In Depth Extra: Deck Fasteners

Deck FastenersSimpson Strong-Tie’s EB-TY Premium offers the same features as the EB-TY hidden fastener but with a stainless steel plate. The plate provides additional hold-down and pull-through capacity for the screw, making it stronger and easier to install.

With the desire for outdoor living continuing to lead trends for both new and remodeled homes, there’s no better time to be selling decking products. But along with overall demand, what’s also keeping deck fastener manufacturers on their toes is the extensive variety of materials, from exotic woods to composites. Thankfully, there’s a screw or fastener for nearly every material, application, and climate—and therefore no excuse to not have beautiful decks that stand the test of time.

Out of Sight

By far the biggest trend in deck fasteners is the continued growth of hidden fastening systems for both wood and manmade materials. Hidden fastening systems secure planks without the need for screwing into the face of the deck board, resulting in a clean look.

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“One thing we’re definitely seeing in the industry is there’s a lot more interest in hidden fastening options,” says Scott Park, senior product manager at Simpson Strong-Tie. “Most people go that direction now for composites … there’s still quite a bit of face fastening, but for composites, hidden fasteners are popular. It’s driving interest for people who want to keep using wood decking to look for hidden fastening solutions so they can fasten without exposed screws and nails.”

“Our patented Extreme hidden fasteners continue to grow because of the stainless steel reinforcing insert. We know that our customers want a particular result, and that result is a smooth, screw-free surface that will last a lifetime,” says Roderick Kabel, marketing director for DeckWise. “When they lay down a significant amount of money for exotic hardwood decking, they also do their research and find what type of fastener they should use for specific decking materials. Oftentimes, the result is a hidden deck fastener that they trust will keep their exotic hardwood as pristine and natural looking as possible.”

Simpson’s EB-TY brand offers a range of options for both types of materials. In the next couple of months, it will launch EB-TY Premium, which builds on existing features with a stainless steel plate on top of the polymer biscuit. The stainless steel plate provides additional hold-down and pull-through capacity for the screw, making it stronger and easier to install.

The growing interest in hidden fasteners for wood decks drove Simpson to ensure that their systems aren’t just geared toward pro installers. Features such as chamfered edges to help with board lead-in and a stainless steel plate to allow the screw to pull tight combine with an included drill bit with quick-release shank to ease installation; a predrill guide provides precise angle and placement of the hole.

The DeckWise Ipe Clip ExtremeKD hidden deck fastener is engineered to work well with hardwoods as well as grooved-edge composite decking. It features a resin shell that will not pierce the composite material and will not negatively react with the material; a stainless steel insert adds hold-down strength and anti-corrosion properties.

DeckWise Ipe Clip

“We’re excited about this product, and having the predrill guide in there will help ensure it’s installed correctly and quickly,” Simpson Strong-Tie’s Park says.

National Nail offers two hidden fastening systems under its CAMO brand. The CAMO Edge Deck Fastening System, which consists of CAMO deck screws, the Marksman tool and driver bits, screws into both sides of the deck board for a secure attachment that exceeds uplift resistance standards. The stainless steel CAMO Clip works with grooved deck boards and creates a 1/4″ gap.

“For hidden deck fasteners, the future is bright,” says Kabel, who notes that DeckWise also can accommodate one of the newest decking materials, thermally modified wood.

Camo Edge Deck Fastener

The CAMO Edge Deck Fastening System from National Nail combines CAMO deck screws with the Marksman tool to fasten each edge of the deck board to the joists below for a secure connection without face-fastening. The system works with wood, composite, and PVC deck materials.

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