Category Archives: Composite Decking

Is There Such Thing as a Maintenance-Free Deck?

This is probably the question asked most often by both our potential and current customers, along with the entire internet. Everyone wants a maintenance-free deck that once it’s installed, you do absolutely nothing and it’ll stay looking just like the first time you stepped on it. This popular belief was pioneered by some of the manufacturers of synthetic decking products, promising a maintenance-free, trouble-free surface that would last for years without lifting a finger. These fantastic claims resonated well because people were tired of the same Southern Yellow Pine, Cedar or Douglas Fir that would need yearly stripping, sealing and painting just to try to keep it together for a few years.
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Refinishing All Decks, Even Composites

Refinishing is a tradition that all deck owners know well. Whether its pressure treated, cedar, redwood, pine, or any other type of softwood, usually every year in the spring time a proper cleaning and refinishing is necessary to restore its former beauty.
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How to Zombie Proof Your Home!

It seems like it’s inevitable, the zombie apocalypse is coming. So what are we to do when this doomsday approaches? We’ll zombie-proof our homes, of course!

Now you may be wondering why you’re on a decking blog reading about zombies, but if The Walking Dead has taught us anything, it’s that we can live amongst the undead.
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Can Composite Decking be Recycled?

For years the decking industry has gone back and forth as to what is a “green” decking option and what isn’t. In an industry where everyone boasts their product is the best, how are we supposed to make an educated decision when buying a new deck? Some composite decking does use recycled materials, but does that mean the boards themselves can be recycled? The majority of the time the answer will be no. Our findings suggest that the composite deck boards that can’t be recycled are made from wood and plastic fibers which are combined using bonding agents that deter any machine from separating them.

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Deck Maintenance – How to Prevent Mold

Keeping your deck clean will keep it from looking like this.

I looked all over for moldy hardwood decks, but all I could find were composite decks like this one.

Unfortunately mold is something that we have to deal with. Mold is everywhere, all the time, but only under the right conditions can it cause a threat. While mold itself is not always bad (think of it as nature’s way of recycling), it can be detrimental to older decks made of soft wood and composites.

Mold only needs a few things to grow: food, such as dirt and pollen, water, and favorable weather conditions. When these three elements are all met, the mold begins to have a feast on whatever it’s sitting on.

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Decking Options – 2013 Comparison Guide to Deck Materials

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When deciding to build the deck of your dreams, it’s important to make sure you invest in material that will last for years and not be a hassle. The first step in making sure you will live happily ever after with your deck is making sure you know all the material that is available for you to choose from. Once you see all that is out there, you will discover what thousands of other homeowners already know; Advantage Hardwoods are the most ideal choice for your unique project. Continue reading

The 7 Deadly Sins of Deck Building: #7 Pride

Listening to advice leads you down the right path when you build your brand new deck.

Listening to good advice leads you down the right path when you build your dream deck.

Dear Future Deck Owner,

You’re looking to build a new deck, and you probably have a lot of questions on what the entire process entails. I used to boast to my neighbors about how my deck was the best on the block, that was until it started falling apart. It turns out that composite decking, doesn’t look pretty after a few years. I had to save a lot of money to redo the damage. Now, after a lot of money and a lot of hard work, I can look back at my new deck and feel the journey was worth it. Hopefully, this letter helps you learn from the mistakes I made. So, here are some tips I’d like to share with you to make the entire process a little less intimidating.

What I thought to be easy, was actually the most challenging part of my experience, finding the right contractor. Since I’m a little handy around the house, I always thought I knew best, and every contractor was beneath me. This was a difficult pill for me to swallow. It’s hard to find a person who is knowledgeable and trustworthy with your money. If you think about it, you’re handing over money to someone you probably aren’t familiar with, and are trusting them to safely build a deck for your family to enjoy. If you do your research, and even a background check, you’ll find the right guy. If you’re lucky, he can be a contractor you can continue to go back to and build a professional relationship with.

The decking market has been introducing new materials, each promising to be better than the next. What can you believe in an over saturated industry? Composites claim to be “green” and “no maintenance,” but I’ll tell you, this is far from the truth. The plastic material used to construct each individual board is made with chemicals that can be toxic. As far as “no maintenance,” nothing worth having is “no maintenance”. Every deck needs to be cleaned and cared for if you want it to last.

Soft materials like pine and cedar look great right after installation, but after a few years the weather can take a toll and cause the material to be nothing more than an eyesore.

I have found in my research, after I was burned with a composite deck, that exotic hardwoods have the best qualities. They are dense, strong, and have a natural resistance to pesky mold and bacteria. Teak used to be the top notch decking material, but what if I told you there is a better material out there than teak? Ipe decking is stunning, and outperforms teak. It’s strength and density contribute to its structural integrity. If you allow your decking to mature to a patina gray and you decide you want to bring the color back, you can! A pressure washer and a little Ipe Oil™ will bring back its rich colors. Try doing that with composite!

What I am trying to share with you is my experience. If you’re anything like me, you have a big head and you know everything about everything. Don’t let your pride get in the way of your sense of good judgement. Learn from my arrogance, and create the best deck in your neighborhood.

Sincerely,

A Happy Deck Owner