When purchasing wood for a deck, what is are the questions / process used to properly select wood for stairs and the landing area:

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The photo shows new planks installed with older planks, weathered by the Florida sun. The details (paint / stain / etc) of the older planks are unknown. The new planks were cut to match the old planks.

When all is said and done, a decision must be made at Home Depot (or the like) and decide which plank of wood to be purchased. I would think dimensions are set, however, any guidance regarding any other decision points are appreciated. Thank you

  • I would only use 2 X lumber ( 1.5"). It is twice as stiff ,twice as strong ,and will last more than twice as long as the traditional 5/4 "decking.". But I don't like to feel a bounce when I step on a stair or deck. Commented Sep 4, 2020 at 15:18

1 Answer 1

  1. Durability.
  2. Appearance.

The end. :)

I suspect that you're asking what to use in your particular case. That looks like painted pressure-treated SPF (spruce/pine/fir) in 5/4x6 (five quarter by six inches--about 1" by 5-1/2" actual). It's very common. Be sure to let it dry adequately before painting.

Some brands call that "solid color stain", but to me anything that doesn't penetrate the wood and peels like that is just glorified paint. Anyway, look for that type of product to match what you have. If you're replacing it all consider the pre-stained "cedar tone" variety.

  • I agree never go below 5/4 and it looks like you have 3 stringers so 5/4 should be plenty in wood or composite, the one advantage with some composite’s is the color is in the mix and many are guaranteed for 20 years.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Sep 5, 2020 at 2:50

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