Choosing Wood to Build Your Deck

Adding a deck to your home is a great way to create more usable outdoor space. Whether you use it to grill on Sundays, do yoga in the mornings or as a space for your kids to play, your deck is useful in all types of situations.

One thing some homeowners don’t consider, however, is the type of wood they’ll build with. Choosing a wood that isn’t conducive to outdoor building can result in rotting, molding and other problems that require replacement. There are three types of wood most people use to build their decks to avoid this problem.


If you’re building from scratch instead of using something like Bison wood tiles, then redwood is a great option for you. It’s a stable wood that holds seals and stains better than most. It is recommended to seal your redwood deck periodically to add a little extra protection from the elements.

The only downside to redwood is that it’s one of the most expensive options on the market. If you’re building a small deck, you might be able to find enough redwood for the project at a reasonable price. For larger projects, however, you might need to look at a cheaper option.


Cedar is another type of wood that’s great for decks. It’s a soft wood, but that doesn’t mean it can’t handle a hard job. It’s naturally resistant to water and insects, which has made it the go-to decking option for years. It’s still recommended to seal this wood when building your deck for that extra level of protection.

The cost of cedar is more affordable than redwood depending on where you source it. Some people have started worrying that historic cedars are in danger of extinction because of the lumber industry, so that could affect price in some areas as well.

Pressure-Treated Lumber

This wood is widely used to build decks and is often builders’ first thought. That’s because the companies that make this wood treat it to be water and insect-resistant as well as strong. It’s widely available in the U.S. and by far the most cost-efficient option for homeowners. If you’re not picky about having natural wood in your deck, then pressure-treated lumber will save you some money on supplies.

Building a deck is a fun project, but before you get started make sure you’ve chosen and good wood that will last for years to come.