Many landscapers, builders and developers have found themselves fitting an increasing number of decks over the last 20 years. Whilst their rise in popularity was initially driven by the retail market - with homeowners looking to improve their landscapes - they are now also frequently specified in developments for use in a variety of situations, including garden, communal, roofing and balcony areas. Softwood decking boards have tended to dominate the market given their ready availability at low prices. Of late, however, there has been a shift in demand towards more attractive, high-quality hardwoods that, unlike their cheaper counterparts, offer a lifetime of service. Amongst these are Oak, Cumaru, Balau and, perhaps toughest of all decking timbers, Ipe. The latter is native to South America, where locals refer to it as ‘Ironwood’ given its outstanding durability, density and natural resistance to both insect and fungal attacks. It offers a century of service, even without treatment, and will look good all the while. Ipe features rich, dark grains which offer a contemporary, luxurious finish and boasts eye-catching colour variations, with sparks of red, green and brown. These properties have seen it move to the fore of the market, particularly over the last two years.
Cumaru decking, also known as Brazilian Teak or Golden Teak, is a naturally durable Brazilian timber with a density similar to Ipe. It has a consistent golden-brown colour and is resistant to rot, making it an excellent choice for exterior applications. Part of the reason for its toughness is due to the tropical environment that it grows in. It has an inherent hardness and harnesses oils that make it a naturally treated wood which will last a long time in most environments. The development of the hardwood decking market has led to the innovation of a range of complementary products, including Balustrade Components such as handrail, baserail and posts. A range of hidden fastening systems - that are not suitable for use with softwood given its propensity to shift – are now also available, such as the DeckWise System. Hidden fastenings allow decking boards to be fixed without the need for unsightly face screws, allowing them to be displayed to their full potential. As such, they represent a logical accessory for those who have the made the often significant investment in a hardwood deck. As the fasteners clip into the sides of adjoining boards, they require a groove to be routed into the timber with a biscuit jointer on site. Whilst this can prove time-consuming, the rewards are immediately there to be seen. Alternatively, we offer a unique pre-grooving service for decking boards that we supply.
We now offer Cumaru and Ipe Deck Tiles that offer easy and quick installation. Deck Tiles are perfect for renovating concrete decks, patios or balconies. Stainless steel screws are built-in, that slot into the 4 pre-drilled corners for easy installation using connectors. For more information, see our full range of Hardwood Decking Products.
To achieve an enhanced yet natural appearance on hardwood decking, decking oil may be applied. Treatex Bangkirai Oil was created for exotic timbers like Balau, Cumaru, Ipe.