Bamboo Exterior Decking Versus Wood Decking
How good is bamboo decking? The jury is still out.
After around 5 years in the market, bamboo exterior decking is still of questionable performance. Bamboo in many cases has the right credentials - it is rapidly renewable and plantation grown.
However the substantial amounts of wood adhesive required for its manufacture is often overlooked - in some cases the product is more glue than bamboo! This fact quickly mitigates the green credentials of such a product.
Often of Chinese origin, specifications and test data on VOC’s and durability are hard to come by.
Laminated bamboo decking has most certainly had problems in New Zealand. Based on the original bamboo interior flooring, this product does not cut the mustard in exterior applications.
Many failures have been recorded in New Zealand, mainly around surface mould, delamination and fibre pull (where strands of the bamboo break off)
Our suggestion, for now, is to stick with the tried and true wooden decking, at least until bamboo manufacturers can deliver a product that can perform.
Image footnote: laminated bamboo decking showing surface mould and fibre pull