Today is the first in a series of three posts about our yet to be revealed backyard transformation, which I can’t wait to share.
A deck is every Aussie’s dream for the ultimate in indoor/outdoor living and seamless entertaining flow from your house to your al fresco, am I right?! Damian and I have always loved the idea of a deck, especially when we bought our family home 18 months ago, with a designated area for entertaining as well as a flat lawn further back for the kids (there are two since little Charlie joined us last month!) to play.
Maintenance though, is not our idea of fun. We have already realised that going from apartment balcony (where someone else takes care of the outdoors for you!) to front and back gardens is a big jump. Is it even the weekend if you’re not at Bunnings buying a lawnmower, hedge trimmer, lawn feed, and so the list goes on! Not to mention trying to modernise what was a very “Nanna” house inside too, lived in by the same old lady for three decades.
So, we didn’t want to have to think about sanding back, staining and treating a deck. No thanks! Plus we live in a bushfire prone area of Sydney’s upper north shore, we’re terrified of termites and we want the kids to be able to drop ice creams and have the paddling pool spill everywhere without worrying about a deck staining or rotting. And, of course, Australia gets really bloody hot for a large portion of the year, so I didn’t want something that would warp and split. Does a deck like this even exist?!
Enter: Trex Company, the world’s number one decking brand and the inventor of timber-alternative composite decking, with more than 25 years of product experience. When the brand approached me to work with them on creating the back deck we’d been dreaming of, I read the product information and it was like it had been designed for us! Equally, it’s eco-friendly and made of 95% recycled materials (a 4.9 metre Trex composite deck board contains approximately 2,250 recycled plastic bags), which sits well with me and my increasing consciousness of our disposable, throwaway society.
We picked Trex’s Transcend decking in their grey-toned colour option (there are 10 to choose from), Island Mist. It requires no sanding, staining or painting and uses special technology to ensure it will maintain its colour and finish against all of the Aussie elements. Sound too good to be true? It’s backed by a 25-year fade and stain warranty, so I was on board (or deck!).
In terms of caring for it, you literally sweep it with a soft bristle brush and clean the composite deck with soap and water when required. Too easy!
While you can install Trex decking yourself, I’ve made no secret in the past of our lack of practical skills, although Damian is becoming handier by the day since we moved here! So we were lucky enough to have experienced tradespeople Urban Arch do the job for us, with distributor Master Woodturning delivering the product.
Tony Masciocchi from Urban Arch came out to our home with samples to discuss what would work well, show me colours, discuss the design and what we wanted. Tony made everything really clear and answered all my stupid questions without making me feel stupid for asking them! I felt really confident that his team knew their stuff, having seen photos of other jobs, and I had no issue leaving them to it as the job was half finished when I disappeared into hospital to give birth!
So, just how hardy and low-maintenance is it? Unlike timber, Trex composite decking is termite-proof (woohoo!) and will not rot, splinter, split, scratch or require seasonal painting, staining or sealing. And it can withstand and resist intense sun, powerful winds, animal, insects (and children, presumably!), furniture and shoe wear, and strong salty seawater.
All Trex composite decking products come with an installation guide that covers planning and preparation, installation and care, if you want to DIY rather than have someone DIFY (Do It (For) You)!
NEXT WEEK: Read and see more about the build of our deck, including before photos.
Disclaimer: My deck was supplied to me by Trex in exchange for coverage on this website, though this is an honest review of the product and service.