wood decking
Photo: Hamilton Hedrick


The original and still most common decking choice, wood is natural, strong, easy to install and feels good under bare feet. But it also requires an annual cleaning and can rot, splinter, and warp. Even though all wood naturally weathers to a gray color, it should be cleaned and re-stained every two to three years to keep it looking its best.

Pressure Treated Wood: Lasting about 15 years, this is the least expensive and most common type of decking. Most pressure-treated wood is made from Southern yellow pine, which is quick to splinter if not maintained. When working with this wood, always use gloves, wear a mask, and never burn it because the toxic chemicals in the wood that prevent rot and termites can also be harmful to your health. These chemicals are also highly corrosive so for best results, use only stainless steel fasteners.

ACQ, from Ring's End, about $1.32/lineal ft.

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