Slippery decks is a slippery subject

Slippery decks is a slippery subject

Do you think slippery decks is a slippery subject? I do and here’s why. In my last 20 years I have seen a large proportion of timber decking products. They claim to do everything to prevent you from slipping but in actual fact do the opposite.

How to make decking slippery

To make your decking slippery simply choose a deck board that has grooves in it. Allow me to explain further. By removing some of the surface area (by creating grooves) you will reduce the friction between the decking surface and the bottom of your shoe. These grooves provide no “antislip” whatsoever and only serve the chance for you to slip more. The worst offender is the “reeded” decking board where the contact area is reduced by as much as 70%

The best timber decking boards are smooth

The best timber decking boards are smooth because they allow the full friction between your shoe and the decking surface. The smooth surface also makes for easy maintenance. Imagine how easy it must be to sand and clean a smooth decking surface… very.

The best timber decking boards are smooth because there is nowhere to trap the dirt. Dirt allows algae to grow, and the grooves trap the dirt. With the decking boards being smooth you will use much less decking oil too, as there is far less surface area when compared to a grooved decking board.

Which deck would you prefer to fall over onto?

Given that slips, trips and falls happen, especially in mid-summer party season, it begs a question. What surface is the safest to fall onto?

  1. A smooth deck?
  2. A grooved deck?
  3. A decking board with razor sharp carborundum strip in?

This one is simple; it has to be a smooth decking surface. Let’s face it, no one really wants to fall but considering that if you really must, it should be onto a smooth surface. I’d certainly prefer a smooth surface over a grooved surface. The worst has to be that stuff with the carborundum strips, imagine your knees, palms or face hitting this… it’s not for me.

If you had to have an antislip strip to make the Architect happy, what would you suggest. “ I suppose the rubber stuff is ok but doesn’t look great!”

To compromise or not

How about a smooth decking board that has a slight camber to the surface, I’ve recently been introduced to Grad who have worked with their board partners to offer this exact shape. They call it the “Comfort Profile”.

 If only this was fabricated from durable, environmentally friendly, easy to fit decking boards that had massive warranties… now wouldn’t that be a thing.

There is no compromise, leave your skin on your fingers, have easy maintenance, and go smooth.

Leave a comment