Brazilian ipe is a hardwood that is increasingly being used in outdoor decks. Ipe wood naturally grows in tropical climates, becoming very hard and resistant to decay, insects, and weathering. For example, when used for deck boards, ipe can last at least 40 years with minimal attention.
Tips on Brazilian Ipe decking
One homeowner recently had an ipe deck installed because one felt that this exotic hardwood was said to be virtually indestructible. Even though it was more expensive initially, people decided on ipe after calculating long-term cost savings plus almost no maintenance costs. The homeowners’ backyard retreat received an elegant tropical look due to the ipe boards’ rich red-brown and olive tones. In addition to adding depth and visual interest, each board’s colors were varied, and the grains had different patterns.
However, there are essential things to consider when installing brazilian ipe decking Florida. For instance, exotic woods like this one are extremely tough on cutting blades or drill bits due to their hardness and density. Many deck builders suggest using carbide-tipped power tools designed for professional use when working with ipe. The ordinary tools will be dull in no time. When working with ipe lumber, suitable protection for the hands, eyes, ears, and lungs is also necessary.
Likewise, ipe deck boards cannot be sealed or stained like traditional wood deck materials. Attempting to apply any film finish would not last long and might destroy the wood. It may disappoint homeowners who prefer to use colored deck stains to enhance or change their natural patina. It is best to allow ipe to naturally weather into silver-gray over time with periodic applications of a hardwood cleaner and brightener to revive its rich brown color.
Generally, adequately installed ipe decking should have minimal expansion and contraction despite harsh temperature swings. Do not use stainless steel fasteners and hardware because they may leave discoloration around insertion points due to the reaction between tannins in the wood and metal components. Adherence to the manufacturer’s spacing requirements will also prevent unattractive gaps due to natural shrinkage or expansion.
In many cases, this is the only decking material that can match Brazilian ipe’s performance and aesthetic appeal. Initially, its cost is higher than pressure-treated pine or cedar. As they are difficult to work with, installation and maintenance over time provide a lifetime of pleasure in a homeowner’s outdoor living space because they are durable and have rich color with grain.
The type of wood from tropical forests is often referred to as ironwood by users who would use it instead of any other deck material for their permanent backyard oasis, which is explained through the experiences.