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sheila 09-03-2007 07:29 PM

what is the best material for decking
wood or composites?

spyder9176 09-06-2007 08:43 PM

Wood requires maintenance to stay looking nice. Pressure Treated wood will turn gray,shrink, crack and warp very fast if not treated at least every other year. More expensive woods like mahogany and cedar need yearly treating to keep there new color. Composite requires little maintenance. It will fade from the sun and if you keep your grill on it grease stains are impossible to get out. Also composite can look wavy if the joist supporting it have large crowns in them. So there really is not a best it’s a preference. If never staining your deck sound great than composite is for you. If you like the look of wood and can maintain it than wood. There is a maintenance free wood called IPE or "ironwood". It's a very durable form of mahogany. Pressure Treated is the least expensive while mahogany, cedar and composite are about the same.

inspectorD 09-08-2007 08:17 AM

Out of the box
I try to get my customers to build a stone patio.

Stone walls..pea stone to walk on with weed cover underneath is easy to maintain....lasts for generations.. Also no permit needed.
Less in taxes in some counties also.

Never needs paint, doesn't warp or rot....cleans up with water.

Rain anyone?;)

glennjanie 09-08-2007 11:12 AM

I vote for InspectorD's solution. Right on D.
Each area of the world has stone peculiar to the area which makes a neat tie to the natural surroundings. Limestone, in many variations, covers most of the earth; sometimes on the surface, sometimes a few feet down. Some of us are blessed with sandstone also which is rather easy to break apart in layers. With the layered stone you can use whatever thickness you please. We usually call that flagstone.


Barry M 09-29-2007 07:04 PM

Wood decks do need maintained every couple years but contrary to what most believe, so does composite decking. Composite decking is 50% wood 50% plastic. The wood fibers will gray just like a wood deck, which is why they sell sealer for composite decks, and the plastic in composites has a reputation for getting covered in mildew which appears as black spots. This mildew and graying combined is extremely hard to clean up. I have actually turned away customers that want their composite decking cleaned up. It takes a very strong solution of bleach and so much pressure that you are almost damaging the product just to try and get it cleaned. IMO composite decking is way over rated and I think its wrong that these companies sell it as "maintenance free". Nothing outside is maintenance free.

Now call me to clean up an old grayed out deck and I'll bring it back to life almost effortlessly. :D

handyguys 04-01-2008 06:58 AM

I just did a podcast where we discuss pros and cons of wood and composite decks. I would agree, if the terrain will allow that stone or concrete is the best from a longevity perspective. As for wood or composite WOOD, what wood? Hardwoods (IPE for example). PT Pine is also better than composites.
Give it a listen.

Zom 06-11-2008 07:07 PM

Deck is looking bad
4 Attachment(s)
We've had this deck for 4 years We power washed and stained it last year. Some leaves sat on it over the winter and when we cleaned it off it left black spaots all over it. We used deck cleaner to no avail. My wife did some looking online and she found that oxygen bleach was good for cleaning decks. This stuff boast that in 10 minutes your deck will go from "This to this' It shows a pic of a bad looking deck then shows a nice clean deck. well, we got some of it. Followed the directions but it will not clean the black off. I tried to power wash it. It will come up but it splinters the wood. Do any of you have any experience with getting the black stuff off? The pics below were just taken. the deck is still wet from cleaning and the sun is going down. Any help is appreciated.


inspectorD 06-12-2008 05:15 AM

Sounds like you can power wash it and blow the deck apart...or cange the top boards altogether.
That is decay starting in the wood, some species of mold that is dinning out on your organic material.
Bleach is what I would recommend, and lots of elbow grease.

Check your deck to see if it is structuraly sound also. Poke a screwdriver around some joists and check your ledger board and connectors for damage . Check deck saftey

Zom 06-12-2008 06:50 AM

Just plain household bleach? Thanks for the response.

erndog 06-12-2008 07:12 AM

deck reply
I would suggest diluting the bleach, full strength would damage the wood.

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