Redwood Deck or Concrete Patio: What's Less Expensive?

Decision time. It's either a redwood deck or a concrete patio. Which one is less expensive in your part of the USA?
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Sorry, meant to add that we're talking about 350 square feet of patio or deck space.
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On grade? 30 feet in the air?
In Phoenix on or near on grade is concrete. The maintenance of wood over the years far out weights the installation cost.
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On grade.
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I'd go concrete.. texture and color if you want. Put down a good foundation.
Wood looks nice for about a year.. then weathers.. and either you have to cover it or care for it each season.

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My neighbor with a nice patio, you should see her patio furniture, mentioned that they were going to stain the patio. This is new territory for me. Does color come from mixing something with the concrete before pouring or does it come from staining after? Pro's and con's?
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Yeah, go concrete. I am spending a lot of time and money this Summer refurbishing my cedar deck. Not worth the time, effort or cost. Our last house had a concrete patio and it took 5 minutes in the Spring to hose off the Winter's dirt and we were ready for another Summer of outdoor enjoyment. Des

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Concrete. But that's less expensive in terms of _my_ time and upkeep.
John
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Well, between your opinions and my finding how out how extensive the rotting is in the substructureof the existing deck, and seeing a friends patio, I'm going to switch the existing, but massively damaged redwood deck to a concrete patio with color and possibly texture. It will still need a fence around it to keep the dogs in their proper place.
Thanks
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I see everyone recommending concrete and I wonder why. I just replaced a concrete patio with pavers.
The concrete was very old (maybe 30 years) and the sections had settled so that they no longer lined up. I saw no way to repair them other than rent a jackhammer and have the pieces hauled away.
I would imagine that my pavers will need some adjustments after 30 years too. However with pavers, someone can just lift them up, level the sand bed and put them back. I'd guess those pavers are good for at least a hundred years.
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If the original patio was done correctly, there would be no adjustments needed. I know of some that are 50 years old, walks at are pushing 100 years and in excellent condition. Your idea does have merit though. Pavers can look very nice.
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This particular patio consisted of a bunch of 4x8 concrete sections separated by redwood 2x4s. It looked like they anchored the 2x4x in place by driving nails thru them and embedding the nail into the concrete.
After living in the house about 10 years I had to replace the redwood. It does eventually rot. I used pressure treated instead.
Eventually I replaced the whole thing because there was up to a 2 inch diffference in height between the sections.
I guess the sections were migrating due to frost heaving and the wide separation between the sections. They were out of alignment even before I pulled out the rotten redwood.
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I've seen thing like that. In most cases, they do not have a lot of reinforcement or are very thick. More like oversized patio blocks. May be a OK in mild climates, but now where you'd have frost heaves.
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I opened this thread to rail on decks and tout the benefits of masonry in all its forms (no, I'm not a Mason !), and lo and behold, a thread of pro-concrete posters. My faith in mankind is restored.
Decks tend to look like crap after a few years. My slab has been there 50 years, yes it's a mottled dark gray, but it looks sort of rustic and requires no maintenance.
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Since I broke it up, I know what was there.
No steel. About 4 inches of concrete. Pretty much put directly on central NJ clay soil. Just a bit of gravel in some places.
There were definitely chipmunks living under the slab, but not any obvious signs of dirt being washed out or excessive tunneling.
I do think that despite the way the nails tied the redwood to the cement, each slab pretty much moved on its own. When the ground expands, that stuff just has to move.
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SQLit wrote:

shouldnt all homes have ground area the slopes away from the foundation and thus not be on grade?
Just wondering as _all_ homes I ever saw in detroit did not have any slope, but I keep reading that I am supposed to have a slope!?
My new home has a slope, my wife wants concrete/bricks, but with the slope I think wood would be easier. We have high water table as well.
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Most with concrete have a slight pitch away from the house. You need only a very small amount for the water to run. Ground is not a smooth an dirt also will absorb water so you'd want a bit more.
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I don't have a clue about cost, but I'd never put a deck where I could have a patio. Easier to maintain, no staining or waterproofing, spills easily hosed off, never rots, no raccoons or skunks make a home under it, no guard rails needed. Can't think of a single benefit of having a wood deck over concrete on the ground.
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