Home Property DIY decking mistakes could cost £1,000s to repair

DIY decking mistakes could cost £1,000s to repair

10th May 24 11:51 am

Homeowners are being warned of common decking mistakes which could leave them with hefty repair bills.

The gardening experts at GardenBuildingsDirect.co.uk have revealed six decking mistakes which could lead to costly damage.

Those considering sprucing up their garden this summer by adding decking are being encouraged to follow practical advice.

Mistakes, such as not sealing holes or using poor-quality wood, can be extremely costly for homeowners.

Should installation go wrong, a major repair job with a professional could set DIY homeowners back over £1,500.

Design, size and materials are all vital components that must be considered in detail before carrying out any DIY work.

A spokesperson for Garden Buildings Direct said: “Laying your decking may seem simple and cheaper than going to a professional, but if done wrong it can work out expensive, so it is important to follow practical advice.

“Not only will this minimise mistakes, but it will also help to create the perfect outdoor space to entertain guests for the summer barbecues and garden parties.

“Common issues that DIY’ers face when installing decking themselves include placing the groove the wrong way and not allowing a space between the wood panels.

“If you want your decking to last a long time it’s important to follow advice as a dodgy DIY job could cost a fortune to repair.”

Garden Buildings Direct’s six DIY decking mistakes to avoid

Not sealing any holes

Rats can infest decking if there are gaps for them to crawl into. Fill in the frame of the deck with hardcore, soil or any other available material, or put chicken wire or mesh around the edge of the decking.

Not allowing a gap

Wood expands and contracts under different conditions. When humid it tends to expand and when the moisture is drawn out it can contract. It’s important to leave a gap between the boards to give the wood adequate space to change without damaging the integrity of the entire structure.

Poor quality wood

Hardwood and composite decking will last longer, look better and are less likely to become a safety hazard over time. Avoid opting for softwood as it will not stand the test of time.

Not sealing the deck quickly

Using a proper sealant will protect wood from the ravages of sun, rain, and temperature fluctuations. Failing to seal the deck straight away can lead to the wood weathering quickly and rapidly decreasing the lifespan of your decking.

Groove side down

Despite the common belief that you should lay deck boards with the groove side up, it’s more effective to have the smooth side on display. This is because the grooves encourage air circulation beneath the deck which stops it from rotting.

Incorrect sizing 

Carefully plan how much of the garden needs covering with decking, because too little won’t leave enough space to fit furniture and planters. On the other hand, too much decking could stop the natural feel of the garden and may need ripping out to start again. As with our garden buildings, we wouldn’t reccomend taking up any more than 30% of your garden space.

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