Small details can have a big impact in deciding how to build a deck. In the recent past, the popularity of composite decking has waged a new question for future decks everywhere – wood decking or composite decking? Each have their own pros and cons of decking material including deck cost, deck durability, deck maintenance, deck termite concerns and deck lifespan. The material you choose will be determined by personal preference, the location of your deck (shade and sun mixture), your deck budget and the size of the outdoor space. We will help you make the best decision to ensure you get the most deck value that will work together and complement your house’s architectural style.
The original choice for decking material, wood is a proven material that looks great, is economical and can last long if maintained correctly. You will have to sand, clean, stain, paint and seal your deck every 2 years at a minimum depending on the environment. Wood decks are known to splinter, warp, rot or fade and can last up to 20 years. You can get pressure treated wood to support your future maintenance. Wood is definitely a good choice if you are on a budget and do not have an issue keeping up with the maintenance.
Types of Wood for your Deck:
There are a lot of choices when choosing the type of wood for your deck and below is detail on some of the wood we work with.
Cedar decks resists moisture rot and insect infestation and offers a lot of durability compared to other types of wood. The hardness is due to the fact that cedar and actually closely match is environment. Cedar can cut down on maintenance issues that come up over time and can have a long life span.
Redwood Decks is a premium deck wood that is easy to work with, is insect-resistant and rugged that helps it avoid warping and splitting. It has an open cell structure and contains no pitch and resins and maintains its natural beauty with easy maintenance. Redwood aborbs and retains finishes well which makes it a long lasting deck choice.
Douglas Fir Decks is beautiful and strong. It also responds well when treated properly. It is termite resistant and is a solid choice.
Southern Yellow Pine Decks is strong, durable and environmentally friendly.
Ipe Decks is a magical south American hardwood. It is great against bug and rot and is very difficult to burn. It is dense and heavy which can make it difficult to work with and cut, but a solid choice.
Mahogany Decks has a woven look to the grain with courser texture.
Pressure Treated Wood Decks is the most popular choice of deck material in the US, primarily because it is long lasting and economical. The chemical preservative is forced into the wood cells under pressure and usually has a warranty against decay and termite damage.
Composite decks are nearly maintenance free. They do not need sanding, staining or sealing, but do require cleaning with a soapy water mixture or low power washer or soft bristle brush. Composite decks will hold up well in harsh weather and can last up to 50 years. Composite will not splinter or become susceptible to insect damage. Composite decks have longer boards (up to 20 feet) so that means fewer end joints. They are UV resistant and will not lighten or fade in direct sunlight. Probably the biggest disadvantage of composite decking is the price, but some argue the cost can be offset quickly over time based on the low lack of maintenance compared to wood decks. They can be easily scuffed and are prone to staining. Some argue they do not look like wood and can heat up and bake in the hot sun, so you need to keep that in mind depending on the shade and sun mix. We have used different composite material building decks including: Fiberon Decks, Azek Decks, Timbertech Decks, Trex Decks, Mangaris Decks, Ipe Decks and more.
Serving All of Marin County cities, including: Belvedere, Corte Madera, Fairfax, Larkspur, Mill Valley, Novato, Ross, San Anselmo, San Rafael, Sausalito and Tiburon