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Backyard Decks Gazebos Outdoor Structures

5 Reasons You Should Get Deck Covers Installed if You Live in Canada

What Are Deck Covers?

Deck covers can take an exposed outside area and provide shade, shelter, protection and style. They can be constructed of various materials, such as wood, vinyl, aluminum, fiberglass, and plastic, with some being custom-built while others are pre-fabricated. 

You can choose one to fit over a pre-existing deck or to enhance a custom deck you may be constructing along with the help of your designer and deck contractor. 

You may have opted for a wooden deck, or have a composite deck surface, or you may simply have a concrete flat patio area where you are considering adding this feature. The main purpose of installing a deck cover is to prevent water from entering the space between deck boards, which can cause damage to the underlying structure and even cause structural failure. However, deck covers can serve as basic a purpose as providing shade or being an accent piece which is aesthetically pleasing and suits the look and feel you want. 

A deck cover can be an essential piece of equipment for an outdoor space for the simple reason of longevity, preventing damage and reducing maintenance costs over time. In particular, if you have a wooden deck, damage from natural elements is a concern and quite an important consideration, whether you live near the beach or on a country property in Canada. Both scenarios come with their own elemental maintenance concerns. 

Deck covers can offer protection against wind, rain, snow, heat, bugs, and other weather conditions. They also provide privacy, prevent dirt from accumulating, and can provide other opportunities to really make your outdoor space reflect your own personality and tastes. 

However, not every type of deck cover does all of these so consider your reasons for wanting a deck cover installed and consider which type will meet your needs.

Here are the top 5 reasons you should get a deck cover installed if you live in Canada.

1. Protect Your Deck (And You!)

Living in Canada has its pros and cons. While we enjoy those long summer days and can even appreciate those calm rainy days, or a beautiful wintery snowfall, it’s important to protect your deck from not only harsh weather conditions but the cumulative effect of even those milder sunny days over time. 

Whether your deck is exposed to sun, rain, wind, or an abundance of snow, these natural elements can severely damage your deck and other types of outdoor furniture.

This is where deck covers come into play.

A deck cover protects your deck, furniture and guests from harmful UV rays, it can provide shelter from the rain, block out the wind, and keep snow from settling on your deck. They can also provide protection from insects and other pests.

Speaking of protection, MDT also shared 8 essential deck maintenance tips for fall and winter in this blog if you’re interested. 

3. Keep Your Deck Cool (And Your Home!)

Once summertime comes around, odds are you and your family will be spending more and more time outside in fairly hot weather. Canada’s summers can be as warm as the tropics on certain days. On average, the warmest province in Canada is Ontario. 

They get hotter summers than BC, so although the winter days might be colder, their summer days are hotter and, as temperatures rise, so does the need for air conditioning. 

The good news is adding a deck cover can not only protect your deck (and skin) from extreme sunlight and heat, it also results in a cooler deck. Even better, it can provide a structure for you to pop in a ceiling fan or corner fan to further cool down the area. 

The best news is that this cooling effect can actually transfer to your home! By breaking the effect of direct sun on your home’s walls and windows, the temperature inside the house can be moderated somewhat, which means you can save on energy bills. Another saving can come from the fact that if the family is comfortable outside, that means fewer people indoors running fans or the AC. 

3. Improve the Aesthetics of Your Outdoor Living Space (And Get Creative!) 

Not only do covered decks provide protection from natural elements and a cooling effect but they also allow you to transform your backyard into a beautiful outdoor living space. Given the variety of shapes, styles, sizes, and materials you can choose from, you can get really creative and enhance the aesthetic appeal of your backyard. 

motorised louvered pergola

Maximise the look of your outdoor space with a motorised louvered pergola. With a touch of a remote, your world will be transformed. The louvered roof allows or blocks the sun, can open completely, allowing full sun and breeze, and keeps out rain or snow when in the closed position. They can be adjusted to meet your exact preferences. Enjoy more views of the outdoors with a stylish, functional design. 

Or a transparent roof covering to protect against the rain while still being able to view the stars at night? Or a modern sleek design with recessed lighting to enhance the architectural style of your home? Maybe you’re a little more bohemian and would like a pop of colour with an accent wall all strung with fairy lights. 

Creating a covered area to enjoy a meal, have a glass of wine by an outdoor fireplace, or show off your expertise if you’re a Grill Master are all great for social butterflies, while simply designating an area to house your plants and a hammock for the perfect nap may be more your speed. These are only a few ideas of the enhancements that a deck cover can offer, your imagination is all it takes. 

Looking for some backyard inspiration? Here are some other backyard oasis ideas that will transform your outdoor space

4. Add Value to Your Home (And Life!) 

Installing a deck cover can definitely allow you to enjoy your outdoor spaces more, however, it not only improves your enjoyment and the aesthetics of your outdoor living space, it can also increase the value of your home. 

By customising your deck and the cover for your deck, you can increase your home’s resale potential, giving you good reason beyond your own immediate comfort to install a deck cover as an addition to your house. 

For the same reasons mentioned above, for those looking to buy a home, aesthetic appeal, maintenance costs, and lowered energy bills are all great selling features, as is an outdoor living space in general. 

The main thing to remember is that covers should complement your home’s exterior style which means you should choose a design that complements the architectural character of your home. The best part is that you will get to enjoy it in the meantime while knowing your home has just increased in value with this one addition. 

If you’re not sure what your vision is yet, consulting with expert deck builders can help you to transform your backyard into a functional yet beautiful outdoor living space. 

5. Enjoy Your Deck All Year (Day or Night!)

Enjoying the outdoors can be difficult when you live in a country like Canada. With more than half of the year consisting of unpredictable weather, it’s tempting to stay indoors. So, if you want to enjoy your patio or deck space all year round, consider adding a deck cover to your backyard space.

That way you can truly enjoy spending time in your outdoor oasis relaxing with a book during the evenings, spending quality time with your loved ones, or hosting dinner parties under the stars (and built-in lighting) with the protection of a covered deck, no matter the time of year. 

Just make sure to choose the cover that suits your activities, whether it’s keeping out the bugs in June, keeping warm in winter, or minimizing all those pesky falling leaves in fall that can affect your deck and are a pain to sweep. 

Better yet, discuss features and elements to include in your cover like retractable blinds, cooling fans, heaters, screens and lighting to ensure you can enjoy your deck day or night, no matter the weather or time of year. Whether you’re looking for a simple or custom design, our team can help you choose the perfect cover for your deck. Contact Mississauga Decks & Trim to discuss your project today.

Categories
Deck Building Decks

Pros and Cons of Building a Cedar Deck for Your Home

There are many benefits to building a cedar deck for your home. You can use it as an outdoor patio, or you could use it as the main floor of your home. It’s also a great way to show off your assets and make a statement. 

However, there are some important things you need to consider before beginning this project. 

Key Factors to Consider 

Tips for Building Custom Decks

When building a custom deck, there are a few key things to consider. Your new deck should be both functional and aesthetically pleasing. 

Some questions you may want to ask yourself are:

Read this blog on Things to Consider When Building a Deck for more information. 

Deck Maintenance

When it comes to maintaining your custom deck, there are a few key things you don’t want to forget.

For example, decks should be kept clean and free of wet leaves and debris as they can eventually cause mould growth and damage your deck. 

Another deck maintenance tip is to look into deck waterproofing to protect your deck from all types of weather, especially during the colder months of the year.  

Read more about Mississauga Decks & Trim’s 8 essential deck maintenance tips for fall and winter here. 

Now let’s get into the pros and cons of building a cedar deck. 

Pros of Building a Cedar Wood Deck

  1. Naturally beautiful and aesthetically pleasing
  2. Environmentally-friendly 
  3. Lightweight material that is easy to use 
  4. Sound 
  5. Resistant to varying temperatures and weather conditions 
  6. Naturally resistant to insects 
  7. Tends to last longer than most woods as it naturally resists rot/ decay

Cons of Building a Cedar Wood Deck

  1. Can be more expensive than other materials 
  2. Requires regular maintenance 
  3. Can be easily scratched by heavy furniture 

Final Thoughts

Building a versatile and durable cedar deck can be a great way to create a beautiful backyard oasis for you and your family to enjoy.

Overall, there are way more pros than cons of cedar decking. 

However, you may want to consult a professional deck-building company in Mississauga to help you with your new deck project.

So what are you waiting on? Contact Mississauga Decks & Trim (MDT) to start building the custom deck of your dreams today!

Categories
Decks

When Should You Replace Your Deck? Here are 6 Warning Signs

So you’re noticing some potential issues with your deck and wondering, when should you replace your deck? 

Maybe it’s getting old and rickety or discoloured. There may be cracks in the wood or perhaps your railings are starting to come a little loose. 

Heck, maybe it’s all of the above. 

Unfortunately, no deck lasts forever. The weather is bound to take its toll over time. 

We know that deck replacement can be quite a process, even if the only aesthetic change is to the type of material you’ve chosen to roll with this time around. 

You may even be wondering if you should repair or replace your deck. 

In this blog, we’re going to go through 6 warning signs that it’s time for a brand new custom deck and some key tips on the best ways to get it installed. 

1. Wood rot and degradation

Wood rot on your deck isn’t too hard to spot but it can be one of the most detrimental factors when it comes to the condition of your deck. Wood rot originates from microbes eating up the fibers in wood that provide its rigidity. 

These microbes spread quickly, and the wood rot will come along with it. If you don’t spot it quickly, it can rapidly eat away at your deck. Once it spreads, chances are you’re going to need an entirely new deck installation.

To spot wood rot, check for darker patches, soft and spongy wood, or cracked wood that crumbles when dry. There are plenty of other signs, so make sure to cover all your bases. 

Of course, if you’ve got a PVC or composite deck, you don’t need to worry about that. So you may want to consider replacing your wood deck with a low-maintenance material.

Read more about the difference between PVC vs composite decking here

2. Loose railings

Though having loose railings might not always mean that you need to entirely replace your deck, it can coincide with other problems that you should be on the lookout for. For one, safety is always key, so making sure all those loose parts are tightened up is important. 

But loose railings can also be a sign of poor handy work or over-exposure to harsh weather conditions, wearing away at the base of your railing. 

Either way, depending on the scale of the problem, a full-on deck replacement might be required. Loose railings can be the difference between a $20 and a $2000 fix so you want to make sure to inspect them properly. 

3. Bad post conditions

If your posts are made of wood, check them for wood rot the same way you would with your deck boards. 

Your posts are what hold up the majority of the weight of your deck, and provide structural integrity. 

If they’re soft or decaying, the stability of your deck could be on its last legs which is a safety hazard for you and your family. Issues with posts can often lead to needing a completely new deck. 
Click here if you need help finding a high-quality deck builder in Mississauga.

If the posts look like they’re rotting away, we highly recommended that you replace your deck as soon as possible and refrain from using it until a professional deck builder can help you replace it. 

If the issue is less serious, like water pooling around the base of the post, speak to a deck builder about how you can divert water away from the base.

4. Rust on your deck

Another effect the weather can have on your deck is the way that it can rust whatever metal parts you may have used. From nails and screws to larger fixtures beneath your deck, replacing or repairing any rusted fittings will increase the longevity of your deck. 

It’s especially important to check up on any rust if your deck is older, around 15-20 years old.

5. Deck is detaching from your home

One of the more obvious indicators of necessary repair to a deck is on its ledger board. The ledger board is the part that connects your deck to your home. 

The deck may start to detach from your house, in which case a big repair may be in order. Many environmental factors can play a role in the separation of the ledger board from your home, so if you live in a region with heavy snowfall, keep an eye on it. 

6. Your deck is getting old  

The older your deck, the more likely it is that all of the issues we discussed earlier will occur. Wear and degradation happen over time. 

A general rule of thumb is to get your deck professionally inspected after about 5-6 years. If you live in a place like Canada with extremely cold temperatures, checking it more frequently is recommended. 

We at Mississauga Decks & Trim offer a 10-year workmanship warranty on all of our decks so you can feel secure knowing that your structure is safe and sound.

Things to consider when replacing your deck

Although it can be more costly, PVC or composite decks tend to last longer than natural wood decks. 

Mississauga Decks and Trim offers low-maintenance materials that come with manufacturer warranties ranging from 25 years to a lifetime. The main benefit is that you don’t have to worry about water, bugs, and other external issues potentially damaging your deck.

If you still want a wood deck, consider heat-treated Ash, or exotic hardwoods like Ipe, Garapa, and Cumara. Ipe especially is known for its durability and can last for over 75 years without rotting.

So when should you replace your deck? When there’s wood rot and degradation, loose railings, bad post conditions, rust on your deck, your deck is detaching from your home, or when your deck is getting old.

Now that you know the 6 warning signs that it’s time for a new deck, you may want to schedule a consultation with an expert deck builder in Mississauga. 
Contact Mississauga Decks & Trim (MDT) today to find out how we can help you either repair or replace your deck!

Categories
Decks Railings

Top 7 Privacy Screens For Deck Railing Ideas

These top 7 privacy screens for deck railing ideas will ensure you get the freedom to truly enjoy your home to the fullest, after all, you built that new deck, pool, or pergola to maximize the use of your outdoor spaces.

Deck railings are essential elements of outdoor decks. They provide safety and security to the area around the deck as well as creating a pleasing aesthetic as a finishing touch to the area. 

Homeowners should definitely focus on features like railings as an integral part of their overall design right from the get-go. 

A feature many should consider when factoring in which railing to choose to enhance their design is a privacy screen. A deck even a few feet above the ground or a raised swimming pool area can make a difference between your activities being visible by those on the road by your home or your neighbours. 

Screening a section of your outdoor area can serve other functions as well from minimizing street noise to creating a section as a stand-alone feature which can frame a barbecue, a small sitting area or even a mini garden. 

An additional bonus is that a privacy screen in certain materials can be utilized to minimize the impact of the sun at certain points of the day and even act as a windbreak. 

Privacy screens can easily be incorporated into many types of deck railings available on the market today. The type of material you choose depends on the purpose of the deck railings,  some of which include wood, aluminum, steel, and composite materials. 

You can easily work with your designer to choose which privacy screen will suit you best and how it will work with any of these materials. 

1. Tall Horizontal Privacy Screen for Maximum Coverage

For maximum privacy, a long, tall privacy screen is preferred by some homeowners, allowing them to use their deck whenever they like. A big horizontal screen like this is a great option for them to have to maximize the use of their space for any purpose.

You can use this addition to hide your deck from nearby neighbors and passersby. It won’t inhibit airflow and will allow for some light to get through.

This painted screen exemplifies how a bold color can elevate your backyard and become an accent piece for your outdoor deck. The predominant use of grey lends a sleek, modern look to the entire deck in this particular layout.

The rail and the privacy screen appear to be one uninterrupted element, as seen from behind because the whole thing is designed to work together seamlessly.

2. Framed Lattice Privacy Screen with Plant Trellis or Potted Plants for a Private Oasis

A framed lattice is a great addition to the design of a privacy screen when you are looking for a lighter touch with great airflow. It’s a cheap and fairly easy way to make the area look better overall. Aside from that, it may also be installed on or beneath the deck railing without requiring major construction.

A framed lattice is a great addition to the design of a privacy screen when you are looking for a lighter touch with great airflow. It’s a cheap and fairly easy way to make the area look better overall. Aside from that, it may also be installed on or beneath the deck railing without requiring major construction.

Some framed lattices can act as a trellis to support either creeping plants (real or fake!) or hanging potted plants to soften the feel and create additional privacy without restricting a pleasant breeze. place some more potted plants on the floor or on stands and you end up with an inexpensive mini oasis. 

The contrasting aesthetic isn’t limited to the screen, either. The deck as a whole can benefit from a screen’s presence in the railing design. By pairing it with the flooring tone in a complimentary but different hue,  it can also create an interesting visual highlight and draw the eye to designated featured elements creating a look and feel of a shady welcoming area on a sunny deck.

3. Composite Materials Privacy Screen for Low Maintenance 

Vinyl, composite and PVC materials can be used beyond the scope of decking and stairs. They are used for railings and other features as well such as privacy screens for the same reason you may choose them for the rest of your deck build. They are hard-wearing, long-lasting and low-maintenance and many come with excellent warranties.

If you aren’t told it may be understandable why you may even mistake these privacy screens for a natural wood deck feel and finish giving those who have always dreamed of a luxurious wooden deck the best of both worlds. 

4. Privacy Screen with Built-in Flower Beds

A screen can be custom-built out of various materials to incorporate built-in elements, one of these is flower beds. As a way to edge an outdoor area while creating delineated spaces, a privacy screen can be erected and constructed with built-in flower boxes to contain plants. Plants can both enhance an area by softening lines, create a green space which is known to enhance our health both mentally and physically, or simply add a pop of colour to an area with more muted colours. 

You can create low flower beds with perennials for a soft frame or even plant shrubbery which can grow a few feet higher and create the feel of a living green wall edged by the privacy screen. 

In spite of the fact that these plants can perform the job of a privacy screen, the privacy screen creates a controllable framework that ensures there are no gaps and you can even further enhance the aesthetic appeal by adding decorative stones and lighting, which a constructed privacy screen will allow. 

5. Exotic Hardwood Privacy Screen for Individual Design and Value

There’s more to this material than just its beautiful aesthetic. Quality and longevity are further benefits to going with durable exotic hardwood. It can be more expensive to install but provides excellent value over other natural wood choices.

If your design for your privacy screen or space is particular or the area you are installing it in has unique attributes, working with wood allows for a fantastic custom-built environment.

If you use an exotic wood for the privacy screen, incorporating it into your deck railing for a seamless look and feel will enhance your outdoor area.

An intriguing design can be created and customized including other featured elements, such as this divider made of reed panels that you can set up along your deck railing for extra seclusion, while the contrast highlights the beauty of the exotic hardwood

The look and feel of real wood, especially and exotic one, together with the option for staining to bring out the rich grain, create an excellent option for adding a natural and tropical feel to your deck.

6. Privacy Screen with Built-in Wooden Bench to Maximize your Outdoor Space

Another feature that can be installed and built into a privacy screen is seating. This design element can add various benefits to your use of the area. Adding seating of course first and foremost can maximize the use of the space by allowing more seating to accommodate more people in an area where too many chairs could look cluttered. 

Built-in benches and seating can also make a privacy screen simply more aesthetically pleasing and can be built in along with other elements like fold-down mini tables or planter boxes. 

However, the design of the seating itself can serve yet another purpose by having the seats be boxes with lids which can be raised to provide additional outdoor storage space for items like gardening tools, items for a barbecue or grill or even just storage for the cushions for the seats themselves. 

7. Privacy Screen with Covered Area for Comfort and Enjoyment All Year

After investing so much time, effort and money into your outdoor deck it would be nice to be able to make use of it as much as possible. While a privacy screen can be one stand-alone element, several of them can be incorporated to section off a part of your outdoor space and even incorporate an awning or covered pergola element. 

It can be very minimal or more elaborate to create a covered area with protection from the sun, wind, rain or even the cold with a heating lamp throughout the year. 

Now that you’ve gone through our top 7 privacy screens for deck railing ideas, you may have a better sense of what you’re looking for. So contact Mississauga Decks & Trim to discuss how we can build the ideal privacy screen for your deck railing

If you’re still not sure what you’re looking for, check out our website for more information or contact us to discuss these and other ideas. 

Categories
Backyard Deck Building Decks

6 Reasons To Start Planning Your New Deck Project During Winter

Planning your new deck project during the winter may seem like the last thing on your mind. For many of us, winter is a dark and cold season that makes us want to stay indoors and hibernate until spring arrives, trust me, we get it.

But what if you could save money and time planning the custom deck of your dreams right now? 

Here are Mississauga Deck & Trim’s 6 reasons to start planning your new deck project during winter:

1. Save Money

Although there is less demand for building projects in the fall and winter, most building companies remain active all year. This is a great opportunity for you to take advantage of the off-season, which is typically the cheapest time of year to build a new deck.

Given the cost of building materials tends to spike during spring and summer, your new project may not be as expensive during the winter months. 

Some deck building contractors in Mississauga even offer off-season pricing, typically discounted from their regular rates as winter is a slower season. 

Moreover, if you inquire with a building company early enough, you can get a better sense of the cost and start budgeting for your project so you are more financially prepared. 

With the money you save, you can then invest in a high-quality decking material like PVC or composite, which will upgrade your outdoor living space. 

Click here to learn more about the difference between PVC vs composite decking

2. Save Time

During peak times, it can take weeks to set up an initial meeting with a deck-building company so you can share your vision with them. Given they are spread quite thin during these times, your deck-building project may be prolonged if you don’t start planning early enough. 

It may also take them longer to acquire the necessary building permits and resources to build your new deck due to high demand and potential issues with their supply chain which can cause substantial delays.

If you get a head start during the off-season, however, acquiring building permits and resources should be a lot easier and faster. Deck-building companies may also have more uninterrupted time to spend exclusively on upgrading your backyard. 

Consequently, the builders can construct your customized deck quicker, which saves you time and money as the project will not be constantly delayed. 

3. Optimal Time for Deck Staining 

It is a common misconception that spring is the ideal season to stain a hardwood deck; however, this is not the case. The weather is often muggier in the spring and summer than at other times. Wood has the propensity to take in the moisture that is present in the atmosphere.

When you stain wood in settings where there is a lot of humidity, you run the risk of it peeling and cracking. Because of this, it will be more difficult for the wood to take on the staining procedure. Additionally, watermarks on the wood might be produced by direct sunlight.

Staining wood in hotter temperatures is not a good choice for a number of reasons, including the possibility that the stain will evaporate before it has a chance to penetrate the wood. When staining wood, temperatures between 50 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit are recommended as being optimal; all the more reason to start planning your project earlier. 

4. Minimize Potential Damage 

Typically, decks are constructed using pressure-treated wood. Due to its inherent moisture content, this wood will go through a drying process throughout the first few months.

Drying time for wood may be prolonged in humid environments. Wood drying in direct sunlight during warm weather is prone to warping.

Building a deck in the winter allows the wood to dry out more gradually. This is helpful since it eliminates the potential problems of cracking or twisting and minimizes any potential damage. 

5. Spend More Time in Your Backyard 

If you start planning your new deck project earlier, you can spend more time making memories with your family and entertaining guests in your backyard all year round. 

The time it takes to build a deck depends on your preferences regarding the size, materials used, and customized features that you want but if you choose expert deck builders with a team of skilled professionals, they should be able to complete the project in no time!  

Wondering why you would want to be outdoors during the coldest months of the year? There are various features you can add to upgrade your deck and backyard so you can truly enjoy your outdoor living space during the winter. 

For example, check out these backyard oasis ideas that will transform your outdoor space. 

6. Access The Best Contractors

It can be very difficult to find professional deck-building contractors who are available to work on your project during the peak season. 

Take advantage of the “off-season” during winter when construction companies have more time on their hands to customize and perfect your new deck. 

We at Mississauga Decks & Trim know that planning your new deck project can be overwhelming. If you’re ready to get started but not sure how, reach out to MDT today so we can help you build the custom deck of your dreams. 

Categories
Composite Deck Deck Building Decks

PVC vs Composite Decking – What’s the Difference?

What’s the difference between PVC vs composite decking? Aren’t they both just plastic? Does it really matter which material you use for your deck? We at Mississauga Decks & Trim are here to clear up the confusion and help you decide which material is best for your custom deck.

Should you upgrade your deck? 

First things first. Do you currently have a deck in your backyard?

If not, check out this article on how to find a quality deck builder in Mississauga. If the answer is yes, do you know what the material is? Decks that are made out of wod may seem pretty good at first until you realize they are high maintenance, they have short lifespans, and they are easily damaged by natural elements.

Instead of spending tons of money trying to repair things like wood rot and mildew every other year, people are finding it easier and cheaper to replace their decks with materials that are more durable, weather-resistant, and of premium quality.

Before reading on, you may want to find out if it’s time to replace your deck.

Now let’s dive into PVC vs composite decking. Though they’re both made of synthetic materials, each option has its pros and cons. In this article, we’ll outline the similarities and differences so you can decide which material best suits your preferences. 

Is it time to replace your deck?

What is composite decking? 

Composite decks are a mixture of wood and plastic that form a material that is stronger, heavier, and longer lasting than wood.

Generally made from recycled materials, the combination of plastic and wood pulp core makes it sustainable and resistant to things like weather rot and insects. Most composites these days are “capped composite”, which is the plastic shell that protects the surface of the deck board.

The capped surface is very durable and scratch-resistant. It comes with fade and stain warranties ranging from 25 years to a lifetime. Compared to natural wood, it’s very customizable, and can be used to replicate the colour and aesthetic of natural wood if you prefer that sort of design.

What is PVC decking?

PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. Similar to composite decks, PVC decks are also made from synthetic materials; however, they are 100% plastic rather than a combination of plastic and wood fibers.

PVC decks are just as durable and long-lasting as composite decks and require just as little maintenance. They are also extremely customizable when considering which colour you want, and the overall appearance of your deck.

Similarities of PVC and composite decking

  • Weather and moisture-resistant 
  • Insect-resistant
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Extremely durable
  • Low-maintenance
  • Super customizable


Benefits of composite decking

Appearance is typically the main deciding factor for people who are considering a composite deck. The fact that it’s a wood blend gives it a much more natural look if that’s what best suits the aesthetic of your home.

It’s pretty common to find composite decks finished to look like real wood so that you can still have that rustic appeal without breaking the bank. Some of the higher-end composites can almost fool you into thinking it’s real wood.

The added wood grain in composite decks also contributes to their slip-resistance, a feature not exactly commonly thought of when considering something made with plastic.

If for whatever reason you need to step out onto your deck after it rains, the added texture and friction from the wood grain makes your trip that much safer. It’s also something to consider if you want to build your deck around a pool or any other water feature.

The last benefit of composite decking does not expand or contract as much as PVC. PVC decks expand and contract with changes in temperature, something pretty common in a country like Canada.

Composite is not by any means exempt from movement due to temperature changes, but it is much more stable than PVC.

Need an image of a composite deck from MDT if possible

Benefits of PVC decking

While composite decks are heavier than wood decks due to their blend of wood grain and plastic, PVC decks are the exact opposite.

Because of its 100% plastic build, PVC is a significantly lighter material, easier to handle and makes the building process much easier. Deck installation is also simple and the material is extremely versatile.

PVC decks are also 100% mould and mildew resistant due to their make up of completely synthetic materials. Composite decks, because of the presence of wood grain, can still (albeit the chances are unlikely) allow for mildew growth.

If your deck is in a shaded area (under a tree), or in close proximity to the ground, or near a body of water (pools, spas ponds), PVC decking is a better option.

PVC also tends to be cooler to walk on in comparison to composites, but whichever material you decide to go with, picking lighter colors will help with reducing heat retention.

Though PVC decks for the most part use less recycled materials, they are 100% recyclable once it’s time to replace your deck. Decks never last forever, regardless of how good you are with upkeep. So if you want a deck that, once it reaches its natural end, can be recycled, look no further than PVC. Composite decks, despite being made of recycled materials, cannot often be recycled. 

Need an image of a PVC deck from MDT if possible

Which material is best for you?

Though both materials are great options, the choice between the two really comes down to which material best suits your preferences.

If you prefer something that resembles natural wood, is more affordable, and is more stable in varying temperatures, composite decking might be for you.

If you want something that is 100% mould and mildew-resistant, your deck is situated around a shaded area/pool, or you’re seeking a more environmentally-friendly option, PVC decking might be better for you.

How much is PVC vs composite decking?

Another factor to keep in mind should be the cost of PVC decks and the cost of composite decks. Depending on the deck building contractor you choose, PVC tends to be a little pricier than composite as it is considered a premium material.

Generally speaking, the cost of composite decking can range from $8-$14 per sq. ft whereas the cost of PVC decking can range from $12-$18 per sq. ft.

Though both options are typically more expensive than most natural woods, the payoff in terms of durability, weather resistance, and cost-effectiveness is pretty massive if you don’t want to spend up to $1,000 in maintenance every year on a wood deck.

Now that you’ve learned the difference between PVC decking and composite decking, it’s time for you to make a decision. Our team at Mississauga Decks & Trim has worked extensively with both materials and can help you with your deck-building project or even a complete backyard makeover!

Contact us for a consultation or call us at (647) 321-1545 today to get started.  

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Decks

8 Essential Deck Maintenance Tips for Fall and Winter

Anyone with custom decks in the GTA should consider going through a deck maintenance checklist, especially once the leaves start showing off those beautiful fall colours!

When those pretty leaves start to fall on your deck, the cold sets in and the frosty Canadian winter looms, some of those daylight hours should be spent on prepping and preserving your deck. A deck is a fantastic enhancement to your home but it’s also quite the investment. Ensuring that you can enjoy it for years to come means understanding the importance of deck protection. 

Knowing how to prep your deck for fall varies somewhat depending on what material you selected for your outdoor living space, how you plan to use the space, and the design itself. Below you will find 8 essential deck maintenance tips you should know for fall and winter.

Inspect Your Deck in Great Detail

It’s a good idea to go over your deck inch by inch at this point in the year. There may have been damage incurred during the summer months of heavy use. This can be from summer storms or intense sunny days. So look for wind damage, water damage, and even damage from animals to your deck. Maybe a family of raccoons, or other such creatures, has taken up residence without you even realising. 

Another creature to look out for that can create a world of damage to your deck are termites. Termite damage can cost thousands of dollars and is a leading cause of damage to decks. The easiest way to spot them will be signs of little piles of wood pellets. If you see this, it’s time to get a professional on the scene to assess the damage.

Splintering, cracking and other dangerous degrading of the material should also be attended to immediately for both safety concerns as well as deck maintenance and longevity. 

Check for Small Leaks Which Can Lead to Serious Damage to Your Deck

In winter, sometimes water will freeze in pipes and crevices and cracks that it has gotten into. This can lead to damage to your deck.  If your deck is close to an outdoor faucet, there is a pipe system included in the structure or if there’s a gutter that empties by your deck, this is when you need to worry about this potential issue. If the water freezes, the deck can crack creating an extremely costly repair job. Pipes bursting can also be a source of major damage. 

Give Your Deck Some Space and Trim Your Nearby Vegetation

Trim back overhanging branches and cut back the shrubbery that surrounds the area. Although carefully managed landscaping can be beautiful, runaway vegetation can place pressure against structures, roots can grow too close to the foundation, branches can fall and damage decking elements in winter storms, and so on. An extremely shaded area during wet months can also encourage moss and mould which can shorten the life of your deck.

Clean the Leaves Off of Your Deck

If you have a wooden deck such as a cedar deck, you want to ensure you are cleaning up those fallen wet leaves regularly. That’s because when leaves are in the same spot for an extended period, they start to rot. This can lead to mould growth which will affect the strength of your deck over time. Regularly rake or sweep up the leaves and try not to allow them to become a wet, mulchy mess in the first place. It will also make for a cleaner, more inviting spot to hang out!

Apply a Coat of Weather Protection to Your Cedar Deck

As you head into the wetter months, consider the wide range of water-repellent finishes you can add to your cedar deck to preserve it and prep your deck for fall and winter. This will protect against splitting, cracking or warping which result from moisture and water damage. To waterproof a wooden deck, first, it should be cleaned with a deck cleaning solution. Redwood and cedar decks require a special type of cleaner, so a product designed specifically for these types of wood should be used. A pressure washer can also be used to clean your deck, but if the pressure is too high, it can damage the wood so be mindful. Some of these deck waterproofing sealants even come in beautiful stains allowing you to maintain and beautify your deck in one job! Check out what deck waterproofing looks like here!

Get the Right Furnishing to Use Your Deck as a Quiet Retreat

The days get shorter and there is a nip in the air but maybe you aren’t quite ready to retreat indoors, and lovely sunsets shared on the deck all snuggled up in your favourite cozy sweater and a hot drink in hand can be a wonderful way to enjoy your deck during fall. Make sure however that the furnishings you have outside can manage the shift in weather patterns, so either get furnishings that can last year-round or put out some hardier options for this time of year in your fall prep.

Accessorise for Year-Round Outdoor Living

Now, some people decide that their deck is such a part of their living space that they include add-ons to be able to use it all during the winter months as well, like creating a screened-in section, installing heated elements like panels, floors, and lamps, or weatherproofing an upper deck to continue using the lower level during the wetter seasons. For these installations, of course, looking out for leaking and tears in screens and getting those repaired before the colder months set in is a must. Another option you have is to install a permanent, covered deck or simply consider installing a temporary seasonal covering like an awning. This will ensure deck protection from harsh weather and can then be removed in the spring and summer.

Honestly Assess if It’s Time For a New Deck

Although materials like PVC and composite decking offer amazing warranties and a high-end licensed deck building contractor who knows what they are doing can provide you with a deck that can last for years, not everyone has gone this route. Especially when it comes to wooden decks, even with the recommended maintenance routine, the average lifespan is 10 to 15 years. If you are a true lover of a beautiful wooden deck, consider if an upgrade in the material should also be included in your deck refresher project. Hardwoods, composite decking, and other materials require less deck maintenance and will last longer. So when you do your annual inspection, be honest in your assessment and make sure your deck is not only a welcoming space for you and your loved ones to enjoy but also a safe one. Find out if it’s time to replace your deck here!If you are considering building a new deck or simply want an upgrade or add-on, Mississauga Deck and Trim (MDT) is the best deck builder Mississauga has to offer! MDT specialises in high-end design custom decks in the Greater Toronto area and offers solid lengthy warranties on both their materials and their work. For more information, check out Mississauga Decks and Trim.com.

Categories
Deck Building Decks

How to Find a Quality Deck Builder in Mississauga

Great deck builders in Mississauga are few and far between. Let’s be honest, not everyone is a regular Tim Taylor or Mike Holmes. Carpentry, and being that top-tier Carpenter comes with years of experience (or just really good sitcom character building). Sometimes it’s best to spend that extra bit of money to make sure your project gets done the way you dreamt it up.

This is especially true when considering something as integral to your home as a deck. You don’t want to be relaxing in your backyard if your deck looks like it was fished up from the depths of the Atlantic Ocean, regardless of whether you built it with your hands or not. In many cases, the best course of action is to head to Google and type in “deck builder Mississauga” or “custom decks Mississauga”, browse around and find the right person for a job of this magnitude.

So what steps should you take when considering who to trust with a project as important as this one? We’ve built a comprehensive guide for what sorts of questions you should be asking, what measures you should take, and finalising a deal for the best deck builder Mississauga has to offer.

Before You Look For A Deck Builder

High-quality deck built by Mississauga Decks and Trim

Make sure your project is fully or mostly planned

Looking for a contractor without having a concrete plan in mind is like going to the grocery store without a list, you’re just winging it, and chances are you’re going to spend way too much money on things you don’t need. As with any big project, careful planning and an understanding of what you want your deck to look like, and how you want your space to feel are key. If you reach out to contractors without having a full grasp on what you want your deck to look like, the deck builder won’t be able to give you a full rundown of estimates or an accurate appraisal, so be sure to check out Awesome Add-ons for your Custom Deck to help you create a clear vision of your dream deck.

You should also figure out what materials you intend to work with, and if you’ll include advanced designs

Some deck builders are also best working in specific conditions and with specific materials. Not every deck builder in Mississauga has equal amounts of experience with specific types of materials. Some may be more suited to working with PVC, others with pressure-treated wood. For more information on the difference between PVC vs composite decks, click here.

If you plan on using advanced or intricate designs in your dream deck, make sure to flesh out those ideas fully before looking for a deck builder as some may not be familiar with that sort of design, and would therefore be less suited for the job.

Figure out what the cost would be to build the deck without a professional

Going into a conversation with a contractor prepared is key. Of course, it’s going to be more expensive to use the services of a professional deck builder in Mississauga, but that doesn’t mean you should leave everything to blind trust. Have an understanding of what it would cost to do it yourself, and go into negotiations with a fair middle ground to work towards the overall cost. If you’re not sure what Things to Consider When Building a Deck, check out our comprehensive guide.

Looking for a Deck Builder

Word of Mouth

Word of mouth is the way most Carpenters, especially deck builders, make their money. When it comes to decks, it’s hard for happy customers to not constantly brag about just how gorgeous their brand-new deck is, and just how much better it is compared to their neighbours. These satisfied customers are also quick to recommend the same deck builders to whoever asks. If you know anyone that had a project done, especially ones that may look similar to what your ideal build looks like, make sure to inquire with them about deck builders nearby.

Reading reviews and websites

Checking out reviews is essentially word of mouth from people you don’t know. You can learn a lot about a potential deck builder just by reading the reviews left for them on sites like Google or Homestars. They say a business is only as good as its worst review, so check out what others have had to say about them, and make your decision from there. Keep in mind that everything should still be taken with a grain of salt, and further research can come in handy.
You should also take the time to check on the websites of the deck builders, as you’ll find a much more comprehensive outline of their services, and what sorts of jobs they’ve done in the past. Check out how long the company has been in business, as older companies tend to be more reputable.

Mississauga Decks & Trim building a deck

Chat With Your Chosen Deck Builder

So you found a couple of suitable candidates for the job. Now comes the really important part – actually speaking with them, and becoming the boss that you are. You’re essentially interviewing the deck builder for a job, and like any good HR representative, you need to make sure that this is the right person/company for it. Here are a couple of questions you should consider asking during this part of the process.

Do they have proof of licensing and insurance?

Is there a regular crew that they work/handle projects with?

If something goes wrong, how will problems be handled, and how will unexpected costs be factored into the overall work?

Ask about their building/planning process.

Ask to view some of their previous builds.

Have they done projects similar to this one, and are they capable of handling intricate/advanced designs (if you have them)?

Do they mostly work with suburban or urban houses? A deck builder in Mississauga vs. one in Toronto has more than likely worked on different styles of projects.

What materials do they have the most experience working with?

Ask for suggestions/if there’s room for improvement on the build.

What sort of extras/features would work with this build, and do they have experience implementing these aspects into the deck?

What would be the expected timeline for this sort of project?


You should also make sure to ask for direct references from customers that were satisfied working with these specific deck builders. Online reviews and single cases of word of mouth in some cases aren’t enough to gauge an accurate review of the deck builder’s work.

Getting Down to Paperwork

You’ve found a deck builder in Mississauga that you trust to build your dream deck, it’s time for paperwork. Make sure you see a copy of their licensing and insurance, as this makes them all the more credible, and should make you all the more reassured. Ask about how payment will work. Is there a payment plan or a schedule depending on the cost of the project? Is there a way to set up that sort of term-based payment system? Lastly, make sure you get a firm price for the deck project.

The End Result

You did it! Days of relaxation and recovery suddenly seem closer than ever, and all it took was a fair amount of leg work and finding the right person for the job. Rest easy knowing you will soon be able to relax on your gorgeous deck!

Aluminum cocktail railings with heat-treated ash upper deck built by MDT.

Best part? Not once will you have to swing a hammer, because you did your research and placed your trust in the best people at your disposal. If you’re still looking for a custom deck builder in Mississauga, check out Mississauga Decks and Trim; anything you can dream of, we can build!

Categories
Deck Building Decks

Top 3 Questions to Ask Deck Builders in Mississauga

So you want to build a deck to enhance your outdoor space, but there are so many deck builders in Mississauga to choose from, so where do you start? 

Well, with the answer to these questions, you may find the choice isn’t so overwhelming after all and the deck building contractor best suited to your needs will soon stand out from the crowd.

The first step of course is deciding whether it is time to replace your deck. If you’re not sure, it may be beneficial to check out: Is It Time to Replace Your Deck? before reading on. Once you’ve decided that you do need to replace your deck, the second step is finding certified deck builders in Mississauga who also have a lot of satisfied clients. It isn’t enough for a deck building contractor to just be certified, you want to ensure that your needs as the client will be met, which includes communication, objectives, and timelines.

Start from the comfort of your mobile phone. Go online and look for companies that have a gallery showcasing previous work. If you see items that appeal to you, check to see if they have good reviews for both their work as well as how well they communicate and interact with clients for the duration of the project. You may have already decided that you want to go with a particular material, for example, composite decking, so focus on companies that are already familiar with working with this material. Maybe you even have a design in mind already. If that’s the case you may also want to set up consultations with custom deck designers and construction companies that have experience in the kind of project you are envisioning for your property. 

For more information on How to Find a Quality Deck Builder in Mississauga, click here. 

On the other hand, if all you know is that you want to expand the use of your home and are not quite sure how to do it, a company that offers everything from deck design to planning and even helping acquire permits may be the way to go. This means that you could end up with a plan incorporating unique features you always wanted but didn’t know how to include. After all, you may find out you have space for a fire pit or a custom gazebo with that designated hot tub space you always wanted, or even a play area for your children. 

Building a new deck can be so exciting but let’s be honest, a little daunting as well, so here are the 3 questions you should ask deck builders in Mississauga once you’ve narrowed down your choices.

  1. What Materials Do They Use to Build Your Deck?

You want the best quality materials with great durability for your deck building or outdoor project. A deck is exposed to weather and hard wear and tear, and you want it to last for years to come. A deck-building company that only uses the best quality materials is a good sign that they understand that a quality and custom deck should be built to last. Not sure which materials you want to use? Read more about the difference between PVC vs composite decks here. 

  1. Are They Licensed and Insured for Deck Building Projects?

You want to make sure you’re protected should there be any issue with the deck building project, and yes, you are within your rights to ask to see what licences and insurances are held by the contractors. A great deck-building contractor will be one who is also able to help you obtain the permissions and legal permits you may need to acquire in order to pursue your project.

  1. What Warranty Do They Offer for Their Decks and Outdoor Structures?

The right contractor to build your deck will not only work with materials with long-term warranties but will also offer a reassuring warranty for their own work.

It may be tempting to go for the lower-priced option for your decking but think of your deck or outdoor structure as an investment. A beautiful deck, custom gazebo, or other outdoor living features not only enhances your lifestyle but also increases the value of your home. Therefore, these seemingly simple questions will quickly eliminate options that seem too good to be true. 

With years of international expertise and a solid reputation in the Greater Toronto area, Mississagua Decks and Trim is a licensed and insured deck-building company that uses the highest-grade deck-building materials and offers a 10- year warranty on all of their high-end custom decks and outdoor structures. 

Chat with us today to learn more!

Categories
Decks

Things to Consider When Building a Deck

Let’s be honest, it hasn’t been the best year, let alone the best summer for spending time out back, inviting friends over, and hanging out on that deck you’ve been dreaming about. Maybe building a deck hasn’t been the first thing on your mind. But it’s about time you got back to thinking about how you’re gonna finish that project you’ve been dreaming about. It’s time to plan ahead and make the most out of next year’s hot months. It’s time to build a deck (or at least start planning).

So break out the toolbox, consult with your partner, and get started on your new deck. Or if the YouTube tutorials are too much, we always recommend reaching out to hire your favourite Mississauga deck builders (pssst, it’s us).

Here are a couple of tips and things to consider before you get started on construction. Remember, planning is half the battle.

#1 – What’s the Deck Going to be Used For?

It’s easy to jump headfirst into a project without considering what it’s actually going to be used for. Every project you undertake should always have a utility at the end of the day, and that’s no different in deck building. Mississauga or any other suburban area has always been great for families looking to have their own space and to get a chance to relax.

If you want a deck perfect for relaxing, design it with space for things like a hammock or garden sofas in mind. If grilling is your passion, plan for adequate grilling space. Invest in stone or brick walls for fire safety. Transform your space into a top-of-the-line outdoor kitchen with a pizza stove. Make sure you know what you want and plan with that purpose in mind.

#2 – Features

This is the part of deck building that you daydream about the most. Sure, it’s important to think about what materials you’re going to be using, or the size of your masterpiece, but what we’re really picturing is firing up the grill, or where that fire pit should go, or if we’re really gonna get bold and install a bar for those extra spicy nights outback.

Make sure to understand the amount of space you’re working with when thinking about what extra features you want on your deck. After all, you don’t want to be crowded while you’re manning the grill. With so many options at your disposal, it can be easy to get overwhelmed.

#3 – Let Your Space Shine

Cedar rooftop deck, with waterproof built-in bench storage - Mississauga Decks and Trim

The best thing about deck building in Mississauga is just how much space you have to work with. With space comes the freedom to let your imagination run wild, so have fun with it. But you can still build a great deck without a massive backyard. With careful planning and maybe a hint of consultation from some of the best deck builders Mississauga has to offer, you can make the most out of the space you’re working with. Relaxing on your deck is best when you don’t feel cramped, so let your deck breathe, and let your space shine. Sometimes less is more (especially when thinking about add-ons and extra features).  Consider things like built-ins as a way to maximize space on smaller decks.

Your greatest foe when it comes to building a deck won’t be your own will to get at it, nor will it be the envious neighbours. Your greatest foe is Mother Nature, and you need to make sure you accommodate her. She can be the best and the worst dinner guest. Mississauga deck builders know this better than anyone else and should consider how nature will affect the shape, size, and type of deck being built.

In cold weather, regular wood will expand and contract, warping your deck.

If you don’t mind straying away from wood for your deck, look into composite decking materials. It is the more affordable option in the low-maintenance product line with lots of choices when it comes to pricing and esthetic options.

If you want the best cold and rainy weather protection out there, check out PVC for your deck. It is a premium product that is great around high moisture areas such as pools and hot tubs.

#5 – Shading

Speaking of shading – look, the sun is nice and all, but sometimes shade is key. Shade is ESSENTIAL to any great deck. When planning out how your deck is gonna look, make sure that when needed, you can retreat to an umbrella or gazebo to escape the sun and enjoy the cool vibes.

Investing in a little cover from the elements goes a long way in making sure that you and everyone at the barbecue are cool as cucumbers.

#6 – Compliment your home

Fiberon deck with spigot glass railings - Mississauga Decks and Trim

A deck is an add-on to your home, so make sure that it all fits together. You don’t want your deck to stick out like a sore thumb. The colour or stain on the wood should match or complement the brick of your home. A grey PVC deck with a light-coloured brick home just doesn’t go together.

You should also take into account the style of your home and what style deck would suit it best. If your home is a Greek revival, rocking a contemporary deck feels out of place

You also don’t want your deck size to be too big in comparison to your home. Sometimes a smaller deck works best depending on the size of your home.

 

#7 – Check your local building codes!

If you haven’t read up on the construction by-laws in your area, that should be one of the first steps you take. Building without a permit can be extremely costly, and if you need one for your project, getting your hands on one isn’t a hard process, and should never be neglected. Deck builders in Mississauga or anywhere else should never neglect the laws that are enforced where they live.

Though the summer is on its last legs, it’s important to plan for the future. Building a deck is no quick and easy process, especially with the sheer number of factors that SHOULD be considered when undertaking such a big build. But a good, and smartly built deck can bring a house together and make it feel like a home, no matter the season.

Times like these are what we’ve been ceaselessly dreaming about since the world shut down. As the world starts to return to a degree to normalcy, it’s time to get that deck ready, that grill fired up, and those throw pillows on your garden sofa nice and fluffed. But first, take all the steps necessary to plan out how your deck will take shape, and turn those dreams into a reality.

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