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Old 05-06-2014, 05:59 PM   #1
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


I reinstalled flooring on my deck with PT around 3 weeks ago - since then we had some really heavy rain storms and I've noticed some of the boards shrunk and increased the gap between them. Some are about an 1/8 - 3/16 while others appear nearing 3/8" !

I know shrinkage is normal, but this much? What will it be like a year from now?
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Old 05-06-2014, 06:13 PM   #2
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


Likely around a half an inch gap. That is why at least arpund here I bang PT decking tight against each other. Ronn

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Old 05-06-2014, 06:33 PM   #3
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


Great - so some will be 1/4 and others around 1/2. That's going to look awful I fear
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Old 05-06-2014, 06:37 PM   #4
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


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Great - so some will be 1/4 and others around 1/2. That's going to look awful I fear
It's the least expensive decking material on the market, there's a reason for that.
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Old 05-06-2014, 06:39 PM   #5
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


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Great - so some will be 1/4 and others around 1/2. That's going to look awful I fear
Only if you are looking straight down.
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Old 05-06-2014, 06:47 PM   #6
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


exactly,your eye will not pick that up too much,the gap on most composites is 3/16 so your pretty much where it should be for drainage and allowing debris to fall thru

do you have a sealer on that yet?if not get one on asap
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Old 05-06-2014, 06:56 PM   #7
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


Well it's pressure treated wood - I was under the assumption it shouldn't be sealed for a few months??

It was pretty wet when I installed it.
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Old 05-06-2014, 08:07 PM   #8
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


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Well it's pressure treated wood - I was under the assumption it shouldn't be sealed for a few months??

It was pretty wet when I installed it.
I would ignore the advice to get a sealer on it. Virtually EVERYTHING that you read says to let it age out for like six months before putting anything on it.. And sealer on wet PT wood will do absolutely Nothing. Ron
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Old 05-06-2014, 08:12 PM   #9
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


The Flood Company used to make a product called Seasonall. It was for fresh new treated lumber. Went on clear and let the wood dry out more slowly over a period of time to help eliminate checking and warping and all the other things treated lumber does.
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Old 05-06-2014, 08:17 PM   #10
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


Weird because I believe it was on here that I was advised to wait...

I don't want to do clear, I want more of a semi-transparent finish.
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Old 05-06-2014, 08:18 PM   #11
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Here you go, this explains it all:

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEnKLhi83J8&sns=em[/ame]

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Old 05-06-2014, 08:25 PM   #12
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


Thanks - I looked up the old thread - this is what someone advised me. I will take a look at your URL. Appreciate the advice.

Edit: Touché on the URL - lol!


"1. Let the lumber cure after instillation. At least 3-9 months, though waiting up to 12-18 months can be ok. Treated lumber is made to withstand exterior conditions for a period of time with no treatment. Coating/sealing it before its had a chance to dry, and off gas the chemicals left from the treating process, almost always leads to failure. (This does not apply as much to kiln dried treated lumber)"
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Old 05-06-2014, 08:31 PM   #13
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


it is all about conditions. I've put it down and the area was shady with not much heat and it took forever for the treatment to cure out and for another deck the very next day in direct sun the boards are shrunk a lot.
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Old 05-06-2014, 08:44 PM   #14
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Yeah, it's not terribly hot out in NJ yet - mid 70s or so, but it has 100% sun from noon on. I don't have any trees for shade and my backyard faces southwest.
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Old 05-06-2014, 11:00 PM   #15
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Deck board shrinkage / gap


Get some finish on there asap. Why wait for it to dry out and crack/check. If it's kiln dried, do it right away..........

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