Three Decking Options To Use in Harsh Climates
Harsh temperatures and relentless snow or rain can wreak havoc on building materials. Decks are exposed to the weather all year round, and it can be destructive. Your deck should be a place to go to relax and enjoy nature. It shouldn’t be constant maintenance. So, if you are building or renovating your deck, take the time to consider the best material to use for your environment. Extreme hot and cold temperatures cause materials to expand and contract significantly. This can lead to cracks and popped boards. UV rays that beat down on the deck surface will cause boards to fade significantly. If you live in a humid environment, then you need to be concerned with mold and fungi growth, which leads to rot and decay. All these elements reduce the longevity of building materials. So if you are building a deck in these conditions, do some homework before deciding on which materials to use.
Concrete decks may have a higher upfront cost, but over time it is worth the extra investment. This is because an elevated concrete deck requires little to no maintenance. It doesn’t need to be stripped or stained every couple of years. Concrete is extremely durable. You won’t have to worry about broken boards or warping. It also is resistant to mold and termites. Concrete can be dyed to your desired color. It comes in many styles. You could opt for a clean poured sab, large separate pavers, or even have a pattern stamped onto the surface.
If you want the warm natural look of wood, then composite decking may be a good choice. It comes in a variety of wood tones with or without the texture of wood. Composite decking is low maintenance. It doesn’t need to ever be stripped or repainted. It will fade over time though. This type of material is durable, but if using in harsh climates then opt for narrow, thick boards. Narrow boards are less likely to cup, and thick boards won’t warp as easily. Keep in mind, with a composite deck you will still need to use lumber for the support structure.
Aluminum decking is a durable building material that will likely outlast your house. It is resistant to mold and mildew. It will not fade from harsh UV rays. However, you will want to paint it every couple of years. Other than that, the maintenance is easy. Aluminum decking is also fire resistant. All of these benefits push the cost of the product up. Be sure to browse decks made of aluminum before you make the investment. It has more of an industrial look than the other options.