How to Choose the Right Material for Your Outdoor Decking

How to Choose the Right Material for Your Outdoor Decking

Outdoor decking is a flat surface meant for walking and relaxing on and therefore, above all else, the materials used on it is the most significant design factor to consider. Once upon a time, homeowners were limited to wooden decks. Today, there are many different materials used for decking and the choice you make will significantly impact the design and cost of your deck. Let’s delve at decking options;

Pressure treated wood

Everybody loves a wooden deck and pressure treated timber is an excellent alternative to expensive hardwood decks. Pressure treated (PT) wood is not only affordable, but also readily available. Decks made of PT lumber are easy to build too. All you need to do is cut the lumber up, then fasten it with screws or nails.

Most PT lumber is sourced from fir, or yellow pine then treated to prevent annoying bugs, rot, and fungus. Wood treatment plants utilize preservatives less toxic than traditionally used copper arsenate, a carcinogen. Without this treatment this wood will warp and crack with time, requiring constant replacement.

Pressure treated wood is not very stable and to keep it from the damage it requires maintenance. The maintenance procedure does not only prolong the life of the PT lumber but enhances its looks as well. The maintenance schedule, done once a year includes a power wash and preservative or wood stain application.

The hectic annual maintenance can be a drag for some homeowners. The Aussie weather can be harsh, for example, the seasons bring changes as cold, falling leaves then summers with scorching heat. A PT wood outdoor decking in such area will need at least 20 hours of work annually to give it a long life. You could hire a specialist to do the maintenance or buy tools and cleaning agents that could set you back a few dollars.

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Cedar and redwood

Many will not entertain decking options beyond Australia’s best natural hardwood decks. This may include Jarrah; costly hardwood, but its cost is much worth its wide range of astounding light to dark brown hues. Jarrah could turn grey with time if left unsealed giving that treasured sun-kissed look. Other great alternatives for Jarrah include Blackbutt, Spotted gum, Merbau, Ironbark, and Stringybark.

These hardwoods have highly prized rich color tones and thanks to their high levels of natural oils and tannins, they are rot, insect, and decay resistant. Lumber with more heartwood content lasts longer while that with more sapwood will be softer and more corrosion prone. Some of this wooden outdoor decking’s like Jarrah, Spotted Gum, and Ironbark is also fire resistant.

Aluminum

An aluminum deck requires little maintenance. This decking material is also weather, rot, insect and rust proof. Its material is lightweight, and it is usually finished by applying slip resistant thick coating to give it the color desired.

Aluminum outdoor decking Pergola won’t catch fire, and neither will it become brittle during freezing weather. What’s more, aluminum is fully recyclable, and when compared to most other decking materials it is four times as light and will last three times longer.

Aluminum stays reasonably fresh in the sun because aluminum dissipates heat efficiently. Its planks are built with interlocking edges that help to create a gap-free deck. Water channels are then constructed to receive and drain off rainwater.  You can have an aluminum decking in various wood grain finishes from outdoor decking Pergola.

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About the Author: Derek John

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