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HowTo Decking Installation and Care

HowTo Install Your Decking

Before installing your natural timber decking, the decking boards should be oiled on all four sides to ensure you have the greatest protection from the harsh Australian climate. Please remember that most natural decking timbers do not come at a set length. If you order 200 lineal metres of decking you will receive this in varied lengths from 1.2m up to 5.7m.

Whichever decking material you choose, the spacing of the joists must suit. If using composite decking boards, the manufacturer will specify the maximum joist spacing you should allow for the product.

Once you are ready to start the deck, you should start from the outside and work your way in. For example, if you are building a raised deck that comes off the house, the first decking board to be laid should be on the edge of the deck.

The spacing of the decking boards is also vital. This will allow for the decking boards to expand and contract with the changing weather conditions. Natural timber decking will expand and contract along the width of the boards, whereas composite boards will expand lengthways. Natural timber expands when it is cold and wet, as it retains moisture, and contracts when it is hot, as the moisture evaporates. Therefore, if the spacing of the boards is too small, the boards will butt up next to each other and as the timber expands, the board will start to cup, which may result in the screws breaking.

Finally, just before you start to install your decking, make sure you have covered the following tips:

  • Every decking board should be fastened with at least 2 screws into the joist.
  • The ends of the decking boards should always be pre-drilled as they are prone to splitting.
  • If you are not using a drill point screw, a pilot hole should be drilled into the decking board. If using hardwood joists, do this for the joists as well.
  • Screws are the fastener of choice compared to nails as they have superior holding power. Nails will also lift themselves out of the boards with the natural expansion and contraction of timber which could be concerning.

HowTo Care For Your Decking

Now that you have installed your wonderful deck, it is time to learn how to care for it properly to ensure it lasts and looks new for many years to come.

HowTo Care For Timber Decking

Sweeping or blowing off your deck?

  • Do this 1-4 times a month depending on your location and the natural mess that could be created with leaves etc.

Scrubbing your deck?

  • Suggestion is 1-6 times a year, again depending on the location and climate.

Oiling your deck?

  • Depending on the stain or oil used, this could vary from 2 times a year, to 1 time a year, or 1 time every 2 years. This will keep your deck looking as good as it did when you installed it.

Stripping back the stain or oil?

  • 3-5 years depending on the stain or oil used.

Sanding your deck?

  • Normally 5-10 years after install, your deck could use a sand to remove all of the layers of stain or oil that have been applied over the years. This will bring it back to its original beauty.

HowTo Care For Composite Decking

Sweeping or blowing off your deck?

  • 1-4 times a month depending on your location as explained above.

Hose off your deck?

  • 1-2 times every 2 months. Use a garden hose only. If considering using a high-pressure hose, check with the manufacturer as this could damage some boards.

Scrubbing your deck?

  • 1-2 times a year depending on your location. The scrubbing is to remove the stubborn grit and grime that doesn’t get removed by the hose or broom.

If your manufacturer recommends a specific cleaning solution for their timber or composite decking, it is important to follow this advice as other products could cause damage. If you are unsure which product to use, contact us and we will be more than happy to help talk you through it.

Free Decking Project Quote And Advice

Contact us for a free quote or advice on your decking project.