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Why Decking is Still the Best Problem Solver in the Garden

Decking became popular a number of years ago as a powerful solution to a ton of different problems in the home, but there’s absolutely no reason why you can’t put an inventive, modern spin on it, and create the garden you’ve always wanted, free from that ugly ex-compost heap area, or the swampy lawn.

Easier Access to Home

Let’s face it, there are a lot of homes out there, especially older or Victorian properties, that don’t have great accessibility. I’m talking uneven, steep steps and awkward areas in general. This is less than ideal when it comes to having elderly or disabled friends or relatives round.

Remodelling entire chunks of the property in order to better accommodate people’s needs isn’t out of the question, but it can be extremely expensive, slow and potentially permanently change the period look of a home.

On the other hand, you’ve got quality decking as an option. Not only can this provide better access, with either ramps or easier steps, but it also doesn’t change the actual property anywhere near as much as the alternative.  

No More Muddy Footprints

If you’re forever having to deal with the kids and pets muddy tracks through your home, decking could make for an ideal buffer zone allowing some serious shoe-wiping before stepping in. Plus, it gives everyone somewhere to go outside, year-round, without risk of tracking mud inside the home. That’s always going to pay for itself in saved cleaning time alone!

Garden Use Year Round

Speaking of which, decking can give you the use of your garden all year round. If you live in one of the many parts of the UK that have to deal with eight months of rainy grey weather a year, paying for major changes to your garden can seem like a tough pill to swallow.

However, if you have decking, you’re elevated off the ground. That means that you’re away from the water-logged lawn, and all that mud, and you’re able to sit outside all year round.

Put out some quality garden furniture and maybe an outdoor heater, and you’ve got somewhere to dine al fresco no matter the weather. Decking could help you get vastly more use out of your garden.

Endless Style Potential

One of the best things about decking is the sheer amount of design potential inherent to them. A quick browse on Pinterest shows up a ton of inventive designs home-owners have created with their own garden decking.

You’ve got to remember that at the core of things, decking is a blank structure, ready to be covered in colour, plant life, whatever you can imagine, and the overall shape and style is totally up to you.

Low Cost

Compared to massive changes you could be making in your garden, like installing a patio, for instance, decking is vastly cheaper, and an easy and straightforward way to deal with an absolute litany of garden problems, from awkward, ugly areas to home accessibility.

Timber constructed garden fences

Timber constructed garden fences

When choosing a garden fence you will soon realise that there are many different varieties available. Each style offers something a little different; so it is important that you find out your options before you purchase.
There are four main qualities that a fence can have, the question is, which quality meets your requirements?

Privacy

One of the main reasons homeowners opt for a garden fence is to provide privacy for the home and grounds. These days many properties are built in smaller areas, so are in close proximity to one another, are close to a road or public footpath. By choosing traditional fence panels such as closeboard fencing you are able to ‘close off’ your garden to neighbours, foot and road traffic.

Security

Installing a fence around your property can be an added security measure. If your property is amongst lots of other properties a fence acts as a secure barrier, clearly marking out your boundary lines.

Decorative

Fences are often installed around the garden to enhance the visual appearance of the property. They don’t have to create privacy or provide security, they are simply chosen for their look and style. Homeowners will often replace or re-paint fences if they intend on the selling the property, believing that it can add selling appeal and value.

Safety

An enclosed garden offers safe outdoor space for children to play in, without the worry of them running into a road or other dangers. Likewise, fences are often installed so that family pets can use the outdoor space without leaving the boundaries of the property.

Maintenance and Repairs

Installing a new fence can be costly, depending on the style you choose and the size of your garden. With this in mind if your fence sustains damage it is worth finding out if it can be repaired rather than replaced:

Rotting, mouldy wood – All fences will eventually attract mould due to the changes in the weather. If you see any evidence of mould you can usually clean it off before the problem takes hold. Repairing rotten wood is not so straightforward. If the rot hasn’t spread and it is feasible to isolate and replace the rotten panel, this can be enough to save the entire fence. It is worth remembering that too much ‘patching-up’ can affect the overall structure of the fence.

Unstable fence posts – Over time, due to weathering and natural ground movement fence posts can become loose (though remains standing). To remedy this insert a repair spur (a wedge of wood) into the fence post hole in the ground, to reduce the posts movement. For added strength pour concrete into the post hole or bolt the spur to the post.

Loose panels – Common at this time of year as the weather takes a turn for the worst. If the fence panel is in good condition and worth saving, a temporary fix is to reattach the panel with extra nails.  Of course there will come a time when you will need to replace the entire fence. No fence will last forever, and there will be a time when it is no longer cost effective to attempt further repairs:

Rotting, mouldy wood – If the rot and mould has spread beyond the stage of cleaning it off or patching it up you will need to replace entire panels. This can, however, lead to further rot developing on other panels a few months later. To eliminate all traces of rot replace the entire fence.

Unstable fence posts – If a post has become unstable because of a breakage, replace the entire post. Inserting a spur may temporarily hold the post upright and in place but the solution is very short term.

Loose panels – You may have already reattached loose panels with extra nails, or panels may have become loose for the first time (usually after bad weather), whatever the cause, replacing the panels with new panels is the best solution.