deck building

All Decked Out:

Once the sun comes out, we all long for that perfect deck. At Hughes Lumber, the ideal summer night includes lounging in patio furniture, eating some grilled goodies and sipping cold beverages while watching the fireflies. A deck is a place for family dinners or entertaining friends. That’s why we want to give you all the right tips for choosing what kind of deck is right for you.

Wood vs Composite:

Real wood decks have long been the most common decks out there. Typically, residential decks are constructed with Pressure Treated Southern Yellow Pine, Cedar, Composite Materials, and Tropical Hardwoods. Each has their own unique qualities that can make it right for your project.

compare deck

Pressure Treated Southern Yellow Pine:

This is the most common decking used in Oklahoma. It is the most affordable and durable. The Southern yellow pine is chemically treated to help it resist the weather, bugs and rot. This would be the best option if you are looking for a standard and affordable deck. Treated Southern Yellow Pine, like any wood deck, requires regular maintenance such as power-washing to keep it looking its best.

Southern Yellow Pine is milled in Oklahoma. By choosing Southern Yellow Pine, you will be supporting the economy of our great state.


Cedar Lumber:

Western Red Cedar looks great and smells great. It is a highly revered, durable wood and is naturally resistant to rot, decay and insect attacks, which means anything you build with it will last a long time. Western Red Cedar is imported from British Columbia and is more expensive than Southern Yellow Pine.

A cedar deck requires maintenance such as scrubbing the surface and applying a clear finish every three to four years. The stain used must be semi-transparent, otherwise the wood will weather to new colors, often gray.

Tropical Hardwoods:

Tropical hardwoods are the most expensive decking option. Ipe, Brazilian Walnut, is the most commonly used in North America of decking. Ipe is a beautiful, long lasting product. It is extremely dense and durable, making it very resistant to rot. Ipe requires less maintenance than other wood species because of its density. It is typically not stained because of its density. At Hughes Lumber, we can special order Ipe and other Tropical Hardwoods for your decking needs.

Composite Decking:

Composite Decking is a synthetic product made from wood fibers and recycled plastic and requires less maintenance than other types of decking. It will not rot, fade or warp. It is not susceptible to insects and requires no finishing of any kind. Dozens of colors are available from various manufacturers. Because it is made of recycled materials, it is also very eco-friendly. Originally, Composite Decking did not have the same aesthetic appeal as a wood deck. However Composite Deck material manufactures have greatly improved the quality and appearance. At Hughes, we special order Composite Decking to your specifications.

composite decking

Deck Screws & Hidden Fasteners:

One of the other factors to consider when building a deck is whether you would like to use deck screws or hidden fasteners. Deck screws are designed to handle the elements of outdoor living. They are resistant to rust and corrosion and are easy to screw in. They come in different colors to match any decking and are typically cheaper than the hidden fastener alternative.

Hidden fasteners tie deck boards to a support structure by anchoring on the side or underside of each board, leaving the surface of the deck fastener-free. This is for aesthetic purposes, as you can't see any screw heads, and for safety, as you'll never injure your feet on a screw or nail that is sticking out of a deck board. Additionally, the wood is less damaged by water, as the fasteners never penetrate the surface of the wood. These come in side mount fasteners, most of which have sharp teeth that are impaled into the side of the decking. Bottom mount fasteners are screwed into the side of a joist and then attached to the underside of the decking. This is more labor intensive but are virtually invisible from the deck.

Hughes Lumber can help give you all the information you need on all of the options available to you.

deck screws

(Much of this content was sourced from Popular Mechanics and manufacturer websites.)

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