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Wooden decking looks good in almost any garden, whether contemporary or traditional in design. If you are considering installing wooden decking then there are a few things to consider at the design stage. First of all is the site flat or sloping? Changes of level in the decking can be used to disguise uneven and sloping ground but means a more complex build. The construction of low level decks on level ground is well within the scope of most DIY enthusiasts, but building the deck on sloping and uneven ground, or rising to a high level, is best left to experienced installers. If you are installing yourself, you need to closely follow the product manufacturer recommendations. However, if your plans are for a raised deck or include changes of level, specialist expertise should be sought to ensure the deck is structurally safe for the people using it.
Whether your timber decking is freshly installed or a few years old, it requires a certain amount of maintenance to keep it looking it's best over many years. Wooden decking is not high maintenance, but some maintenance is really worthwhile in the long run. Whether the wood used for the decking has been pressure treated or not, it should also be treated with a deep penetrating treatment specifically designed for new wood and applied as soon as possible after installation. This treatment will help to expel any existing moisture and stop water from getting into the wood. Damp wood can swell and crack, so it is vital for the longevity of your decking to avoid damp penetrating the wood. There are also products available for treating decking contain a fungicide to prevent the growth of algae, avoiding a slippery and potentially dangerous decking surface. Plant holders and furniture placed on the decking should also be moved regularly to prevent staining and help the wood to breathe.
Wood decking can become faded and grey quite quickly when exposed to the elements, in addition it can collect dirt and stains. When this happens you need to clean it thoroughly to restore it the original colour. To clean properly wet the wood and apply a cleaning product with a clean sweeping brush, working the mixture into the wood, then with a stiff bristled brush rub down the surface then hose down the deck, when dry it will look almost as good as new.
The cost of timber decking varies depending on size, and type, softwood is obviously the cheapest option, whereas hardwood decking is the best for durability but the prices are much higher. In terms of the labour or installation costs plus the materials, the average price for building a deck over a 3m by 5m concrete or solid patio area.is around £600.00 for labour and materials, a larger 4m by 6m hard patio area is around £700.00, whereas decking over a 4m by 6m grass/mud area will cost around £1100 for the labour plus decking. Labour is typically charged at around £150 per person per day, so if you buy the materials yourself budget for around 2 men for 2 days to build a decking area of 4m x 6m. Most people find that it is cheaper to have local tradesman supply the decking and fit as they generally have access to much better trade prices.
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