People all over the United States enjoy kicking back with friends on a deck. Every year, decks are put up around homes throughout the nation. If you are considering installing a wood deck, you may not be sure what kind of lumber to get. There are a number of options from big leaf maple wood to figured cherry wood. Here are some tips to get the wood you need for your perfect deck:
1. Decide What KInd of Lumber You Want
Yellow pine that has been pressure-treated is very cost effective and easy to get and therefore one of the most popular woods for deck construction but it is not the only option. While yellow pine has some advantages, it has some drawbacks as well. It is not one of the more durable of the wood options but it is easy to work with. It also needs more care and feeding than other kinds of wood.
The two kinds of wood that are used most often in the place of yellow pine are redwood and cedar. These do not need as much in the way of chemical treatment because they have a natural resistance to fungal decay, insects, and moisture. These last longer than the yellow pine but their drawback is the cost, which is higher than yellow pine.
Another option is hardwood. Hardwoods have some of the same benefits as cedar and redwood, they can resist the invasion of bugs, mold, and moisture. These woods are harder to work with but also will last a lot longer if treated properly. They are also a lot more expensive. Figured cherry wood is one of the hardest woods around. It would make for a beautiful but expensive deck.
2. Make Sure You Get the Best Quality
When you are dealing with natural wood for your deck, it is crucial that you get the best quality of lumber. You do this to avoid some of the problems that occur with any wood product. Wood can last a long time but is prone to warping, decay, twisting, and splitting.
For the woods that are treated with chemicals, you need to make sure you get the right composition of chemicals in the wood. You can vary the amount of chemical treatment because some wood will need more than other wood. This is dependent on where on your deck the pieces will be used.
Other wood needs to be checked for defects. This can happen in any kind of wood from figured cherry wood to cedar or redwood. This can take a lot of work as each piece needs to be visually inspected for problems. If you have some usable wood with a problem, put it in a place where it will not be seen as much.
Try to make sure the lumber you buy is very dry. As you work with the wood to place it as your deck, it can be prone to warping and cracking, you can reduce the likelihood of this if you start with very dry wood.
3. Measure Twice, Cut Once
That seems to be the credo of carpenters all around the world. The exact size of the individual pieces of wood will depend on the size and style of your deck but it is important that each piece is sized correctly. The size of each piece may also play a role in just how long it will take to get the piece into the right place. The important thing is to go to the lumber yard with a well thought out plan for the sizing of all of the wood that you will need for your deck.
There are a lot of uses for wood around the home. Hardwood flooring makes any space look more elegant and classy. Specialty wood products made of different woods, including figured cherry wood, make great accents. Wood decks can expand the living space of a house and add to its overall value at the same time.
Finding the right wood for any project around the home can take some effort and work but any time spent here is time well spent. Getting the right wood for your home project will make a lot of difference.