Decks are practically a symbol of Minnesotan summer. We might not be able to head up to the cabin every weekend and get out on the water, but we still want a spot where we can chill out and catch some rays, away from the mosquitos and gnats—so it’s no wonder that you’ve decided to add one to your home!
While it’s impossible to regret a new deck addition, it is a substantial investment so it’s crucial that you do it the right way. Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors, your Sauk Rapids deck builders and exterior renovation pros, are here to help with a few important before-you-buy considerations.
Deck Material Options
There are plenty of deck materials on the market, but generally, the most common boil down to two types: vinyl and wood. While one isn’t inherently better than the other, each category may be a better fit for certain homeowners, so it’s essential that you do your homework and see which deck material is a better fit for your maintenance requirements, budget, and lifestyle.
A Wood Deck: For Those Who Love the Classics
There is a reason that wood deck contractors have been an important part of the deck business for as long as they have! Wood decking is a beloved go-to. It feels great underfoot, for one, and has timeless good looks to boot.
A couple other benefits of wood decking include:
- Affordability (depending on the price of materials and market trends)
- The ability to change up the deck’s look with paint or staining
- Its refinishing potential, meaning that you’ll periodically get a deck that looks like new again
A Word on Maintenance
Wood decks do require regular tending in order to look their best—and to avoid giving your bare feet splinters. Oiling, resealing, and refinishing are all part of the routine for owners of this deck type.
While these aren’t hard tasks by any means, especially if you hire the pros to do it, maintenance neglect can mean that your wood deck will experience premature aging or rot. Be sure you’re ready for the minimal care procedures wood decking requires before signing a purchase agreement!
Vinyl Decking: For Those Who Love a Modern Twist
Aesthetically versatile and undeniably fashion-forward, vinyl decking is amazing for homes that have a design tending towards trendy. It comes in a variety of colors and designs and isn’t limited to simply looking like wood. For homeowners who want their deck to be a statement of their own individual style, vinyl can’t be beat.
A few other more practical benefits of vinyl decking include:
- Its colorfastness
- Its low-maintenance nature
- Its resistance to mold
Is Vinyl Decking Maintenance Free?
Being easy to care for is indeed a characteristic of this decking type, but that doesn’t mean you can simply leave it to its own devices! Vinyl decking appreciates a good scrub-and-wash with a specially-made deck cleaner a few times per year. You’ll need to be careful with your cleaning job, as leaving chemicals on any kind of deck isn’t good for it.
Seasonal Deck Concerns
No matter what type of deck you opt for, you’ll still need to be aware before purchase that both require seasonal care, just like the rest of your home’s exterior. Above all, your pre-winter prep is arguably the most important to maintaining your deck’s longevity.
Clean Between the Cracks
This is good to do anytime, of course, but critical before the first freeze. Organic matter such as dirt or leaves serve as hubs for moisture accumulation, and this is not a good thing for any deck type; in the winter, water expands and turns to ice, putting excess stress on the boards. A simple pre-season sweep-and-clean will stop this potential issue in its tracks.
Always Check for Structural Issues Before Winter
With proper care, your deck, vinyl or wood, will last you for ages; however, nobody can account for freak accidents that may damage it, such as storms. When the results of those accidents are left uncared for, they can result in boards needing replacement or similar structural issues. Before winter, always run a quick check over your deck and call Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors if you need repairs. We’re always happy to help!
Wood Deck Contractors & Vinyl Deck Installation Services You Can Trust
Armed with your new knowledge, you’re now ready to set up your first consultation—and we at Tony’s Lifetime Exteriors are waiting for your call! Our entire deck team is hired in-house, so you know our crew is trustworthy, and our focus on attentive relationship-building means that you’ll get a custom deck that’s a perfect fit for your needs. When you’re ready to get started on your dream exterior, give our Sauk Rapids office a call today at 320-252-9086.