Considerations: maintenance vs. natural appearance= your choice.
I've heard very good things about the better synthetic materials, but
they don't look quite the same. I'd gather in L.I. with salt air and
sun, maintenance can a challenge. I've seen some on beach houses out
there with that weathered look. Some people like it.
What don't you get? My deck is 8" above the ground and the kitchen opens to
it. Patios do not work well 8" above the ground.
OTOH, I do have a patio below the deck, and it gets shade from it. Best of
There are many good choices.
Redwood (usually expensive in the east)
The artificial are supposed to require the least amount of maintenance.
I've seen little of it so can't comment on that.
The best appearance, (and highest cost) are Ipe and Mahogany. Give them a
coat of Penofin oil every couple of years and they will look great.
Penofin also has UV protection to maintain the natural color.
We have a good lumberyard where I live and they have a 4' x 4' section of
decking made from each material so you can see what it will look like and
how well it weathers.
Unless you are a sucker for "authentic", you can't beat the composites
(fake woods). They last forever, no splinters, uniform appearance.
I have some and I wouldn't trade it for anything.
After you've had it for a year, get yourself one of those electric
pressure washers. Each spring I pressure wash mine and it looks as
good as it did the day it was installed.
Thanks all for the replies. I have never looked at the fake stuff
myself...but I have seen it on a few decks. Years ago it looked real
bad, maybe there is better stuff today. I will look. Never heard of
Ipe...but you learn something new every day!
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