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What size deck screw to use

Posted by zerwasagirl (My Page) on
Sat, Oct 21, 06 at 17:53

Please help. I have been reading thru this forum to build my deck correctly. I was all set to use #7 or #8 coated trim heads to screw down 5/4 x 6 Brazilian redwood. Then on McFeely's web site, they said "use of trim heads for attaching deck boards is not generally recommended." That only leaves #10 flat head. Why and how come no one on this sites uses #10? Also, should the length be 2 1/2 inches? Thanks for the GREAT advice you all give!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: What size deck screw to use

I used #10 2 1/2 316 SS buglehead screws w/star drive.

Swan secure product, Woodpecker I think.

Used 9/64 pilot drill.

I screwed and plugged, so SS may have been overkill for that.

I believe Mcfeelys has a #10 2 3/8 square drive that Steve Brooklyndecks uses and has had good success with.

I didn't break a single screw (so far, fingers crossed),
and they hold well.

I decked with 5/4 ipe, and warped boards were a pain. Not sure that the smaller trim screws would have held.

My only deck, so search on Brooklyndecks, John Hyatt, Clemens, etc. These guys are pros and install hundreds of decks.

Their advice has been invaluable, and they are always helpful to rookies like me.

Just my opinion, hope it helps, and good luck.


RE: What size deck screw to use

Trim head,square drive,ss screws are all I have ever used to put down ipe. 1 5/8'' for 3/4'' material,2 1/2'' for 5/4''. John

RE: What size deck screw to use


When I screw down an Ipe deck that I'm gonna plug, I use the #10 2 3/8" no-co-rode deck screws from mcfeely. they are great. When I'm not gonna plug, I use the 2.5" #8 headcote SS trimhead. Mcfeelys sells them, and they recommend them for tropical hardwoods. I wouldn't use them with cedar.

the bugle heads on the #10 have superior hold down ability over the trim heads, but I don't like to see them.


RE: What size deck screw to use

Im using 1 in.Ipe. I plan to face screw and plug, the plugging will probably happen later, Im screwing into doug fir. there is a possability that plugging may not happen, especially before winter. can I use the brown headcote,and plug later,what size and length? also does an impact driver help with the process? any other tips.
thanks Bob

RE: What size deck screw to use


If you plan to plug, you have to countersink deep 3/8" holes (for bugle head screws), or 1/4"(for trim heads). If you set headcote trimscrews now, you'll have to pull them to countersink doesn't make sense. If it's very cold where you live, the titebond 3 glue may not work right for gluing the plugs.

I love my Makita 14.4 impact driver. wouldn't use anything else for setting deck screws. I use a corded drill for deep countersinks.


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