Jan 10, 2017

Posted by in Articles, Home & Garden | Comments Off on Five Tips for Splinter-Free Decking

Five Tips for Splinter-Free Decking

Splinters can be a painful part of deck ownership, and if you have kids, like to walk around barefoot, or just want to avoid splinters in general, there are multiple things you can do to avoid splinters. Want to avoid the pain of splinters? Take a look at these tips:

1. Install Composite Decking

If you’re in the market for a new deck, you can avoid splinters by choosing composite decking. This type of decking is a combination of vinyl, plastic, or other smooth materials. It comes in planks just like wooden decking, but you don’t have to worry about it chipping off and forming splinters.

You can work with a deck builder to put in composite decking, or you can get deck kits that feature instructions and all the pieces you need to create your own deck. With composite, you can choose any colour, and there are a range of shades that closely mimic wood.

2. Use Wood Carefully

Some homeowners simply don’t want to forgo the charm of wood for composite, and if you fall into that category, you should choose your wood decking carefully. Ideally, you want to use pressure-treated wood. This wood is designed to survive the elements, and it’s less likely to disintegrate and splinter than untreated wood.

Additionally, you want your deck sealed from the elements. You also have to commit to taking care of it. In most cases, you need to add oils or sealants every year. This care helps to keep the wood moist and relatively splinter free. Remember a lot of splinters are formed when the wood dries out and starts to crack.

3. Refinish Wood Decks

Instead of putting in a new deck, you may want to refinish your existing deck. If splinters are a problem, consider sanding down the deck. This removes the loose fibers that become splinters. If your hardware is countersunk and your boards are level, you can use a power sander or a floor sander. If not, you may need to sand the deck by hand.

Once the surface has been sanded, sweep away all the excess dust and splinters. Then, seal the surface with stain, varnish, or paint. These substances help protect the wood from weather damage that causes splintering. Even if you don’t have time to sand the deck, a coat of paint can still help to lock in splinters.

4. Tile or Carpet the Deck

In lieu of paint or varnish, you can opt to cover the deck with another material. Stick-on vinyl tiles or mildew-resistant outdoor carpeting are both options to consider. If you want carpet, you can simply add a rug to the deck, but if you want extra durability, you may want to staple outdoor carpeting in place.

If you like, you can stick vinyl tiles directly to the surface of a clean deck. Alternatively, for a more professional look, consider applying roofing felt to the surface of your deck and then putting ceramic or stone tiles on top of that.

5. Cover Your Benches

Paint and similar sealants can work on the floor as well as the railings and benches of your deck. If you decide to use carpet or tile, however, you may need to explore alternative options for your benches and railings.

To reduce exposure to bench splinters, consider adding outdoor cushions to your benches. Additionally, you can buy covers for your deck railings and posts. These covers are typically vinyl or plastic, and they are designed to slip over the wood and provide a smooth layer of protection.

If you want more tips on having a splinter-free deck, contact a professional deck builder or visit websites like http://lifestylepatios.com. They can guide you toward the best materials and options for your area and your budget.

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