The ultimate guide to decking materials

The right deck will extend a home’s usable living area, creating a free-flowing synergy between indoors and out. But how do you choose the best decking material? The choices for decking materials are no longer simply limited to classic timber decking. Here’s a guide to choosing the best decking material.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team
0FC8CFBD-C43F-4180-85D1-CF38FD5869A7Created with sketchtool.
E160A899-8C92-47FF-BB31-6DB22BCEB5D9Created with sketchtool.

The right deck will extend a home’s usable living area, creating a free-flowing synergy between indoors and out. But how do you choose the best decking material? The choices for decking materials are no longer simply limited to classic timber decking. Here’s a guide to choosing the best decking material.

The best things to consider when choosing a decking material are the amount of maintenance you are happy to undertake on an ongoing basis, where the deck is located, and of course, the total budget. 

These factors will all make a difference to which product is best for your project. For example, if the deck area is going to be partially shaded, in full sun or near a coast and likely to be affected by salt spray, these will determine the types of products that are best suited to that setting. 

Macrocarpa Decking by Timberline
Macrocarpa Decking by Timberline

Timber decking

Timber decking is popular, and arguably a quintessential part of residential New Zealand architecture. Locally grown pine and macrocarpa and tropical hardwoods are generally the top choices for timber decking, with pine and macrocarpa the most cost-effective option.

Hardwoods are generally tropical timbers such as kwila, teak, garapa, jarrah, purple heart and vitex, which are much stronger than pine, and less likely to cup and warp over time. Kwila is generally accepted as the best performing hardwood for New Zealand conditions.

Timber decking generally requires yearly maintenance, including staining, sanding to remove any splinters, and cleaning to remove any moss or mould growth. 

Composite decking systems

Composite timber decking is manufactured with a combination of materials, most commonly a mix of recycled wood fibre, plastic and a binding agent to create a timber-look product that is stronger and generally more durable than its solid timber counterpart. 

Visually, it is almost indistinguishable from solid timber, which has led to its rising popularity in New Zealand as a solid timber alternative.

Composite decking can create a very natural look while offering a virtually maintenance-free decking option. Due to its makeup, it doesn’t require staining, oiling, painting or other regular maintenance as solid timber does. Depending on the type of composite chosen, it can also be specified as non-slip decking, an advantage when used around pool or wet areas. 

Also unlike solid timber, composite decking won’t warp, cup or splinter over time. However, depending on the type of composite chosen, it can be affected by exposure to UV light. This is more so with those composites that incorporate a higher ratio of plastic so it’s important to understand what the product you choose is made with. 

Eva-Last® Decking by ITI Timspec
Eva-Last® Decking by ITI Timspec

Bamboo eco decking

Bamboo is a newcomer to the decking market, but its benefits are vast. Bamboo is known as one of the most renewable plant sources due to its ability to reach maturity in as little as five years, with wood being harvested repeatedly from the same plant. 

Bamboo decking is manufactured with dried strips of bamboo that is glued together into a solid plank. This process allows for a hard-wearing, durable decking material that, like composite decking, can create a very natural aesthetic while removing the need for ongoing maintenance.

Deck stains, oil, paints and treatments

Depending on the type of decking chosen, it may require a stain, oil, painting or treatment to ensure it performs as intended over the years. Most timber decks require regular stain or oil treatments to prevent decay over time. The decision between stains, oils, paints or treatments is linked to both performance and aesthetic value. 

 

Learn more about decking materials: Is South American garapa right for my deck?

 Top banner image credit: ShadowDeck™ BLACKBUTT Decking Timber by ShadowDeck

Millboard Decking - Enhanced Grain Collection by FORTÉ
Millboard Decking - Enhanced Grain Collection by FORTÉ

Get in touch with
ArchiPro

Request pricing/info
Visit website
Recommended reading
Done tagging

The ultimate guide to decking materials

The right deck will extend a home’s usable living area, creating a free-flowing synergy between indoors and out. But how do you choose the best decking material? The choices for decking materials are no longer simply limited to classic timber decking. Here’s a guide to choosing the best decking material.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team
0FC8CFBD-C43F-4180-85D1-CF38FD5869A7Created with sketchtool.
E160A899-8C92-47FF-BB31-6DB22BCEB5D9Created with sketchtool.

The right deck will extend a home’s usable living area, creating a free-flowing synergy between indoors and out. But how do you choose the best decking material? The choices for decking materials are no longer simply limited to classic timber decking. Here’s a guide to choosing the best decking material.

The best things to consider when choosing a decking material are the amount of maintenance you are happy to undertake on an ongoing basis, where the deck is located, and of course, the total budget. 

These factors will all make a difference to which product is best for your project. For example, if the deck area is going to be partially shaded, in full sun or near a coast and likely to be affected by salt spray, these will determine the types of products that are best suited to that setting. 

Macrocarpa Decking by Timberline
Macrocarpa Decking by Timberline

Timber decking

Timber decking is popular, and arguably a quintessential part of residential New Zealand architecture. Locally grown pine and macrocarpa and tropical hardwoods are generally the top choices for timber decking, with pine and macrocarpa the most cost-effective option.

Hardwoods are generally tropical timbers such as kwila, teak, garapa, jarrah, purple heart and vitex, which are much stronger than pine, and less likely to cup and warp over time. Kwila is generally accepted as the best performing hardwood for New Zealand conditions.

Timber decking generally requires yearly maintenance, including staining, sanding to remove any splinters, and cleaning to remove any moss or mould growth. 

Composite decking systems

Composite timber decking is manufactured with a combination of materials, most commonly a mix of recycled wood fibre, plastic and a binding agent to create a timber-look product that is stronger and generally more durable than its solid timber counterpart. 

Visually, it is almost indistinguishable from solid timber, which has led to its rising popularity in New Zealand as a solid timber alternative.

Composite decking can create a very natural look while offering a virtually maintenance-free decking option. Due to its makeup, it doesn’t require staining, oiling, painting or other regular maintenance as solid timber does. Depending on the type of composite chosen, it can also be specified as non-slip decking, an advantage when used around pool or wet areas. 

Also unlike solid timber, composite decking won’t warp, cup or splinter over time. However, depending on the type of composite chosen, it can be affected by exposure to UV light. This is more so with those composites that incorporate a higher ratio of plastic so it’s important to understand what the product you choose is made with. 

Eva-Last® Decking by ITI Timspec
Eva-Last® Decking by ITI Timspec

Bamboo eco decking

Bamboo is a newcomer to the decking market, but its benefits are vast. Bamboo is known as one of the most renewable plant sources due to its ability to reach maturity in as little as five years, with wood being harvested repeatedly from the same plant. 

Bamboo decking is manufactured with dried strips of bamboo that is glued together into a solid plank. This process allows for a hard-wearing, durable decking material that, like composite decking, can create a very natural aesthetic while removing the need for ongoing maintenance.

Deck stains, oil, paints and treatments

Depending on the type of decking chosen, it may require a stain, oil, painting or treatment to ensure it performs as intended over the years. Most timber decks require regular stain or oil treatments to prevent decay over time. The decision between stains, oils, paints or treatments is linked to both performance and aesthetic value. 

 

Learn more about decking materials: Is South American garapa right for my deck?

 Top banner image credit: ShadowDeck™ BLACKBUTT Decking Timber by ShadowDeck

Millboard Decking - Enhanced Grain Collection by FORTÉ
Millboard Decking - Enhanced Grain Collection by FORTÉ

Get in touch with
ArchiPro

Request pricing/info
Visit website
Recommended reading
Done tagging

The ultimate guide to decking materials

The right deck will extend a home’s usable living area, creating a free-flowing synergy between indoors and out. But how do you choose the best decking material? The choices for decking materials are no longer simply limited to classic timber decking. Here’s a guide to choosing the best decking material.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team
0FC8CFBD-C43F-4180-85D1-CF38FD5869A7Created with sketchtool.
E160A899-8C92-47FF-BB31-6DB22BCEB5D9Created with sketchtool.

The right deck will extend a home’s usable living area, creating a free-flowing synergy between indoors and out. But how do you choose the best decking material? The choices for decking materials are no longer simply limited to classic timber decking. Here’s a guide to choosing the best decking material.

The best things to consider when choosing a decking material are the amount of maintenance you are happy to undertake on an ongoing basis, where the deck is located, and of course, the total budget. 

These factors will all make a difference to which product is best for your project. For example, if the deck area is going to be partially shaded, in full sun or near a coast and likely to be affected by salt spray, these will determine the types of products that are best suited to that setting. 

Macrocarpa Decking by Timberline
Macrocarpa Decking by Timberline

Timber decking

Timber decking is popular, and arguably a quintessential part of residential New Zealand architecture. Locally grown pine and macrocarpa and tropical hardwoods are generally the top choices for timber decking, with pine and macrocarpa the most cost-effective option.

Hardwoods are generally tropical timbers such as kwila, teak, garapa, jarrah, purple heart and vitex, which are much stronger than pine, and less likely to cup and warp over time. Kwila is generally accepted as the best performing hardwood for New Zealand conditions.

Timber decking generally requires yearly maintenance, including staining, sanding to remove any splinters, and cleaning to remove any moss or mould growth. 

Composite decking systems

Composite timber decking is manufactured with a combination of materials, most commonly a mix of recycled wood fibre, plastic and a binding agent to create a timber-look product that is stronger and generally more durable than its solid timber counterpart. 

Visually, it is almost indistinguishable from solid timber, which has led to its rising popularity in New Zealand as a solid timber alternative.

Composite decking can create a very natural look while offering a virtually maintenance-free decking option. Due to its makeup, it doesn’t require staining, oiling, painting or other regular maintenance as solid timber does. Depending on the type of composite chosen, it can also be specified as non-slip decking, an advantage when used around pool or wet areas. 

Also unlike solid timber, composite decking won’t warp, cup or splinter over time. However, depending on the type of composite chosen, it can be affected by exposure to UV light. This is more so with those composites that incorporate a higher ratio of plastic so it’s important to understand what the product you choose is made with. 

Eva-Last® Decking by ITI Timspec
Eva-Last® Decking by ITI Timspec

Bamboo eco decking

Bamboo is a newcomer to the decking market, but its benefits are vast. Bamboo is known as one of the most renewable plant sources due to its ability to reach maturity in as little as five years, with wood being harvested repeatedly from the same plant. 

Bamboo decking is manufactured with dried strips of bamboo that is glued together into a solid plank. This process allows for a hard-wearing, durable decking material that, like composite decking, can create a very natural aesthetic while removing the need for ongoing maintenance.

Deck stains, oil, paints and treatments

Depending on the type of decking chosen, it may require a stain, oil, painting or treatment to ensure it performs as intended over the years. Most timber decks require regular stain or oil treatments to prevent decay over time. The decision between stains, oils, paints or treatments is linked to both performance and aesthetic value. 

 

Learn more about decking materials: Is South American garapa right for my deck?

 Top banner image credit: ShadowDeck™ BLACKBUTT Decking Timber by ShadowDeck

Millboard Decking - Enhanced Grain Collection by FORTÉ
Millboard Decking - Enhanced Grain Collection by FORTÉ

Get in touch with
ArchiPro

Request pricing/info
Visit website
Recommended reading
Done tagging
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