Sustainable Decking: Eco-Friendly Designs for Modern Homes

Staff
7 Min Read

Installing decks can help extend your outdoor space for relaxing, dining, and barbeques. However, for a more modern feel, your materials and designs should be eco-friendly. With various sustainable deck designs available, you’re truly spoilt for choice.

Sustainable decking involves using eco-friendly materials, natural finishes, and sustainable design patterns to minimize waste. Here are some eco-friendly designs you could use.

Recycled Composite Decking

Recycled composite decking combines recycled plastic and wood fiber. It’s incredibly durable and low-maintenance. The bonding agents that manufacturers use when creating recycled composite are also eco-friendly. Most manufacturers sustainably source materials in states like Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina.

Finding recycled composite decking materials in states like Tennessee may not be that challenging. For instance, when looking for a deck builder in Nashville, Murfreesboro, or Franklin, it’s best to pick those who offer sustainably obtained materials.

 

Picture by @Esther Garcia

 

Thermally Modified Wood Decking

Thermally treated wood manufacturers design them to last for a long time. Decks comprising this material and design can serve you generously. Heat treatment typically occurs through pyrolysis—extremely high temperatures and without oxygen—changing the wood’s chemical structure. This process makes the wood incredibly resistant to water, mold, insects, and decay.

Thermally modified wood decking is a sustainable option as it requires no replacements over extended periods. Besides, this design has unique natural beauty as wood can retain its grain pattern. This design can be your ideal option if you’re looking to boost your deck’s appeal.

Bamboo Decking

Bamboo is fast-growing, hence renewable and sustainable. This deck design can be sustainable as your installer can source materials without damaging ecosystems. Bamboo is also durable as it can resist weathering, pests, and rotting. It’s also low-maintenance because it doesn’t demand painting, staining, or sealing to boost its aesthetic appeal.

When installing bamboo decks, you can cleverly hide fasteners for a sleeker appeal and to reduce the risk of splinters. Moreover, it’s best to work with various bamboo decking designs, including thermally modified or Moso bamboo. Although bamboo decking can be costly, it can be your go-to choice for every modern home seeking to be more sustainable.

Reclaimed Wood Decking

Old or used wood can still give your deck a unique character that new wood can’t replicate. However, please don’t pick compromised wood (decayed or extremely old wood) when recycling your materials, as this can compromise your deck’s structural integrity. Instead, barn wood from old farm structures and bans or recycled from old pallets and crates can be ideal options.

When working with reclaimed wood decking, carefully plan your design and layout and pick less decayed wood. Ensure you also adequately treat and process your wood to improve its durability. Properly treating old or used wood can give your home a laid-back appeal. Besides, this design option can minimize the need for fresh wood, hence being sustainable.

 

Deck for your home with Indoor plants
Picture by @Taryn Elliott

 

Recycled Plastic Decking

Plastic bottles, containers, and other materials can create aesthetically pleasing decks. Manufacturers collect plastic waste and process it sustainably, sometimes mixing it with different materials in muted ratios. Recycled plastic is also durable and can serve you over extended periods.

You can use a more traditional decking design that’s easy to maintain and build, especially when using recycled plastic. The advantage is that recycled plastic can be slip-resistant and presents a sustainable decking option that reduces your carbon footprint. For a more natural appeal, introduce sustainable gardening practices around your deck to improve its therapeutic effect.

Permeable Decking

Permeable decking designs allow water to seep through. This feature reduces pudding and runoff and minimizes the risk of pollution. They’re more eco-friendly and are maintenance-free since they demand less cleaning and repairs.

Permeable decking designs can still increase property value due to their high aesthetic appeal. Loose aggregates like gravel, crushed glass, or geotextile fabric can create exotic designs while allowing water to seep through effortlessly.

Cork Decking

If you want a decking design option for harsh marine environments, cord decking can be your pick. This decking design is sought-after for its durability, as it withstands exposure to saltwater and extreme temperatures.

Cork decking can also absorb sound and reduce noise levels for a more peaceful environment. Besides, the cork material offers a natural organic look that effortlessly complements your surroundings. When installing your cork deck, you can mechanically fasten it, directly glue it, or use snap-lock systems.

 

Cork Decking for your home with plants
Picture by @Matheus Bertelli

 

Aluminum Decking

Like other materials, aluminum can be ideal for decking. It’s highly workable and matches various architectural styles if you pair it with a range of trim and railing options. It also presents a more sustainable decking design for a modern, eco-friendly home.

The good thing is installing aluminum decks isn’t challenging. Aluminum decking pieces can come with interlocking features for easy installation and replacement. Individual aluminum plank pieces only require installing and securing using nuts to create a more solid surface.

Accoya Wood Decking

Accoya wood undergoes modification to improve its durability. It’s a more stable decking material that most homeowners now prefer. It’s also biodegradable and safe for the environment. Much better, an Accoya wood decking design can significantly improve your home’s aesthetic appeal, improving its value.

Accoya wood decking designs are also low-maintenance. Due to its desirable stability, the material barely shrinks in temperature changes. The good thing is that its manufacturers source the material from sustainably managed forests, promoting ecological preservation.

Conclusion

The numerous decking designs available today can help keep your home sustainable, eco-friendly, and modern. When installing your deck, the type of material you use vastly influences its design. You must pick more sustainable decking designs to keep your surroundings safe and habitable.

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