Choosing the Right Type of Hardwood Deck: Jarrah vs Merbau Timber

By Published On: 26/05/2022

Are you interested in putting up a deck to spruce up your backyard? Not sure where to start? You came to the right place! Whether you have a large backyard or a small one, you can still make the most out of the available space by decking.

The benefits of getting one range from providing a useful leisure area for warm summer days to hosting a barbeque with friends on game nights. If you’re already sold on the whole idea of decking, but are not sure what type of deck to get. We have some recommendations that might help you.

There are numerous kinds of decks, but two of the most prominent choices in Australia and overseas are Jarrah and Merbau decking. Here we provide some details on each type to help you make an informed decision.

Jarrah Timber Decking: The Aussie Classic

Abundant at the iron-rich soils of Western Australia, Jarrah wood has been considered as the go-to decking wood for most Australians. Many households across the country opt for this type since it is highly compatible with the climate of the land.

In addition, it is a very dense wood, making it the easy choice for homes in fire-prone areas. Due to its natural density, it is impervious to any premature rotting, and resistant to fungi and termites. It also works with oils and stains well.

It sits snugly as Class 2 of the three timber durability classes — neither highly durable nor unsuitable for outdoor use. This means that is has a relatively long lifespan of about 25 years, sometimes lasting even longer.

Before getting a Jarrah timber decking, you have to figure out your deck level first. For instance, ground-level decks would make the wood decay faster than if it were used for above-ground decks. Consider this factor before you choose to go with Jarrah timber decking.

The Downside of Jarrah

One of the cons with Jarrah wood is that it can be difficult to work with due to its interlocked grain. If you want to work with Jarrah, the best time would be when it’s still green. If mishandled, it could most likely blunt your tools.

Aside from this, Jarrah decks can be pricey. The specific maintenance required with this kind of decking could accumulate over the years. However, you have to remember that for a premium finish and wood quality, it is safe to say that with Jarrah-type you do get your money back.

Merbau Timber Decking: For Extreme Conditions

Merbau timber decking is the preferred solution for people who reside in areas with harsh weather conditions. It is definitely durable enough for outdoor use. It produces a natural oil called Tanning that protects it from extreme weather conditions and temperatures. This natural oil also prevents it from easily splitting, not to mention the beautiful finish it gives off the wood.

For those who live in beach-front zones, Merbau timber decking also has no difficulty withstanding the extraordinary impacts of seawater. Unlike Jarrah, Merbau does not need a lot of maintenance depending on the location and the conditions that it’s exposed to.

Merbau ranges from deep brownish tones to bright yellow colors, that like the Jarrah, will surely complement your home. It all depends on your preference.
Moreover, Merbau types can be morphed to almost any size backyard so if you have a small backyard, you don’t have to worry about having a chunky deck taking over the remaining space. With this highly pliable material, anything is possible.

The Downside of Merbau

Merbau is not native to Australia, so the only challenge this wood might pose is its cost. You should also know that the supply of Merbau around the world is greatly decreasing because of illegal and unsustainable harvesting processes.

It is important to have a beautiful backyard deck for your home, but we need to be conscious of the environmental downsides of getting one as well. If you are looking into getting a Merbau timber decking, do your research and make sure that you only get one from providers that practice legal and sustainable harvesting processes.

Still Confused? Contact Us!

Investing in a deck is a big step to take. Choosing the deck type itself could render one paralysed from the range of choices available in the market right now, and diving deep into it without the proper knowledge could get overwhelming and confusing. However, with the right people to help you with your project, you can make it a worthwhile undertaking.

Elite Decking, a Perth decking company, helps by working alongside you to realise your dream deck. We believe that the right backyard design that’s functional and beautiful can transform an ordinary house into a home. Over our years of experience, we have gained the expertise to advise, design, and provide the deck that truly suits all your needs and desire. Contact us to get a free quote.

For decking projects, call 0405 556 250.

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