Why does the smoke not go up through my outdoor fireplace?

 

Why is the smoke not drawing out the chimney of my outdoor fireplace?

There are a couple of likely culprits. Number one is the flu architecture. There is an art to designing the flu that will draw the smoke up rather than back out at your guests! Secondly, try starting with a small amount of kindling and allow the flu to heat up first before making a large fire. This will help draw the smoke as well. Finally, once in a great while, there are just some conditions based on the structures around the fireplace and the wind that will make it more difficult to draw the smoke.

All of the above is accurate. For the most part if your fireplace is designed properly and you follow the above guidance, you should successfully ventilate your outdoor fireplace. In the example above to the right, we integrated a pizza oven above the firebox. While you cannot see it from the photo, there is a 2nd flu for the pizza oven to ventilate out from. To see a wonderful photo gallery, go to https://archadeckofcharlotte.com

 

How can I put my Green Egg into my stone outdoor kitchen?

We get asked all of the time about the integration of the Green Egg into an outdoor kitchen. We also get asked simply what kind of stand can I use instead of the retail stand that you can purchase with the Green Egg?

Archadeck of Charlotte has masons that custom build “nests” around the egg that serve as quite functional and beautiful. If you love outdoor cooking and living, the Green Egg has become an important addition to the space. While it was introduced as a high quality smoker of meats, fish, and vegetables, it is commonly used to grill as well!

We have a great variety of designs for outdoor kitchens in our photo gallery at https://archadeckofcharlotte.com as well as on our Pinterest page.

Why does YELP hide reviews on deck builders?

It is quite perplexing and there are no straight answers to the question, “Why does Yelp hide reviews on deck builders?”

We one of the oldest and most respected deck, porch, and patio builders in the country. Yesterday’s primary referral source was “word of mouth” and today that equates to on-line reviews. These reviews and the various companies that post them can be misleading, manipulated, and confusing.

Yelp is one of the companies that posts on-line reviews (seems like mostly disgruntled people are attracted to taking the time to post these as I read various company reviews). Our company is only showing 5 reviews from this web site? This is SO MISLEADING as we actually have many, many reviews that they choose not to show unless you dig deep into the site to find them. Why is this? When we ask the representative, the answer is “the person who writes the review has to credible?” or have written more than one review. We have several customers who have “Yelper” before but for whatever reason, the company chooses mostly the negative reviews to show, even when the “Yelper” had not written in prior. Why is this? The only reason we can gather is that we do not advertise with Yelp. In fact, we were told by a representative that the reviews that are positive could be shown on the search engine easily if we wanted to work with them. What? Does this sound like pay to play? The Better Business Bureau (BBB) shows all reviews, good or bad, whether they have ever reveiwed before or not. Our reviews are over 60 individual reviews and a 4.9/5 and show what kind of company we truly run.

We are extremely proud of our company and this type of practice is quite hurtful. There have been several law suits brought against the company for slander and each case (including being appealed by Yelp to the Supreme Court), they can plead freedom of speech. Imagine the harm this practice could do to a company?

 

 

Enclosing my screen porch with glass

We have designed and built thousands of screen porches over the past 28 years in the Charlotte, NC market. A recent trend is to enclose the porch with glass. The best rationale we can gather from this trend is people get tired of pollen, dirt, and water getting in the porch.

Stunning 2-story sunroom by Archadeck utilizing unique architectural design to overcome a difficult roof line

Stunning 2-story sunroom by Archadeck utilizing unique architectural design to overcome a difficult roof line

The options are plentiful to achieve this. We can purchase windows that are fixed, called picture windows that can be custom made. We can also install sliding glass windows and/ or doors to allow for maximum ventilation when you want to allow air flow. There are Casement style windows (crank outs) that can be installed in porches as well. Finally, the most common window is called a double-hung, and these are most likely what you have on your home currently. They slide up and down and can tilt in for easy cleaning.

To differentiate between a 3-season room and a 4-season room, you would need to add heat/ air to the room to truly make it a 4 season room. If you want to simply enjoy an outdoor space but can live without the heat and air, the glass option works fine. Local building codes dictate that if you want to add glass, you can do so without adding heat and air as long as you do not change out the back door of the house leading into the room. Once you “break the seal” of that entry, the code requires you to add heat/ air to the new space.

custom built sunroom in Charlotte

Energy-efficient custom built sunroom with lattice under deck

To find an entire photo gallery on porches that have been glassed in, go to https://archadeckofcharlotte.com or for more information call 704-944-1350.

 

Can you build a patio/ deck in the winter in Charlotte, NC?

We are often asked if you can build a patio or deck in the winter in Charlotte, NC?

The answer is yes! We build year around here with few exceptions. Like anything else, if the weather is below freezing (a rare occurrence during the day here), we would most likely hold off on the patio for sure. A deck can be built in cold weather and the important consideration is the spacing between the boards is different when built in the winter versus the summer for expansion and contraction reasons.

 

We often are back logged from 2 – 3 months depending on the season so our work progresses year around. If you want your project ready for the spring, you would want to get on the calendar ASAP to insure it could be ready. Do not hesitate to have projects constructed in the winter as we have been doing them successfully for over 28 years now! To see a great photo gallery of outdoor living spaces like the ones above, go to archadeckofcharlotte.com

 

What are the latest decking trends?

Archadeck of Charlotte is one of the largest design/ build firms for outdoor living in the  USA. As the largest of the over 50 Archadeck franchises in the country, we have built over 23,000 jobs over the past 28 years in the Carolinas.

Like anything else, things change over time. What are the latest decking trends? There is a continued push to low-maintenance materials such as Trex Transcends composite deck and rail, Travertine stone decks, Flagstone raised patios, etc….

We are seeing a big push for picture framing decks with accent colors and materials. People are looking more and more to make their outdoor living space more than just a deck. They prefer an integrated outdoor living oasis. Decks are a big part of this, specifically for homes that are built on crawl spaces as homeowners do not want to negotiate steps right out their back door.

 

When we design decks today, people want outdoor kitchens that are conveniently built right on the deck such as the one shown above. They love fire features such as this wood burning outdoor fireplace built into the ground and up to the surface of the deck, wonderful for entertaining! The travertine tile deck above is both elegant and easy on the feet.

To find a complete photo gallery of deck trends, go to charlotte.archadeck.com

 

Patio with water feature, how much would it cost

 

How much would it cost to have a patio with a water feature built into my backyard? Of course it depends on the size and materials. I am going to attempt to provide a reasonable expectation on a budget for this type of project!

A very modest paver patio that is large enough to house a 4′ x 6′ water feature that has a motor to create a soothing sound and all the patio area for a table and chairs should run between $10,000 – $13,000 in the Charlotte, NC area.

 

Archadeck of Charlotte designed this Gazebo pool cabana with fire pit and patio

Archadeck of Charlotte designed this Gazebo pool cabana with fire pit and patio

If you add a fire pit like the one featured above you could add roughly $1,500!

Call Archadeck of Charlotte to schedule your free design consultation at (704) 944-1350. To see many patios with a wide variety of water and fire features, visit our website at archadeckofcharlotte.com