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5 Most Shocking Reasons Why Ipe Decking is Becoming More Popular

Are you looking to build the ideal deck for your home? Thinking about what the perfect decking material would be? Ipe or Brazilian hardwood is the answer to your problem.

There are an estimated 30 million residential decks in the US. A good 10 million of them have only come up recently. We’re betting most of these decks use ipe wood for their materials.

Most people choose ipe wood because of its sturdiness and reliability. Get a decking material that can last your whole lifetime.

Read on below for the top 5 benefits of using ipe decking.

1. Low Ipe Decking Cost

In 2016, 25% of home remodeling projects focused on adding decks to already-built homes. One of the many reasons why ipe is a very popular addition to homes is its low cost. Ipe prices can even equal synthetic plastic deck material.

If you plan to DIY your deck, you can get the ipe wood boards for a cheaper price. Ipe deck boards could cost for as little to 3.50 USD to 5 USD per square foot. The added cost of labor could increase the total price to about 20 USD per square foot if you plan to pay professionals to build the deck.

Prices for random lengths are available in our shop. For example, a 1×4 ipe wood with eased edges can cost 2.24 USD per foot. Check out our price list for ipe wood costs at different lengths and functions.

The cost of ipe decking installation can vary with the size of the deck. A 200 to 500 square-foot deck can cost you around 7,000 USD. Smaller decks can cost only 2,000 USD or more.

Ipe wood can seem more expensive than most other wood materials. In the long run, it will be a great investment and will cost you less. We’ll further explain below the durability of the ipe wood.

2. Ipe Decking Has Durability and High Density

You want to create a wooden deck or porch that lasts for a long time. Ipe hardwood is tough as nails and has a high density. It’s not a surprise that it earned the nickname “ironwood”.

Ipe wood’s high density makes it the best decking material according to many deck makers. This dense characteristic makes ipe wood long-lasting and sturdy. Several resistances come from the high density of this redwood species.

Ipe wood has a Class A fire resistance rating. This is comparable to the resistance of steel and concrete against fire. The wood’s density, rugged surface, and natural moisture content help.

In the market, most wood materials do not expand like ipe wood. The contracting and expanding of ipe wood make it an adaptive material. Often, these changes will be due to the climate and temperature of the area.

As a note, excessive movement is a common problem with ipe decking. The reason is the wood still moves with changes in the temperature and humidity. The wood will compensate when it starts drying and can cause coupling, gaps, and buckling.

To prevent this, make sure that airflow on all four sides of the boards remains even. The boards and joints should have even spaces between each other. Also, allow some room for expansion and drainage.

3. Ipe Wood Is Sustainable and Eco-Friendly

Among the various typical decking options, ipe wood has great sustainability. As discussed above, it is very sturdy. This leads to fewer instances of deck wood replacement.

Compared to most wood types for deck boards, ipe wood can last much longer. With the right maintenance, it can weather the elements for over 75 years. In the case of termite attacks, it can hold out against them for up to 15 years.

Although we say that ipe has good sustainability as decking material, the source itself isn’t so much. Due to its widespread use in many construction projects, many are overharvesting it. In time, further sourcing of ipe could lead to its extinction.

This is why you must be smart and efficient in using ipe wood. This incredible hardwood has much use to us and will benefit future generations. All we need to do is to be responsible for the usage of our materials.

4. Retains Cool Surfaces

In its original state, Brazilian hardwood or ipe has high moisture content. Through the slow drying process, the moisture content level goes down. This is to prevent the ipe wood from cracking and splitting.

For months, the wood sits in a warehouse to readjust to its new environment and acclimate well. If you buy ipe wood, it’s best to consider one that is premium or select grade. This will ensure that the woods will have the least amount of separation and cracks.

As a tip, when you buy ipe wood, it’s smart to let them acclimate. Let the boards sit for a few days on-site before you cut them. The longer they get to adjust to temperatures, the stronger they’ll be when you start the decking project.

There are some options for ipe decking, including air-dried boards and kiln-dried lumber. Air-dried decking has a moisture content of 12% to 18%. This ensures that excessive movement and checking will not occur during elemental exposure.

The kiln-dried wood has a moisture content of 6% to 8%. This is essential in climate-controlled interiors. Kiln-drying ipe allows more stability and prevents moisture loss.

Since ipe hardwood has a natural capacity to keep less heat, it will stay cool in the summer months. Using ipe decking will be better than using composite and plastic decking. It also has a tendency to crack less, giving you fewer chances of getting splinters.

If you can’t get access to ipe, some Ipe alternatives include cumaru, massaranduba, and teak.

5. Low Maintenance

Ipe helps create the ideal deck for many homeowners. It has great aesthetic value, great efficiency, and incredible stability. Still, without the right maintenance, it can wear out faster than it should.

The great thing about ipe decking is that doesn’t need a lot to keep it in tip-top shape.

All you need is regular cleaning. Sweep it every day to clear out the sap, pollen, and leaves. Should debris remain, rinse it out.

Sealing your boards after constructing the deck will help in its longevity too. If you want to give further protection to the finish, you can oil your ipe wood. Remember to reseal your boards every few years.

Exposure to the sun will make the board colors fade. If you want to keep the color from fading, use a UV protectant on the boards. If you can get an awning to protect it from the high sun, do it whenever your budget allows you to.

All Hands on the Ipe Deck

That’s it for the 5 reasons why ipe decking is becoming a popular choice among homeowners.

Did you enjoy this blog post and/or found it informative? Feel free to visit our blog page for more articles on Ipe decking.

Thinking of getting treatments for a beautiful finish on your ipe deck? Check out our main page for our products and services on all things ipe! You can also contact us and fill out a form for a quote.

Great Alternatives to Ipe

The most common reason we see for people looking for alternatives to Ipe is price. If you are looking for an Ipe alternative this article is for you. Ipe is the king of hardwoods, the reasons for that are numerous. But what are the best alternatives? Here are two of our favorites and why.

Garapa

From a density and longevity standpoint, we prefer Garapa. It is a great wood and is substantially less expensive than Ipe. So what are the pros and cons of Garapa?

Garapa Pros:

  • Less Expensive
  • Extremely Durable
  • Long life span can exceed 30 years

Garapa Cons:

  • Color is yellow, but it will turn grey if allowed. Also can be treated to darken the color.
  • Somewhat plain looking as the wood doesn’t have many age rings or contrasting color characteristics.

Cumaru

Cumaru is a beautiful wood, but in our experience, it is less stable around water than Ipe and Garapa. In fact, we have seen it prone to cupping especially in the 1×6 size. While this usually happens when moisture and/or water are near it.

Cumaru Pros:

  • Beautiful exotic look
  • Less expensive than Ipe
  • Durable
  • Life span can exceed 25 years

Cumaru Cons:

  • Not as good around water
  • Less density

In the end, ll of the woods no matter if it is ipe, garapa or cumaru are great choices. But there is only one king of hardwood decking and that is Ipe.

Ipe Woods USA Awarded Best Of Houzz 2019 – Second Win In a Row

Ipe Decking

Awarded by Community of Over 40 Million Monthly Users, Annual BOH Badge Highlights Home Remodeling & Design Professionals with Top Ratings

While we strive every day to offer the best prices and service, we are pleased to be recognized by a community of over 40 Million members as the best company for exotic hardwood decking service.”— Steven Rossi

SAN FRANSICO, CA, UNITES STATES, February 25, 2019 – Ipe Woods USA has won “Best Of Customer Service” for the second straight year, Houzz the leading platform for home renovation and design. The innovative lumber distribution company was chosen by the more than 40 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community from among more than 2.1 million active home building, remodeling and design industry professionals.

The Best Of Houzz badge is awarded annually, in three categories: Design, Customer Service and Photography. Design awards honor professionals whose work was the most popular among the Houzz community. Customer Service honors are based on several factors, including a pro’s overall rating on Houzz and client reviews submitted in 2018. Architecture and interior design photographers whose images were most popular are recognized with the Photography award.

A “Best Of Houzz 2019” badge will appear on winners’ profiles as a sign of their commitment to excellence. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.

“Best of Houzz is a true badge of honor as it is awarded by our community of homeowners, those who are hiring design, remodeling and other home improvement professionals for their projects,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of Industry Marketing for Houzz. “We are excited to celebrate the 2019 winners chosen by our community as their favorites for home design and customer experience, and to highlight those winners on the Houzz website and app.”

Follow Ipe Woods USA on Houzz https://www.houzz.com/pro/ipewoods

About Ipe Woods USA:
While lumber is an old industry the direct to consumer market for lumber is relatively new, and so is Ipe Woods USA. Utilizing a distribution network of more than 10 warehouses and/or mills and over 300 pickup locations across the United States. The company specializes in Ipe decking but also offers Massaranduba, Garapa, Tigerwood, Purpleheart and Cumaru.

About Houzz:
Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish – online or from a mobile device. From decorating a small room to building a custom home and everything in between, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world. With the largest residential design database in the world and a vibrant community
empowered by technology, Houzz is the easiest way for people to find inspiration, get advice, buy products and hire the professionals they need to help turn their ideas into reality. Headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif., Houzz also has international offices in London, Berlin, Sydney, Moscow, Tel Aviv and Tokyo. Houzz is a registered trademark of Houzz Inc. worldwide. For more information, visit houzz.com.


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Buy Ipe Direct Acquired by Ipe Woods USA

As promised here is the big news, the acquisition of Buy Ipe Direct has been completed. Read all about it in this months Business Insider.

https://markets.businessinsider.com/

We are excited to add this amazing brand to our portfolio of Ipe companies in an effort to better serve customers and provide the best customer service. We continue to grow rapidly and appreciate the customers that value our high standards and make our business possible.

The sites will operate much the same as they have and we are looking to eventually work towards a seamless integration into our successful business model.

2019 Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship Announced

The Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship

The Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship was created to remember the life and legacy of our dear Caitlan. Since education is a gift that lasts a lifetime we are delighted to announce our second annual scholarship offering.  We lost Caitlan suddenly in a tragic car accident on September 29th, 2015. She had just turned eighteen and was looking forward to life full of promise. 

We had many great applicants last year, but unfortunately we could only give one scholarship which went to Samantha Martinez from Arizona State University . We want to thank all participants and ask you to join us again in The Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship.

My name is Steven Rossi of Ipe Woods USA. This wonderful young lady was not only my niece, she was also inspiration to our whole family. She was an intelligent, witty, spirited young woman who was the light of our lives.  Her dream was to go to College and in her memory, Ipe Woods USA is offering a College Scholarship in the amount of $1500.

This scholarship of $1500 will be offered to someone who needs financial assistance to fulfill their college dreams.

Scholarship Subject : Intoxicated Driving – What can we do to raise awareness 

Every day, almost 30 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes—that’s one person every 48 minutes in 2017

In a three-page essay please discuss the following:

How can we prevent drunk driving? What can be done to raise awareness about intoxicated driving?

Inform people about the dangers of drinking and driving

We ask that this essay be a concisely written creative essay that can be shared in Memory of Caitlan Wallace and her tragic automobile death.

Essay Format:

  • Use the basic principles of an opinion essay:
  • An Introduction that previews the 3 essential points of the essay
  • A Body that discusses each point of your argument for safe driving
  • A Conclusion that summarizes your points

The essays will be judged on academic excellence, writing style and the concise conveyance of the points you make highlighting the need for safe driving.

The work must be original and unpublished. The writing will be checked for plagiarism and writings that were previously published on any kind of media outlets, including personal blogs, Facebook pages, and similar platforms, will not be considered applicable.

The essay must include at least three official and authentic sources to corroborate your argumentation.

Once you submit your essay, you give ipewoods.com permission to use it for commercial purposes.

Writing Guidelines

    • The essay must follow logical reasoning as your writing must be based on factual and logical arguments to prove your point.
    • The writing style is free, as creativity is also evaluated. We welcome and cherish conceptual writing, provided that you follow the aforementioned guidelines of argumentation and remain objective.
  • The writing must explain a particular point of view and prove it reasonable and logical based on the official sources you have to include on your writing.
  • The sources that refer to objective statements must be cited as quotations, whilst official data sources, like statistical data, can be simply referred at the end of the writing by an index markers system of your preference, i.e., “1, 2, 3, 4….”; “*, **, ***”.
  • Both types of sources, either quoted statements or data sources must be referred at the end of the essay in a separate section that must be titled “References”. You must include links for the official websites where the information can be accessed or, in the case of books and other printed media, you must include an extended reference with the number of the page and paragraph where the data or statement can be found, as well as the year of the publication, and the name of the book and the author.
  • Once again, note that the essay must follow a logical reasoning. Religious books or any other kind of abstract, empiric or non-scientific sources are not valid to corroborate your argumentation and you will be eliminated from the contest.
  1. Your essay must be saved as a “.doc” file.
  2. Application Guidelines
  • Send us your essay by email to [email protected]  with the subject “2019 Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship – YOUR NAME”

In the body of the email include the following information:

  • Your full name
  • Telephone number
  • Full name of the school/university you are attending
  • Area of Study

You also must submit an official document that proves you are currently studying and associated with your school/university, including an official  certification by the institution, as a signature or an official stamp. This document must be scanned with a good resolution and attached to your email.

Review and Winner’s Announcement

The applied works will be reviewed under the following criteria:

    • Evaluation of the proper grammar usage
    • Evaluation of writing skills
    • Evaluation of creativity
    • Evaluation of argumentation and sources
    • The evaluations will get a grade of excellence based on the performance on the aforementioned criteria. The total highest grade will naturally be selected as the winner
    • The announcement of the winner is made on November 15th. The winner must claim her prize within one month or the second highest grade of the selection will be awarded as the winner.
    • To claim the prize, we will contact you and your school/university to prove your association and subsequently, the prize will be sent via check .
  • Deadline The final date for submission is December 15th, 2019, and we will choose the winner by December 25th, 2019 and the check will be mailed out by January 1st, 2020.

Steven Rossi

IPE Woods USA

In Loving Memory of Caitlan Wallace

Tigerwood Decking, Ipe or Cumaru: Best Tropical Decking Options

Two men unload Ipe Decking from a truck in Utah.

Spring is decking “season” and we have a while to get there. But late December is a great time to think about what wood to use on your next deck. During the springtime, the mills use the vast majority of their day grooving Ipe decking boards which are meant for hidden fasteners. Most of our trucks are usually loaded with Cumaru, Ipe or Tigerwood decking to be moved all around the country and even boats to other countries based on client’s request. Just as we have disclosed before on this site, Ipe remains an unquestionable decking material; however, the cost keeps rising year by year. Hence, we are looking towards other possible decking option to Ipe currently, and we felt that it is an ideal time to share the available options with our clients.

A lot of quality tropical decking species with different appearance and performance are available, but, how do you know which species are appropriate for your need?

Ipe Alternatives

Red Balau Decking: This kind is workable than many other similar tropical types of wood. Balau belongs to the Shorea genus – a reason why it shares texture, hue and workability qualities with Mahogany. Balau is relatively hard – when compared to the domestic Hard Maple – durable, and has a regular and flawless color pattern than most other tropical decking woods. Besides, it is half of Ipe’s cost in price. For this reason, it has become a great wood in the tropical decking world. However, it cannot be easily seen as Ipe or Cumaru, which makes it difficult for local sellers to find.

Jatoba: Possibly, you might have heard about Jatoba before, and it can even be the one currently used for your house’s interior flooring. It is commonly known as Brazilian Cherry. Because of its extreme hardness, it is an outstanding choice for interior flooring work. Also, it is quite resistant against insect and rot – one of the qualities which make it to be very stable. In the long run of use and due to exposure to sunlight, the appealing red color also usually becomes deeper. Hence, the use of Jatoba is an excellent choice to combine your exterior deck with your interior floor.

Tigerwood Decking and Others

Tigerwood Decking: this species is also known as Goncalo Alves. It is famous for its brownish-orange and dark stripes appearance which makes it look like a Tiger. Usually, it can become darker as a deep reddish-brown over time. While the Tigerwood does dry excellently and stays stable for different weather, kiln drying is necessary to attain stability. Although Tigerwood decking is mostly used for decking, they can also be applied to interior works. Due to the variegated stripping, the construction of deck with regular appearance can be challenging when readily obtainable. The most challenging part of a Tigerwood decking is that the stripes are not consistent – while one board may have zero stripping, another may have massive stripping. From our experience, when used as an entire decking, while the smooth surface can be quite pleasurable to a barefoot, it can be slippery.

Massaranduba Brazilian Redwood Decking: Massanduba is also called the Brazilian Redwood or Bullet wood. This species is quite dense and hard. They are usually found large and produce an excellently straight and regular grained board which are ideal for decking. They do occur in red color and do become brown when exposed. Regarding hardness, Massanduba is 20% lesser than Ipe, but it is still much durable. Besides, Massanduba hardly breaks apart when used in climates such as the Rockies and the Southwest. Because Massanduba is more stable under wet environments, they are popular in Europe. It is advisable to consider the climate before choosing Massanduba for decking meticulously. It has a similar price to Cumaru and can be obtained with ease. Also, this kind of wood is an excellent alternative for selective climates.

Garapa Decking: Garapa is another sturdy and dense decking wood. It is commonly referred to as Brazilian Oak. It is lemon-yellow in appearance, and always conspicuous. Clients mostly inform us that although Garapa is stable and handy for decking work, the color remains a “No” for many house-owners. Regarding hardness, it is about 40% less hard to Ipe. However, it remains as a harder wood than most domestic species. In fact, it belongs to the rating of class-A woods among the South American decking woods. Also, the color issues are mostly resolved with dyes or stains to give Garapa an Ipe-like appearance.

Cambara decking: they are also mostly categorized as a variant of Mahogany because they possess identical attributes such as reddish-brown hue and open grain. In truth, Cambara is not ideal for decking because of its irregular presence in Brazil and grade inconsistency. It has only been mentioned here because some people used to make use of it some years back but not anymore.

Perfect Woods for Decks

Cumaru against Ipe: Ipe is one of our most popular decking products, and it is specialized upon by Ipe Woods USA, as the name says. However, we also engage in the shipment of Cumaru, Red Balau, Tigerwood, and Jatoba of various sizes. For the Tigerwood decking, we store them in a relatively lesser amount but can be obtained in whatever quantity based on a request. Also, because we are aware that the other options stated above are workable species, we do supply them in whatever quantity our clients order for.

From our several years of supplying decking materials, Ipe has remained as an excellent product beyond others; hence, we have continued to use it as our flagship offering. However, due to the increasing cost of Ipe, we have started to engage in massive stocking position in other species as an alternative, and so far, our clients have been grateful for our new approach. Apart from the tropical decking woods, we are also ready to serve your needs concerning decking materials. Basically, in a case where our client demand for a specific kind of wood, we are always prepared to stock as demanded.

Nevertheless, all of our chosen species have reasons behind them, and most times, we do try to make clients see the reasons why they should choose a particular species over some others mentioned herein. Ultimately, many factors are usually involved in constructing a deck, and your situation may be different from others. Hence, it is advisable to allow us to pick the ideal tropical decking species for your job.

See our Ipe vs Other Hardwoods Page.

Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship Winner

We had many great applicants for the Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship. We are very proud to be announcing the winner of the Caitlan Wallace Memorial Scholarship, Samantha Martinez of Arizona State University. The scholarship will be again available in 2018-2019, the details will follow soon. Congratulations to Samantha on winning the scholarship this year. We are happy to be able and honor the memory of Caitlan and bring something positive out of the tragedy of her passing. We look forward to next years Scholarship and we will be increasing the amount.

Acquisition of Competitor Completed – Announcement to Follow

It is no secret the Ipe Woods USA has grown drastically in 2018. In fact, you may know that Ipe Woods USA is a less than 2-year-old company. Our fierce competitive spirit and commitment to quality and customer service are showing. Not only have we grown from a completely unknown company, but we have now acquired one of our competitors and leading Ipe wood wholesale website distributors online.

The official announcement is expected in November.  This acquisition will help lead Ipe Woods USA to an even more dominant online company in 2019 and years to come.  The official announcement will be very exciting. We are excited to add to our ability to serve customers.

One thing that will not be changing is Ipe Woods USA’s award-winning customer service and commitment to quality. Many people rely on us for their customer projects and personal projects. We work hard to ensure that trust is placed in the right area. Every day we work to ensure prompt delivery and high-quality lumber.

Your Own Little Hideaway, Right in the Middle of the Yard

Sometimes you just want to be away from it all, even if you’re only in the middle of  your own yard.

What Does it Look Like?

A gazebo of ipe wood would add just one more touch of class to your yard.  If you close your eyes, you can already see it, right there in the middle of your yard.  Standing there, inviting. Think and imagine carefully. What do you see? Does it have windows that can keep the rain and weather out, or is it open letting the breeze through, and keeping things cool in the shade?  

How is it set up?  Do you have benches around the walls, or do you have some high-end lawn furniture in the middle it?  Or did you decide to build some chairs and furniture out of ipe?

Imagine hard, and you’ll see it.  You can see it there in your yard with ipe’s dark, rich tones.  Keep imagining, and you’ll also feel the envy of your neighbors when they see it.  

The Challenge

There’s no denying the beauty of a gazebo built of ironwood, nor how tough it is.  It’s not something that’s going to blow over with the first storm that comes along.

There is something else that ipe offers that few other kinds of wood offer, and that’s a challenge.  If you’re a woodworker yourself, you may be feeling the challenge of building something from one of the hardest woods on the planet.  

Ipe’s density and hardness, make it one of the most durable woods you’ll ever work with.  Anything you build with it will last for a good long time, something future generations will be admiring.  

Maybe you’re the type who loves a good challenge, and building with ipe will certainly be that.  Building a gazebo from Brazilian walnut will certainly be a challenge, and different from doing a deck.  

That doesn’t mean it can’t be done.  It’s not impossible. Just remember the motto of the US Navy Construction Battalion (the Sea Bees):  “The difficult we can do right away; the impossible takes a little longer.”

And when you’ve finished it, you’ll be able to point with pride at having done something that few other people have done.   

You’ve climbed the mountain.

Do It Now

As the saying goes, there is no time like the present.  Every day you put off building that beautiful gazebo in your yard, is one less day for you to enjoy the shade, and the sense of contentment you’ll have knowing you’ve got your own little hiding place there waiting for you.  

Ipe Woods USA, found at ipewoods.com has all the materials you’ll need to build your hideaway place in the backyard.  What are you waiting for? You know it’s going to look gorgeous, and be the perfect hiding spot. Visit us today and get the ball rolling.  Just do it now. You won’t regret it.