Can I Use Tongue and Groove Boards for Decking?

Can you build a deck with tongue and groove boards?


The answer is yes. Creating a deck with tongue and groove lumber is as easy as creating a deck with traditional boards. First, cut all of your pieces into appropriate lengths.

Next, coat any fresh cuts with an end sealer. This will ensure the end cuts don’t release moisture too fast (which reduces the changes of cracking or splitting.

Once your first board is in place, the rest of the job will go smoothly as you just need the other boards to fit snug into one another. If you need help fitting the boards into one another, use a grab clamp or two to help keep the boards in place. For installation, we suggest that you pre-drill a hole on a 45-degree angle where the tongue and the face meet. You will see a slight v-groove in this corner. Then, on that same 45-degree angle, drive a trim head screw through the pre-drilled hole, through the deck board into the floor joist.  The trim head screws are required because the head will sink into the corner where the v-groove is. This sinking action will allow the next deck board to slide into place and will perfectly conceal the previously installed screw head.


Some helpful tips to remember when using tongue and groove lumber for decking:

  • You must have 24” or more of open air space below the deck to use tongue and groove boards.
  • Leave at least 2 sides of the upper deck space open for cross ventilation.
  • Tongue and groove decking should be used for covered porches and patios only.
  • Do not allow standing water to collect under the deck. Ensure that the ground is adequately sloped under the deck to eliminate standing water under the structure.
  • If you install skirting around the perimeter of the deck, it is imperative that the skirting does not prevent cross ventilation.

When choosing your tongue and groove lumber, remember Ipe is a strong, dense material that is great for any outdoor project. Get your free Ipe decking quote directly from the mill. Contact today. Happy decking!2

Ipe Climbs Above the Rest


I was asked the other day ‘What’s so great about Ipe? What can you build with it?’ My response ‘Anything you need to get built!’  Ipe is one of the best building materials on the market today. You can build decks, boardwalks, stairs, railings, benches and more. It’s a proven performer in all harsh conditions and climates. Not to mention, it is naturally beautiful and insect free.

If you’re building a deck with Ipe, it makes sense to build your stairs with Ipe as well.  Adding Ipe stairs to any decking project turns it into a homeowners dream. Ipe is already 5x stronger than Redwood, so it will be able to withstand any weight. A characteristic Ipe has that many other decking materials don’t, is it’s slip resistant. You won’t have to worry about your great aunt slipping down your stairs when she comes over.screenTeam_deckingLIf your deck doesn’t need stairs but you would like an elevated section, consider adding three stairs rather than just two. Two steps keep the main function of a deck while the third adds enough room for an overflow seating section.  Everyone will be able to sit comfortably at your parties and there will be no awkward standing and eating.

If you already have your deck and are beginning to clean it for the summer months, remember to inspect your stairs as well. Look for rotting and decaying around the fasteners. If there is any, DO NOT step on your stairs and call your Ipe supplier immediately. Also, if your stairs are open in the back, make sure the distance between each stair is not exceeding 4 inches. It’s possible in the other seasons for wood to shift slightly. If your wood has shifted slightly, make sure you fix it to ensure no future accidents.

For any more questions about Ipe stairs, check out for a free quote today. Happy Decking!


Deck Tiles Turn Your Backyard Into Your Own Oasis

If you’re thinking about remodeling your back patio, consider Ipe deck tiles. This DIY project is quick and easy and will help you enjoy your deck for years to come.

When I say easy, I mean easy.  It’s literally a snap to do. No extra tools required just the deck tiles and connectors.  Before you begin remodeling your deck, be sure to sweep away any debris or dirt.  Then install each tile in the pattern of your choosing. The tile corner should be lying on top of the connector before you snap it in. Work from the inside to the outside of your deck, connecting and snapping the deck tiles with the connectors.  You can even lay your tiles out in a variety of patterns to add a unique design to your deck.

It’s that simple.


Ipe deck tiles are the best possible option when choosing deck tiles. Ipe wood is one of the strongest and most sturdy products on the market. If you thought installing your Ipe tiles was easy, keeping the color is even easier. Simply apply one coat of Ipe Oil at least once a year and you will be left with a beautiful deck. To learn more about this product check out

Happy Decking!


How Durable is Ipe Wood, Really?

When you’re buying a new car, do you look for quantity or quality? Do you want a reliable car that will last longer than 100,000 miles or are you interested in the newest, hottest model? I’m willing to bet that you want both. Instead of having to settle for one or the other, why not choose something that looks great, but is still the most sustainable product money can buy? uses truly sustainable Ipe wood products. We guarantee our Ipe product will last you longer than 75 years of wear and tear. Just look at the Walt Disney Boardwalk resort, for example. After 17 years of being visited by thousands of people every day and getting hit with the ferocious Florida climate, this massive Ipe boardwalk is still able to hold its structural integrity.

Lasting longer than 75 years isn’t easy. Water and other liquids are considered krypnonite to most wood, but not Ipe. The dense wood has such tight grain that water is not able to seep into any cracks, which enables it to last much longer than your average wood. No wonder New York City has used Ipe on over 12 miles of their coastal walkways.

One tip to help your Ipe stay even stronger:

  • Remember to not skimp on fasteners as weak fasteners may corrode, which can weaken the wood around it.

Not only does Ipe hold its structures for years, it is also the safest for the environment. This monster of a tree can reach heights up to 200 ft. and can be found in abundance in the Amazon region of Brazil. By only logging a couple trees per acre, we are able to minimize our carbon footprint and ensure a regeneration of the forest. We also don’t add any harmful chemicals to our Ipe, making it safe to use virtually anywhere.

Ipe decking is a safe, environmental friendly, sustainable product. It’s no wonder that so many people trust Ipe with their decking and outdoor projects. Get your free Ipe decking quote directly from the mill. Contact today. Happy Decking!

Turn an Ugly Deckling Into a Silver Fox

Haven’t you heard? The new and tan look is out and weathered and gray are in. And we’re not talking about the fashion world. This summer, weathered looking decks have emerged as the latest and greatest trend. Don’t worry if you just bought a brand new deck, we can help you take it from looking sleek and refined in no time at all.

Weathered decks are like the silver foxes of the decking community. They look good styled next to any new or old home. You can dress them up with any deck furniture and you’re ready for cocktail hour.

Turning an ugly deckling into a silver fox.

Giving your deck a full makeover isn’t as hard as you think.


All you need are a couple of beauty products, stain or sealers to be exact, and time. There are many products on the market that help with aiding a weathered deck.

-Clear Water Repellant

  • This product doesn’t add any color to your existing deck and grain patterns can be seen through the finish. The sealer’s lack of UV protection helps the UV radiation fade your wood, giving you a nice, natural gray look. Clear water repellants can last from 6 months to 2 years, depending on surface texture and exposure to the sun.

-Bleaching or Weathered Stain Oils

  • Using bleaching or weathered stained oil helps keep your deck protected longer than clear water repellant. Weathered stained oils are basically clear water repellant finisher with some gray pigments. This type of stain only lasts 2-3 years so be sure to continue applying clear water repellant over the bleaching oil for longer effect.

-Solid Colored Stains

  • Solid colored stains use an opaque finish. You’re not able to see the wood grain or natural color but surface texture is still intact. We advise re-staining your deck every 2-3 years after using this opaque finish.

-Semi-transparent Penetrating Stains

  • We recommend oil based semi-transparent penetrating stains because they filter into the wood surface deeper than most wood-based products. Peeling or blistering is less likely to happen with this stain because of it’s non-film forming. Decks with this type of stain gradually wear off and last up to 5 years.

Check out to get a free quote. Happy decking!