The choice in Decking timber and materials for your project depends on a number of factors including availability, affordability, sizes, maintenance requirements, durability, strength, colour and texture.
The materials you choose for your deck are likely to be the most important part of the process, and will also determine how long your deck will last so it's well worth spending the time to find out what each option has to offer.
Merbau (also known as Kwila) is the decking of choice with a consistent yellow-brown colour once aged turning a darker brown. Merbau grows in South-east Asia, the Philippines, Solomon Islands, Fiji and Papua New Guinea. It is a tannin rich hardwood and is an extremely durable timber, with proper maintenance you can expect upwards of 30 years!
Spotted Gum is the most popular Australian hardwood decking product due to its intense range of pale and dark brown colours and the presence of wavy grain this produces an attractive outdoor decking solution! It is a Eucalyptus growing in coastal districts from the New South Wales/Victorian border region to Maryborough in Queensland.
Seeing as spotted gum has a lower tannin content than other decking options it is ideal for areas in which staining is a concern for example around a pool.
Spotted Gum is naturally bush fire resistant. And is a one of the hardest timbers in Australia with proper maintenance you can expect up to 40 years!
Iron Bark (Mixed Red + Grey) is a eucalyptus that grows along the east coast from Sydney to Cairns and on the western slopes and plains of New South Wales.
It produces a stunning array of timbers hues from pale brown to dark chocolate brown, as well as dark and light red!
Iron Bark is naturally bush fire resistant and one of the hardest timbers you’ll find in the world with proper maintenance you can expect an extremely long life decking solution. Up to 40 years!
Black Butt is a Eucalyptus that grows in the coastal forests of New South Wales from Bega on the south coast up to Maryborough in Queensland.
Another great option for light coloured decking its pale brown, sometimes with a slight pinkish tinge, will brighten up any outdoor area!
Black Butt is naturally bush fire resistant and with proper maintenance you can expect 25-30 years!
Treated pine is in plentiful supply, and is very affordable. It offers a 'softer' feel underfoot than some other types of wood. Pine must be properly treated to prevent termites and weather damage.
Composite decking is a type of decking material normally composed of plastics, timber and sawdust. Composite decking is designed to look like wood, requires very little maintenance and is quite strong.
Composite decking comes in a range of sizes, colours and finishes.
|Merbau||Spotted Gum||Iron Bark||Black Butt||Treated Pine||Wood Composites|
|Colour||Yellowish to brown or orange to dark red||Pale to dark brown and chocolate||Dark Red||Cream to pale brown||Various colours available but colours can vary from batch to batch|
|Grain||Interlocked||Variable - wavy or attractive fiddleback||Interlocked||Straight|
|Texture||Coarse to even||Moderately coarse||Medium and even||Medium to even|
|Durability||Class 2 above ground||Class 1 above ground||Class 1 above ground||Class 1 above ground|
|Hardness||8||10 plus||10 plus||7 - 10|
|Timber sizes||90 x 19mm||86 x 19mm||86 x 19mm||86 x 19mm||90 x 22mm||88 x 23mm|
|140 x 19mm||135 x 19mm||135 x 19mm||130 x 19mm||137 x 19mm|
Sealing your deck protects it from damage caused by the sun and rain. Once a decision has been made to either leave the deck to age naturally or seal it, the choice of which sealing system to use being oil or water based sealers, will often depend on the decking application, decking materials used, age of the deck and whether it has been previously sealed before. Water based products leave an acrylic layer on top of the timber surface while oil based products penetrate the timber. Good quality deck sealers will exhibit the following characteristics;
|Water based||Oil based|
|Advantages||Quicker drying time||Penetrates deeper into the timber and has excellent durability in tough conditions|
|Lasts 2-3 years||Allows the appearance of the wood grain to come through, even if a dark stain oil sealer is used|
|Less odour on application||Re-applying is much less involved. The timber simply needs to be cleaned of dirt and grime before new sealer is applied. In some cases moderate resanded may be required|
|Non-flammable||Requires less upkeep and less frequent re-coating|
|Retains color better||Harder finish when dry|
|Easy cleanup with water||Recommended for surfaces exposed to harsh weather (e.g. outdoor decks, pergolas and fences)|
|More environmentally friendly|
|Disadvantages||Uses a pigment that is more opaque, to some extent masking the beauty of the natural timber grain||Longer drying time (but this provides a more even finish)|
|Refinishing process can be much more work. It’s often necessary to remove the old water-based stain entirely before a fresh coat is applied, which usually requires a combination of sanding, stripping, and scraping||Need to re-stain every 1-2 years|
|Some oils have strong odour due to the additives|
|Use mineral spirits for cleanup|
|Harsher on the environment, although good decking oils are made from natural|
|requires more frequent maintenance|
A number of different stains, paints and acrylic treatments can also be applied to timber decking, both to improve the way it looks and to help to make it more resistant to weather and termites.
Arranging for a quote for your project should be a convenient and pleasant experience. Simply contact us on the phone numbers provided or email us at email@example.com
Wherever possible Deck-Mates supports local business in the procurement of timbers and materials for our projects.
We invest heavily in relationship building with all our suppliers in order to ensure we get only the best quality products at the best possible prices. We expect as prompt and efficient service from our suppliers as our customers expect from us.