Best Decking Material for West Coast

by Tina
(Victoria, BC, Canada)

We are thinking about building a new deck and are wondering about what kind of decking material for the deck surface to put down.

What will last the longest? Our last deck rotted.
Thank you.

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Mar 19, 2010
Better Deck Material? - New Wood Treating Method
by: Don

Has anyone heard of or used thermally modified wood?

It's new to North America, but has been used in Europe for years. Apparently the wood is scientifically treated using just heat & steam in special designed kilns to the point where the wood sugars are permanentley converted to a substance that can't be broken down by insects and micro orginism.

Sounds greener than composites or chemical treated wood.

I found two Manufacturers - Purewood products & Radiance wood.

They claim that the treated wood is dimensionally stable, able to cut, sand, stain, like regular wood. The dark cooked color goes right through the wood to make it look like an exotic IPE.

All this without chemicals. I saw it in the Mar. 2010 Wood Magazine. Sounds too good to be true, I am skeptical until I hear of anyone using this.

Nov 04, 2009
Aluminum Decking is a Great Option
by: Editor - Rich Bergman

Yes, thank you for the good comment about aluminum decking systems.

They are probably one of the most durable decking materials you can find and will make the deck surface waterproof also.

Nov 04, 2009
Another Option
by: Anonymous

You can also look at using aluminum decking, which is typically watertight and also will not burn if hot coals or cigarettes fall on your deck. There's little to no maintenance required.

Take a look at for their alumilast decking.

Oct 25, 2008
Waterproofing a deck
by: Rich Bergman - Editor

If you want a water proof deck there are a few options. One is building the surface with plywood and then installing a vinyl flooring membrane with heat welded seams such as a Dura-Deck product.

The other options are fiber glass surfaces or there are now products available that allow you to use regular wood decking and the space underneath the deck has water proof channels that catch the dripping water and direct it to the perimeter of the deck to an eavestrough.

If you don't care as much about waterproofing your deck and just want something that will last longer I would suggest you commit to upgrading to the composite materials.

They cost as much as 3x more than wood but they are a final solution. If you plan on living there for a long time it is well worth the money.

Those are your options.

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