Posted on: 22 December 2020Share
When you're thinking about your impending new deck, your thoughts will probably be limited to all the wonderful days you'll spend relaxing in your brand new outdoor space. You probably won't be thinking about the flammability of this addition to your home. And yet, perhaps this should figure into your plans.
Thinking About Fire
Arguably, any new construction project in Australia, whether it's big or small, commercial or residential, should consider matters of flammability. After all, the nation is no stranger to the devastation of bushfires. There are also other factors. Perhaps there's an existing backyard BBQ in the vicinity of your new deck or perhaps you're thinking of adding one. Maybe your household includes a smoker, who might pop out onto the deck to light up. Suddenly, thinking about the flammability of wooden decks becomes very sensible indeed. But what can you do to protect your new deck from the possibility of a fire? You have a number of options.
Fire protection shouldn't be an afterthought, but it technically can be. Any wooden deck can be protected with a flame retardant spray, creating a coating that will discourage a fire from taking hold. This is the least effective option since the protection won't be as comprehensive as other options, and regular reapplications are necessary.
Flame Retardant Wood
The idea of flame retardant wood seems like a contradiction. Isn't wood, by its very nature, flammable? Not if it has flame retardant integrated into it. When the wood is milled and shaped into decking, it's treated with a long-lasting fire-resistant chemical. This treated wood is still 100% natural wood, simply with an invisible upgrade.
WPC means wood plastic composite and is an inexpensive option that is highly durable while offering a considerable degree of fire resistance. It looks just like natural wood, but the plastic components sharply reduce the overall flammability of the finished deck.
Metal isn't flammable, so why not create a space that can't in fact catch on fire? The entirety of your new deck could be made from aluminium, but this will substantially increase the cost of the project. A better bet is to have a wooden deck, which is then finished with the addition of aluminium decking boards.
Nobody is going to build a deck with the intention that it will one day be at risk from a fire. And yet, since this possibility cannot be ruled out, it's reasonable to incorporate some level of fire resistance into its design and construction. Reach out to a professional to discuss fire-resistance and a new deck.