5 Reasons to Avoid Wood Decking in Alabama
For many lake homeowners, a deck is a sanctuary—a perfect outdoor space for gatherings, barbecues, or simply relaxing. While wood has traditionally been the material of choice for decking, there are reasons why homeowners in Alabama might reconsider this option. Here are five compelling reasons:
- Climate and Weather-Related Concerns:
High Humidity: Alabama’s high humidity levels can be tough on wooden decks. Moisture can seep into the wood, leading to swelling, warping, and even rot over time.
Frequent Rain: In addition to humidity, Alabama experiences a fair amount of rain. Prolonged exposure to moisture can deteriorate wooden decks faster than in drier climates.
- Termite and Pest Risks:
Alabama is part of the termite belt, an area in the southern U.S. where termite infestations are very common. Termites, especially the highly destructive Formosan termites, can cause severe damage to wooden structures, including decks.
- Maintenance Efforts:
Wooden decks require regular maintenance like staining, sealing, and refinishing to retain their beauty and integrity, especially in Alabama’s demanding environment. This can lead to higher long-term costs in both time and money.
- Heat Absorption:
During the hot Alabama summers, wooden decks can become extremely hot to the touch, especially if they’re in direct sunlight. This can make the deck uncomfortable to walk on and reduce the amount of time you can enjoy it.
- Shorter Lifespan:
Given the combination of weather conditions, potential for termite damage, and regular wear and tear, wooden decks in Alabama might not last as long as they would in more temperate climates. This could lead to increased costs in repairs or even replacing the deck entirely.
While wood decking has a natural appeal and can offer a traditional aesthetic, it may not be the most practical choice for Alabama homeowners. Consider alternative decking materials like composite, vinyl, or aluminum that can offer durability, reduced maintenance, and resistance to the elements and pests. By choosing the right material, you can ensure your deck remains a comfortable, safe, and long-lasting extension of your home. We are happy to help you with all of these options on your future deck or dock projects.