Ipe decking is so long lasting, you will want to make sure that your deck fasteners last as long as your Ipe deck. Deck screws are the strongest way to install Ipe decking and stainless steel deck screws are the ideal method to fasten Ipe deck boards to deck joists for long lasting strength and structural bracing. If you are planning to fasten Ipe decking with screws, Ipe decking is so very hard and strong you must either pre-drill the Ipe deck boards or use a specialty screw to eliminate this step. There are three primary ways to fasten Ipe decking with deck screws:
The fanciest way to screw down Ipe deck boards is to pre-drill the screw holes with a countersink bit. The countersink bit will drill the hole and leave enough room for your screw head and an Ipe plug. After the deck boards are screwed down securely, pre-made Ipe deck plugs can be inserted into the screw holes to hide the head of the screw.
While this decking installation method is the most time consuming, many purists simply love the look of the finished Ipe deck with no visible screw heads. If you are planning to install your Ipe decking yourself, please be aware that this preparation step will take time. If you are planning to have a deck contractor install and build your Ipe deck, they will charge more labor for this method. Many Ipe decking owners believe it is well worth the initial price for the long lasting good looks.
Another installation method is to pre-drill the screw holes in the Ipe deck boards prior to installing, again using a countersink drill bit. This time the depth of the countersink is set shallower to allow only the top of the screw head to set slightly below the top of the deck board. This Ipe decking screw-down method saves the additional step of installing an Ipe plug to hide the screw head, but the screw head will remain visible after installation. Many do-it-yourselfers find this Ipe decking installation method to be the best for their Ipe deck project. If you are using a decking contractor to build your deck, this installation method is less costly than using Ipe plugs.
Due to new advances in deck screw technology, you can now use ‘self-drilling’ screws that eliminate the need to pre-drill the Ipe decking prior to screwing the Ipe deck boards down. We have tested many of these screws and have found the Ejector Screw to be the best and most reliable screw of its kind. With this Ipe decking screwing method, the screw heads will remain visible after installation.
The decking installation itself, however, is performed in about a quarter of the time of a typical pre-drill installation. For clients who do not mind seeing the screw heads on their Ipe decking, this method is the fastest way to install decking. Contractors use this fastening method for commercial and residential projects alike. Contractors for the Coney Island boardwalk and other high traffic walkways have used the Ejector Screw to keep their projects reliable, strong, on time and on budget.
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