All posts by blogger978i

Decking Out Your Backyard: The Best Deck Building Tips

According to recent statistics, 64.8 percent of Americans are classified as homeowners. If you’re among the ranks of those falling into this statistic, congratulations! There’s nothing that screams independence and self-sufficiency as much as owning and managing the property you’ve selected for your needs.

While it’s can be a difficult task, sprucing up your home can be a lot of fun, too. Building a deck outside your home is an awesome way to declare your space your own and create a cozy environment to read, hang out with loved ones, and enjoy the outdoors.

You may be asking how you build a deck- after all, you aren’t a trained carpenter! Well, it actually isn’t as difficult as it looks. While building a deck- raised or otherwise- takes time, it’s pretty easy to learn to DIY.

Read on for some deck building tips that will get you started in creating the space of your dreams!

Getting Started

Before you can actually begin to build, there are some considerations that you’ll need to think about. From practicalities like space and money to envisioning your dream space, there’s so much to keep in mind. Read on to learn what some of these considerations are!

Do Your Research

Start out by having a little fun online and doing some internet research on how others have made their decks work for them. This means reading how-to guides and testimonials, but it also means browsing Pinterest and looking at finished deck projects. By doing this, you’ll decide what styles and designs work for you and which you find less appealing.

Measure Your Space

Before you can even have a vision for what you want to do with your outdoor space, it’s crucial that you take the measurements of the place that your deck will occupy. So much of how you’ll layout and design your deck is dependent on the amount of space you’ll have, so not taking these measurements will force you to get ahead of yourself.

Get out your tape measurer and measure the height and width of the area your deck will occupy. Once this is done, you’ll have a pretty decent picture of the shapes and sizes of foundational wood you’ll need to buy. You’ll also have a concept of what furniture, shelves, and items you can fit on your deck, which is essential to having a vision.

Have a Vision

The next thing to do is to come up with an idealized vision of your perfect deck. Now that you know what will fit in your space, consider what you ultimately want it to look like.

There are lots of high-quality and beautiful cuts of wood that you can use when designing your deck. When creating your goal vision, imagine the wood that you like best as a sort of centerpiece that ties the room together. How will your shelves, decorations, and furniture match up with it? 

Know Your Budget

Being a dreamer is fun, but there’s another practical consideration to take into account: your budget. Use your idealized vision for your deck as a basis for what you do, but make sure that everything you buy fits into the budget. This means that you’ll need to make some pragmatic adjustments, but we hope it isn’t too much!

Budgeting can be tricky, so make sure that you write everything down. Look through all your bank accounts and decide how much you’re willing to invest. A deck isn’t worth going into debt for, so force yourself to operate within that budget and you’ll be fine!

Getting Ready

Once your research is done, it’s time to find the appropriate tools and materials that you’ll need when building your deck. Read on to learn what some of these items are and figure out how to get a hold of them.

Learn How to Build

You’re now going to need to figure out how to build your deck. You likely found some great articles on this while doing preliminary research- make sure that you go back and read all those articles carefully.

Be 100% sure that you understand the terminology that you’ll encounter in instruction sheets and that you learn some basic facts about carpentry. You don’t need to be an expert, but you also can’t be totally ignorant.

Get the Right Wood

Now that you’re done with the preliminary steps, it’s time to find and buy the perfect wood for your deck! You’ve got lots of options here, so take a look around. Dark IPE decking wood is awesome because it already has eased edges so they fit together easily, making DIY simple. You can also get Garapa decking, which has that same benefit but also comes in a lighter color. They’re both awesome, so it’s your choice, really! 

Have the Appropriate Tools

In addition to wood, you’re going to need specific tools in your toolbox when you get to work. Hammers, nails, and drills are no-brainers that you probably have laying around your garage, but you may need to go buy deck fasteners and primer paint. Miter saws and nail guns are also crucial when working with large quantities of wood, so think the practicalities through.

Getting Building

Now that you know what you’re doing and have a goal in mind, it’s time to get to building your deck. In this section, we’ll be discussing how to lay the foundation for your deck and get the space in tip-top shape, so keep your eyes peeled!

Lay the Foundation

The first thing to do when building your deck is to lay down its foundation. Create the ‘skeleton’ for your deck by placing thick wood around the perimeter of the area. This will give you a good idea of the layout you’re working with. 

Then, use your decking wood to create the floor. You can even buy pre-grooved decking to make your life easier when trying to fit the wood together! Nail these grooves together and use invisible deck fasteners to coat the entire area’s surface in good-looking wood.

Put on Doors Correctly

Your deck is obviously going to need doors leading into the house, so you’re going to need to put them in properly. The key to this is lowering the deck’s surface (everywhere- you want it to be level) so the door is at least an inch above it. You don’t want your door to struggle with swinging open and closes, so make sure that you leave a gap large enough beneath the door for it to be functional.

Build Better Stairs

Not all decks are raised, but if yours is you’re going to need to consider how to build the stairs in addition to the deck itself. You’re going to need to calculate the rise and run of your stairs so you know how much wood you need. You also will need to ensure that everything is even and they’re going to the right place on your deck.

Building deck stairs is a topic that requires a whole other article, so click here for some additional tips on doing this!

Getting Decorations

So you’ve built your deck- congratulations! The hard work is over. Now you can get to customizing your space and make it into a place where you really feel at home. Read on for some tips on how to make your deck the most relaxing place possible.

Get Some Furniture

In order to have a comfortable deck space, you will, of course, need furniture. There are lots of cozy chairs and couches you can get at the store, but you’ve come this far- why not DIY your furniture, too? 

Use the same wood you did for the deck- you can even use the leftovers if you have any!- and get to work. You can create the bones of the furniture in the same way you did the deck. Once it’s done, you can paint this furniture any color you like and add cushions.

Create a Color Scheme

Speaking of painting, you’re going to want to come up with a color scheme for your deck’s decor. While you could just choose colors you arbitrarily like, another interesting way to do this is to use color psychology. Blue is awesome if you want a calming space to read, but for an energizing and warm space to garden on a terrace, pick yellow.

More Deck Building Tips

As a homeowner, it’s important to take measures to make your house a place that represents your values and desires. Building a deck can help you customize your space, show off your hard work, and give you a place to do the activities you love most.

Now that you have all the essential deck building tips to get started on this project that will make your home your own, it’s time to actually get cracking. Check out this page to learn the prices of whatever high-quality wood you might choose to build your deck from. We offer a wide variety of sizes and woods at various prices, so you have a lot of options to pick from.

Good luck, DIY extraordinaire!

IPE Wood Siding: Benefits and Maintenance

Have you been thinking of ways to improve the exterior of your home?

Many people plant flowers and put up decorations, only to discover that their home still feels dull. 

You might find that one of the best ways to improve your home’s appearance is with protective siding made of Ipe wood.  

Continue reading to discover the benefits of using Ipe wood siding and how you can improve the appearance of your home! 

What Is Ipe Wood?

Before going into all of the benefits of this impressive material, you must know what Ipe wood is. Ipe is pronounced as “ee-pay,” and comes from parts of South and Central America. 

Other names that Ipe goes by are Brazilian Walnut, Lapacho, and its scientific name, Handroanthus spp. Ipe trees can grow up to 300 feet tall and are an impressive view. 

Common uses for Ipe wood are home siding, outdoor decking, and flooring. 

Many people recommend working with wood on home projects because it is easy to work with and can be found in many places. Nearly any carpenter you go to should have the ability to install Ipe wood. Since wood is also easily accessible, prices tend to be lower. 

Ipe wood is biodegradable and perfect for any homeowner that has gone “green.” 

Now that you know what it is, here are some of the benefits of Ipe wood that make it a perfect addition to your home. 

1. It’s a Durable Material 

One of the biggest reasons that people use Ipe wood for siding is that it’s incredibly durable. 

When working on the exterior of your home you must consider the elements that will eventually damage your siding. Cheap vinyl options tend to crack and wear down over time, but with Ipe wood, you don’t have to worry! 

Ipe wood is so durable that it is often used for decking because it can handle foot traffic with ease. Ipe is a redwood that can handle weather and extreme temperatures. This wood is 3 times harder than cedarwood and is one of the best materials for siding a home. 

This wood tends to stay durable for a long time because it isn’t at high risk for insect infestations and rotting. Ipe wood should last a minimum of 25 years and can stay good for half a century if properly taken care of.  

2. Fire-Resistant Wood 

Yes, you read that correctly — Ipe is fire-resistant, making it a safe option for home siding. 

Although Ipe wood siding is not completely fireproof, it can help give you more time to get out of the house and to a safe place. This wood can resist fire far better than a softer wood can. 

Ipe wood is in the same fire-risk group as concrete and steel. This means that your home will be much safer with this type of siding. If you want to ensure that your home and family are safe from fires, you can install Ipe decking and siding to decrease the risk of letting flames spread. 

3. No Worries About Insects 

Getting wooden siding can be a bad idea if it is not treated for insects.

Fortunately, with Ipe woods, you don’t have to worry as much about infestations. Ipe wood is insect resistant which makes it last longer.

Ipe wood has such a high density that insects are not able to infest it. Although this wood is insect resistant, it can become damaged when exposed to certain marine species. 

The natural oil in Ipe wood helps keep the bugs away, so you must keep it moisturized. Getting Ipe wood siding can be beneficial to you and your family, especially if you live in a spot that is prone to infestations.

Termites and other insects won’t be able to find a home, making it one less thing that you have to worry about. 

4. It Comes in Many Colors 

When picking out a siding for your house, you will want to find something that matches the rest of the exterior.

Ipe wood is an excellent choice for siding because it comes in a variety of colors. You can easily match the wood to your home to bring everything together. Some people use unique shades of Ipe on their siding to break up full brick walls that look empty. 

Ipe wood is typically brown with hues of red, yellow, and olive. You can also find it in dark brown shades that have hints of black. If you have a darker brown house, you can easily lighten up your home with a golden Ipe siding. 

You can also stain Ipe wood to achieve your desired shade of brown. 

Many people have a difficult time distinguishing Ipe wood from the dense Cumaru, which is another South African tree. Typically Ipe is darker than Cumaru and has a unique smell that you can’t forget. When working with Ipe wood you may notice a soft scent of cinnamon and vanilla. 

5. It Looks Good

One of the best benefits of using Ipe siding is that it looks good!

Wood siding is timeless and adds a rustic feel to any home. If you want a classic look that reminds everyone of comfort and cozy cabins, Ipe makes the perfect siding. 

Many people appreciate the grain and cuts of this type of wood. Each piece is unique and has its own story to tell. 

Another reason for getting Ipe wood siding is that it can increase the value of your home. Ipe wood will surely catch the eye of potential buyers. 

One of the reasons that Ipe wood looks so good is because it ages and creates a beautiful finish with a lot of character. As long as you keep the wood moisturized it will look smooth and detailed. 

If you want your siding to look its best you should clean it with a power washer. Over time, the siding will become dull and dirty. Siding typically gets dirt from cutting the lawn, dirt blowing around, and animals. Regularly cleaning your siding will help prevent too much dirt from building up. 

6. It’s Reasonably Priced

Although many people are under the impression that Ipe wood tends to cost a lot of money, the truth is that it doesn’t.

Depending on the quantity needed and the style that you choose, you can get less expensive options of Ipe wood. Overtime Ipe can also save you money because you won’t have to spend as much on repairs and maintenance.

As long as you are properly cleaning and sealing your Ipe wood siding, you won’t have to worry about it drying out and cracking. This is important because once siding begins cracking you will have to hire professionals to repair the area or completely replace the siding. 

Don’t forget, you’ll also save money on getting the house sprayed for bugs. 

You may have to put a bit more money aside for the initial investment in this siding, but it will be worth it in the end. 

How to Clean and Maintain Ipe Wood 

Getting Ipe wood siding for your home is an excellent idea that doesn’t require an extreme amount of maintenance. 

You can pick up Ipe wood siding at our locations to get started on your home project. It is easy to install and clean, especially if you have put a protective sealant over top. Having your siding protected can cut down on cleaning time and make your job easier.

Many people clean Ipe siding with a power washer because it’s efficient. Other ways to maintain the wood are by getting rid of any debris on it and cleaning with soap and water.

The surface of your Ipe siding should be clean and dry. Wet siding can mean that your Ipe wood is in bad condition and needs more care if you want it to last.  

When maintaining the quality of your Ipe siding you should be sure to weather seal it with an oil-based product. The oil prevents the wood from drying and splitting. You should also restain the siding periodically to brighten up the color, otherwise, your siding may start to look dull. 

This Wood Siding Won’t Let You Down 

Finding good wood siding for your home can be a difficult task, but this guide can help! 

When deciding which material to use for exterior siding, Ipe is an excellent option to keep in mind. Ipe wood siding has many benefits and is one of the most durable options on the market right now. 

There are many things that you don’t have to worry about when you go with Ipe wood. Not only is Ipe wood a strong and reliable material, but it also comes in beautiful brown colors that will complement your home. 

Don’t forget to preserve your siding by keeping the wood cleaned and protected.

Be sure to check out all of our Ipe wood options that you can use to enhance your home’s appearance!