Decking timber review
Mayfield’s decking timber review explains why we use timber substructures for our uPVC sundecks for static caravans and holiday homes.
Mayfield has been using timber in the construction of its decks for the past 26 years while the building industry has used it for a great deal longer and for good reason. Wood is the only truly sustainable material on earth and we can grow as much timber as we need from well-managed forests.
Using timber in construction is a great way to lock away carbon for long periods. Even when wood is eventually recycled, it releases its carbon slower back into the atmosphere compared to new releases of carbon from fossil fuels used to make products such as steel.
So timber, being relatively newly-grown and then returned directly to nature, is in effect ‘carbon neutral’. In addition, using local timber suppliers (which Mayfield encourages throughout their distributor network) dramatically reduces the miles to market, therefore reducing further environmental impact.
Softwoods are the most frequently-used timbers for construction. In order to comply with the building regulations they must always be strength graded and put into a ‘Strength Class’. In the UK, softwoods are graded visually, in accordance with BS 4978:2007, or by machine to EN 14081:2005.
All Mayfield supplied timbers have been machine graded to achieve a minimum of C16 Strength Class and the timber is stamped accordingly. (An independent body audits and checks the strength grading machine to ensure that the C16 strength graded timber we use complies with current legislation and guidelines).
How long will our timber last?
Using the correct timbers in construction is paramount to them being long lasting. Our sundecks are built so that they have plenty of airflow circulating underneath them which prevents moisture build up which can result in the timbers decaying.
We also have both high and low pressure preservative treatments in our timber to increase long-term durability. In fact Mayfield often come across sundecks that are over 20 years old with very little signs of timber decay on the subframes. A testament to the quality of the timbers we use.
What are the main advantages of timber?
There are many advantages using timber for the construction of our sundecks, which Mayfield has proven time and again. We can offer alternative products such as galvanised steel but they have drawbacks including rust, cost, environmental credentials and non-strength grading certification.
Revolutionary building materials are continuously being introduced which may offer advantages over timber, some of which Mayfield have explored and are developing for future products. However, for now timber is the preferred choice of materials to use for our substructures due to its durability, sustainability and price.
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All Mayfield supplied timbers have been machine graded to achieve a minimum of C16 Strength Class.
Both high and low pressure preservative treatments in our timber sub frames increase long-term durability. The above timber sub frame was installed in 1993.
Drawbacks to steel include rust, cost, environmental credentials and non-strength grading certification. The above galvanised sub frame was installed in 2002.