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Posted: 27.09.13

How to choose a reputable decking installer

How to choose a reputable decking installer

Decking is an excellent way of making the most of your client’s patio area, or extending their home into the garden – perfect for al fresco dining during the summer months. On commercial projects too, decking can be a cost effective method of making the external landscape an all year-round functional space.  The perceived value to the client far exceeds the actual cost of materials and installation.

With reasons like this, the decision to specify a deck area is often easier than finding an installer you can trust to do the job properly!

Here we look at some of the ways that you can tell when you’ve found a reliable decking installer:

Have they been approved by the decking manufacturer?

Most manufacturers know the importance of making sure their products are properly installed. That’s because they realise that if their products are installed incorrectly, it reflects badly on them, and that’s the last thing that they want.

As a result, many manufacturers offer training courses and back this up with detailed installation guidelines. Ask your decking installer to demonstrate that they work exactly as recommended, for instance, by showing you the manufacturer’s checklist and design guidelines.

Another advantage of choosing a reputable decking installer with in-depth understanding of the product is that if there was ever an issue with the decking it should make remedying the problem that much easier – the onus is on both the installer and the manufacturer to sort it out, rather than both trying to apportion blame on each other.

Can they provide reference?

Always ask for a reference before commissioning the services of a decking installer. If they are a reputable company they should be happy to provide this.

If they do give you a reference always follow it up. And, if you have the time, ask the person who is giving you the reference if you can take a look at their decking. It’s a great way to get an idea of how the decking on your project might look and also spot whether the tradesman followed basic installation guidelines.

These include making sure that the deck boards have been laid to ensure correct colour consistency. That’s because modern composite deck boards, although low maintenance, are manufactured to allow for subtle variation in surface appearance, just like timber. To enhance this natural visual appeal the decking installer should have laid the boards in the correct way to ensure colour consistency. It’s a simple rule to follow, but one that is so easy to forget.

Another factor to look out for when you look at a previous project is whether the installer has allowed sufficient expansion gaps across the decking. These gaps allow for slight movements in the planks as they expand and contract with the outside temperature. A sure sign that the decking installer has left insufficient gaps is if the boards are beginning to distort due to the sheer force of expansion.

The great thing about composite decking like Twinson Terrace from Deeplas is that it is a blend of wood and PVC-U that provides all the natural beauty and warmth of timber combined with the durability and low-maintenance of PVC-U.

The PVC-U content provides a splinter-free, UV-stable and insect resistant surface, with the added advantage of being impervious to water and rot, even after years of exposure to the elements.  At the same time your client gets all the natural beauty of timber, with no need for ongoing painting or preservative treatments.

For details of Twinson Terrace decking from Deeplas, please visit our decking page here