Well, it's been a long, frustrating journey my friends. But the Trex saga has come to an end. At least from my ownership perspective. The new Ipe deck has been installed at our house and I must say, my wife and I are both very pleased with the results.
The picture above is of my original Trex deck. Blah! As a reader of this blog, I probably don't need to recap you with the constant nightmare that Trex has proven to be. The persistant mold, the loss of color, and the eventual deterioration of boards due to multiple applications of bleach-based cleaning solutions.
Done! Finished! Finito!
The next set of pictures are of my newly installed Ipe deck. What a world of difference!!! We used Ipe decking with Ipe clips so as not to have an visible screws. Cedar rail supports with an Ipe finish top rail. Black aluminum balusters, capped off with some copper post caps.
Now according to Trex, mold is an environmental condition that is in no way caused by or encouraged by Trex products. Okay, fine. So, here comes the real test with my new deck. I will do nothing more than sweep my deck and gently hose off for a routine cleaning procedure. If Trex is correct, that it doesn't matter what material is installed, then I should see black mold covering my deck in approximately 18-24 months. The clock is ticking Trex. I'll be very curious to see if my deck turns into a petri dish much like my old deck.
Friends and relatives with Ipe decks, or any natural material for that matter, have never has any sort of mold problems with their decks. Even neighbors who opted for composite material such as Azek haven't had any issues and they are going on three years.
I'm told that yearly maintenance for my new deck includes: washing off with a hose, and applying penofin oil to bring back the lustrous sheen you see in these pictures. This type of work is much more acceptable to me than the type of effort I was applying to my Trex deck.
The beauty of this is that when I'm done maintaining my deck on an annual basis, I will have something that I can be proud of; unlike my old Trex deck which after a lot of elbow grease was equivalent to polishing a turd.
I hope this blog has been informative and entertaining. I certainly hope that if you are looking to install a new deck, or replace an existing one, that you weigh all your options carefully before making a decision. I wish I would have.