What screws to use for decking?
Owing to the testing conditions that wooden decks have to withstand at times (wind, rain, etc.), the decking screws that secure them in place have to be equally as resilient. Also known as deck fasteners, these types of screws are notably resistant to corrosion and coated in a material that prevents them from rusting.
What Makes Decking Fasteners Ideal
Decking fasteners also need to penetrate the material easily and sit flush with it. To this end, there are a variety of deck screws here at OSC that can drill into wooden decks with ease and sit flat on the surface. For achieving this flush finish, and to drive easily into the material, these screws are often self-drilling and countersunk.
As with any type of screw, decking screws come in all shapes and sizes to accommodate certain applications and materials. The term “shanks” refers to the width and length of a deck screw, and these features vary greatly for the type of application.
Another important consideration is the shape of the driver, or the part that the drill/drive tool connects with to rotate the screw. An example of the type of head you can find at OSC is the square head, ideal for preventing stripping in comparison to the Phillips head.
Why is CAMO the best-hidden fasteners for wood decking?
Easy-to-install Decking Screws
What makes decking screws straightforward to install is their sharp point, which allows for self-drilling without the need to pre-drill a pilot hole. These types of screws are known as self-tapping screws and often feature narrow, sharp points for creating a thread as the screw enters the material.
The shank has been designed specifically for the application of the decking fasteners. The shank refers to the thread and length of a screw, with the thread being measured in degrees. A longer thread-length corresponds with a shallower degree in its design, which creates the effect of propelling the screw while turning it in the material. Further to this, the design of the thread means it's more difficult to remove a deck screw than screw it in place.
Corrosion-Resistant Deck Fasteners
While the ease of screwing these deck fasteners in place is certainly an advantage, the main draw of these types of screws is their ability to resist corrosion and wear. These properties come from the material a screw is made from.
Decking screws are often made from stainless steel or coated in ceramic, which prevents straining of the timber on exterior wooden structures. Other materials ideal for deck fasteners include galvanized plated zinc and metals high in copper.
Working with Composite Decks
For screwing together composite decks, which are made from treated woods, special deck screw are required. With regular screws, there is the risk of creating a "mushroom" effect in your composite wood where the material bulges at the location of the screw.
At OSC, you can find specially-designed composite timber fasteners that are ideal for composite decks, having the right dimensions and handy coloured heads for convenient use.
Further related reading:
- Expert advice on laying decking boards
- The benefits of using hidden decking screws
- Get ready for summer with hidden deck fasteners