Decks, patios and other outdoor spaces are beautiful – and easy to enjoy on a warm day. But they also need maintenance, improvements and sometimes even expansions. When that time comes, you have some important choices to make about the new materials you are going to use, how you are going to upgrade and what’s right for your outdoor area. Here are the top things you should keep in mind when making these decisions!
Watch for Important Maintenance and Repairs
It’s smart to begin by taking inventory of all the maintenance tasks your current deck or patio needs. In nothing else, plan a thorough wash of all surfaces: If it’s been a while, a pressure wash is excellent for removing tough dirt and stains, although this may also damage sensitive woods. Check for boards that have warped or split, look for nail pops that need to be addressed (and maybe exchanged for screws), and consider if you need to stain or seal before adding any more to your area.
Know Your Hard Surface Options
For patios, walkways, and areas around your deck, hard surfaces like stone are a great option. But there are several different surface options here, each with their own drawbacks and advantages:
- Concrete: Concrete is very affordable but needs frequent care and sealing to avoid cracks. Colored concrete is an inventive option, but colors can fade out over the years, especially in the wrong climates. Concrete may also be an option for dealing with more awkward landscapes that need to be smoothed over.
- Natural stone: Nothing beats the look of natural stone, but it can be more difficult to install, and usually requires a substrate between the stones like white sand, pebbles, or concrete. Because of this, it can become quite expensive.
- Brick: Brick is an excellent option for certain houses, but not a great fit for every style. Bricks also tend to be porous and can disintegrate over time, so they have to be replaced.
- Pavers: Pavers can be stacked close together in a variety of patterns and color options. They are a versatile and popular patio material, although, like stone, pavers can take time to install properly and keeping them level is especially important.
For patios, walkways, and areas around your deck, hard surfaces like stone are a great option. But there are several different surface options here, each with their own drawbacks and advantages.
Choose Your Decking Materials
For decks, porches, and other wood-based upgrades, choosing the right type of wood for your climate and plans is very important! Common options include:
- Pressure-treated wood: This wood is affordable, and has chemicals integrated with wood fibers to stand up to harsher weather. Today’s pressure-treated wood uses fewer and safer chemicals, so environmental impact is much better than it once was.
- Cedar: Cedar is one of the most beautiful deck woods and has natural resistance to bugs and mildew. However, it does require frequent maintenance through staining and other care. A similar, more high-end option is redwood.
- Composites: Composite wood is manufactured from waste wood and recycled plastic. It tends to be incredibly durable, reasonably priced and requires very little maintenance. Many clients prefer the lower maintenance a composite surface offers.
If you need any help with your outdoor space maintenance or important upgrade projects, just let us know! Quality Craftsmen is the top local choice in the East Cobb area. We are glad to provide the advice or aid you need to get the perfect results you’re envisioning.
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