Ipe decking comes from the trees of the Brazilian rainforest. Find out what makes Ipe wood decking the ideal choice for your next project.
Decks can give your property a lot of benefits and increase the value of your home.
The most important part about installing a new deck is deciding what to build it out of. There are all different types of decking materials out there, including woods and plastics and a mixture of both.
But if you want a beautiful and quality deck, you can narrow down those options to Ipe wood.
Keep reading to learn more about Ipe wood decking and why it makes the perfect home deck.
What Is Ipe Wood Decking?
Ipe, pronounced “ee-pay”, refers to seven different species of trees.
Each of these trees has its own, individual characteristics. Some are evergreen, others are semievergreen, some can be deciduous, and others still drop their leaves and grow flowers instead. But they’re all part of the same genus, Tabebuia, and they’re all native to South and Central America.
Ipe wood has become popular over the last several years because of its durability and beauty. Inf act, its warm colors and appearance make it similar to mahogany wood.
It’s also a smart choice for outdoor features, such as decking or patio furniture.
We’ll take a closer look at that below.
Understanding the Benefits of Ipe Wood Decking
Ipe wood decking has a lot of benefits that make it more practical than other types of wood.
Here’s a quick list of the most important benefits of Ipe decking.
Your Ipe deck can last a minimum of 25 years without you having to do much for it.
But let’s put that into perspective.
Decks made from other wood types, like cedar, can last about 25 years as well. However, to get this much life out of them, you have to put in a lot of effort. If you don’t have the time or budget for heavy, yearly maintenance, a cedar deck will only last about 10 years.
Ipe decks give you a long-lasting outdoor space without the work.
There are two main things that make Ipe wood eco-friendly. It’s 100% natural wood, and many supplies harvest it in a responsible, sustainable way.
Let’s break those two things down.
Suppliers don’t treat Ipe wood with any chemicals or toxins. This isn’t true of all decking material. Because it’s 100% natural, Ipe is a safe option for your family and for the environment.
Most Ipe suppliers also follow harvesting practices and regulations set by organizations like the USGB (United States Green Building Council) and the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council).
This means you can rest assured the wood your buying wasn’t harvested in a way that hurt its natural ecosystem.
Ipe is one of the toughest woods out there. It’s so dense, it will actually sink in water. It’s also three times harder than cedar and eight times harder than California redwood.
This will prevent your Ipe decking from decaying like other wood. For example, no matter how wet it is outside, Ipe wood won’t mold or rot. Since insects like termites are attracted to softer woods, you won’t have to deal with any pest problems either.
Ipe wood also has the same fire rating as concrete and steel. Because of this, it has a high level of fire resistance.
This makes it a good option for people who enjoy grilling or sitting around bonfires.
With other types of wood decking, you have to be careful to avoid scratches. Anything from moving outdoor furniture to long dog toenails could be potential causes for scratching.
But Ipe is a lot tougher than other woods.
You would have to try really hard to scratch your deck if it’s made or Ipe. That also means you won’t have to worry about sanding or refinishing your deck every year.
Doesn’t Retain Heat
Some decks retain high levels of heat. This makes it uncomfortable, or even impossible, to walk on barefoot in the hot months of summer.
But Ipe wood doesn’t retain heat.
Because of this, you don’t have to worry about shoes even in the middle of July. Instead, you, your guest, and your children can enjoy socializing or playing on your deck without burning the bottoms of their feet.
Ipe trees can grow up to 150 feet tall. In other words, you can find very long planks of wood.
Long planks of wood usually cause warping over time. But not Ipe woods.
Ipe is naturally weatherproof. It also has a moisture range of about 14 to 18%. This means you won’t have to worry about warping problems.
Wide Range of Color Choices
You can find Ipe wood in many different grains and color choices.
For example, Ipe wood is a tight-grained wood. This means it doesn’t contain a lot of knots, which can give your deck a clean, smooth, and beautiful appearance.
The colors range from light browns to chocolate browns, to olives, and all the way to nearly back.
As Ipe wood ages, it will also fade to a natural silver.
How to Maintain Your Ipe Wood
Ipe doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. In fact, if you like the silver color it fades to over time, you don’t have to do any maintenance at all.
But if you want it to keep its natural color for years to come, you will need to apply a new coat of stain every year.
You should also clean your deck at least once a year. This will keep your deck looking tidy and beautiful.
Understanding the Benefits of Ipe Wood Decking
Ipe wood decking is much more durable and long-lasting than many other types of wood. Because of this, it can be a beautiful, high-end, and low-maintenance decking option for your home.
Are you ready to invest in an Ipe deck?
Make sure you click here to take a look at some of our Ipe options.
Check out our new “What is Ipe Wood?” page here.