Deck Installation 101: Choosing Material

15 June 2021
 Categories: , Blog


If you've decided that this is the summer when you're going to have a deck built onto your home, you may be already forming the plans for its construction. One of the things you need to know as you're envisioning the deck that you want is that you're going to have to choose between a variety of different materials for that deck. Understanding your options will help you get the right deck construction material for your needs. Here's a look at some of the choices available to you.

Pressure-Treated Wood

Pressure-treated wood is perhaps the most popular deck construction option. It's the choice many homeowners go with, and for good reason. Pressure-treated wood is widely available, one of the most affordable decking options, and it's resistant to a variety of pests and issues.

The chemical treatment used for pressure-treated wood actually creates a barrier of protection against many wood-boring insects and pests, as well as rot, weather damage, and more. When you're considering wood options and are considering one that will last, pressure-treated wood is a good option.

However, it can be vulnerable to warping, cracking, and shrinking in some cases. Additionally, it's not the most decorative of the decking material options. If you are envisioning something more attractive for your deck, pressure-treated wood may not be the right solution.

Cedar Lumber

Cedar is a widely-known wood material that's appreciated for its rich, deep red color and the fragrant oil in the wood. When you're looking to make a statement with a vibrant deck, cedar makes a great choice. Additionally, the natural tannins in cedar can repel certain types of bugs and pests.

However, unless you get hardwood cedar, your deck may still be vulnerable to certain types of pests. Additionally, cedar must be pressure-washed periodically as well as sanded and oiled if you want to retain that vibrant color. Otherwise, cedar ages to a silvery grey finish that can still be attractive, but doesn't have the same rich appearance as it originally did.

Composite Material

Composite material crafted for deck construction is usually a combination of plastic and wood. This type of material is an affordable, low-maintenance option for deck construction. The plastic content contributes some additional resistance to weathering, pest infestations, and other similar hazards as well.

Additionally, since composite material is manufactured, you will have a lot of different color and style choices for your deck. Keep in mind that composite decking is significantly more expensive than some of the alternatives, but it contributes a long lifespan that may make it worth it.

Talk with your deck installation contractor for more information and to choose the material that's right for you.