Category Archives: Hardwood News

Everything You Need To Know About Hardwood Lumber

Installing a deck adds extra value to a house while also giving you a lot of extra space to enjoy the outdoors for years to come. This makes it one of the best renovation projects for any home. With so many options of wood to choose from, it’s difficult to know which material to choose for your home’s new deck. Hardwood lumber is the best choice, both for its beautiful appearance and longevity, but what else is there to know about this material?

Making sure you know everything beforehand saves you both time and money in the long run.

That’s why we’ve collected that kind of information for you down below. Keep reading to learn all of the information you need to know to get the most out of your hardwood deck installation.

Why Choose Hardwood Lumber?

Hardwood lumber comes from deciduous trees that are slow-growing, which means the wood grows compact and dense. This high density gives hardwoods extra strength and longer life. They’re able to withstand more without ever getting damaged, and it makes the wood less of a chore to clean as well.

This is why it’s important to choose hardwood for your decking material rather than softwood. It makes for a much better investment compared to softwood lumber.

Ipe Wood

This type of wood has other names such as Brazilian Walnut and Pau Lope. Regardless of what you call it, this wood stands above the rest.

With a hardness rating of 3,600, it’s one of the hardest woods on the market. Having such a high hardness makes Ipe very durable and long-lasting. It resists against common problems such as warping, denting, and has the same fire rating as concrete without additional chemical treatments.

It’s sold without any knots or blemishes so that its beauty shines without any distractions. Ipe has a natural color range in rich browns with black undertones that makes it a desirable choice for many homeowners.

Garapa Wood

At 1,630, Garapa wood has less than half of Ipe’s hardness, yet it still retains many of the same desirable qualities as Ipe. It’s durable, strong, and resists many kinds of damages without extra chemical treatments. The best part about it is that it is a cheaper option, making it a good choice for those on a stricter budget.

It’s resistant to warping, rot, and is also fire-resistant. Also known as Brazilian Ash, Garapa is unique because of its eye-catching golden tones.

If you’re looking for an alternative to Ipe and you love yellow-toned woods, Garapa is the choice for you.

Cumaru Wood

Another Brazilian-based wood, Cumaru wood, sits just below Ipe at 3,540 on the hardness scale and is as beautiful as its brethren. Cumaru, or Brazilian Teak, is the medium brown option between these three hardwoods. There are tones of purple in the wood, giving it a mystical feel.

Like the others, Cumaru has high durability and resistance to damage, rot, warping, and even fire. It’s a cheaper option when compared to Ipe, though it doesn’t have as flawless of an appearance as Ipe.

Common Defects

When you purchase from a trusted company, defects in your lumber are hard to find, but it’s still a good thing to keep in mind. Sometimes minor defects won’t cause any problems during the installation of your new deck. Other times, they’ll stall the entire project.

Once you receive your lumber, give each piece a good inspection for the following:

  • Types of warping, such as bowing, twisting, or cupping
  • Cracks
  • Splits in the wood that go all the way through
  • Grain separation
  • Loose knotholes

Hardwood minimizes the chances of these defects from occurring, but make sure to call your provider if there’s a problem.

Installation

After you’ve chosen your desired wood material, it’s time to choose the right kind of cut for your project. Different installation plans require different cuts and fasteners. Purchasing your lumber pre-prepared makes the entire installation process easier.

Standard

This is the cut most of us think about when we think of lumber. It’s as basic as you get: a board cut only to the dimensions you set, without any other incisions. The edges of the wood are sharp corners, making it easy to lay the pieces up against each other.

This cut is best used with face screws drilled into the wood. Use wood plugs or other methods to hide away any evidence of the screws.

Eased Edge

An eased edge is the same as a standard cut of wood, except it has rounded edges. You’d install this type in much the same way as standard, but the finished deck has a different feel and appearance at the end of the project. This is also a great cut for making stairs and banisters.

Pre-Grooved

For an installation process that creates a seamless effect, pre-grooved is the way to go. Each side of the board has a small indentation, allowing you to fit the pieces into one another without the use of screws.

You’ll need special fasteners specific to this style to secure the lumber pieces together. Once you’re done, you’ll have a deck with nothing marring its natural beauty on the surface.

Groove and Tongue

This style of cut lumber comes with a large indentation on one end and a mirrored section sticking out at the other end. This is to help create a seamless look that hides aways any fasteners you use during the installation process.

Make sure to only select this style of lumber for places that allow for good water drainage. The grooves and tongues create hidden spaces for water to collect and cause damage to the wood over a long period. It’s a prime area for rot and mold to begin growing.

With the hardwoods listed above, you won’t have to worry as much, but it’s still good to keep in mind.

Always Choose Hardwood Lumber for the Best Results

Now that you know all of the pertinent information about hardwood lumber, installation is a breeze. No surprises wait for you around the corner when you’ve done all of your research beforehand.

When it’s time to figure out the logistics of your next hardwood renovation, make sure to check back here for everything you need!

Ready to get started on your new deck? Check out our lumber selection to find your home’s perfect match!

Ipe Woods USA Remains Open During Pandemic – CEO Message

The hardwood lumber industry has been deemed essential for the Nation during this trying time and so we will remain open and fully operational. We expect no delays in operations or delivery for any orders in the United States. Our hearts go out to all people that have been affected.

Message From CEO-

RE: COVID-19

In the wake of the recent COVID-19 “Coronavirus” Pandemic (Originating in Wuhan, China), we have a message for our customers. We, along with you, are concerned about the use of government funds to bail out the large corporations and print more money, while largely ignoring the plight of small and medium-sized businesses like yours and ours.

Every time the politicians go back up for election, they tell us how small businesses (classified as under 500 employees) are the backbone of our economy. They tell us how important we are and that, overall, we are the largest employers in the country we make this country what it is. But when it comes to tax time, the largest corporations pay the least. When it comes to a crisis like this COVID-19, those large corporations are the first to take the money that is handed out from the Federal Government. Never have I seen a small business get a bailout. The money they give to these large corporations is massaged into the economy by inflation and the printing of new money, which falls on the backs of the middle class, and small business.

I wouldn’t normally write something like this, but I want to express to our customers, who are literally the hands that built this country, that we are on your side. You know what it takes to build a business and you care about the well-being of every employee you have. We, like you, will work through this tough time to help our customers meet their commitments and we will also work to ensure our employees can take care of their families.

No bailout is coming for us, but in many ways, I prefer it that way. I’ve never been one to take a handout and I know that most of you feel the same way.

I want you to know that you can count on me and every employee of Ipe Woods USA to treat you like the hard-working people you are and to give you the respect you deserve. We are taking steps to make sure we don’t add to your level of anxiety at this time of uncertainty.

As part of this outreach, as of today, we will not seek to collect any debt on small businesses for at least 90 day and no interest will be charged over this time. We will also waive any interest accrued in the last 30 days. As the situation warrants, we will consider extending this grace period if that is In the best interest of our customers.

Secondly, for all projects that have used our lumber, we will accept your job photos (which you submit) and use these to promote your businesses and your relationship with Ipe Woods USA in your city or area of operation. All this is to be done at no expense to you.

We appreciate you all, and we are so proud to work with and be associated with such a great group of American businesses. It is you that have made this country what it is today and we intend to support you through thick and thin.

-Steven Rossi
CEO

Composite vs. Wood Decking: Can We Pick a Winner?

In 2018, the percentage of houses with no outdoor addition like a deck, patio or porch dropped to 8%. It’s clear most homeowners want some way to enjoy the outdoors, no matter where they live.

That’s because outdoor spaces like decks add value to your home, add extra living space, and lets you show off your design skills.

If a deck best suits your outdoor needs, you’ll need to choose between composite versus wood decking. To help you take some of the guesswork out of the process, we’ve developed this guide.

Keep reading to learn about the pros and cons of plastic decking versus wood decking.

Composite Versus Wood Decking

When deciding between composite and wood decking, it’s important to factor in aesthetics, cost, durability, and your current lifestyle.  You may find that wood is less expensive initially but over the years it requires more maintenance and therefore, more money to keep it in good condition.

Composite may be a smarter choice especially since manufacturers are getting better at making boards that closely resemble natural wood. And while most composites absorb more of the heat in summer, making plastic decking hotter to the feet, there’s new technology available that can drastically reduce heat absorption.

Wood Decking

Wood is a natural product. However, it may be chemically treated.

Also, what types of wood you can find may depend on your geographical location. Here is the type of wood for decks most commonly used:

Pressure-treated Lumber

Most wood decking is made from pressure-treated lumber, including the understructure frame such as posts, joists, and posts. It’s affordable and widely available.

Most treated decking is 5/4 x 6–inch planks. It’s typically cut from southern yellow pine and then treated with chemicals to resist fungus, wood-boring bugs, and decay.

The biggest con is that pine isn’t very dimensionally stable. It can crack, swell, split, and warp.

Redwood & Western Red Cedar

Both redwoods and western red cedar’s are known for their beautiful crimson color, natural beauty, and their natural resistance to decay, rot, and insects. As a result, they’re treated with fewer chemicals.

These trees made great decking because they are:

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to cut
  • Stable
  • Resistant to warping

Most sizes for decking are 2 x 6 and 2 x 4. They come in a variety of grades as well.

To maintain its color, treat with a semitransparent stain every three to four years.

Tropical hardwoods

Tropical hardwoods are new to the decking scene. And they have some great characteristics such as:

  • Dense
  • Hard
  • Heavy
  • Durable
  • Naturally bug and rot-resistant

There are myriad species available so pricing fluctuates. The most common decking sizes are 3/4- and 1-inch-thick boards.

They’re easy to care for but make sure your tropical hardwood decking has been legally and ethically sourced. You’ll ensure that your wood has been grown and harvested in a legal and more sustainable manner.

The Care & Maintenance of Wood

Natural wood requires more care than plastic decks. Every two to five years, you’ll need to perform the following tasks to keep your deck in good shape:

  • Sand
  • Stain
  • Seal
  • Paint

Twice a year you should clean your deck.

Durability & Lifespan

Wood has about a 15-year lifespan to fight off the following problems:

  • Splintering
  • Staining
  • Fading

Wood can last about 20 years.

Possible Problems After 20 Years

Before the following issues begin causing problems such as:

  • Insect and rot
  • Scratching
  • Warping

On average, most wood decks last between 10 and 30 years, if untreated. It can last up to 50 years if it’s treated wood.

However, how well it was maintained, weather conditions and the type of wood used will factor into how long it lasts.

Composite Decking

Composite decking is a hybrid product. It’s composed mainly of wood fibers and recycled plastic. Common names for composite decking are:

  • Trex
  • TimberTech
  • Veranda

Composite decking is dense and heavy. It’s also stain and weather-resistant that doesn’t warp, rot, split or splinter. Its lifespan is 50 years.

Most types of plastic decking have wood-grain patterns molded into their surfaces to give them the look of real wood.

The Care & Maintenance of Composite

Unlike with wood, you don’t have to sand, seal, stain or even paint your composite. It is recommended that you clean your composite deck twice a year to keep it looking clean.

You can do that by using warm, soapy water and scrubbing your deck. Diluted bleach can kill any signs of mold or mildew.

Available in Different Colors & Sizes

Standard composite decking is available in several colors such as brown, gray, and tan. These colors will most likely fade over time, especially areas exposed to direct sunlight.

There are new fade-resistant composites available. They cost more but keep their color longer.

You can buy composite decking in lengths up to 16 feet.

Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Invest in a New Deck

Before you make the investment, you should ask yourself a few questions to help you decide which type of decking is best for you such as:

  • How will you use the deck?
  • Is the deck in a sunny or shaded area?
  • Will you do your own deck maintenance or hire a company?

You should also factor in how long you plan to live in your home. While a deck can help increase the value of your home, you shouldn’t blow your budget if you’re planning on moving within a few years.

The Price of Decking

It’s important to understand all the costs involved before you make your choice. Here are the typical costs of both composite and wood decking materials:

  • Pressure-treated wood: $1.50-$2.50 per square foot
  • Cedar: $3.75-$5 per square foot
  • Redwood: $6-$8
  • Tropical hardwoods: $8-$12 per square foot
  • Composite: $7-$10

Once you figure out which material you want to use, try the free cost estimator to get an idea of costs. Don’t forget to factor in the cost of maintenance moving forward if you choose wood.

Choose Your Decking Here

Now that you know the differences between composite versus wood decking, it’s time to start shopping. We have a great selection of decking materials.

We offer competitive pricing and materials that can stand the test of time. Click here to start shopping today.

How an Ipe Wood Fence Gives Your Home a Distinctive Contemporary Look

If you’re in the market for a new fence, an ipe wood fence may be just what you’re looking for. With an exotic, contemporary, and timeless look, ipe hardwood and ipe fence designs are as beautiful as they are durable.

Because of the grain and color of this tropical wood, you’ll often see it used in more modern, contemporary designs.

This guide has everything you need to know about ipe hardwood for your backyard and how to use it to create a beautiful, modern outdoor oasis.

What is Ipe Wood Fencing?

Ipe is pronounced ee-pay in Portuguese. Ipe wood is sourced from South America. This beautiful and exotic hardwood is from the tropics, so it makes a great weather-resistant choice for fencing.

Because it is a tropical wood, it comes naturally resistant to weather, insects, abrasion, and rot. Ipe wood fencing can stand up to rain, heat, wind, and any other elements your home may face. The Wall Street Journal describes this wood as being tough as nails.

The color is naturally a medium to a dark shade of brown. If the wood has been untreated or sealed, it may turn lighter and patina but it can easily be brought back to its natural beauty with a brightener or cleaner.

The color of ipe wood is similar to mahogany and it is a less expensive tropical hardwood that teak lumber. Because it is so durable and weather-resistant, you will often see ipe wood used in fencing, decks, outdoor furniture, and walkways.

In almost all applications, you can expect a really long lifespan out of your ipe fence. With a little maintenance, you can expect your fence to last longer than many pressure-treated woods or engineered materials.

Contemporary Design Ideas with Ipe Wood Fence

Ipe wood fencing is often used in modern and contemporary designs. The color and grain of the wood make for a great contemporary look as opposed to other more weathered or grainy types of woods.

Ipe fences can be laid horizontally for a contemporary look or even in a decorative pattern such as herringbone, or a mix of traditional horizontal boards broken up with vertical ones.

A modern fencing twist is laying the boards horizontally and using thicker, larger pieces of wood. You can separate the slats a little more as well. Bigger spaces with a wider plank give a cool take on the usual fence patterns.

The darker color of ipe boards is also on-trend right now and you won’t even have to stain it.

Another contemporary look is to mix ipe boards with black iron. You can use black iron to stabilize the fence and create a modern, industrial look.

Metal is another sleek way to stabilize an ipe fence in a contemporary and industrial feeling way. The combination of the two will give a clean and modern feel to your outdoor space.

A Good Neighbor Fence

A good neighbor fence is a newer trend where you try to have the fence look the same on both sides. The idea is that both you and your neighbor will see the same fence so one person doesn’t have a bad side while the other has a good side.

With boards laid in a modern, contemporary pattern such as horizontally, both of you will see the same thing on either side of the fence.

The great thing about using ipe as a good neighbor fence is that the natural color is also universally appealing. While it lends itself to contemporary designs and outdoor spaces, the pretty color goes well with any house your neighbor may have.

Additional Contemporary Fence Ideas

For some more contemporary looking ipe fence ideas, think of concrete or green vegetation. In addition to black iron, using concrete is also another super modern way of securing your fence and creating a minimalist and on-trend look.

Between the concrete and durable ipe hardwood, you will barely ever need to maintain this fence. While both are contemporary in design, they are also so clean and classic looking, you will have a look that is virtually timeless.

Another fun twist on the average fence is to use boxwoods or metal trellises to secure your fence. You can break up pieces of the fence with hearty, and contemporary boxwoods trimmed in a clean fashion.

Metal trellises filled with plants and vines are another pretty way to break up the fence while still creating privacy. Both looks add a natural element that are visually stunning.

The pops of green will look gorgeous against the rich, reddish-brown ipe wood fencing. This would also look pretty as a pergola, around a pool, or as a privacy wall.

Ipe Wood Fencing Price Guide

While getting a new fence can seem expensive, with proper care and maintenance, an ipe fence can last for decades. A new fence is also something that will always increase the value of your home.

Ipe fencing comes in three specific widths with varying lengths at Ipe Woods USA. There are 1×4 boards, 1×6 boards, as well as 1×8 inch boards. These are all ¾” thick.

The price of ipe wood will typically be around $2.00-$2.50/LF for standard 1×4 boards. The price will vary slightly depending on the board you go with. Each board can be used in a variety of different ways and the prices range depending on the size and quantity you need.

The 1×4 boards range in length from 4 to 20 feet.

The 1×6 boards range in length from 4 to 20 feet.

The 1×8 boards range in length from 4 to 20 feet.

It is always best to have a professional asses your needs and quote your unique job.

Why Use a Contemporary Ipe Wood Fence?

An ipe wood fence is well worth your investment. From its rich color and universally appealing look to its durability and versatility, you can use an ipe fence in almost unlimited ways.

The color and look of ipe wood make it an eco-friendly and timeless addition to your modern, and contemporary outdoor space. Use it with iron, metal, varying patterns, or in combination with natural plants for a sleek and modern fence that will transform your outdoor space.

If you’re ready to speak with a professional about your new fence, fill out the contact form here to get started on your contemporary backyard make-over.

2019 Ipe Woods USA Scholarship Winner Announced

We had many applicants in 2019 for the Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship. Upon review of all the applicants, Ipe Woods has selected Zayd Albowyha from San Francisco State University in California as the grand 2019 scholarship recipient of $1500.

In 2018 our recipient was from Arizona State University. Making this the second annual scholarship award. We also have increased every year the amount of the scholarship.

We are glad to be able and provide this scholarship with the purpose to increase awareness and help prevent even just one tragedy from impaired driving in memory of Caitlan.

Ipe Woods USA will be offering the scholarship again in 2020. This scholarship will again be increased. This information will be coming shortly.

Congratulations to Zayd!

10 Tips For Creating Your Very Own Backyard Paradise

Having a great backyard is important for so many reasons. Perhaps most important is to improve your quality of life with an outdoor living space. According to a University of Michigan survey, a beautiful backyard paradise is certain to pay off. For example, home shoppers paid more than 11 percent more for a well-manicured lawn. People desperately want the curb appeal and entertainment space associated with a picturesque yard.

Read on to learn how to create your own backyard paradise. Explore 10 tips so that you can create the backyard of your dreams.

1. Lawn Treatment

Having a backyard full of weeds and dirt does not sound like paradise. One of the easiest things to do is treat your lawn. This involves seeding at least twice a year and regular fertilizer applications.

The end result is going to be a thick and rich-colored lawn. You can DIY or hire a professional lawn treatment company.

A professional company will take additional steps to make your lawn perfect. They may add topsoil to the property or aerate the lawn. The bottom line is that lawn treatment is a relatively inexpensive way to make your backyard look great.

2. Plant Shrubs and Flowers

Beautiful plants and flowers are the hallmarks of many tropical vacations. Now that your grass is forest green, it is time to add some more color. You can do this by planting shrubs and flowers.

This is a relatively cheap investment compared to other major backyard projects. There are so many different types of shrubs, trees, and flowers.

Some homeowners prefer to plant perennial flowers so that they grow back every year. This way you do not need to buy new flowers each year and plant them.

Some flowers, like lavender, attract butterflies that add to the atmosphere. There are other popular shrubs like evergreens that stay active all year long.

3. Add a Living Space

The biggest fad in homeownership is adding an outdoor living space. The foundation for an outdoor living space can be achieved in a few different ways.

There are hardwood and composite decking materials that look great. Some people prefer a deck, while others opt to lay down a paver patio. There are even deck tiles that provide a unique and exotic look.

Even laying down a few tons of small rocks can work if you are on a budget. Either way, the intent is to create an area where your guests can relax.

This is a place to put down reclining chairs and a dining table. Some homeowners buy sofas and loveseats with weatherproof cushions.

4. Incorporate Some Lighting

Now it is time to add some ambiance to your outdoor living space. A simple floodlight is not enough if you plan to enjoy your backyard at night.

The remedy is to add some string lights over top of your outdoor living space. String lights use gentle bulbs that are intended to set a relaxing mood for your guests. They also look great.

You can install string lights using a series of hooks. Some elect to hang the hooks from the house or a 4×4. One popular idea is to insert a 4×4 into a large potter and plant flowers at the base.

Another place to hang your lighting is on a beautiful new fence. Your backyard paradise needs privacy. A wood fence allows for intimate moments with some dim lighting attached to set the mood.

5. Warm Up Your Guests

If a lot of time and money was spent on the backyard, you probably want to use it all year long. However, this becomes more difficult as the seasons change and the temperature drops.

The good news is that you can warm up your guests with some cool outdoor appliances. Of course, there are traditional fire pits to roast marshmallows and cook hot dogs. There are also outdoor heaters and fire tables that use propane gas.

6. Outdoor Speakers

Every vacation paradise has great music playing in the background. Your backyard is going to be no different.

There are outdoor speakers that are commercially available. They are weather-resistant and can be mounted to the siding or any other permanent surface.

7. Outdoor Bar

There are very few tropical paradises that do not include a bar. Adding a bar to your backyard will make your house the place to be.

You will need to decide between a wet or dry bar. A wet bar gives you a sink to rinse dishes.

There are many different commercial bars to choose from. To save money, you can choose a DIY project or design your own bar.

If money is not an issue, you can install a complete kitchen in the backyard. This option comes with items like a refrigerator and a stovetop.

8. Add an Awning or Gazebo

Do not let a little rain ruin your next outdoor event. By adding an awning or large gazebo, the party can continue in spite of the weather.

A gazebo can be acquired for less than an awning. You can take it down and store it inside during the harsh winter months.

An awning likely requires professional installation. An automated awning is remote controlled and can retract after your company departs.

9. Mount a Television

With some protection from the elements, you are ready to add an outdoor television. What better way to enjoy a big football game than watching it outdoors.

This is the perfect complement for your bar and fire pit. You can mount it on the side of the house. There are weather-resistant options that can stay up all-year-round.

To take your outdoor TV to the next level, mount it on some shiplap siding. Made popular by HGTV, shiplap siding is weather-resistant and will surround your outdoor TV with style.

10. Add Some Accessories

Now, put the final touches on your backyard paradise with some cool accessories. For example, a small pond will give guests that relaxing vibe.

Another popular accessory is tiki torches. You can install them in the ground or mount them on a deck railing. There are many great add-ons to elevate your entertainment game.

A Recap of Your Backyard Paradise

Your backyard is like a blank canvas. There are so many upgrades that can make your backyard the place to be.

Taking steps like adding deck tiles or an outdoor TV mounted on shiplap siding are certain to win over guests. If you are interested in designing your backyard paradise, contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Hardwood vs Softwood Decking: Which One is Right for You?

About 23.8% of the 850,000 homes built in 2017 had a deck. Since only a quarter of new homes have a deck, it’s likely your house didn’t come with one.

Now that you own your home, it’s time to outfit the backyard with a brand new deck. This will breathe new life into your home and allow you to enjoy your backyard fully.

The question now is, hardwood vs. softwood? Which one is better building material for your deck? We are going to answer all of your questions and help you decide.

Hardwood vs. Softwood: The Truth

Don’t make an assumption based on the names that one type of wood is better than the other. The names have no actual indication as to the physical hardness of the wood.

The two terms come from a broad biological description of different wood species.

What Is Hardwood?

There are broadleaved trees that grow in temperate or tropical climates. In temperate climates, these trees tend to be more deciduous, while in tropical climates they are more evergreen.

This type of wood tends to grow slower to create a denser and more durable wood. Not all hardwoods are suitable for outdoor decking use. For example, balsa is a hardwood, but not a suitable choice for deck material.

Common examples of hardwood are beech, ash, or oak. The most common hardwoods used for decking are teak, cumaru, ipe (also known as Brazilian Walnut), and iroko.

Ipe is one of the best options when it comes to hardwood decking. It’s a rich color, and incredible density making it the perfect choice for the homeowner looking to invest in their home long term.

What Is Softwood?

You will find a lot of softwood trees growing in Russia and Scandinavia. These are coniferous trees that grow faster than the hardwood counterparts.

For it to be used for decking, the wood must first be treated so that it will resist decay from insects and fungus. Common examples of softwood are spruce and pine.

Which One Is More Often Used?

Because softwood is easier to obtain, and therefore more affordable, it’s used more often. Softwood makes up about 80% of the world’s timber.

While hardwood is also used, it tends to be a more significant investment and requires greater skill and effort to work with. It’s more popular with those looking for a long term solution.

Which Wood Is Better?

One type of wood isn’t better than the other. They’re just different.

They each offer different colors, looks, and finishes to your completed deck. They also each require a specific approach and method for installation.

How Do I Clean It?

It doesn’t matter what type of wood you choose; you need to keep your deck clean for it to last and maintain that like-new feel.

When caring for your softwood deck, you need to seal or stain it at least once a year. This is necessary to maintain the water repellant quality. Having the wood repel water means that it’s protected from rotting, the environment, and insects.

You should also sweep or washing it throughout the year to keep it clean and useable.

In contrast, hardwood doesn’t require any seal or staining. The natural density of the wood prevents it from absorbing water.

The only cleaning you should do is rinse and wash with warm soapy water.

Making Your Choice

We mentioned earlier that one type of wood isn’t better than the other. While this is true, you need to weigh the pros and cons of each type of wood to determine which is right for you.

Choosing Softwood

Softwood decking makes a good investment if you are on a tight budget and looking for a short term look-good solution.

However, over the long term, it will require more work to maintain and will not last as long as hardwood. Then even if you maintain it, it won’t withstand the elements as well as hardwood. This means it’ll require year-round maintenance and care.

Choosing Hardwood

While hardwood decking is a larger investment upfront, you are building something that will look beautiful and last for significantly longer than the softwood deck. Plus there’s minimal maintenance for you.

Hardwood is the one to choose when you want maximum durability and looks. This wood naturally grows in places that are high in moisture. So it will handle the rain or snow in your climate with ease.

Choose a hardwood like ipe, and it can last up to a century. That is longer than it took the tree to grow. It also has the same fire rating as concrete or steel. This makes it a smart choice.

Let’s Build Your Deck

Are you ready to get started building your deck? We can help you by providing the best decking that money can buy.

By now there should be no question which one you will choose in the hardwood vs. softwood debate. Hardwood is worth the investment for a lifetime with a beautiful and durable deck.

Ipe is one of the most durable and longest-lasting hardwoods in the world. It has a natural ability to resist bugs, scratches, mold, and even fire. Plus it will stay cool in the hottest of summers. You can’t say that about the synthetic options.

It is important to us that our ipe wood is only legally sourced from Central and South America. Let us help you plan your new deck by browsing our cost comparison sheet.

Cumaru Wood Decking: 8 Benefits It Will Bring to You

It’s a great time of year to build or re-do your outside deck. The sun is out, the summer breeze is blowing and you can get your deck done in no time at all.

We offer one of the best wood you can use for your deck. What is one of the best woods’ name? Cumaru wood.

We are going to give you the eight beneficial reasons it works so well on your decking needs.

In general, Cumaru wood offers style and durability. What’s more, this wood is affordable and easy to lay as you build or re-do your deck.

Now we are going to get down to the specifics of why you need to know more about this one-of-a-kind decking wood.

Cumaru Decking

Cumaru wood is also known as Brazilian Teak wood. Cumaru wood comes in Yellow and Red. Although the red version of this wood is what we use the most for decking purposes.

We know you may be used to hearing about Ipe’s wood for decking jobs and it is a very good wood to use for that purpose.

However, Cumaru wood takes less time to produce and is two-thirds the price of Ipe’s wood. That is a big incentive to offer for deck builders.

We like letting our customers know they may need to apply a careful kiln to the drying process with the wood. This helps prevent any shrinkage which may occur during dry seasons.

The rich red color of Cumaru wood, when used for decking, stands out because of its color and density. 

This elegant wood has all the beauty of a hardwood floor you would use in an interior space. Except this beautiful wood is excellent outside because it is durable and weather-resistant. 

It can outlive many of the decking alternative woods like Pine, Cedar, Redwood or Douglas Fir.

The durability factor in this special deck wood is because it is a high-density hardwood native to the northern parts of South America.

The graining of the wood gives it a Brazilian Teak finished appearance. This wood is resistant to insects and has a long-lasting deck life.

One of the greatest benefits it offers is its price which is competitive with other decking wood options. Even deck options which include composite decking. That makes this Cumaru wood one our customers love to use on their planned deck jobs.

Cumaru Wood

If you decide to use this wood for your decking projects we are going to give you the eight benefits it will bring you. They are;

  1. This type of wood resists rot. This type of wood also has long-life and durability built into it. It is decay resistant and has excellent weathering properties.
  2. This wood is hard and strong. It has excellent longevity due to it being so stiff and firm. 
  3. It is hard to beat using Cumaru wood for your decking when you compare prices. The wood is inexpensive when it is imported and consistently offers low prices.
  4. Cumaru wood is diffuse-porous. It has narrow rays which are fairly close together. It offers heartwood mineral components which are confluent. It is also a large pore wood with no set arrangement.
  5. Cumaru is also known as Brazilian teak and Tonka Bean. This is because the tree is cultivated sometimes for its vanilla-cinnamon scented seed. Which also means as you are working on your deck project you receive faint vanilla or cinnamon-like aroma.
  6. The wood is dense and has interlocked grain. This helps make it strong and sturdy. But it also means pre-boring may be necessary when screwing or nailing the wood.
  7. The wood is rich, dramatic and beautiful to look at. There are no two pieces of Cumaru decking exactly alike. This helps make your deck look sophisticated and unique at the same time.
  8. This special wood has unique measurements. It is 3540lbs with a density of 1.07g/cm3 on the Janka hardness scale. This makes it over three times harder than the typical teak wood used in a lot of decking projects. It has double the strength of oak decking.

Cumaru

Marketing started for tropical hardwoods in the United States for decking and cabinetry about 2006.

Cumaru wood achieved a 2-3% growth rate per year by 2010 because of the woods’ natural durability and aesthetics.

This unique decking wood markets to consumers for their decking projects because it offers high quality with low maintenance. Also because it is a tropical hardwood it is very durable as well.

Consumers report they select Cumaru wood for their decking projects, in part, because the wood is also insect and decay-resistant.

Cumaru wood has five measured benefits which distributors, customers, and producers agree upon. They are;

  • 86% prefer this type of wood because of its durability
  • 71% prefer this type of wood because of its low-maintenance
  • 71% prefer this type of wood because of its strength
  • 57% prefer this type of wood because of its biodegradation qualities

Sometimes there is a wood which exceeds industry standards. Cumaru is that wood. 

Ipe Wood

If Cumaru wood comes in second place to any other wood it is Ipe wood. It is the decking wood most preferred by consumers

For the most part, this is because of its sturdiness and suitability for various environments. Ipe needs very little drying and has a 12-15% moisture content.

It is the preferred wood most of the time for restaurants, boardwalks, businesses, and homes which need deck wood.

Ipe wood or Cumaru wood are both are very good for any decking project. While Cumaru wood cannot beat Ipe wood in most categories it is still a very durable and strong wood.

Building my Cumaru Wood Deck

If you want to build your Cumaru wood deck reach out to us today. Right now, you have the perfect season to build your deck.

When you add this one-of-a-kind wood affordable prices you have the perfect combination to get your deck project finished now. 

Why wait to build your deck with Cumaru wood when the same wood was used New York’s famous Coney Island? When Coney Island needed to rebuild their boardwalk, Cumaru wood was selected.

This unique wood was selected because of its affordability, beauty, and durability. It is also FSC certified.

Don’t let another extreme weather season happen which decays your current deck or gives you a reason to wish you had built one when you had the chance.  

There is nothing like having the deck of your dreams add a little bit of sanctuary and beauty to your yard.

We will help you step by step with our Cumaru wood product and customer service. If you need it for your deck, we can make it happen. 

How to Build a Deck: 5 Tips From the Pros

5 Tips On How to Build a Deck

Looking at adding a deck to your home? Here are 5 tips on how to build a deck.

Did you know that adding decking to your house could be 80% cheaper than you think?

Houses that have good quality decking installed often rise in value up to 80% of the cost of the decking.

Of course, that is only installing the basic wood structure. After you install other items such as outdoor furniture its appeal rises further.

You may want to make your house look even better, but have never installed decking before. If you want to ensure that you are investing well, what should you look out for?

Check out our list of 5 tips on how to build a deck.

1. Choose Your Design Carefully

Experts say that you should not build decking that is 20% of your house’s square footage.

If you decide to go with this, you will need to plan carefully how you use each square foot. Will you use your decking area mostly for ornaments, or will you host garden parties?

Some add to the beauty of their decking by building more than one level. Perhaps they have the main seating area and a smaller area that is lower and tapers down to a yard.

When designing your deck, plan for your decking to be a few inches below door level. In winter leaves may pile up against the base of the door and, if the same level, the out-swinging storm door will push them into the decking.

This is not only ugly but can cause damage in the long term. Leaving this gap will also keep leaves out of the house.

2. Think in 3-D

If you are building substantial decking, you likely have favorable weather and want to sit outside and enjoy it. To shield you from unwanted sunlight you have a range of options.

If you want to read in peace, you can go with a pergola and sun rays that creep through the wooden slats. To stay out of the sun completely, install an awning.

Once you have shade in place, and a superstructure to hang things from, only your budget limits what you can do.

Elaborate lighting systems, heating systems to allow you to enjoy the decking all year round, TVs, audio systems, Barbeques – the list is endless.

3. Choose Quality Materials

Depending on the weather where you live, your decking may take a pounding. Direct sustained sunlight in summer, followed by lashing rain in winter means you need to pick enduring materials if you do not want to replace timbers each year.

You have a choice between natural wood and composite boards.

Natural Woods

Natural woods such as Redwoods and Red Cedar are historically the most popular choice for checking materials. They are naturally resistant to decay, insects, and rot.

There are many other natural wood solutions available at a lower price to artificial solutions. However, it is true that they will show their age with just a few years.

Artificial Solutions

Before you discount the non-natural materials, think of what they can offer you.

Composite boards are a blend of recycled plastic and wood. This gives them incredible durability. They often come with a warranty of up to 25 years.

Since they have a plastic coating their finish is also guaranteed and will not significantly fade during this time. In fact, the time saved by not needing to maintain composite often persuades people to spend the extra money needed to purchase it.

The appearance of the composite boards is engineered to look exactly like genuine wood and people often find it difficult to distinguish between them.

4. Choose Your Fixtures Carefully

Even if you go for a long-lasting wood decking solution, this could still be undermined if you choose the wrong fittings. Choosing screws and other fixtures will damage the wood surrounds.

Choosing fixtures that will rust quickly will mean you have to take up the boards to replace the fixtures even though the wood may be fine.

If you plan to use stainless steel nails or screws, we recommend 305-grade stainless steel or higher. A lower grade may discolor the wood surrounding it.

A safe solution is the CAMO® Hidden Clip System. Rather than driving the screw into your decking panels, this system uses an unseen clip that sits in-between the panels. This houses the screw and protects the wood from discoloration.

5. Choose the Right Finish

When your decking is in place you are ready to apply the finish. You basically have three options:

  • Paint
  • Stain
  • No finish

Painting

Painting a new wooden deck may seem unorthodox, but it does have its advantages. Depending on the color that you choose, you may not have to clean it as often as other finishes.

A good quality paints job is easier to clean by simple washing. It is hardwearing and will not fade easily.

However, this is also a negative. Paint is very hardwearing. This means that one you have painted your decking, there is little chance of successfully going back to a natural wood look.

Staining

Staining allows you to retain the natural beauty of the wood. If your wood has a naturally beautiful grain pattern, you may even be able to accentuate it with the right stain.

The downside is that stain is less hardwearing than paint. Depending on the quality of the stain that is applied and the number of coats, it may not last many years. Particularly in areas of high traffic will it age more quickly.

No Finish

This is a surprisingly good option. Not only are you able to make immediate use of your decking, with correct maintenance and cleaning, the wood can also last for decades.

If you took the option to use Redwoods and Red Cedar, you may be able to leave the surface of the wood completely untouched thanks to its natural resistance to bugs and decay.

Of course, over time this type of wood will discolor, however, unless it is under very severe weather conditions it will not change in any way other than appearance.

How to Build a Deck and Many Other Projects

These are the top tips on the subject of how to build a deck.

If you are planning to add a deck or any outdoor timber to your house, why not check out our blog to see what practical advice we have to offer?

Make sure to contact us today for a quote on the best wood you can buy!

Home Improvement 101: Which Decking Material Should You Choose?

Which Decking Material Should You Choose?

Looking at adding a deck to your home? Here are a few suggestions on what decking material you should choose.

Adding a deck to your home is a great improvement on the aesthetic value. It gives your home a convenient finished touch that makes your outdoor warm and welcoming.

When choosing decking material, there are factors to consider ensuring that your deck can withstand wear and tear. It’s also essential to ensure that your decking material meets your financial investments goals. Keep reading to learn more about the different types of decking materials out there and how to choose.

Types of Decking Material for Your Deck

Although there is a variety of material to use for decking, not all will keep your outdoor glory. Therefore, your decking material should not only look presentable but also be durable for an exceptional outdoor look all year. Here are a few options for your decking material.

Decking Material: Redwood and Cedar

Red cedar and redwood are purists’ materials, which are known for their rich natural beauty and color. What makes the difference in the materials is that they aren’t pumped with preservations or chemicals. Both materials contain oils and tannins that make them resistant to decay, insects, and rot.

These are naturally superior materials and will guarantee that your deck will look excellent throughout the season. With these softwoods, your home will have an improved look that will guarantee an added natural taste of style and class.

Composites

Plastic lumber and composite decking material are common in the today market. These type of materials are selling fast due to simplicity and affordability. People working on a budget find them appropriate as they work within their budget.

Composite materials are also convenient and easy to upgrade. Therefore, if you are looking for a way to change your deck more often, this is a suitable choice of material. Most plastic lumber decks are made of polyvinyl chloride polyethylene and they come various colors to guarantee you an appropriate material that meets your décor needs.

Tropical Hardwoods

Exotic imports have a defined look and when you use them for decking; your home aesthetics will automatically improve. Some of the tropical materials for decking include red tauari, massaranduba, Philippine mahogany, cumaru, ipe, and tigerwood.

With such materials, your deck will be durable and will be naturally resistant to insects and rot. These exotic woods are also thick, which makes them stable and unshaken especially by natural impairments.

Another benefit of this material is that they are relatively strong. In fact, driving a nail or screw through them has to start with boring a hole. Therefore, the design will have a uniform look as all nails or screws you use will have a standard look.

When you compare these tropical materials with PT lumber, they are relatively expensive. Their beautiful look makes them convenient for most homeowners who are interested in making their home unique and luxurious.

Aluminum

Aluminum is convenient for making a deck that is exceptional and simple. Although most manufacturers don’t design decks with aluminum material, it does not mean that it does won’t produce a competent deck.

What makes aluminum an ideal material is that it won’t rust, rot, crack, warp, or splinter. Unlike other materials, aluminum will not be affected by weather and it’s resistant to mold or slip.

Using aluminum requires a coating that makes it durable and will not blister or peel regardless of the conditions.

Another benefit of aluminum is that it’s easy to redecorate and change as you change your interior décor. Your deck will have a new look on occasion when you decide to make changes. This will give it a new look, almost as if you changed the material.

Common aluminum decks include Versadeck, LockDry, and AridDeck. They are strong and will work under any weather condition to ensure your home is presentable all year round.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Materials

Although all decking material has a way of improving your space, it is essential to ensure that your choice of material is within your standards and expectations. You need to consider various aspects of your home. Some of these include:

Complement Your Home Design

Your deck should serve as an extension of your home design. Your material for decking should complement your interior décor. The finish, color, and rail design are essential elements of design.

During the colonial time, decks had an older style. These styles are common today and most synthetic manufacturers offer a variety of railings as mission style or provincial to help the deck fit the rest of your house décor. In other words, decks that are perfectly done shouldn’t bring competition to the other house style.

Weight Cost

Cost is an essential factor to consider when making any investment. Before committing to any investment, ensure that the materials you buy don’t strain you’re your budget.

Also, when buying materials ensure that the price you get is convenient for you and fits in your budget. This helps ensure that when it comes to repairing or changing the deck, you are also comfortable financially.

Price also influences the type of design you get. The more you are willing to pay, the higher your chances of getting a good design. Paying more does not mean that the material you get is of great quality over the cheap one.

Weather Conditions

Weather conditions are a major determinant of the type of material to use for decking. Materials that look great during winter may not work well during summer seasons. When investing in materials, ensure you find one that works best through the season.

Additionally, ensure that your choice of material allows you to be flexible in designing it through the different season.

Getting the Right Decking Material Gives the Entire Deck Project an Exceptional Look

The right material also guarantees that your deck has a unique style and it’s convenient. Choosing a long-lasting decking material will determine the longevity of your deck and its aesthetic appeal. You need to consider the above factors before making the decision.

Contact us for a variety of choice of decking material, delivered to your building site