Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Ipe Deck Maintenance: 4 Things to Avoid

When it comes to deck maintenance, there’s always a set of do’s and don’ts you need to follow depending on the material you use. With ipe decking, there are certainly a lot of things that fall into the ‘don’t’ category, such as the four listed below.

Don’t use film forming coatings

This is a general rule that applies to all types of wooden decks and not only ipe. Film forming coatings may work on boats, but they only serve to make deck maintenance harder.

Do not overapply penetrating oils

Ipe has the same structural density of steel. It’s so dense that it will sink if you throw it in water. Even so, you’ll still need to oil it occasionally, but don’t apply too much. While softer woods will absorb penetrating oil, ipe will only expel most of the oil back out. You’ll need to wipe off any excess oil if you don’t want the wood to look messy and invite mold and mildew growth.

Do not use a sprayer to apply finish

Ipe’s density also means that using a sprayer to apply finish will only result in clumping and unevenness. If you want the finish to look smooth and natural, you’ll have to do it the old-fashioned way—with a paintbrush.

Do not install ipe decking without applying finish on all four sides of the board Make sure to seal the cut ends upon installation with either oil or wax. Prefinishing ipe is critical not only to extending the lifespan of the finish, but the wood itself, as well.

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