Decking is a popular solution for making the most out of your outdoor space. It is also the easiest way to create more living space in your home.
About 25 years ago, Trex turned the decking business on its ear with composite timber made from finely ground wood and discarded plastic bags; however, that has dramatically changed as there are plenty of other makers of synthetic decking, giving you many more viable options to choose from.
Choosing suitable decking can be difficult. Not only are you considering aesthetics and price, but also concerns about performance and maintenance. Decking can last for about ten years to 30 years if chosen rightly. Usually, composite and timber can last for extended periods. However, unlike composite, some parts of the timber deck can be replaced. Composite decking, on the other hand, will need to be entirely replaced, which can be more expensive in the long run.
To enable you to make a wise decision, we’ve put together a list of the pros and cons of some decking materials in the article. Whichever you decide to choose, however, insist that your installer use hot-dipped galvanized or, better still, a stainless steel joist hanger, screw, and clips on the deck framing, which will most likely be made from pressure-treated lumber.
Composite decking has been the new range and most talked about type of decking. They are made from several materials, including plastic and wood fibers recycled from the woodworking industry. Composite decking takes the appearance of natural wood and is just as durable! It is, however, quite expensive than wood decking, but the unique composition that makes it easily maintained and resistant to termites has compensated for that.
Composite is a natural beauty and does not need paints, stains, or sealers to maintain its attractive appearance. Also, it won’t split, splinter, or rot. Some brands can even be curved. Many are embossed on both sides, meaning they can be flipped over if marred.
As much as composite materials are suitable for decking, they also have their downside. One significant complaint people make regarding composite decking is that removing stubborn stains with a mild bleach solution or deck cleaner can be challenging.
Also, it is prone to fade, and most manufacturers do well to inform their customers before beginning the project. Composite decking is also twice the weight of wood, so not ideal for roof decks.
- Pressure-treated wood
As a result of its low cost, pressure-treated wood has become one of the most commonly used materials in the deck construction industry. It is real, natural, and beautiful. It is also treated to resist rot, fungal decay, mold, mildew, and termite damage.
But just like other wood products, pressure-treated wood should be sealed or stained regularly. If left unsealed, the wood will engulf and give off moisture, making the wood swell and contract as it dries out. Also, the wood’s appearance tends to reduce over time due to the constant swelling and shrinking. It is also very prone to splintering.
- Cedar decking
Cedar decking is one of the most used wood due to its natural look. It is made from a higher grade of lumber and is pressure-treated to ground contact level. Also, it has an attractive, wealthy, western, coastal cedar color, a warm tone, natural grain, and unique texture, with outstanding durability due to its insect resistance. Cedar comes in various colors; you can change the color to match your home setting.
But just like other materials, cedar needs to be sealed and stained regularly; it is also more expensive than pressure-treated wood.
Creating a deck in your home may be the ultimate boost you need to add value to your home. However, when choosing a decking material, consider its cost, maintenance, and durability level, as this will enable you to make the best choice that suits you and your family’s style.
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