Decking is a great way to get more use out of your garden and outdoor spaces. Before you rush into building your own deck, follow these three essential tips to make sure you start properly.
Design and Plan Your Decking
Planning and designing your garden decking are essentialsteps – you cannot begin without doing this. Even if you have decided on the space it is going to fill, you should take some basic design steps to make sure you are going to get the most you can from your decking.
Consider how you will use your decking, and how this could impact the design. If you are planning on using your decking for dining and barbeques, make sure you have enough space for the garden furniture you will use and consider building a brick base for a barbeque for extra safety. Make sure you have room to move and to keep the cooking area clear from seating spaces.
Choose Which Material You Will Use
There are many different materials you can choose from to make your decking, but the cost of the materials will probably be the deciding factor.
Composite boards are the most expensive choice, but they will last the longest and require the least preparation and maintenance. Pressure-treated softwood is the cheapest option, but this will require regular maintenance and will not last very long if you have a few harsh winters. The most popular choice is a hardwood decking, which, when properly treated and maintained, can last a decade or more without coming with a high cost per metre.
Plastic (PVC) boards are also available, but these are often an expensive choice that lacks a natural finish. They are easy to clean, like composites, but lack the design and patterning that comes with composite boards and doesn’t have a natural finish like wood.
If you want a decking that requires little maintenance and looks attractive, composite decking boards are an excellent, if expensive, choice. Hardwood boards offer the best long-term value with a natural look, though they may need annual or bi-annual varnishing or painting to stay at their best.
Calculate How Much Decking You Will Need
Calculating your decking can be difficult. If you have a simple rectangular or square shape, then taking your measurements should be easy enough. Most people, however, will not have this luxury.
Most decking will be a unique shape that moulds itself around the exterior of your home. For complex spaces, reduce the area into a number of smaller areas that you can measure individually. If you have a large area with two smaller areas on each side, for instance, measure them each individually and add those surface areas together. This decking calculator tool from Armstrong Supplies can help you work out how much decking you will need for each area from a number of different decking materials, including hardwood and composite. You can even source the materials you need to begin installing your decking from the aforementioned UK based Armstrong Supplies.
If you have followed these three steps, then you are all set to begin building your own custom decking area in your garden. We hope you enjoy your new space!