Decks have become increasingly popular in the United States because upon their construction, a homeowner not only adds function and appeal to their outdoor space but quite literally takes their living quarters from the inside to the outside of their home. However, you may be wondering how Ipe decking stands up to its competitors and if it’s a worthy choice over its competition.
Ipe decking is environmentally unfriendly and notably expensive. While its aesthetically pleasing amber tones and desirable density make it one of the most sought-after, wooden decking options, the harvesting of Ipe trees has caused problems with deforestation and greenhouse gas emissions.
An Ipe tree takes 100 years to mature, so once an Ipe tree is harvested, neither you nor your children may ever see its seedling come to full growth! In this article, I discuss an excellent and environmentally friendly alternative to Ipe decking. I also review outdoor upgrades like patio covers and window frames. Read on for comparisons and useful, home-improvement information.
Should You Purchase IPE Decking?
At TNT Home Improvements, we acknowledge that decks divide your yard and define your entertainment space. They can be as minimal or as lavish as you desire. However, there are four important factors to consider when choosing which products to construct your deck with. In the following table, I refer to these elements while comparing Ipe hardwood decking with TimberTech capped polymer deck boards:
|Average Cost of a 16’ by 20’ Deck
|Average Cost of Maintenance of a 16’ by 20’ Deck Over 10 years
|Ipe Hardwood Decking
|Eventually Deteriorates from Mold, Mildew, and Rot Growth
|Fades and Warps due to the Properties of the Natural Wood
|TimberTech Capped Polymer Deck Boards
|Resistant to Moisture, Cracking, and Splintering
|Stain-Resistant with Enduring Color
Ipe decking is made from natural wood and costs less per installation, which may certainly entice some buyers. However, TimberTech is made from composite, capped polymer, which lasts longer and has fewer maintenance costs over an extended period.
My first impression of TimberTech was that it was too good to be true, so I asked myself a few questions. Because TimberTech is made from capped polymer, will it dent or stain easily? Additionally, does TimberTech become slippery when wet or hot in direct sunlight? Upon conducting further research, I found that the answer to all of these questions was “no!”
Why IPE Decking Is Bad for the Environment
According to Greenpeace.org, forged documents often contribute to the illegal logging of Ipe trees in the Amazon, which leads to deforestation. In turn, deforestation results in irreversible environmental damage.
While there may be some other alternatives to Ipe that affect the environment less (for example, think of a bamboo tree, which only takes 3 months to 2 years to reach maturity), there is no such thing as a completely environmentally sustainable option that involves the demolishing of a healthy, thriving forest.
TimberTech’s Value and Effect on the Environment
Unlike Ipe decking or decks made from pressure-treated wood, TimberTech has taken strides to leave as limited of an impact on the environment as possible. The TimberTech AZEK Vintage Collection is made from high-performance polymers, which are primarily recycled. The following list describes the benefits of TimberTech decks when compared to other, leading wooden deck alternatives:
- TimberTech decks are made from 100% high-performance, recyclable polymers: In time, we’ve simulated natural products by making them better. Wooden dentures have similarly been replaced by recyclable materials such as polymers. I think that now, it seems somewhat odd to look back when so much progress has been made.
- Materials from TimberTech decks can be recycled after they are replaced: Related polymer products, like windows and siding, can also be safely recycled. When treated, painted, or stained, wooden decking cannot be recycled traditionally.
- TimberTech’s AZEK Collection guarantees a 50-Year Limited Fade and Stain Warranty: Once your deck is set, TimberTech offers warranties ranging from 25 to 50 years, depending on whether the packages of Edge, Pro or AZEK are chosen.
With TimberTech decks, you set it and you forget it. This means that you will have more time to relax while entertaining family and friends. For at least 25 years, accidental spills from one’s grill will be of no concern to buyers of TimberTech. For more information concerning TimberTech and its competitors, you may view this DrDeck YouTube Video or TimberTech YouTube Video.
How to Know When to Upgrade Your Deck
If your deck becomes unsafe in any way, or if it is maintained poorly, it is likely time for an upgrade. Sometimes this means installing an entirely new deck (especially if your deck has rotted or deteriorated from mold, mildew, or insects). However, there’s good news! Insects cannot feast on decks that are made from capped polymer, which is the material that TimberTech decks are made from.
Installing Patio and Deck Covers
Awnings, and patio and deck covers aren’t necessary to preserve TimberTech decks because they are resistant to sunlight, moisture, cracking, splintering, and stains. Yet when installing Ipe decks or other decks made from natural woods, these attachments may prove beneficial.
Ipe is among the most resistant woods used in decking. For this reason, it’s an extremely practical option when installing wooden decks. However, it’s still no match for natural elements like sun, snow, and rain. TNT Home Improvements has considered this and offers premier services including but not limited to deck and pergola building, roofing, siding, and patio cover and window installation.
Amerimax Window Upgrades for Your House
When repairing the outside of one’s home and installing all-new window frames, you may want to consider a variety of options. An excellent example of a company that configures its windows to suit the needs of its buyers, is Amerimax. A variety of Amerimax window packages are available, which include:
- The Craftsman Portrait Series: Windows in the Craftsman Portrait series possess fusion-welded frames, slim designs, and sliding window slashes for easy maintenance.
- The Masters Grande Series: Like the Craftsman Portrait series, Masters Grande windows come in colors including but not limited to: white, desert sand, and sandalwood. It also contains a unique sash weep system so that its glass seal will not deteriorate.
- The WinPro Series: WinPro windows are heavily reinforced with steel, a weather-stripping design, and rails for easy control.
- The Aristocrat Casement Series: These all-new casements are meant to protect one’s home from the outside elements and include Amerimax’s tightest weather seal for steadfast durability, strength, and protection.
Amerimax windows can be customized with a variety of sizes, colors, and grids, and up to 11 options for glass paneling. Amerimax window frames look great by any deck but when repairing the outside of your home, you may ask: which siding will go best with my Ipe or TimberTech deck? Many contractors recommend Mastic siding because it comes in a variety of accents and with many accessories, materials, and options available.
TNT Home Improvements has been a locally owned and operated residential outdoor construction company since 2005. We are fully licensed, insured, and always have an engineer on-site to oversee all projects. If you live in the Northern Colorado or Southern Wyoming area, then give us a call today at (970) 663-2868.
Additionally, you may fill out our contact form to make an appointment and to discuss your next home improvement project. Upon consideration of which products to have installed, TNT Home Improvements will gladly accommodate any customer’s choice. Whether you choose to install Amerimax, Ipe, Mastic, or TimberTech, we will gladly cater to your needs.