Dock Construction
Dock Building

Materials Used in Dock Construction

A dock is where boaters can safely dock and moor their vessels. It can also serve as a recreation space for swimming, fishing, and other activities.Dock Construction

Piling a dock is complex, and mistakes can be costly. It is essential to follow best practices when planning your pilings. Click Learn More for more information.

The decking material is another crucial choice for a dock. Southern yellow pine is a good option because it is affordable and pressure-treated to prevent rot.

Dock builders rely heavily on wood, whether it’s for pilings or decking. Using a natural material like wood also allows a dock to blend in with the surrounding environment. It’s important to choose the right wood, though. For example, cedar is a great choice for piers because it resists rot and mold very well. In addition, cedar is a more attractive choice than Southern yellow pine. The latter can splinter and isn’t as strong. Another option for decking is composite materials, which are a mix of wood fibers and plastic. These are also resistant to rot and mold, but they don’t have the same visual appeal as wood.

In general, the best choice for decking is pressure treated wood. Depending on the type of water, it may be necessary to use different levels of treatment for freshwater and saltwater. It’s a good idea to check the maximum height of the lake or other body of water. Once you know what that is, the deck should be built a few inches above that level.

As with other types of construction, dock builders should follow blueprint specifications and safety regulations. They should be familiar with a variety of tools, including hand and power tools, chain saws, bobcats, trucks and drills. They must also be able to read and interpret blueprints.

Most dock builders go through a three- or four-year apprenticeship program, which includes significant on-the-job training. In addition to learning basic skills, apprentices typically attend specialized training with industry experts and manufacturer representatives. They must also take Occupational Safety and Health Administration safety courses, standard first aid and CPR classes, and tool or skill-specific certifications. As demand for new and repaired docks grows, job prospects for carpenters will improve.


Concrete is an excellent choice for dock construction because it is durable, affordable, and resistant to damage. It also doesn’t contaminate the water, making it an environmentally friendly option. However, it may be more costly than other materials such as wood, but the initial cost is offset by the lower maintenance costs and long-term savings.

Floating concrete docks are built to be highly resilient, with a thick foam core that provides strength and buoyancy. This makes them a good choice for areas that are exposed to harsh weather conditions, such as tidal changes and storms. Additionally, a floating concrete dock allows for the installation of utilities and electrical lines, which are housed in the concrete.

The iDock is an example of a floating concrete dock that has been successfully tested against the effects of severe tropical weather, including hurricanes and high winds. The dock was originally constructed with an RC substructure consisting of piles and pile caps, as well as a wooden deck. However, following Hurricane Irma in 2017, the wood deck was destroyed and only the deteriorated concrete substructure remained. The iDock was reconstructed with a re-engineered RC deck using precast slabs carrying a GFRP grating, which increased the load-bearing capacity and durability of the structure.

The initial cost of a concrete dock can vary, depending on the size and complexity of the structure. A larger, more elaborate dock will generally have a higher cost than a smaller, simpler one. In addition, the type of concrete used can have a significant impact on price. Choosing a high-quality, specialized concrete mix may have a higher initial cost, but it can be more cost-effective in the long run by reducing maintenance expenses.


When building a dock, one of the biggest decisions you’ll make is what type of decking material to use. The most common is Southern Yellow Pine, which is a softwood that’s readily available and easy on tools. However, this wood does splinter and can rot with age. Our custom structures are made with “ground contact” pressure treated Southern Yellow Pine, which means the treatment penetrates the lumber to the utmost degree and will provide years of service.

Steel is a durable, cost-effective option for pilings and support beams. In addition, it can be driven deeper below layers of weaker soil and rock formations, which enhances the structural strength of a dock. Steel piles are also resistant to corrosion. Our docks are supported by galvanized steel. Unlike plain carbon steel, which can degrade in a marine environment, galvanized metal is coated with a layer of zinc to protect against rust and corrosion.

Another great choice for your dock structure is HDPE plastic lumber, which is very easy to work with and requires no special tools. This type of material is incredibly durable and can resist mold and mildew, unlike traditional wood materials. Our custom docks are constructed with either a modern through-flow or classic HDPE decking.

For safety reasons, you should install your dock to a certain height above the water level. This will help prevent the forming of ice that can break and damage docks. Generally, we suggest installing the dock a few inches above the maximum water line. You can find this mark by looking at the highest point of the lake, river or pond. It’s also a good idea to check with local towns and areas for permitting requirements before beginning construction on your dock.


A dock isn’t complete without a foundation, and the pilings that hold it all up. Unfortunately, marine pilings can be very vulnerable to damage. Whether from sun’s UV rays, fungus, termites, or wood-boring marine organisms, they can be ruined quickly. To prevent this from happening, they must be protected by piling caps.

Piling caps can also add a nice aesthetic touch to your dock. They are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials, so you can choose the ones that will suit your specific dock design and budget. Some are even designed to help with the sturdiness of your piling. They have internal hexagram truss systems that boost the piling’s strength and rigidity.

These are a great option if you have a sturdier type of piling in mind, like fiberglass. Fiberglass is incredibly strong and can withstand the elements, so it doesn’t require extensive piling protection. In fact, a piling cap may be all you need to ward off roosting birds and add a finishing touch to your project.

With growing restrictions on the use of treated lumber in water, wooden pilings are being replaced more often than ever before. In response to this, Shoreline Plastics developed EcoPile. This patent-pending piling was engineered to outlast all others and stand up to the harsh marine environment. The patented composite marine piling is 100% free from leaching pollutants, impervious to wood boring organisms, and meets sustainability standards for strict environmental regulations. It also comes with a 25-year warranty.


Aluminum is an excellent material to use in dock construction for a number of reasons. It’s durable and low maintenance, and it also resists corrosion, which is a big benefit because aluminum is more likely to be exposed to the elements than wood or steel. A quality aluminum dock will last far longer than a pine or concrete one, which is why many homeowners choose it. It does, however, have the disadvantage of being slightly more expensive than other materials.

A high-quality aluminum dock can increase the value of a lake home, and it’s also aesthetically pleasing. The material is lightweight, which means it can be installed easily. It also places less pressure on the foundation and shore, so it’s more stable than wood or steel docks. Aluminum is also available with a variety of decking options, from a modern through-flow look to classic HDPE plastic or wood-grained decking.

Another advantage of aluminum is that it’s sustainable, which earns it points in the environmental friendliness column. It takes around 95 percent less energy to recycle aluminum than it does to manufacture the primary metal, which makes it a smart choice for environmentally-conscious property owners.

As a property owner, you want to be sure that your dock is safe and secure for you and your guests. The best way to do that is by hiring a licensed professional for your dock construction project. A licensed professional has completed training courses and received certification from the state of Michigan to build and inspect docks, which ensures that the finished product meets all applicable building codes and safety standards. A licensed professional is also more likely to provide a warranty on the work they perform.

Roofing Services

Getting Started As a Roofer

Roofers Wilmington DE build and repair roofs. They may specialize in residential or industrial roofing. They collaborate with other construction professionals, such as carpenters and electricians, on construction projects.Roofer

Small businesses focus on residential roofing, working on single-family homes and multi-unit housing complexes. They often interact with clients, addressing their questions and concerns. They may also give sales presentations, starting with the highest-priced options.

Whether you are building a new home or replacing your current roof, there are many different roofing materials to choose from. Some are more expensive than others but each adds value to your house and holds up well over time with the right care. Choosing the best material to suit your environment, personal preference and house style will require some research.

Asphalt shingles are a popular option for most environments. These roofs are made from thin sheets of a mix of organic and inorganic materials with a coating that helps them resist damage. They are available in a wide range of colors and styles. Some are designed to mimic more expensive tile or shake roofs.

Clay or concrete tiles are another popular option for rooftops. These roofs are a great choice for warmer climates and can stand up to high winds. They are also non-combustible, which makes them a safer choice than most other types of roofs. However, they are quite heavy and may need additional framing to support their weight.

Rolled roofing, which is often called mineral-surfaced roofing, is a common choice for low-slope residential roofs and outbuildings like sheds or garages. It consists of large rolls of asphalt-impregnated material topped with mineral granules that are either torch down or nailed into place. Rolled roofs are cheap to install, but they don’t offer much in the way of aesthetics.

Slate roofs are an attractive option for luxury homes. These roofs, which are composed of thin sheets of real stone, are fire-resistant and durable enough to withstand hail and high winds. However, they are very expensive to install and must be installed by a professional.


Roofers need to have training and certifications in order to do their jobs well. A high school diploma is usually the minimum educational requirement, and taking courses in carpentry or related subjects can help a would-be roofer learn the basics. Many roofers, however, start their careers without any formal education and train informally while working with experienced roofing professionals. Depending on the company and its methods, new hires may need to undergo three or more years of on-the-job training before becoming proficient.

Other roofers choose to join trade unions or contractor associations that offer apprenticeship programs. These typically last three or more years and combine a planned program of work experience with classroom instruction. Apprentices are often paid while undergoing training, and they may earn additional pay as their skills and knowledge improve. This is a good route for someone who wants to gain the skills of a professional roofer, but it can be expensive.

Regardless of the method of learning, roofers need to have physical strength and stamina, as well as a comfort level with working at heights. They also need to be detail-oriented and able to follow instructions precisely. They should also enjoy working outdoors and with their hands. In addition, some states require that roofers be licensed and obtain training or certification through the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Certification through a professional organization like the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) can also demonstrate commitment to professionalism and top-notch workmanship.

Getting Started

Many roofers earn their credentials through apprenticeships or completing relevant training programs, but it is also possible for a skilled individual to start a roofing business as an independent contractor. As a small business owner, you will need to manage the finances and supply materials for jobs as well as market your services to potential clients. This involves creating a website, printing business cards and using social media to promote your services.

Most roofers work at construction sites as part of a larger team, collaborating with other construction professionals to coordinate and integrate roofing tasks into the overall project schedule. It is important to keep up with the latest building codes and regulations to ensure that your work meets all standards.

In addition to constructing new roofs, roofers also repair existing ones. This may include replacing shingles, repairing or patching leaks, and addressing other issues that arise. It is vital that a roofer has excellent customer service skills to maintain positive relationships with clients.

When evaluating prospective roofing contractors, ask to see proof of insurance and licenses before making a hiring decision. You should also request references from previous customers. A quality roofing contractor should not have any problem providing these. If a roofer is reluctant to provide references, this could be a sign that they are trying to scam potential clients. Lastly, don’t hire a roofer who cannot provide a physical address for their business. This is another common trick used by fraudulent contractors. A physical address verifies that the company actually exists and can be contacted should any problems arise during the job. Additionally, it can be a good idea to visit the company’s website to see before-and-after pictures of roofing projects.

Working Conditions

Roofers work in a variety of environments, from residential homes to construction sites and industrial facilities. In some cases, these jobs may have specialized requirements due to the unique features of the environment or structure.

When working on a roof, roofers will need to wear safety equipment such as eye protection, a hard hat and gloves. Gloves are especially important as they protect hands from harsh chemicals, cuts, grazes and burns that can occur when handling tiles, bitumen and other roofing materials. They also provide a good grip and help to reduce fatigue when working at heights.

It is also vital that roofers take regular breaks to prevent heat exhaustion. They should be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and avoid working at midday when the sun is at its peak. The risk of falling from a height is another major concern. This is why roofers must always use fall protection, which can include a harness, lanyard with shock absorber, anchor points and connectors.

Depending on the type of job, roofers will likely need to work with other construction professionals such as carpenters or electricians. It is important that these teams work together effectively to complete the project in a timely manner and to adhere to strict safety protocols. Some jobs might require the use of chemical products, such as solvents or paints, which present additional dangers to workers. These substances can be highly flammable and must be handled with care and attention to ensure the health and well-being of those in contact with them. They must be kept securely out of reach of children and stored appropriately in accordance with COSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health) regulations.

Getting a Job

If you want to get started as a roofer, you should look for an employer that offers on-the-job training. During this time you will learn about roofing materials and how to install, replace and repair different kinds of roofs. You will also be taught how to use the tools and equipment necessary for the job.

Some of the tools that you will need to work as a roofer are ladders, hammers, hatchets, shears, tin snips and hand saws. The most important thing to remember when working as a roofer is safety. This is especially important since many roofers work at significant heights and are exposed to the elements. It is not uncommon for a simple mistake or misstep to result in serious injury or death. Taking the proper precautions like wearing safety goggles and a hard hat is essential.

Often, roofers are part of a team that includes other construction professionals such as carpenters and electricians. This means that communication and customer service skills are a must. In addition, a roofer may have to collaborate with management and salespeople on the design of a new roofing system.

Roofers are usually paid by the hour and may be required to attend meetings on a regular basis. They are also required to stay up to date on the latest developments in the roofing industry and attend training sessions to learn how to better perform their duties.

The demand for roofers is fairly steady compared to other types of construction workers and is not as susceptible to economic fluctuations. The need for re-roofing and repairs on existing structures, along with the construction of new buildings, will keep the demand for skilled roofers high.