Out With A New Deck
This year’s long bitter cold winter has kept many of us indoors, feeling cooped up and in high anticipation for warm weather to revel outdoors. As we settle into the Spring/Summer season we are planning activities that will let us enjoy the warm weather to the fullest.
For many of us, our decks will become our preferred space to be and will represent an added living space. A deck is the perfect way to extend your indoor routine outdoors; you can have breakfast, read the morning paper, and take in the sunrise to start your day, and at dawn its ideal for family dinners and entertainment. Decks are lasting longer, and one of the reasons involves the growing selection of decking material available in the market.
Treated lumber (dry) is a less costly choice and does require consistent re-sealing or re-staining and is more likely to respond to our extreme weather and split, warp or crack. “The Benefits of Pressure Treated Wood,” an article on Home Advisor, assures buyers that treated wood is “infused with chemical preservatives to protect the wood from rot and insects,” but does not protect it from weathering or corrosion, but sealing the wood frequently will.
Cedar is another great product for decks, it’s rich color, dazzling patters and pleasing fragrance is an allure to everyone. BDU Decking College recommends red cedar in particular because of “its natural resistance to outdoor wear, ranging from rain and direct sunlight (specifically UV rays) to insect damage.” In addition cedars natural chemicals “guard against many types of decay, making cedar an ideal building material for many outdoor applications, and in particular for decking.” To preserve its natural beauty staining and sealing might be preferred.
Everyone likes the aesthetics of natural wood but alternatives to wood like composite and other synthetic products are innovating in style, color, and size.
Composite is at the front-line of the trend, and with no surprise. Composite material offers the benefits of a product that is less likely to fade, split, mold, is pest resistant, fire retardant, and it’s wood-plastic composite minimize contraction and expansion. What truly makes it so popular with consumers are the varied array of natural emulating colors and patterns that manufactures have to offer.
Another favorite of many in the decking market is Tropical Ipe, because of its durability and low-maintenance build. The appeal in Ipe is not only in its strong build but in its aesthetic attractiveness that mimics interior hardwood floor and creates a luxurious feel for outdoor spaces. The Wood Database rates Ipe as one of the most durable lumbers on earth, naturally repelling decay and resisting mold perfect for harsh Chicago weather.
Industries like Trex have over a dozen shades and hues ranging from “premium tropical” to “classic earth tones.” Others like MoistureShield make each board different to mimic natural wood; and a step up from that, TimberTech hand scraped texture on each board.
Of course, no deck will last forever, but regardless of what material you decide knowing how to take care of your deck will let you enjoy it for years to come. Here are some tips from top manufactures for your current or future deck.
Care and Maintenance (composite lumber)
Recommendations depend on the manufacture you choose
AERT (MoistureShield) http://www.moistureshield.com/care-cleaning/
How to Take Care of Your Wood Deck
Deck Treck http://www.decktechinc.com/wood-decks