Is a wood cantilever balcony system design a good idea? Traditionally, if you wanted a balcony on your architectural design, the balcony system became a wood cantilever balcony design. Today, new methods and substrates open up options to consider a wood cantilever balcony system or something like an aluminum bolt-on balcony system.
Considerations for wood cantilever balcony system designs
- Amount of cantilever distance before the balcony needs to be supported by a column(s)
- Dense wood placement increases distance of cantilever
- Snow and drifting snow loads factor into weight support
- Density and distance contribute to the amount of deflection
- Wood that extends continuously from interior to exterior is a prime consideration for problematic water intrusion
- Often more expensive because of the heavier support structure
- Failure to adequately ventilate an enclosed deck can create a breeding ground for fungal growth
- Pressure-treated wood may twist when it’s inside a structure
It probably goes without saying that nailing a deck to the building is dangerous.
Questions to ask balcony fabricators
- Think about deck bounce and the feeling of occupant safety. Is there deck deflection (bounce)?
- Do the beams need to be extensively flashed around the building hole to keep water out? Is there additional structural expense?
Recent news stories are another consideration for whether or not to choose a wood balcony system. Google “wood cantilever balcony system,” and you’ll discover many scary considerations for a wood cantilever balcony system.
These scary wood stories are a large reason why Midwest Stairs & Iron enhanced the aluminum balcony system. Though the initial cost of an aluminum balcony system may be more, the saved installation time, safety considerations, and long-term structural integrity outweigh wood considerations. Check out more on how Midwest Stairs & Iron aluminum balconies stand apart from all other balconies.