Build a Wooden Pallet Deck for Under $300

Back when I started Remodelaholic, my focus was on taking something old and making it into something new. (I still love that, but sometimes you just have to buy raw materials rather than repurpose, you know?) Pallets are one material that seems to spur an endless fountain of creativity — DIYers are making anything and everything out of discarded shipping pallets! As an inexpensive source of lumber, pallets are a great material that just takes a little bit of love. Our guest today built a wooden pallet deck — for under $300!

 Build a Wooden Pallet Deck for Under $300 | Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic #palletwood #deck #summer #backyard

Scroll down for the details of how Jodi and her husband built their deck. And if you’re not in need of a deck, you could always pick up some pallets to make…

a pallet daybed
(The Space Between featured on Remodelaholic)
beach house rooftop pallet bed, featured on Remodelaholic

a reclaimed wood backplash
(Circa Dee featured on Remodelaholic)
pallet wood backsplash, featured on Remodelaholic

a pallet wood accent wall
(Mandy Jean Chic featured on Remodelaholic)
pallet wood bathroom accent wall, featured on Remodelaholic

a rustic pallet wood cabinet
(Shabby Love featured on Remodelaholic)
rustic pallet cabinet, featured on Remodelaholic

or a reclaimed wood planked ceiling
(Maple Leaves and Sycamore Trees featured on Remodelaholic)rustic pallet ceiling, featured on Remodelaholic

But, if you need a great spot to host a barbecue or shoot the breeze with your buddies, you just can’t beat a deck. Here’s Jodi to show you how her wooden pallet deck came to be:

Build a Wooden Pallet Deck for Under $300
by Jodi of Second Wind of Texas

Hi! I’m Jodi Blackmon from Second Wind of Texas. My husband, Mark and I are living proof that you can learn something by watching TV! When we bought our house 3 years ago, we started rehabbing it by doing things we had learned by watching DIY Network. Everything else came from Google.

I never thought I’d be the kind of girl who likes to lay tile and spread grout, but I learned not only about DIY projects, but a little about myself along the way. I share DIY tips, tutorials, recipes and furniture restoration projects from my home and others on my blog. I hope you stop by! Here are a couple of my favorite posts:

How to Replace Broken/Chipped Veneer
Barn Door to Replace Pocket Door
And I am thrilled to be featured on Remodelaholic with our Under $300 Deck Addition! Enjoy.

We needed stairs on the front side of our deck, because it’s the easiest access to the yard and pool.

wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

This is what we started with. This is the night after a huge wind storm, and after a quick pick up of everything we had left on the deck, we were able to start.

before building the wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

prepping for the pallet wood deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

We took out all of the stones from under the deck and the courtyard, and leveled the pebbles.

leveling the ground before building the wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

We got several pallets from the ReStore to lay as a base. We laid them different ways to see what would be the best configuration for us.

wooden pallet deck with pallets from ReStore, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

laying out the pallets for the deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

We wound up taking the timbers from these large ones to use later. We started by using old pavers and flagstones for a base.

pavers and flagstones as the base foundation for the pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Mark cut them to fit around existing posts on the deck, and secured it to the deck.

building the pallet wood deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

securing pallets to deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

building pallet wood deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Mark secured the layers together with deck screws and added filler wood so the decking boards wouldn’t eventually sag.

deck screws to hold the pallets together, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

filler wood in a pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Then it was a matter of laying the deck boards and screwing them down.

building a pallet wood deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

how to build a deck from wooden pallets, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

building a deck from wooden pallets, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

diy wooden pallet deck tutorial, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Then we secured the second layer of pallets to the first, using the pavers for support again.

stepped pallet deck DIY, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Since there was a large space between these, we added support boards.

add support boards in spaces of wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

add support boards in spaces of pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

pallet deck with support boards for structure, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Mark added a 2×6 board as a face frame for the first tier.

2x6 face frame on a tiered wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

building a tiered wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

And then laid the boards for the second tier.

second tier of wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

how to build a tiered wooden deck from shipping pallets, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

tutorial for building a tiered wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

For the third tier, we dug 4 holes for short 4×4’s in front of the second tier (above). We then secured 4 timbers going straight out, and laid decking boards across those.

triple-tier wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

how to build a wooden pallet walk-out patio, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

building a tiered walk-out pallet patio, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

Once it was all trimmed out, I filled screw holes and added a solid color deck stain.

fill in screw holes in pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

solid color stained pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

stained tiered pallet wood deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

build a wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

And this is the area shortly after.

diy wooden pallet deck ready for summer, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

steps on wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

steps on diy wooden pallet deck, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

And this is the area now!

wooden pallet deck finished, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

how to build a wooden deck from pallets, The Second Wind of Texas featured on Remodelaholic

One thing we would have done differently, is lay black plastic on top of the pebbles. We have a few weeds that like to pop up.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Top tier-14ft long by 4.9ft wide
  • 2nd tier-14ft long by 2.5ft wide
  • 3rd tier-8ft long by 3.5ft wide

The 1×6’s and screws, poly and stain were what we bought new. Pallets, wood, metal joints, screws, stain and poly total cost-$285!

Update from Jodi, April 2015:

Since it’s been a couple of years since this has been completed, maybe I can answer some questions that have popped up. First, the pallets are not directly on the ground. They are resting on pavers and do not touch the ground. Pallets are very strong and weather resistant in many cases, which is why they are perfect for outdoor use. Second, the top boards are treated deck boards. It’s been a couple of years now, and even though Texas weather is crazy hot and the sun has beat down on this deck with all it’s force, and storms have rained down, the deck has not budged or warped in any way. I was a little concerned it may settle, since we live in an area which is known for cracks in houses (our master bath needed to be raised because it sank 3 inches-not our project) the deck has not moved. I’m thrilled with the way it turned out. And in the beginning, if any of my fears has come to light over the next couple of years, the investment was $300. The whole plan was to have something that would last until we could afford to do better. But it’s held up beautifully and see no reason to replace it anytime soon.

—————————–

Thanks for sharing with us, Jodi! Can’t wait for summer!

Go pay Jodi a visit at Second Wind of Texas and see what else she’s learned from The DIY Network and Google 🙂

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We love hearing from fellow Remodelaholics, so let us know what you like about this and leave any questions below in the comments. If you've followed a tutorial or been inspired by something you've seen here, we'd love to see pictures! Submit pictures here or by messaging us over on Facebook.

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20 Comments

  1. my only concern is the wood pallets will rot and you will ended up having to re-do the whole support structure for your deck boards. Specially since you setup the pallets directly on the ground.

    1. Hi! Jodi here. Thanks for the comment. They actually aren’t on the ground. We used the old pavers to raise them, and they are resting on those. It’s been a couple of years now, and the deck has not budged or warped. Even in this crazy hot Texas weather!

        1. Hi! I’m sorry, I’m just seeing your comment. We didn’t need to use many. Maybe 6 or less per level. There’s a more detailed post on my blog, secondwindoftexas.com. Under tutorials. Thank you!

  2. I see that y’all used the quikcrete paver mold for the area around the deck. How did y’all like that and was that easier than using paper or stone blocks?
    By the way, I love the deck trying to make a pallet deck myself.

    1. Hi Anita. Yes, we did use the quikcrete mold. It wasn’t easy. We mixed all of the concrete by hand. But if you have access to a mixer, it would be a lot easier. We had to take out the grass and make the dirt as even as possible. We chose it because it had an interesting design, and to get a cool design with pavers or bricks, you have to have them just about perfect. There is a post about it on my blog, secondwindoftexas.com, titled The Best $13 We’ve Ever Spent…under Tutorials. It’s pretty detailed on how it works. I hope this helps!
      Jodi

  3. Was this deck built to local code? This design does not meet the local codes that i can find for this area.

  4. This is an amazing diy job you did! And the tutorial is so very much appreciated!!! The pics and process you shared is totally my language, and The way you described your life changing and self dicovery since you became the do it yourself-er you never dreamed of being, is the EXACT way i feel about my journey of the discovery as well. I am a person i didnt know i could be on top of the super, so many amazing benefits of doing things myself. Thanks so much for sharing and thanks to remodelaholic for this outlet of learning, sharing, and great work recognition.

  5. What are the deck boards exactly? When I search “deck boards” on home depot I come up with 8 foot lengths that are over $20. I don’t imagine that would keep you under $300. Do you know which type of boards they were so that I know what will last equally long?

  6. I’d also be worried about rot. Unless the pallets are made with treated wood they won’t last long and will eventually rot even if they aren’t resting on the ground. The pallets here in Canada are made cheap from cheap wood for one time use, that’s why there are so many of them. With all that time and effort it would be more cost efficient over the long run to use treated wood or cedar.

  7. Wow! it looks just as good as any other deck. I’m told you can build so much out of old pallets. The funny thing is, there are companies that throw these away by the thousands. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!

  8. That looks great. I am wanting to do just one layer maybe 4 pallets in a square shape in front of my shed. So what to these negative people. If it lasts even a couple years & you had fun making it who cares. Its not like its a high up structure that will collapse and hurt someone. I cant find your link (secondwindoftexas.com) to the tutorial, can you send that to me?

  9. Hi I looking for an answer, as to how much weight the deck can take,the reason I ask is because I’m hoping to raise the floor of a terrace in my restaurant with a double layer of pallets then lay some sheets of chip board on top. Will it be string enough to hold 50 people and tables and chairs in your opinion. Any help will be much appreciated

    1. Hi David, The strength of the pallet floor deck will depend on the pallets and their condition — for a public restaurant terrace, I’d definitely consult a professional who could help you calculate weight tolerance and stability to keep everyone safe and secure.

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