Deck Master's Blog

Best Decking Materials

The true test of a well made deck is not just a matter of whether it supports all your family and friends. You and your loved ones should enjoy spending time in your outdoor living spaces just as much as any other part of your home; this means making sure that your deck has the exact look and feel you want in order to make it a cohesive addition to your home. 

Beautifully crafted deck

When you get your deck built by Deck Masters, you are getting a customizable experience that suits your needs. We have a variety of woods and materials for you to choose from in order to ensure that you are not simply settling for the best available option. Instead, we will consult with you to make sure that your deck is made from the materials you want at a price that fits your budget.  

Types Of Decking Materials

The specialists at Deck Masters are experienced in the installation of various lumber types. Some materials have benefits and features that others may not have, but your preference is the most important factor. Whether your concerns are primarily about cost, appearance, durability, or anything else, our decking materials have something to offer every one of our customers!

Trex Decking (Composite Wood)

Trex Decking Example

You have probably heard the brand name, Trex, many times when researching deck materials. Trex is a manufacturer of composite wood that can be turned into deck boards. These boards are made from 95% recycled plastics and reclaimed wood, making them the most eco-friendly decking option. We carry and install Trex decking material, and it is quickly becoming the most popular material for deck builders. 

 

  • Durability – Trex composite decking is known for its durability and longevity. Similar to any quality hardwood deck, Trex decking boards are designed to last between 30 and 50 years. The real benefit of Trex decking is its ultra-low maintenance. As it is not made of solid hardwood, Trex composite boards will not splinter, warp, or crack, which means no dangerous planks or protruding nails. It is spill/water resistant, heat resistant, insect proof, and does not need to be stained or painted over the years. 

 

  • Appearance – Trex has been perfecting the look and texture of its composite boards for years. These deck boards are smooth to the touch and feature the classic appearance of a wood grain. Unlike other decking material options, Trex decking comes in a wide range of colors, from various shades of brown to unique grays. If you want to “wow” your neighbors and make your deck stand out from the rest, Trex may be the choice for you!

 

  • Cost – There are different types and product lines of Trex decking, and we can find one that is affordable for you. Trex boards can be cheaper than cedar wood, but you can also choose to pay a little more for a top-of-the-line product. The real savings come into play when you realize how little you have to maintain your new Trex deck, if at all. You can enjoy composite deck floors for many years without ever having to even think about repairs and the associated costs.

Exotic Woods

Exotic Hardwood closeup

Exotic wood decking materials create beautiful deck floors that seem to get better as they age. 

These types of woods are appreciated for their rich, traditional appearance and solid strength. While they are generally going to be the most expensive option for decking materials, the living spaces they create are breathtaking and dependable.

 

  • Durability – Exotic wood floors are a very solid hardwood material that hold up to even the most extreme environmental factors. They are naturally resistant to rotting, mold, and insects, and their strength/hardness defends well against common scratching and gouging that may occur with weaker woods. If you are looking for a traditional wood deck that will stand the test of time, an exotic wood could be the answer!

 

  • Appearance – Though the durability of exotic woods is unquestionable, the aesthetic appeal of these woods may be even more alluring. Composite wood is a great option for a number of reasons, but some people will always prefer the beauty of a natural wood, and Deck Masters is more than happy to oblige! The unique features of some of our exotic wood materials are as follows:

Tigerwood

This wood is usually a medium brown color and has a reddish hue. Like many exotic woods, the color may change (darken) with age. Tigerwood typically features a straight or wavy, interlocking grain that may resemble the stripes of a tiger. 

Kempas

This type of wood is usually described as having an orange-brown color, with darker hues leaning more towards a red color. The texture of kempas wood is somewhat coarse, and it has an open grain that makes it feel slightly less smooth.

Sapele Mahogany

Like other types of mahogany, sapele is typically a darker color. Sapele mahogany can be anywhere from golden to reddish brown, and the color will darken with age if it is not treated and stained repeatedly. This wood has an interlocking grain and a natural sheen.

Australian Cypress

The color and appearance of Australian cypress often varies between samples. This wood will range from a very light tan color to a darker brown with reddish streaks. The grain is straight, and the natural feel of this wood could be described as slightly oily.

  • Cost – As imported and high quality woods, exotic wood types are expensive decking materials. Though the types of extoic woods mentioned above are all reasonably priced, there are many other exotic woods that are quite costly. Some exotic woods are not as bioavailable as others, and other types may be more difficult to work with; both factors could contribute to a higher price. However, if you have the money to spend and a desire for a long-lasting, beautiful deck, exotic woods are a great choice.

Cedar Wood

Cedar Wood Background

Cedar is one of the most popular choices for decks, as well as any number of other home improvement projects. Many people appreciate the fact that cedar wood is versatile, strong, and relatively affordable (considering its benefits). It is also a great choice for environmentalists, as this wood actually removes greenhouse gasses, and it is a renewable resource. 

 

  • Durability – Cedar is perhaps best known for being naturally resistant to rot and decay. A cedar deck can typically last around 20 years, and it will hold up well to stresses from the environment. As a softer wood, cedar is more susceptible to scratches and surface damage, but this damage can be minimized by applying a stain to the cedar boards. Applying a stain and a seal, as well as other occasional maintenance, will go a long way in improving your deck’s longevity. 

 

  • Appearance – Cedar wood looks great when used for decks, especially when it has a quality finish or stain applied to it. The different types of cedar woods all have somewhat unique colors, but cedar is often described as having a light brown appearance with pink-to-red hues. As it ages, a silver or gray color may become more noticeable. Most cedars have a straight, coarse grain.

 

  • Cost – There are cheaper types of lumber, but cedar decking will provide a big bang for your buck! The natural colors you can get with cedar wood make the price well worth the results. Also, since there are multiple types of cedar, there are some cedar woods that will be cheaper than others. A downside of cedar decking is the maintenance. Money will have to be spent on stains and seals every couple of years if you want a cedar deck to last a long time, but the results of a well stained cedar wood may be gorgeous enough to persuade you!

Pressure Treated Wood

pressure treated wood in stacks

Softwood lumber is permeated with certain chemicals to create pressure treated wood. The woods used for pressure treated lumber commonly come from the softwoods of spruce or pine trees. A combination of copper and other chemicals is absorbed by the wood after it is placed in a depressurized tank that replaces existing particles in the air with the copper mixture. This mixture works as a preservative in order to make softer woods stand up well against decay and bugs. 

 

  • Durability – In ideal conditions, pressure treated wood can last up to 40 years. The durability of pressure treated wood is usually what sells people on this option. With the chemicals used to strengthen the structural integrity of the wood, pressure treated decking boards are designed to withstand scratches, dents, insects, decay, and more. However, if not properly maintained, pressure treated wood will fade and stain, meaning annual maintenance (reapplying stains and seals) should be expected. 

 

  • Appearance – The color of pressure treated wood ranges from tan to a greenish brown. Due to the multiple types of woods that can be used and the chemical infusion process, this decking option could come in a variety of appearances. Occasionally, small dots may be poked into the boards to allow them to absorb more of the chemical treatment. People tend to prefer using a more attractive stain with pressure treated wood in order to give it a more natural appearance. 

 

  • Cost – This is one of the most affordable options for decking materials, but there are some drawbacks that contribute to the low price. These woods do not always produce the classic- or natural-looking wood deck you may desire. Maintenance needs may also contribute to a lower cost since these softwood materials will need to be cared for every season. The chemical nature of these decking materials should also be considered, and it is advisable to never let pressure treated wood touch the ground, as this could lead to plant and animal life being negatively affected. However, in general, the low cost of this material is worth the upkeep that is involved.

Call Us To Get Started!

We do not want you to worry about how or where to start when it comes to building a deck for your home. Deck Masters has the experts and the experience to get any job done efficiently and up to your expectations. If you want more information, or if you are ready to start planning your deck today, call us at (907) 782-4043.

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