New Blog Coming and Simplify Your Life

It's August already, and the first week of the month is National Simplify Your Life week. We thought it would be a great time to announce our new Lifestyle Blog to be introduced this month with our new blogger, Denise Cripps. We already share stories around decking, construction, energy savings and more, but thought we could round it out with the addition of some lifestyle stories on how to enjoy these things and how they may affect your everyday life or style perspective.  To give you a taste of what's to come, Denise wrote the following story in honor of National Simplify Your Live Week.... read more

Best tool for removing deck boards quickly

  Looking to demolish or reskin your treated lumber deck or composite deck surface? Consider using the Deck Wrecker for fast and easy removal of deck boards. This easy-to-use tool has several great features and benefits that make it the best tool for deck board removal. Easily removes deck boards The Deck Wrecker's curved rocker design rolls onto joists for quick board removal. Provides Maximum Leverage The Deck Wrecker's 44-inch fiberglass handle saves your back, hands and fingers from the strain of conventional decking removal. The padded handle provides extra comfort and grip. Compatible... read more

Abaco Tropical Hardwood Decking featured at tradeshow

The 2012 JLC Live Tradeshow at the Rhode Island Convention Center featured many great hands-on demonstrations like Abaco Hardwood Decking. The Abaco Tropical Hardwood Decking booth was packed with deck building pros wanting to know more about the decking and railing system. Also featured in the Abaco booth was the Pro Plug Fastening System from Starborn Industries. The Pro Plug System has been engineered to maximize performance and provide beautiful results. Drill, screw, glue and plug in under 20 seconds with the Abaco Pro Plug System. Secure your Abaco hardwood deck boards with a proven... read more

Top tips for maintaining your deck

Decks are a great “value add” for residents, but property managers face plenty of risks—including having a deck collapse—if their deck isn’t regularly inspected and maintained. It’s happening more frequently than many property managers and homeowners realize. Between 2003 and 2007, the Consumer Product Safety Commission reported 224,740 injuries caused by outdoor decks and porches. “What’s happening across this country is an epidemic at this point,” says Michael Beaudry, executive vice president of the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA), adding that “in most cases if a deck... read more

Abaco Pro Plug Fastening System - A perfect fit for tropical hardwood decking

Drill, screw, glue and plug in under 20 seconds with the Abaco Pro Plug® System. Secure your Abaco hardwood deck boards with a proven engineered system. The Abaco ProPlug system has been precisely engineered to maximize performance and provide beautiful results. This fastening system makes securing and plugging quick and easy. Pro Plug system has been shown to significantly cut installation time when compared to other plug installation methods. So if you value strength of top down fastening and a high-quality finished look of hardwood plugs, put the Abaco Pro Plug System to work on your next... read more

Decorative, metal fascia corners add unique touch to decking

Latitudes Composite Decking bolsters its deck accessory lineup with decorative, metal fascia corners. The new fascia corners will be available in the spring of 2012 and can be seen in the Latitudes booth (W429) during the International Builders’ Show in Orlando. Latitudes decorative fascia corners are a stylish way to dress up deck skirting and cover corner joints. Each corner is sold individually and installs easily with eight color-matched screws (provided). Made of stainless steel and powder-coated black, fascia corners are available in Leaf and Ridge designs and are offered in 7,” 9” and... read more

How do I prepare my deck for cold weather?

Basic maintenance to prep your treated wood deck for cold weather can help ensure it will endure the cold or snowy season in great shape. Thoroughly clean the decking, posts and railings using an appropriate cleaning product. If your deck boards and deck railings are made of wood and showing some wear, consider giving them a fresh coat of stain or sealant. It’s also a good idea to check for nail heads popping up, loose or damaged boards, posts, and railings. Better to repair them now so you’re only worrying about how to enjoy your outdoor living space and not spring maintenance when the... read more

Update your deck or patio with tropical hardwood Ipe deck tiles

Thinking about remodeling or resurfacing your deck or patio? Interlocking deck tiles are rapidly becoming one of the easiest ways to do so, especially because these modular wood tiles are able to be installed by almost anyone.How to install deck tilesStart by clearing your deck or patio of debris and furniture. If installing on an existing wood deck surface, replace any rotted or warped deck boards and make sure there are no protruding nails or screws. The surface your tiles will be installed on should be as flat and level as possible to prevent the tiles from shifting.Once your surface... read more

Using a hidden deck fastener system to achieve proper spacing for composite deck boards

If you're considering replacing / refacing your old worn out lumber deck boards with new composite deck boards, make sure you have proper board spacing based on the manufacturer's recommendations.When composite deck boards are not spaced correctly you’re setting yourself up for deck drainage issues, dirt and debris buildup and potential expansion/contraction problems, as deck boards expand and contract with changes in the temperature.One of the best solutions to achieve proper spacing on composite deck boards is to use a hidden fastener system to install your decking instead of deck screws.... read more

How to get rid of chalk lines on decking

Before you snap a single chalk line, make sure you've got the right type of chalk for the application. High permanence chalk lines will most likely discolor a composite deck or lumber deck surface, so I recommend using only dust off marking chalk (Irwin brand - purple is recommended by many deck builders). Never use permanent chalk to snap a line where you'll eventually be walking or where it will be viewable. If you accidentally snap a chalk line with a bright color or with a permanent chalk, immediately scrub the area with soap and hot water to help remove the stain. For stubborn chalk... read more

May is deck safety month. Is your deck safe?

Your deck is the perfect place to enjoy the warm weather with family and friends. And an unsafe deck could possibly collapse, causing serious injuries to you and your guests.The number of deck failures and resulting injuries has been increasing at an alarming rate. Between 2000 and 2008, there were at least 30 deaths reported as a direct result of deck collapses, and more than 75 percent of people on a deck when it collapses are injured or killed. With 40 million decks in the United States that are more than 20 years old, it's important for homeowners to check their deck."The deck is the most... read more

Make an old deck look new again. Resurface, reuse.

The easiest way to renew your pressure treated wood deck is to thoroughly clean it of dirt and debris. Also, make sure all the lumber fasteners are countersunk into the surface. Scrub rust marks and stains from the surface, then sand down any visible imperfections in the wood deck surface with a portable walk behind sander. These deck sanders make quick work when sanding wood decks and can be rented from your local equipment rental outlet.If a board's appearance can’t be revived, consider flipping the board and using the other face. If rot has set in or a plank is split, then you should... read more

Choosing the best composite decking and railing

There are several composite decking options on the market, so it can be overwhelming choosing the right one for your home. Your local building material dealer or builder can help recommended a composite deck product, but ultimately it's up to you as the homeowner to select the best composite decking for your taste and outdoor living area.Lumber and building material dealers typically carry a variety of top composite decking brands from various manufacturers. Each brand will have differences in appearance and composition (wood to plastic ratio, high-density plastic, low-density plastic,... read more

Save time and money by refacing your deck surface

Exposed decks take a beating from Mother Nature, and general wear and tear from moving outdoor furniture around, kids playing and occasionally the family pet. Whether your deck has constant sun beating down on its surface or you live in an area that typically gets a lot of rain or has harsh winters, your wood deck boards may wear faster than expected and become unsightly or even dangerous to walk on. Provided your deck structure (framework underneath decking boards) is solid and up to code, consider refacing / replanking the surface (deck boards)—It's more cost-effective and most DIYers... read more

Make a splash with pool decking and railing

Composite decking is an excellent choice for above or in-ground pool decks. Whether you're a do-it-yourself or a professional deck builder, consider installing composite deck building material in your pool or spa area for its aesthetics, barefoot friendly, slip-resistant surface and its low maintenance performance. Most composite lumber deck boards now days are available with hidden fasteners and in several attractive colors to complement your home and outdoor living area. When planning your new composite lumber pool deck, don’t let the deck railing system be an afterthought. There are several... read more

Add flair to your composite lumber deck surface

Create your own one-of-a-kind deck surface by adding a deck inlay or border accent. To add a personal touch of flair, consider incorporating a unique deck design that uses multiple colors of composite lumber decking along with different surface patterns (woodgrain, brushed or smooth). Most composite wood manufacturers offer dual-sided boards that feature two distinct finishes on one plank. Whether you're looking to incorporate a sophisticated design, like a compass rose, or simply adding a contrasting border color or deck surface, composite wood decking is one of the most versatile deck... read more

Care and cleaning for composite decking

Since composite wood decking is low maintenance, periodic washing with soap and water will remove surface dirt and chalk that accumulate on the composite deck surface. This will also prevent the buildup of pollen and debris that can cause mold and mildew growth. Pressure washers (with fan-tip nozzle) should be used for wetting and rinsing only. Pressure washers should not be used to “blast off” soiling agents; attempting to do so can drive the dirt deeper into the composite deck boards. In most cases, applying the cleaning agent with a pump sprayer and scrubbing thoroughly with a synthetic... read more

Hidden deck fasteners

If you prefer the look of a deck surface without exposed nails or screw-heads, then consider using a hidden fastener system. Using hidden deck fasteners is a great way to hide unsightly screw holes in both pressure treated decking and composite wood decking. These deck accessories can be used on virtually any type of decking material, from composite wood and pressure treated wood, to tropical hardwoods. The most popular hidden fasteners are made of UV resistant plastic or metal. These hidden fasteners include Equator (made specifically for composite decking), TigerClaw, Eb-Ty and Lumber... read more

Universal Forest Products is the nation's leading manufacturer and distributor of wood and wood-alternative products to the retail building materials, industrial packaging/components, manufactured housing, residential construction and commercial construction & concrete forming markets.