A deck is an appealing addition to your home. It increases the value of your home while providing a safe environment to enjoy the open air and sunshine. You have a number of options in the type of wood you use. It depends upon your budget, use, climate, and the look that appeals to you. Here are some of the top choices and a few tips to make your decision easier.
Redwood is a popular choice in hardwoods that wear well in most climates. But it becomes more expensive the farther you live from the West Coast of the U.S. Where it’s grown. Supplies of old growth redwoods are also disappearing. If you can afford it, it’s a very stable, handsome wood that resists warping, so it’s good for warm, humid environments. However, with no natural oils, it’s also subject to insect infestations and rot. Redwood also tends to darken over time, so for both these reasons it should be covered with transparent weather sealants.
Cedar is a smooth-pattern wood which contains natural oils that are highly resistant to insects and rot. However, it’s a softer wood that will handle wear and tear less well. It’s liable to suffer from dents, scratches, and splintering over the course of years. One option is to use cedar for posts and rails, and another material for the actual decking. While less expensive than redwood, cedar is still fairly costly. Consider visiting a timber company like Barrenjoey Timber if you have questions about your options.
Pressure-treated lumber is made to be very resistant to insects, rot, and moisture. It’s found at every hardware store and is more affordable than the above options. However, there are various grades of pressure-treated woods. Those made from soft woods have the same durability issues and may still be subject to warping in humid zones. Harder pressure-treated woods are comparatively more expensive. Another problem is that this kind of lumber can also be discolored, usually to blue-green shades that don’t match natural woods.
Other Wood Materials
There are other woods that are ideal for outdoor weather, such as mahogany and teak. These exotic woods can be very attractive and long-lasting, but are considered luxury woods, especially mahogany, which is much more expensive than redwood. Ipe is a very hard wood from South America that’s good in northern climates. However, there are many supplies that are illegally harvested and shipped to the United States.
A deck should be both visibly pleasant and able to last for years without excessive maintenance. If you’re thinking of adding a deck to your house in the coming months, it might be wise to visit a timber company and see what options/prices are available.