Imagine beginning your day with a morning cup of tea on your deck and the first rays of sunlight streaming in from right between the trees in your outdoor space.

A deck can be an excellent addition to your house, providing a place to play and unwind. But it can also increase your monthly costs, so you must plan well before building it.

Long Decking

It requires time to build one from scratch and proper maintenance if you want it to last long. However, do not worry anymore; we have a guide on how long decking lasts.

Here, we have discussed all the factors that can affect the durability of decking, which will help you understand and plan your actions accordingly. You will also learn more about cleaning and effective ways to make decking boards last longer.

So, dive in!

What Can Affect The Decking’s Life?

Firstly, you will have to understand that the longevity of decks cannot precisely be measured as it will depend on the weather conditions, maintenance, and decking materials. Wood or timber decking would last around 15 years if kept well, and hardwood decks are more durable than softwood ones. However, much depends on the joists, beams, and frames used. That is why hardwood decking can often be named the best decking material.

In this section, we will discuss the major factors that can affect the durability of your deck.

Hole Wood Deck

1. Rain, Ice and Snow In Winter

Ice, snow, and rain can damage wooden decks and cause them to decay over time. If the surface has leaks or cracks, moisture can seep through and damage water.

Decaying your deck will generally happen in the winter or rainy season, and you must clean up the space before that. Deck boards are usually waterproof, but that does not cover every part of your deck. There will be certain parts or gaps which will help the moisture penetrate the surface.

Hence, we recommend checking the joints and gaps on the flooring and covering them with sealants. Ensure no open spaces are on the floor, and hire professional services to coat the wooden surface with a waterproof layer.

2. Chemicals Used

While bathroom cleaning requires chemicals that immediately dissolve and clean dirt from the deck surface, harsh chemicals on your wooden deck boards can cause large-scale damage. They can become discoloured within a few years, or their texture can change drastically. Besides, chemicals can dissolve sealants and cause seal cracks or gaps to reappear.

Hence, only use gentle chemicals made for deck boards, or you can clean them occasionally with mild soap and water.

3. Tearing And Scratching

If the deck is used very often, it will get scratched. This can happen because of moving chairs on the deck or dropping something sharp on the floor.

There could also be scratches made by racquets, bats, or balls used by your kids who may play on the deck. Their sneakers could also lead to scratches; hence, you must be careful. We’d suggest covering the entire surface with carpets or rugs during your kids’ playtime. And if possible, ask them to play in the yard.

Furthermore, you could get rubber stoppers attached below your deck furniture to prevent them from scratching the surface beneath.

Accidents can happen anytime, so you should regularly check the area regardless of how well you maintain the deck. You may notice warping, cracks, holes, or patches, which you should treat immediately to prevent further deterioration.

4. Inadequate Maintenance

Maintenance is the key to ensuring a long life for any deck. For example, everyday cleaning will go a long way in keeping it safe and free from moulds and fungi growth. So, sweep and wipe the entire area or on alternative days. Please do not allow water to remain stagnant on the surface, and sweep off any leaves or branches you find on the surface.

Power Cleaning Wooden Deck

Even small leaves can quickly become a breeding ground for insects, and you do not want that. Wiping the entire area frequently ensures mould and algae do not grow in the corners. One great way to accomplish this basic cleaning is to get your kids to do the job for extra pocket money!

You can occasionally clean the place with a power hose and a soft bristle brush. Always use the washer on the lowest setting so the high-pressure washer does not damage the deck board.

You can also use mild cleaning agents with water to ensure the surface does not harbour dirt or bacterial growth. However, read the pack well to check if the cleaner can be used on timber or wooden deck boards.

If you feel that the deck would be challenging to maintain or you won’t be around to take care of the maintenance needs, it’s better to opt for composite decking. Such decks require less maintenance, and you don’t need to clean them daily.

5. Location

The placement of the deck should be such that it is not in complete shade or full sunlight. It will take longer to dry whenever the surface gets wet if it sees a wide shade. This would eventually rot or decay the wood.

On the other hand, if it sees many sun rays, the scorching sun might cause large-scale discolouration of the boards or melt the oil or sealers. This could lead to the formation of unnecessary holes and crevices.

The ideal location to build a deck would be a spot with ample shade but enough space for sunlight to stream in.

6. Quality of Wood

While a good quality lumbar may be expensive, investing in it initially is better than changing the deck boards every few years. To select the best lumber for your deck materials, check for defects and choose those with the fewest abnormalities.

This process may be slightly time-consuming, but it will significantly help in the long run. Newer cracks and crevices will not develop quickly, ultimately aiding maintenance. Also, ensure that the wooden deck boards are placed further away from the ground to absorb moisture. Otherwise, the longevity of the surface may be affected, and you would not want that.

Alternate Option

If you are willing to go over the budget or spend a good amount of money, you can get aluminium or steel decks for your outdoor space.

Although they are costly, steel decks are a very durable option. In particular, steel decks can last 60 years if maintained well. Plus, they can be coloured and decorated with modern fittings to complement contemporary houses. You can also look into installing a composite deck. Composite materials are very durable and look similar to timber wood decking. They are also very low maintenance and naturally resistant to the elements.

Steel Deck Frame

The Lifespan Of Your Decking

Regular cleaning and maintenance will keep your deck safe and in good shape for years. You can also construct decks using different materials or decking options, opting for composite decking or plastic lumber if you feel regular maintenance is impossible.

Such decks can last 30 – 35 years, and you do not have to worry about frequent decay or algae growth due to rain. However, they tend to be more expensive, and the upkeep will also cost you a lot. So, remember this when making a new one.

We will soon be back with more informative reads. Keep an eye out for all the new updates in this space. Also, let us know if you need assistance with your Sydney timber or composite decking! Our Sydney builders are highly experienced with many home improvement projects!

Goodbye and take care!

It’s a Match

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