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Top 3 best patio floor coverings

Choosing the right covering for the floor of your new patio

patio plancher

Choosing the right floor covering

Are you tired of your old patio? This year, have you chosen to redo your layout in order to take full advantage of it? If this is the case, one of the most important points to choose is the floor covering that your future terrace will have . There are a multitude of products on the market. Some are better than others and the price ranges vary a lot. When comparing several types of coverings or between several companies offering the same type of product, rely on the following characteristics: quality, dimensions, price, warranty, long-term maintenance, installation time and the hardware and tools necessary for installation . With these elements, you will have a comparative basis. This will allow you to evaluate and make decisions in a more informed manner. In order to help you in your approach, we have made a top 3 of the best floor coverings for your future patio .

Photo: Quality composite terrace.

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1. Composite or PVC

Composite and PVC are increasingly popular materials for deck construction and it's not without reason! They are manufactured from scratch in a factory . Composite is a material made of sawdust glued and compacted with a plastic shell . PVC is made entirely of plastic materials . Contrary to popular belief, many companies choose to make their products from recycled materials . They are therefore ecological in several cases. Good quality composites and PVCs have several advantages. They offer a wide choice of colors . In addition, the look is similar to that of wood. They require no long-term maintenance , other than a little pressure cleaning at the start of the season. They are installed with clip systems which create a constant space between the boards. This technique also makes it possible to limit visible screws . A good quality composite will be only slightly warmer than wood stained the same color . Also, the lighter the color, the less warm it becomes. In addition, PVC being less dense, it retains heat less than composite. Both benefit from very long and comprehensive warranties which will save you hassle for several years to come.

To sum up

Finally, some recognized companies offer entry ranges that are barely more expensive than a wooden patio. It can therefore prove advantageous in the long term to invest a little more initially for this type of material. Just be careful not to be lured by the super low price of composite at a big box store. Purchasing a low-quality composite could prove to be a bad investment in many ways.

Photo: Patio with two-color composite decking.

patio composite

2. Western red cedar

Western red cedar is a wood that comes, as its name suggests, from the West. This tree called Thuya Plicateta grows in Canadian and North American forests . It is recognized by its distinctive smell, its more reddish color and its superb veining. Compared to Eastern white cedar, it comes from larger trees in controlled and regulated operations . It has the quality of having much fewer knots than its Eastern counterpart, so it is less prone to splitting . It turns out to be the most economical choice for a durable wooden patio (we obviously exclude treated wood which is not durable). However, it has the disadvantage of requiring maintenance, which generates significant costs in the long term . We suggest sanding and staining the wood with an exterior stain every 2 years for horizontal surfaces (floor, steps) and every 5 years for vertical surfaces (skirt, privacy wall). Depending on several factors such as sunshine, air (salt air for example) or use of the patio, this delay may be longer or shorter. Still take the time to calculate the costs to invest in the maintenance that must be done throughout the life of your terrace before opting for this type of covering, you might be surprised!

Photo: Patio with a knotty Western red cedar wood floor.

patio cèdre

3. Ipe

Lesser known, ipe is a variety of exotic wood from the forests of Central and South America , but more mainly from Brazil. This is the most durable choice of wood for the construction of your future patio. Ipe wood comes from sustainable, strictly regulated forests . Given its origins in warm countries, it is naturally resistant to humidity, rot as well as insects and mold . Its dense grain produces rather uniform boards, without knots or veins. Thanks to this characteristic, it is extremely resistant to deterioration . It has an average lifespan ranging from 50 to 75 years, incomparable to any other material. As for its maintenance, you can let it age naturally , then it will turn gray. However, to maintain its original appearance, oiling is necessary once or twice a year with a product specially designed for this purpose. You should expect a high price for this type of flooring , but it has a look and durability that is a big step ahead of its competitors.

Photo: Exotic ipe wood terrace.

patio ipé

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