Live In A Dry, Sunny Climate? What Type Of Decking Is Best?

If you live in a part of the country that gets frequent sun and little rain, you may be looking for a way to improve your outdoor living space so that you, your family, and guests can take advantage of your naturally sunny climate. Constructing a deck can provide a convenient gathering space adjacent to your home, perfect for parties where you're funneling food and drinks from the kitchen. However, the variety of decking materials available can be overwhelming, and you may be concerned about selecting decking that will be compatible with your local climate. Read on to learn more about your most durable and UV-resistant decking options.

Composite decking

This type of decking is created from wood pulp mixed with polymers to create a solid piece of lumber. Composite decking has a number of advantages over wooden lumber -- it is more flexible and less prone to breakage, it can be stronger than solid wood because of its hard-packed, composite nature, and it requires no paint or stain (but is available in a variety of colors). Many composite lumber manufacturers will incorporate UV-protective ingredients into their boards to help them resist any fading from the sun's rays. 

If you're choosing composite decking and plan to build your deck in an area that gets frequent sun, you'll probably want to select a relatively light color. Although dark decks can be strikingly attractive, these decks will absorb the sun's rays and you may find them to be uncomfortably hot during the peak of the day. Choosing a light color will help reflect UV rays and keep your feet cool. 

Wood treated with UV-resistant deck stain

If you prefer the look of natural wood, but are concerned about fading or wear from the sun, you may want to invest in some special deck stain that includes UV-resistant nanoparticles. These particles are evenly mixed within the stain and spread to form a protective barrier over the wood, resisting any UV damage. Certain types of deck stain can also help reflect the sun's rays, helping cool down the deck surface and avoid discomfort during very sunny days. 

While these stains can be applied to nearly any type of wood, when making your wood choice, you might opt for pine or treated lumber over cedar. Although cedar is an attractive and durable building material, its primary advantage as decking is in its resistance to moisture and moisture-loving bugs -- less of an issue in hot, dry climates. Pine boards are generally less expensive than cedar and can be easily treated with UV-resistant stain to minimize any potential sun damage.

For more information about decking materials, visit a local company like Allweather Wood Products.