Summer, and deck season, are quickly approaching, and if you’re in the market for a deck update you may be asking yourself, ‘how do I choose what type of wood to use?’ The type of lumber you use for your deck can make a huge difference in the overall appearance and feel, as well as the long-term durability. Different types of wood have different benefits, today we’ll walk you through a few of them.
Softwood vs. Hardwood
One of the first factors to consider is whether to use hard or softwood. Hardwood is made from slow-growing tree species like Cherry, Oak, and Teak – because of the slow growth they create denser lumber that is more durable and less weather-sensitive. Softwood comes from fast-growing trees, usually varieties of pine. Softwood is less weather-resistant, but because of its growth speed, it is often more affordable. Both varieties make for excellent decking, but softwood will require more maintenance to help extend its lifetime.
Usually made from softwood treated with a chemical preservation process, pressure-treated wood decks are a fantastic option for those with a tight budget. These sturdy decks are a great option for those who don’t mind keeping up with maintenance, as they will need to be washed, stained, and sealed annually or biannually. It’s important to know in advance that as pressure-treated wood ages it can be prone to shrinking and splintering, be prepared to replace it sooner than other options.
Cedar & Redwood
When first installed, redwood and cedar have warm tones that look classic and natural. Redwood starts with a reddish tint while cedar leans yellow—both fade to a silver hue. While they both tend to last longer than pressure-treated wood, they do require maintenance and you can expect to need annual cleaning and sealing.
Exotic lumber makes for a stunning, luxury deck, but there are a variety of concerns that must be addressed. To start, the lumber can be up to three times as expensive as general hardwood because it is hard to source and must be transported long distances. Additionally, finding ethically sourced material can be tricky; deforestation is a major concern when sourcing exotic lumbers. While exotic lumber is more durable than others, it still requires annual care and will eventually fade and warp.
Depend on Leland Fisher Lumber For Your Full-Service Lumber, Window, Door, and Hardware Needs!
Leland Fisher Lumber is full-service lumber and hardware supplier. We’ve serviced homeowners and professional contractors in Montgomery County, Howard County, and Frederick County since 1894! Whether you want to remodel your home or upgrade your business, we have the professionalism and expertise to make any architectural vision come to life.
Be sure to visit Fisher Lumber’s Designer Showroom featuring displays of Andersen Windows, Therma-Tru entry doors, Simpson and Masonite exterior doors, as well as a wide selection of interior doors featuring Simpson, Masonite, Lemieux, and JELD-WEN. Our knowledgeable experts are ready to assist you! Contact us at 301-424-6500 and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.