This is the case of magical deck support!
And what is the support for one side of this deck?
Three 6D nails!
Two undersized beams!
The left side of those two beams has a small gap and the other side of the strap is jammed into that gap. A photo did not do justice, but I could not see any nails (or even screws) anywhere in there.
That strap is improperly used, improperly nailed, and improperly positioned.
Anchor - noun - a person or thing that provides steady support.
Siding is not anchor material.
Nails are not anchor agents.
Air inside the wall is not anchor ready.
I say those are 6d nails because of the size of the heads. They are very small. They are loose.
And that none appears to be stuck into anything but siding says to me that there is nothing inside the wall into which they are set.
One might argue that this deck has been there for a while, so what's the problem?
This home inspector would argue back that it doesn't matter. Deck codes are specific and change regularly as jurisdictions want better and more support. Decks don't fall straight down. They come loose and fall away from the house. Weight makes them come loose. And gravity works.
The principle works too - more weight, more time, more loosening action.
We hear the news stories all the time. This or that party and a deck collapses. Gee, why?
My recommendation: so often, so VERY often, I see unsafe or unprofessionally built decks. Some people think physics can be avoided. Time works its magic on everything. But I assure you, magic won't hold this deck up. There is NO such thing as magical deck support!
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560