on the stems.


The fruit of the fir.


Metallic strip used to prevent water penetration at the junction of a roof or deck, with a wall, etc. (lead sheets)


A framework, an essential supporting stucture.


Wood from a deciduous broad leaved tree.


An exotic hardwood of South America, renowned for its attractive color, density and rigidity. (felling of these tropical hardwoods is contributing to global de-forestation.)


A point at which 2 parts of an artificial structure are joined, connect by joints.


Each of a series of parallel supporting beams of timber used in floors, ceilings. adjective: joisted.


Partly prepared timber, cut and prepare timber for transport.

Lumberjack, Lumberman

One who fells, prepares or conveys lumber.


Where partly prepared timber is stored.


1) An expensive, pink to dark reddish brown hardwood.
2) A tropical tree of the genus Swietenia, especially Swietenia mahagoni. Found in West Africa.


A low wall at the edge of a roof or balcony.


Any evergreen tree of the genus Pinus, native to northern temporate regions. Trees with needle shaped strees growing in clusters.

A soft timber often used to make furniture.

Pineal - adjective: shaped like a pine cone.


A stout piece of timber set upright in the ground etc., to support something.


Fence or barrier made of rails.


An exceptionally large Californian conifer, Sequoia semervirens, yielding red wood. This is a hot favourite as decking timber because of the natural decay resistant qualities and beautiful tones. Deck Heart and Construction Heart Redwoods are some of the best grades available although Garden grade is more economical because of the numerous knots.


1) Wood prepared for building, carpentry, etc.
2) Piece of wood or beam, e.g. rib of a vessels.
3) Large standing trees suitable for timber, - wood, forests.
4) Warning cry when a tree is about to fall.


1) Of buildings: made whole or partly of timber.
2) Of countryside: wooded.


Building (with wood)


(on a mountain) the line or level above which no trees grow.


US land covered with forest yielding timber.

Timber Hitch

Knot used in attaching a rope to a log.

Tropical Hardwood

A wood which is heavier and much harder, denser than cedar or redwood.

We hope that you have enjoyed our deck dictionary, we will be adding to it as we go along.

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