Selecting a Material for Your Outdoor Deck

Decking comes in different materials and you need to look at what each material offers in terms of aesthetics and functionality before you make a decision. While timber decking is the most common, nowadays there are different materials of decking that have become popular such as composite, aluminium and plastic decks. There are pros and cons to each decking so you need to be aware of your requirements from the beginning.

The traditional decking material used is wood and it has sufficient strength and gives a sense of homeliness to a space. It is also incredibly elegant and will fit any setting. There is some maintenance required when it comes to wood decking as you will need to clean and stain it once in every two or three years. If you are looking for a low maintenance option, it is best to stick with composite decking. You can ask your local tradesman about the maintenance required and the pricing for decking maintenance if you are set on a timber deck for your home. Timber decks can be quite expensive and if you are looking for a more cost-effective option, you can go for pressure treated wood. But this requires maintenance as it can splinter if not looked after properly. Then there are tropical hardwoods that are quite durable and they have a lifespan of about 25 years. A more costly option to pressure treated wood is redwood and cedar. These are less long lasting than tropical hardwood as they can wear easily over time. But you need to make sure that you maintain them by power washing, sanding and refinishing the deck once in every three years.

Composite decking is an alternative to timber decking and you can even select a composite that looks very similar to real timber. These decking planks are made by waste wood fibres and plastic and you will not experience any splintering. As they are an artificial material, there is no need to stain or paint them. They are very low maintenance compared to timber decking and they are resistant to UV radiation. You will need to clean and scrub them now and then to get rid of the dirt and debris. They don’t have the same stiffness as timber decking but you will have an easier time installing them as they are more uniform.

Plastic decking or cellular PVC vinyl decking is a decking material that will last a very long time. They are incredibly durable and requires little to no maintenance. All you need to do is clean then once in a while when leaves and dirt gets collected on top. But you will have a completely different feel for this material when compared to wood. This decking is more durable than composite planks. You will be able to get a variety of colours and textures from this material. Aluminium is another material used for decking. It is not so widely used as the other options but it is a lot lighter than all other options. You can even recycle them. These will last the longest out of them all but they are also the most expensive.

 
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