Nothing blends a home with nature better than the rich tones of beautiful outdoor decking. Whether it’s for the flooring of a wrap around verandah, alfresco area or stand alone gazebo, timber decking just looks great.
But don’t assume that these decking options are just for the floor. Wooden decking can also look great lining the roof, or for edging, pathways, or as wall cladding for a feature wall of an outdoor area or garden.
These days a number of fake timber or composite decking options are also available, which gives a similar look and feel but without the maintenance of traditional wood decking.
Outdoor decking material
When it comes to choosing the best decking material for your property, it’s important to consider the appearance, the use it will be put under, the cost and the maintenance involved. Each outdoor decking material has its own pros and cons.
A wooden deck gives that warm feel of nature that many desire. Different woods comes with varying degrees of hardiness, durability, colour and ease of use.
Thought also needs to be given to natural woods susceptibility to fire, shrinkage and expansion, rot, termites and other insects.
A few of the most popular timber decking materials are:
Am extremely hardy, durable hardwood with a rich tannin content. It is rot and insect resistant and consistently a deep yellowish-brown colour. It is more cost effective than many other decking timbers and is easy to work with.
Spotted Gum is a highly durable, dense timber. It is low in tannins so is less prone to colour bleeding like some other native hardwoods. The colour range is wide with timber, varying from pale to deep chocolate browns. It is also fairly fire-resistant, making it a good choice for bushfire prone areas.
Treated pine is a popular choice because of its lower cost than many other timbers. It’s light colour makes it very flexible when it comes to colouring with different stains or deck paints. It is light weight and easy to work with.
Treated pine must be oiled every year for lasting results. Because it is a softwood, it is also more prone to dents and scratches than other timber decking options. It’s also more prone to shrinkage than denser woods and is not fire-resistant.
A highly fire resistant Australian native hardwood. Blackbutt decking has a beautiful pale brown colour, which can be stained if needed.
Blackbutt decking can crack if left unsealed and as part of a maintenance program should be resealed regularly.
One of the more popular hardwoods, Jarrah has a rich beautiful red-brown colour. It’s dense texture makes it highly durable. It’s also fire-resistant and therefore a great choice for fire-prone areas.
Jarrah is more expensive than many other decking timber materials however.
Probably one of the hardiest timbers, hence it’s name. Ironbark decking will last you almost a lifetime. It is fire, rot and termite resistant. If your looking for timber deck around pool areas, this is a great choice. Ironbark comes in a wide range of colours, varying from pale brown to deep reds.
Because of its heaviness and density, it is a harder timber to work with than other choices.
A beautiful Australian hardwood, Karri come in a slightly lighter reddish-hue to its Jarrah counterpart. It is available in long, knot-free lengths. This makes it great for indoor-outdoor area continuity.
It is generally cheaper than Jarrah or Ironbark. Karri is moderately durable, but not as durable as many other hardwoods.
On the downside, Karri is known as being termite prone, and doesn’t hold paint or stain well.
Bamboo decking has improved a lot in recent times. Strand woven, pressed bamboo is extremely hardy and looks great. It is also generally treated so that it is resistant to termites and insects.
Bamboo does require a fair amount of yearly maintenance. Specialised oils can be expensive. It is also prone to rot, so it is not the best choice for high rainfall areas. The manufacturing process for bamboo utilises a greater degree of chemicals than that for native hardwoods.
Accoya is a treated modified wood that has undergone a process called acetylation, which makes it exceptionally durable. It comes with a 50 year warranty when used for above ground applications, and 25 years for below ground use.
It is comfortable underfoot and not prone to splintering, swelling, shrinking or distorting. It’s also indigestible to termites. Accoya is made from sustainable sources and is available in a wide range of textured finishes.
Composite & fake timber decking
If you’re after something a little hardier and with less maintenance than timber decking, then composite decking may be the right choice for you.
Some of the benefits of composite decking over traditional wooden decking include:
- Less problems with fading, staining and scratching
- Lower maintenance – no need for regular oiling, staining or sealing
- Resistant to rot, mildew, termites and insects
- Won’t warp, twist or split
- Don’t shrink and expand as much
- Available in long lengths which can lead to less wastage
- Light weight and easier to work with
- Free from splinters
- Often slip resistant
- Less affected by chlorine or salt water, making it a great material for areas around pools
- Usually come with manufacturer warranties
- Because they do not involve cutting down trees, may be a more sustainable, eco-friendly option
A few of the common composite decking materials include:
Modwood is a hybrid timber composite that is made from a combination of ground wood waste and recycled plastic. It has a high degree of resistance to UV light, extreme weather, moisture and termites. It’s a great low maintenance option.
It’s Xtreme Guard capping has the highest level of slip resistance, making it great for areas around pools and water. Modwood’s flame shield technology makes it a good choice for fire-prone areas.
Modwood decking comes with a 25 year warranty.
Available in a number of different finishes, including Sahara, Black Bean, Jarrah and Silver Gum, in either brushed or finished textures.
Ekodeck is another hybrid composite made from wood waste and recycled plastic. It requires less maintenance than traditional timber, there’s no oiling, painting or sealing required. It’s ultra tough, hard wearing, non-toxic, UV stabilised and resistant to slippage, rot, decay, termites, warping and twisting.
It looks and feels like timber, without the knots, and is available in long, consistent lengths. Ekodeck decking can be sanded, planed and cut just like regular timber, making it easy to work with.
Ekodeck comes in three different varieties each with it’s own colour range. Choose from their classic, designer series and flame fighter models.
HardieDeck decking is made from the same premium fibre cement that James Hardie is renowned for. It creates a clean, stylish looking deck that is able to withstand the harsh elements of the Australian climate.
It’s safe for fire-zones, non-combustible and therefore compared to other composites it’s particularly a great choice around fire pits and barbecues.
It’s smooth underfoot, with concealed screws and due to the unique material has no bounce, squeak or sponginess when walked on.
Anti-slip additives are required for areas around pools. The HardiDeck can be coloured with a range of different coloured sealers or stains.
Millboard decking is 100% wood and plastic free but you couldn’t tell that by looking at it. It has an incredible realistic natural timber look that is styled from real oak timbers.
So if its not wood or plastic, what is it? It’s made from resin and fibre, which has the rigidity and longevity or plastic but with the suppleness of rubber. Millboard feels much more natural underfoot than some other composite decking materials.
It has all of the usual composite benefits such as being virtually maintenance free and resistant to rot, insects, warping and splintering. It also has the highest slip rating in Australia – P5 so is great for areas around pools.
Its available in a wide range of colours: antique oak, burnt cedar, golden oak, coppered oak, jarrah, limed oak, smoked oak, brushed basalt, vintage oak, driftwood and embered.
Outdoor decking is a great asset to any property and can add to its value as well as appeal. Common areas where we install decking are:
- Backyard decks
- House front decks
- Alfresco areas
- Pathways and curved decking
- Installing a deck around a pool
- Above ground pool decking
- Fire pit decking
- Installing decking over concrete areas
- Garden decking
- Deck extensions
- Floating decks
- Decking for gazebos or standalones
We’re deck builders in Perth
All of the builders at Bushewood Building Company are certified carpenters by trade. We are experts when it comes to working with timber decking and flooring.
If your are chasing a deck builder in Perth or country WA then give us a call. We offer free no-obligation quotes for any project you have.
After an initial site visit and consultation to discuss your outdoor decking ideas, we’ll help you to organise any necessary council permits before beginning the deck installation process.
Whether or not your project requires council approval depends on your local council, as well as the size and height of your decking off the ground.
Depending on the type of project and the lay of your land, we can also install and deck supports, concrete stumps and spacers necessary before building the top deck.
With over 100 years of combined experience between us, our deck builders will ensure your deck is built properly and built to last.
We pride ourselves on delivering beautiful designs, done the right way, on time and on budget.
Deck fencing & railing
Along with the construction of the decking, we’ll also work with you to install the correct deck railing, fencing and handrails necessary.
Apart from being required by law in some cases where elevated off-ground decking is installed, a stylish rail or fence can be the finishing touch on an outdoor decking masterpiece.
For your deck borders, we are able to install timber and wire balustrades, glass panels, wooden slats and more.
We’ll also ensure the deck edging compliments the deck as well as provides a not slip surface to prevent any accidents or injuries.
Staining & maintaining your deck
Staining a deck is a great way to add a rich colour, but also to help in preserving and maintaining it for many years to come. As decks age, they lose the natural tannins and oils within. Staining and applying a deck oil can help to bring your wood deck back to life.
We’ll apply the correct staining after installing your deck for the first time. Sometimes it is better to wait for your deck to weather for a season before applying any stain. Don’t worry, we will guide you as to the proper staining your deck requires based on the timber used during it’s construction and your local environmental conditions.
Special care needs to be taken with decking around pool areas that are continually exposed to chlorine and salt. A good stain that is suited to these areas can help with deck waterproofing, while preventing rot and decay.
As always, before staining your deck, you need to ensure you give it a good clean and that no mould is present. A good deck cleaner is required for this process. Read the instructions on the specific product for more info.
Restoration & repair
If over time your existing deck has splintered, broken, warped, twisted or faded, it may need to be restored or repaired.
At Bushewood we can match your existing deck materials with new ones to perform any repairs necessary.
We can even perform a deck extension if you would like to increase the size of your entertaining area.
Cost to build a deck
The cost to build a deck varies widely depending on a number of factors including:
- Type of wood or composite decking used
- Size and shape of the decked area
- If it is freestanding, floating or attached to the house
- If any accessories such as fencing, handrails, deck lights etc are required
- Any stairs or roofing needed
- Elevation including if concrete stumps are needed for support
- Site conditions, including soil type
- If any local council permits are required
In terms of cost per square metre, basic outdoor decking usually falls within a range of approximately $200-350 per m2. This increases if roofing, stairs or balustrades are required, or if heavy duty cyclone rated decking is needed, particularly in regional areas of Western Australia.
Get an outdoor decking quote
For a more accurate estimate of your particular projects costs, contact us for a free no-obligation quote.