Leaving the area below your deck uncovered can allow weeds and other plants to sprout, eventually pushing up between the deck boards. Gravel installed over a layer of fabric or plastic sheeting helps keep weeds in check and prevents the plastic or fabric from blowing out of place.
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If your deck is looking weathered and worn, you can replace components with composite materials without a complete rebuild. Composite doesn’t splinter or have knots and it’s low-maintenance. This is the first installment in a two-part series on How to Install Composite Decking that shows you how to update an old deck using composite materials.
Installing Composite Decking. It is very important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing composite decking material. Thermal expansion is always something to be aware of when dealing with plastics. ... To install composite decking with a hidden fastening system start at the house by face screwing the first board. Next ...
On an existing deck, the obvious complication is that the decking needs to be removed to install the membrane. The big advantage to this kind of system, however, is that you can put any kind of finish ceiling on the underside of the joists, making it a good option for customers who want a wood ceiling.
("Composite decking has no soul," scoffs Padgett.) The California Redwood Association (CRA) recommends using sapwood-streaked construction common or deck common redwood for decking, but Padgett prefers to use B-grade redwood, which is nearly clear of knots and contains mostly heartwood.
The original and still most common decking option, wood is natural, strong, easy to install and feels good under bare feet. But it also requires an annual cleaning and can rot, splinter, and warp. Even though all wood naturally weathers to a gray color, it should be cleaned and re-stained every two to three years to keep it looking its best.