Cedar is a pitch and resin-free material with increased resistance to adverse environmental conditions. In addition, it is visually attractive - the colour shades of the deck can vary from rich dark tones to natural light or white. The properties of the wood affect the appearance and quality of the deck, so cedar planks are available in various widths and grades. Thus, cedar is a versatile material that can best meet the aesthetic taste of the customer and give the backyard of your house a unique cozy look.
Maintenance of a cedar deck
Despite the fact that cedar is by nature resistant to decay, moisture, insects, and other adverse effects, it needs regular maintenance. Zebra Deck recommends light power wash as required, followed by treatment with transparent or semi-transparent stain. The preferred kind are oil based stains, designed specifically for decks.
The natural properties of cedar wood
- Beauty persisting over time. Regardless of whether the surface of cedar wood is treated with a protective finish, or the grain gets older in a natural way, the material always looks noble.
- The material is naturally resistant to deformation, rot, adverse weather conditions, and insects. Cedar has a high concentration of natural tannins and oils, does not require chemical processing, and is therefore environmentally friendly and safe.
- Cedar absorbs almost no moisture, does not warp if some water gets on it, and lies well and flat on a frame.
- Absorbs and holds various types of finishes well. Multiple surface treatments during the deck’s lifetime do not affect the great properties of the wood or its appearance.
- Thermal conductivity. Cedar conducts the sun's heat well, so in hot weather the deck surface will have a comfortable temperature (as opposed, for example, to hot decks of composite or vinyl materials).
Fasteners for cedar decks
Cedar has a high concentration of tannin, which chemically reacts with metal parts of the deck. Therefore, special fasteners should be used for a cedar deck, i.e. the fasteners must be made from special materials or undergo special pretreatment.
Nails. Zebra Deck uses nails mainly for the construction of fences when working with cedar. Boards are secured only by means of hot-dipped galvanized nails - these kinds of nails are corrosion resistant, and the metal product does not directly interact with the cedar.
Deck screws. When working with cedar, Zebra Deck uses powder coated brown screws. This kind of hardware is specially designed for cedar and does not react with the oils contained in the wood. Any other types of hardware are oxidized when in contact with cedar, resulting in stains and streaks on the board surface.
The products used for deck care should have a number of specific properties in accordance with the type of wood:
- Increased resistance to the effects of sun, water, and temperature fluctuations;
- Optimum consistency that ensures uniform application and drying;
- Antiseptic properties (if the wood does not have antiseptic properties of its own).
The expertise of our contractors shows that the best solution for cedar care are oil based deep penetrating paraffinic finishes, because they contain combined drying and non-drying oils. On the contrary, water-based stains are not recommended for several reasons, among which the main one is their low ability to permeate the material.
Zebra carries out deck construction in several stages.
The first step in deck construction is the preparation of the material for the installation, which includes cleaning dust and dirt from the wood surface using sodium percarbonate cleaners. This process removes mill glaze from the deck surface, as a result of which the stain lasts longer and protects the wood better.
The second stage is the application of wood brightener, which contributes to better penetration of stain into the wood and restores the original colour and tone of the cedar.
The third stage is finishing.
A cedar deck will increase the value of your property thanks to its aesthetic properties - the material has a rich look, matches any home architecture style, and blends well with landscape design. These qualities, combined with the affordability of cedar, make it an excellent investment.