A popular spot for an outdoor kitchen is the patio deck – particularly if you have a smaller yard. Setting up the outdoor kitchen by the deck eliminates paving or doing any high maintenance on the yard. Plus, decks are closer to the house, making it easier to figure out utility connections.
But even though the deck is a pristine location for an outdoor kitchen, you still have to know a few things to make sure you set everything up correctly.
1. Know Everything About the Deck
There are plenty of deck types you can have in your backyard. Each type can accommodate a different style of an outdoor kitchen. But, even if you have a perfect layout to work with, you need to know if your deck is in the right shape to bear the weight of an outdoor kitchen.
The first thing you should do is get a structural check, a safety check, and a code violations check to ensure your deck meets all the requirements to hold an outdoor kitchen. This will also help you understand the type of kitchen setup you can choose.
For example, if your deck can’t bear too much weight, you might consider using materials like Werever’s HDPE outdoor kitchen cabinets over stainless steel, which would weigh much more.
2. Choose the Right Kitchen Layout
Next is the time to decide on a layout. This will mainly be driven by the available outdoor living space on your deck. Be creative with how you structure the kitchen, and keep in mind that the layout needs to focus on functionality more than looks.
After all, you need to walk around the kitchen area if you’re planning on using the space to entertain.
The most commonly used kitchen layouts for this setting are:
- Choosing a central island
- Placing a kitchen by the outer edges of the deck
- Selecting a linear kitchen against the house
3. Choose the Amenities
Once you have the layout, choosing the amenities will help you find the type of kitchen you’ll install. If your deck is farther away from your indoor kitchen, you’ll likely need more appliances and amenities. But, if you’re close to your home, you can get away with keeping some amenities indoors.
Amenities for your outdoor kitchen include bar seating, an outdoor sink, a grilling station with outdoor grill cabinets, an outdoor pizza oven, and more. Ultimately, space will determine how many appliances and amenities you’ll be able to add.
4. Figure Out Utility Connections
With a solid idea of what appliances the outdoor kitchen will have, it’s time to figure out the utility connections. The good news is that most desks already include electrical, gas, and plumbing connections, so there’s no additional work required there.
Additionally, your deck area is usually already well illuminated with lighting from the house. However, if you need to add some additional outlets or lighting, it’s best to start thinking about these before bringing the kitchen items.
5. Consider Shading Options
Last but not least, you want to set up some shades. You can choose a pergola or gazebos for shading, especially for the outdoors. But, things like patio umbrellas, roll-down shades are also great ideas for smaller spaces. Keep in mind that some of these elements will add on the weight over the deck, so you need to refer back to the previous points mentioned in this article.