Building a pool deck can be tricky business, especially if you’re doing it yourself. The best pool decks are resistant to the outdoor elements, easy on bare feet, and slip-proof. They should be easy to maintain and not too costly. While the most common deck materials like concrete, pavers, brick, or tile have benefits, there are also many less traditional materials that can make for an excellent substitute.
Bamboo is a much rarer pool deck material than other types of wood. However, it is harder than oak or maple and absorbs four times the amount of carbon dioxide as other hardwoods. Solid planks of bamboo are easily sealed and stained. Bamboo grows fast, does not often splinter or break and is environmentally friendly. Generally easy to maintain, bamboo decks will need extra protection in extremely cold or wet climates. If your area receives constant snow or rainfall, it is best to apply a good sealer on all sides, wax each plank, and allow proper ventilation underneath each piece. Since this is a very new material, there aren’t many standards to go by and any installation would definitely be more experimental.
Rubber decking is commonly used in public pools and theme parks, and the reasons they’re used is also why they would make for an excellent pool deck material for the home. The two best features are durability and ease of maintenance. It can easily be cleaned using a leaf-blower or some soap and water. Rubber decks don’t overheat and are cushiony on bare feet. They are slip resistant, fade resistant, and can handle a lot of wear and tear from the elements, making them an excellent choice for more extreme climates. Usually made from recycled rubber tires, this eco-friendly material comes in various colors and styles that mimic other types of deck options such as concrete, brick, or hardwood. It is seamless, porous, and allows for quick draining.
Interlocking rubber tiles can easily be self installed but poured-in-place rubber bond needs to be done by a professional, though the second is more durable. If a small area becomes damaged, it can easily be cut out and replaced. The drawback? It can sometimes be costly.
Recycled plastic lumber
This material is made of recycled plastic making it another eco-friendly option. The merits do not stop there. It can be made slip-proof, waterproof, and very resistant to tough outdoor conditions. This material can withstand mold, mildew, bacteria, and insects. It works well in more extreme climates so you won’t need to worry about warping, cracking or splintering. It can be easily maintained and cleaned, comes in a variety of colors and designs, and is UV protected against fading. At $30 to $45 per square foot, it is slightly more expensive than other materials, but its durability will make up for its cost. These easily installed, long-lasting materials are perfect for that no-hassle pool deck.
The variety of design options can help modernize your home and create a perfect frame for that pool. Though harder to come by than more traditional materials, these three options are definitely worth the effort. If you already have a solid pool deck in place, you can upgrade it using a spray-on coating, usually a concrete-blended product, which can lower the temperature of your deck on hot days and is easily maintained.