Decks are places for relaxation as well as entertainment, whether they surround an in-ground pool or serve as a balcony extension in the front or rear. When it comes to deck design, the possibilities can be daunting, as they are with many other outdoor amenities. Choosing the right decking materials will create an aesthetically and functionally solid foundation.
This is one of the most common options today, appearing on about 75% of all new decks. People choose it for its lifespan since it has been chemically treated to resist decay, mold, and insects. It’s easy to find, cut, and work with, however precautions, such as wearing a mask when cutting or drilling, must be taken to avoid chemical inhalation. Also, scraps should not be burnt in order to avoid the release of chemical fumes. This type of decking material does require maintenance because it has a tendency to crack or distort over time.
Cedar decking is widely recognized as a high-quality wood for decks. Over time, this natural wood will age to a gentle gray tone. It’s lightweight and simple to work with, making it ideal for do-it-yourself jobs. Natural tannins in cedar make it resistant to deterioration and rot. Cedar, like pressure-treated wood, requires routine upkeep. However, if you choose high-quality cedar and offer periodic refinishing, your cedar deck will surpass typical pressure-treated wood decking.
Hardwoods, including ipe woods, cumaru wood commonly used for hot tubs steppers, and tigerwood, are used as high-grade decking materials. Hardwoods are considered a luxury option since they are gritty, hard, and durable, as well as inherently resistant to rot and insects. However, they are rather expensive. Hardwoods, as the name suggests, are quite thick, making it difficult to drill holes into them. Hardwoods also don’t take stains or finishes well, so if you insist on using one, make sure it’s specifically made for decking and come as a pre-finished decking products. If you do not want to stain the deck, use a UV-blocking clear wood preservative every three to four years.
Composite decking materials are among the fastest-growing decking solutions available today, comprised mostly of wood fibers and recyclable polymers. Most typically, low-density polyethylene (LDPE) and wood fibers are used together, however rice hulls, high-density polyethylene, and other materials are utilized in some products. They will not warp or splinter because and won’t be damaged by rot or insects. As a result, they are a very long-lasting solution. Composite decking is extremely low-maintenance, requiring no sanding or refinishing. Typically, the only necessary maintenance is to wash your deck a few times each year.
Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) polymers come in a variety of quality levels, although virtually all are durable. High-quality PVC decking has nearly none of the weaknesses that wood has. This eliminates the need for sanding or staining, making vinyl decking nearly maintenance-free. Vinyl has a greater selection of aesthetic alternatives than wood. There are brown, gray, white, tan, and wood-grain designs available. Over the last 20 years, solid PVC decking has improved in formulation and looks, and it is lighter than other decking materials, making it simpler to move and work with on the construction site.
While aluminum decking is not the most popular material, it is an excellent choice. It has appeal for a variety of reasons. It won’t rust, bend, splinter, rot, or fracture, and it’s also weather and mold resistant. Because there are no insects to worry about, an aluminum deck is exceptionally easy to care for and will never peel or blister. You’ll also be pleased to learn that aluminum decking is three to four times lighter and two to three times stronger than wood, composite, and PVC.
Manor has been innovating exterior remodeling and construction in the Columbia, Missouri and mid Missouri area since we opened our doors in 2006. We remain a leader in home exterior projects like roofs, siding, windows and deck renovations. Contact us today to get a free estimate!