Outdoor living spaces are an important aspect of the Australian lifestyle, and it’s for that reason many consider the timber deck a necessity. However, when installing a new deck, it’s important to take certain steps to ensure it’s durable. After all, it’s a time consuming and costly task. So, to build a timber deck that lasts, consider these 7 steps.
Ventilation is a crucial part of installing a deck. Air flow under the deck will ensure that the decking can dry after it gets wet minimising moisture build up, mould and decay. It will also help to prevent decking boards from expanding and cupping overtime.
It’s important to ensure that your deck has adequate drainage. This means designing a way for moisture to drain from under the decking prior to building the deck. There are a wide range of options, from aggregate drains, to the simple slope of the earth or complete drainage systems.
Spacing your timber boards effectively will extend the life of your deck. Why? When boards expand with the weather, they’re prone to move. With insufficient room to move, the boards will buckle and twist causing your deck to pull away from the fixings. A good rule of thumb is that 90mm decking boards require a 4mm gap, while 140mm decking need a 6mm gap.
Ensure you choose the correct screw for your timber decking boards. You want the decking to be held in place correctly. For example, a treated pine joist will need a 65mm long screw. Remember, some hardwoods may need to be pre-drilled prior to installation due to the nature of the timber.
An important addition to your timber deck is joist protection. This protection provides a membrane over the joist to keep the joist dry. DecTec™ is a product that both protects the joist and provides gap spacing for the decking. It also can help the screws stay in place and avoid them loosening overtime.
Pre-coated timber boards add an extra layer of protection to your decking. It provides short-term water resistance, allows dirt to be easily cleaned off the boards and prepares your timber for a topcoat. Pre-coating is also designed to fend off moisture and minimise expansion. It’s important to coat the ends of your decking to ensure that it is adequately sealed before you install it, extending the life of your timber boards.
Timber requires maintenance, and with extended exposure to sun or wet weather, your deck may age prematurely. So, it is best to choose a topcoat that gives your timber both protection from the elements and enhances the colour of the timber.
If you’re looking to install a new timber deck, ensure you keep Bowens top tips in mind so you can enjoy your timber deck for many years to come.
Bowens supplies the construction industry, trades and general public with timber decking, timber hardware and pre-coated timber decking. We offer a wide range of options when it comes to a long lasting, durable timber deck. Find everything you need to build a deck that last at your closest Bowens store, or visit our website for more information.