July 1, 2024

8 Essential Questions to Ensure Your Perfect Deck!

By Bianney Molina // | |

Here are eight essential questions to guide your choice of a residential waterproof deck. While choosing might not keep you up at night, making the right decision can significantly extend your deck's lifespan. A well-maintained, protected deck not only saves money in the long run but also enhances your enjoyment of its aesthetic and functional benefits.

1. Does your deck receive a lot of sunlight?

Is your deck exposed to intense sunlight? It's important to prioritize UV protection to prevent fading and consider surfaces that help maintain a cooler surface on warm days. Choosing a surface with UV-resistant properties not only preserves the vibrant colors of your decking material but also shields it from the damaging effects of prolonged sun exposure. Additionally, opting for decking designed to reflect heat can enhance comfort by reducing surface temperatures during hot weather. These features not only contribute to the longevity of your deck but also ensure a more pleasant outdoor experience, making it a smart investment in both aesthetics and practicality.

2. How heavily is your deck used?

Consider the level of activity your deck sees. Select coatings or decking that match your deck's usage intensity, whether it's light foot traffic or regular hosting of gatherings and activities. Choosing decking that is designed specifically for your deck's traffic levels ensures durability and longevity. For decks with frequent use, opt for coatings / decking that offer robust protection against wear and tear, ensuring they can withstand the demands of everyday activities without compromising on aesthetics or performance. Conversely, for decks with lighter usage, decking that is designed for minimal maintenance and occasional touch-ups may suffice, providing sufficient protection while requiring less upkeep over time. Matching the decking/coating to your deck's usage ensures optimal performance and enhances its lifespan, making it a practical choice for your outdoor space.

3. What level of protection duration do you need?

When choosing the level of protection duration for your deck, it's crucial to consider the warranty details carefully, as they can significantly impact the longevity and maintenance of your outdoor space. While some coatings / decking offer great warranties, it's essential to evaluate whether these options align with your future plans for the deck. Lifetime warranties can provide peace of mind against defects and premature wear, typically covering materials and workmanship for the duration of your ownership. They often include protections against fading, staining, and water damage, which are common concerns in outdoor environments.

However, it's important to read the fine print. Lifetime warranties may have specific conditions or limitations, such as requiring regular maintenance or installation by certified professionals. Understanding these terms ensures that you can fully leverage the warranty benefits without unexpected exclusions.

For those planning long-term investments or aiming to enhance property value, opting for a warranty that matches your anticipated use and maintenance level is advisable. Some warranties may offer prorated coverage after a certain period, providing continued protection against structural defects or significant wear. This approach helps safeguard your investment in decking materials and coatings, ensuring your outdoor space remains durable and visually appealing for years to come. By carefully evaluating warranty details and considering your future plans, you can confidently choose the level of protection duration that best meets your needs and enhances the longevity of your deck.

4. Does slipperiness concern you?

There is decking that features non-skid surfaces, particularly in areas prone to moisture such as around pools or where safety is paramount. Making those choices with non-skid properties enhances traction and reduces the risk of slips and falls, ensuring a safer environment for family and guests. This proactive approach not only enhances safety but also provides peace of mind, making your deck a secure and enjoyable space for everyone to use year-round.

5. Will anyone walk barefoot on the deck?

If walking barefoot on your deck is a common occurrence, it's important to choose decking that offers a smooth surface without splinters, prioritizing comfort and safety. Choosing decking designed to provide a comfortable barefoot experience, ensuring they are smooth to the touch and free from rough edges or protrusions, and cooler to the touch using a cool deck technology. Smooth surfaces as well as surfaces with cooling technology, not only enhance comfort but also reduce the risk of splinters, making your deck a welcoming and enjoyable space for barefoot activities. By selecting decking that prioritizes both comfort and safety, you can create a relaxing outdoor environment that everyone can comfortably enjoy.

6. Do you need to protect deck railings or other woodwork?

Ensuring that the decking and other woodwork provides comprehensive protection for all deck components is essential for maintaining its longevity and aesthetic appeal. A high-quality decking not only enhances the visual appeal of your deck but also serves as a crucial barrier against various environmental factors.

Making sure that all woodwork is effectively sealed around railings, which are vulnerable areas prone to moisture and weathering. Proper sealing prevents water infiltration, which can lead to rotting and deterioration of the underlying materials. This is particularly important in regions with fluctuating weather patterns, where exposure to rain, snow, and humidity can accelerate wear and tear.

Moreover, comprehensive protection means the coating / decking should extend beyond the surface boards to encompass any exposed structural elements such as joists and beams. These components are vital to the deck's structural integrity and must be shielded from moisture, UV rays, and temperature fluctuations that can cause warping or weakening over time.

Additionally, it should offer UV resistance to prevent fading and discoloration caused by prolonged sun exposure. UV rays can break down the surface finish of decking materials, leading to a dull appearance and compromising the overall aesthetic.

7. What aesthetic preferences do you have?

Choosing the perfect decking involves considering various aesthetic elements to harmonize with your outdoor space. Start by selecting the right color: natural wood exudes a timeless charm, while composite and PVC offer durability with a wide array of colors and textures. Choose hues that complement your home's exterior, whether it's classic wood tones, stained finishes that highlight natural grains, or vibrant painted options for a pop of personality. Texture plays a role too, from smooth surfaces for modern appeal to textured designs that mimic wood grain for a rustic feel. Don't forget about patterns like diagonal layouts or intricate picture framing, which can elevate visual interest. Complete the look with stylish railing options—whether traditional wood, sleek metal, or contemporary glass panels—to tie everything together seamlessly. By blending these elements with your landscape and personal taste, you'll create a decking space that not only enhances your home's curb appeal but also becomes a welcoming retreat for outdoor enjoyment.

8. What is your budget for the project?

Evaluate the cost-effectiveness of each option based on its lifespan, ease of application, and additional features like non-slip textures.

These questions will help you select a decking that not only meets your immediate needs but also enhances the long-term durability and appeal of your outdoor space. We also always reccomend, MoistureShield as they have a great technology that offers a wide variety of decking material for all aesthetics, as well as protection for your friends and family. Please read more about it in our blog post titled, 'Why We Use MoistureShield' https://decksouth.com/moistureshield-decking/. Regardless of what you choose, don't forget to call Decksouth for a seamless experience during your backyard project.