Many decking timbers, dependant on the species, can be left uncoated - and will change in appearance with exposure to the elements (take advice from your timber supplier). Un-coated timber usually weathers to varying shades of silver/grey.
Applying a specialist coating can add colour or simply bring out the beauty of the timber deck but can also help to:
- counteract the weathering process and/or;
- provide solutions for protecting decks from excessive wear and make them easier to clean or;
- provide anti-slip protection.
When deciding whether or not to add a surface coating, consider these factors:
Always check the suitability of a product for use on particular timber species.
Make sure your choose a product designed for outdoor use on a decking surface.
Use a penetrating product rather than a film former; film formers can be problematic on an outdoor horizontal surface leading to cracking and flaking of the paint film
Always follow the manufacturers’ recommendations when applying and maintaining the coating.
Bear in mind that there will be some preparatory work to do before and in-between applications - even on newly installed timber.
Regular re-application as recommended by the manufacturer to keep the finish in good condition, will be necessary as weathering and usage will gradually fade any finish.
Choose from a variety of oils, stains and paints. Some offer water repellency and/or UV protection; translucent coatings offer partial colour effects and solid pigmented colour coatings give a completely opaque look.
Factory finished, coloured deck products
Increasingly, companies are offering pre-coloured and /or textural options in their timber decking ranges. Raised grain and earthy hues in soft greys, warm browns and charcoal black are popular. Preservative treated timber incorporating built-in water repellent or colour additives is also available.
check for how long the colour will last before it starts to fade or if any colour-fast warranties are available.
ask if there are any touch-up or application products available to maintain the finish.
Find a product supplier
Members of the TDCA offer a range of brush and/or factory applied coatings, finishes and cleaning products. Several decking manufacturers offer factory finished decking, featuring colour, texture and/or water repellent finishes.