Bamboo is gaining popularity in the realm of outdoor living design and building. Bamboo itself has been used to create everyday objects for over 4000 years. Often being considered a scourge in a landscape, the plant we have taken for granted for so long is quickly becoming the center of attention as a durable, attractive material for interior and exterior home use.
This tough material has a long life and is honored as the Chinese symbol of longevity. Most people try to classify bamboo as a hardwood, but it is actually a natural grass. A highly stable material, it is stronger and more durable than nearly all wood. All of these desirable attributes combined with its amazing longevity make it an ideal building material for outdoor living spaces, such as decks and porches. Not to mention the luxurious and exotic aesthetic it adds to any setting.
The bamboo we use at Archadeck of Central CT for building decks is stronger than most hardwoods. We buy high-quality bamboo decking boards from MOSO®, a company that specializes in carbonized, fused bamboo decking. MOSO® uses a patented process to alter the hardness, dimensional stability, fire safety and durability of their product to a level superior to the best tropical hardwood species.
Bamboo decking is very resistant to all kinds of weather. This includes the wintery conditions that are common here in Central CT. In contrast, most wooden deck boards will show the effects of weather over a period of time. For example, after each rain, wood can swell because it absorbs water, and then it shrinks as it dries out. If you’ve had a wooden deck, you know that those boards can eventually warp and twist. Some types of wood stand up to the wrath of Mother Nature better than others, but bamboo beats them all. Bamboo does not swell or contract in response to moisture. Bamboo decking has a hard exterior, and its cellular interior is flexible and elastic. As a homeowner, you can rest easy knowing your bamboo deck will stand up to whatever Mother Nature throws at it.
Did we mention bamboo is beautiful? Bamboo lends an exotic flair to your outdoor living project, yet it will look right at home on your Woodbridge, Guilford, Madison or Cheshire deck or porch. Because it can be stained in a wide range of shades from light natural to dark chocolate, bamboo is a versatile exterior design element. The freedom of bamboo allows you to easily coordinate with your home’s exterior color palette. To keep its exotic appeal over the years, bamboo requires no more work than you would need to do for a hardwood deck; the actual maintenance is very similar.
Last but certainly not least is the sustainability aspect of bamboo. Bamboo is environmentally friendly and sustainable. When looking at the green aspect, it is the best choice for your deck or porch.
- Bamboo matures in 5-7 years, so crops are replenished constantly. Most hardwood used in the US comes from South America, where deforestation is a severe problem. It takes at least 50 years to grow hardwood trees.
- In terms of a carbon footprint, although we think of bamboo as mainly growing in Asia, it is also grown in the United States and South America.
- Bamboo is resistant to insects and doesn’t require pesticides or other harmful chemicals for protection as it grows.
- Bamboo absorbs 35% more carbon dioxide per acre than trees. (Remember: bamboo is not a tree; it is a grass).
If you are considering bamboo for your new Avon, Farmington, Cheshire, Guilford or Woodbridge, CT area deck or porch, contact us to learn more about this amazing material by calling (203) 793-7142 or email us at email@example.com.
At Archadeck of Central Connecticut, customer service means doing our very best to ensure you’re satisfied with our work at your home. Great customer service is one of the things that sets our business apart from other builders of outdoor living structures in the area. (In addition to our quality craftsmanship, of course!)
How do we know this? Our customers tell us.
How do we do it? Over the years, we have developed a design process that works every time. One of the most important steps in that process features our 3-D architectural design renderings.
3-D renderings provide much more insight than a traditional plan.
When we are working with you, clear and direct communication is vitally important. We’re only going to be working at your home for a number of weeks, but the work we’re doing there will affect your daily life for years. Without clear communication, we may not succeed in building the perfect outdoor living space for you and your family. You are expecting a lot from us, and we want to live up to those high expectations.
Our 3-D design renderings stimulate clear and direct communication in two ways.
3-D design renderings keep us talking
Once we get a good sense of what you have in mind for your new outdoor living space, we translate that into a visual interpretation, a set of computer-generated 3-D architectural renderings. Each set of renderings shows you at least three different points of view and one overhead floorplan layout.
We may go through a number of iterations of the design renderings and we’ll talk with you about them at each phase. Keeping that line of communication open means we encourage you several times to share your feedback and ideas — and any misgivings, if you have them. We want to know! We won’t be satisfied until you are thrilled with the design.
For example, here you can see 3-D drawings for one of our recent outdoor living projects. It’s a screened porch/deck deluxe outdoor living combination project in Woodbridge, CT, with skylights in the roof of the screened porch. In the Early Design image, the skylights were smaller. As we reviewed the drawings with our client, they mentioned that they thought the skylights should be bigger.
That’s great information!
It is far easier, (and less expensive), to change something during the design phase (IE. the size/type of window rather than making a “field change” during construction). It may not seem like a big deal, but if the client had not felt comfortable speaking up, we might have installed smaller skylights. Our collaborative process allows us an opportunity to provide a Revised design for consideration. Our goal is to avoid a situation where, every time that client went out onto the screened porch and looked up they think, I really wish those skylights were bigger. That’s not the feeling we want to leave any of our clients with!
3-D design renderings keep the ideas flowing
The first set of drawings presents a basic visualization of the project. Subsequent versions are collaborations working toward finalizing the design you’ll love. Clients consistently tell us that, looking over the renderings after each time we fine-tune them can trigger new ideas.
You can see intricate details in a 3-D design rendering that you cannot see in an ordinary 2-dimensional drawing. With a 2-dimensional plan, you can miss small things that may turn into big things once the project is completed. Looking at a 3-D rendering, we encourage you to visualize traffic flow from the house to the outdoor living space and throughout the outdoor space itself. We can place furniture in the rendering, to scale, so you can see what pieces will or won’t fit into your new deck and/or screened porch design.
If we are discussing alternate design ideas, we can use two sets of 3-D renderings to compare them and see which option is closer to what you have in mind. Or, the drawings could lead you to ask you about a third option we’ve not yet considered.
Take another look at these renderings of our recent project in Woodbridge, CT. We tried different ideas for the under-deck skirting. The client asked us to change the skirting from brown lattice to white after they saw a 3-D rendering of how the brown would look against the backdrop of the home’s siding. One idea leads to another. For helping you get a clearer view of how the finished project will look, one 3-D rendering is worth any number of words.
Using these computer-generated design renderings plays a huge role in the way we deliver exceptional customer service. Every version of the design carries us a step closer to our goal: making the client happy — from the initial design discussion to the completed project and for years to come.
If you’re ready to let us turn your ideas into 3-D design renderings for an outdoor living space at your home in Woodbridge, Farmington, Cheshire or anywhere else in Central Connecticut, call us at (203) 793-7142 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to get started. We promise you’ll appreciate our version of great customer service.
The answer: When you want to see through it!
Today’s featured project in Colchester, CT, combines a re-decking with a conversion from deck to screened porch, and it is a stunner. Two aspects stand out on this project. First, in replacing the original deck wall with tempered glass, we have opened up a whole new world for these homeowners. Second, the porch addition blends in so well with the cedar home, you would swear the porch had been there all along.
The Colchester homeowners had a wooden deck along the side of their beautiful, rustic cedar home. Since the deck was aging, it was time to have it re-decked or replaced. The homeowners wanted to turn most of the deck into a screened porch, and in the process they wanted a railing or wall system that they could actually see through. Archadeck of Central CT worked with them on a design to make that happen.
The original deck railing topped a wooden wall instead of pickets or balusters — great for privacy, but terrible for enjoying the outdoors. While the deck was lined with shrubs, the view was completely obscured, so people on the deck could not see them. They could only see the wall straight ahead and the sky above. The overall feeling on the original deck was that of being penned in.
The new design is something to celebrate. Most of the deck is now a porch with tempered glass below the railing where a wall once stood. Above the railing is screen. Anyone on the deck can now look out over the landscape, communing with nature while staying dry and protected from insects. The porch is light and airy with a ceiling fan to create a breeze when there is none.
A lot of work went into improving this Colchester outdoor living space, and the results were well worth the effort. First, we took the existing wooden deck apart and added necessary footings to make the deck level again. We also brought a beam up under the deck for additional support. In some projects, the entire deck needs to be removed, but in this case the footings and framework did not need to be replaced, just reinforced.
Once we had repaired the deck framework, we resurfaced the deck, replacing the original deck flooring with new material. The homeowners chose low-maintenance Fiberon Symmetry decking in the Cinnabar color to match the home. Fiberon Symmetry decking boards look and feel much like natural wood, but they are more durable. The outer layer surrounds all four sides and resists fading and staining; the durable composite core means no splintering, cracking, insect infestation or decay.
With the new deck surface in place, it was time to add the porch over it. We left a portion of the deck open for a barbecue grill, but most of it is now enclosed. A tempered glass wall makes up the lower portion below the deck railing, and we used ScreenEze screening to fill in above the railing — all the way up to the vaulted ceiling. For the railings we used western red cedar stained to match existing home.
Speaking of the vaulted ceiling, we designed it with the rafters exposed, so no one will feel penned up on this porch! A ceiling fan completes the scene.
The homeowners are elated with the new porch and the magnificent way it ties in to the cedar home and looks original to the home. You would never know it had been added on if we had not told you. It’s our secret.
Can we create a dream deck, porch or combination outdoor living space for you? If you are thinking about converting a deck to porch at your home in Colchester, Shelton, Avon, Farmington, Cheshire or anywhere else in Central Connecticut, call Archadeck of Central CT at (203) 793-7142, or email us at email@example.com to schedule your no-obligation consultation today.