Building a deck from Ipe lumber ensures quality and beauty for many years to come. Paying close attention to details such as choosing a lumber supplier or selecting what type of fasteners to use is crucial to a quality outcome. J. Gibson McIlvain, a wholesale exotic lumber supplier, suggests the following three steps to a stunning Ipe deck.
Allowing lumber time to rest in a new climate will deter warping down the road. Because wood is an organic substance, it will move and change with the weather. Decking lumber is not kiln dried. The air-drying process leaves the moisture content at 14-18%. Higher moisture content keeps the wood from getting thirsty. The first rain or exposure to humidity will cause the board to expand. With an 18% moisture content, this change is not drastic. McIlvain recommends storing Ipe lumber out of direct sunlight for 2-3 weeks on the job site. This time for the wood to settle before adhering it to a deck will ensure stability.
Every deck built should contain proper ground side ventilation. Airflow around the entirety of a deck will minimize warping throughout the life of the deck. Pay special attention to this ventilation in ground decks or the wood will certainly warp or rot due to contact with the ground.
Any time a piece of wood is cut, the inside structure is exposed to the climate around it. The cut end is porous and likely to suck up or leak out moisture. To deter this movement, seal the wood properly after every single cut. Without a sealant, the wood will split causing unsightly cracks in the board.
A gorgeous Ipe deck is within reach when following these three steps. The hard work is worth the completed beautiful deck space. Trust J. Gibson McIlvain, an importer and wholesale supplier of wood throughout the United States, to supply quality lumber and advice to your job site.