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Frequently Asked Questions
Can HardieDeck™ decking be installed low to the ground?
Yes. HardieDeck™ can be installed as low as 150mm from the ground. Like many other building materials, HardieDeck™ should not be constructed such that it is submerged or sitting in standing water. As with any deck, it is critical to ensure that you construct HardieDeck™ so as to ensure that it has adequate cross ventilation underneath - so don't box in all sides with fascia boards. For more information please refer to the HardieDeck™ Installation Guide.
Can HardieDeck™ be installed in bushfire prone areas?
Yes. HardieDeck™ boards are made of premium fibre cement which is “deemed non-combustible” under Australia’s National Construction Code and suitable for even the highest bushfire attack levels. The Fast-Track fixing system is made from powder coated aluminium which has been certified for use in bushfire prone areas including BAL-FZ by CSIRO. In certain bushfire attack levels there may be additional requirements for framing and balustrades. For more information please refer to the HardieDeck™ Installation Guide.
Is HardieDeck™ suitable around pools and in coastal areas?
HardieDeck™ is suitable for use around pools and in coastal areas (no closer than 50m from breaking surf). Of course, there are a number of considerations that must be taken into account when building a deck in such environments and HardieDeck™ is no different. In terms of materials, you need to upgrade the fastening screws to stainless steel and ensure you have selected the right sealer. Due to the inclement conditions of such areas, as with any deck you will need to increase the frequency of cleaning to remove harsh elements such as chlorine and the salt from sea spray. For the specific requirements for building around pools and in coastal areas please refer to the HardieDeck™ Installation Guide.
How can I use HardieDeck™ over existing tiles, pavers or concrete?
HardieDeck can be installed over an existing floor using 45mm timber battens. Ensure there is adequate drainage and the battens should run in the direction of fall to ensure they do not retain water under the deck. Note that the existing floor or substrate needs to be of suitable strength to support the HardieDeck system and any live loads. And ensure that the deck has adequate cross ventilation underneath. So don't box in all sides with fascia boards. Contact us if you need further information.
What is HardieDeck™ made of?
The HardieDeck™ system provides a highly durable low maintenance deck, with a modern contemporary appearance. It combines specially machined 19mm thick fibre cement decking boards with a specifically designed aluminium Fast-track fixing system that provides the concealed fastening mechanism.
What lengths do HardieDeck™ boards come in?
HardieDeck™ boards and edging boards come in 3m lengths, and weigh around 19kg per board.
Can I install HardieDeck™ without the Fast-track fixing system?
HardieDeck™ is only warranted if it is installed with the Fast-track fixing system. This fixing system is specifically designed to provide additional strength and durability and cannot be omitted or substituted with any other fixing system.
How hot will the surface get?
HardieDeck™ boards will heat up slower than a typical deck, but will retain heat for longer. The paint colour selected will affect the surface temperature of HardieDeck™. Darker paint colours usually absorb more heat than lighter shades or a clear seal option.
Will HardieDeck™ expand/contract as it heats/cools?
Similar to most fibre cement products, HardieDeck™ will expand as it heats and contract as it cools; however, the amount of expansion and contraction is minimal compared to other decking materials.
What is the slip resistance of HardieDeck™?
The slip resistance rating of HardieDeck™ varies depending on the coating system selected. Ensure paint or sealer selected for HardieDeck™ achieves the slip resistance classification suitable for the application. For decking boards installed in high slip areas e.g. swimming pools, it is recommended to use a paving paint with slip resistance aggregate to achieve minimum rating of P4. James Hardie has undertaken slip resistance testing in accordance with AS 4586 and SA HB 198:2014 - “Guide to the specification and testing of slip resistance of pedestrian surfaces” for selected standard paints and sealers. Refer to the National Code of Construction (NCC) for further details on slip resistance requirements for ramps, landing and stairs.
What should be done when re-sealing HardieDeck™?
When re-sealing, ensure that the surface is properly cleaned - sweep away all dirt and debris then wash the surface to remove any oil and grease spots. Apply masking tape over the snap-in cover strips prior to painting or remove the snap-in cover strips and replace them with new cover strips after re-painting. Note: the snap-in cover strips may be purchased separately in packs of 5.
How often should I re-seal my HardieDeck™?
Frequency of re-painting or re-sealing HardieDeck™ depends on several factors including but not limited to how often it is used, the geographical and environmental conditions, the amount of exposure to such conditions, mechanical wear and tear, and or corrosive environments e.g. swimming pool chemicals. Wear and tear on painted surfaces is easily identified and will indicate when the deck needs to be re-painted. Clear sealed decks require re-painting when dark patches form after rainfall or washing down the deck. Refer to sealing manufacturers for more information on re-painting frequency.
If I choose the clear seal option, do I have to worry about stains?
There are different types and brands of clear sealers available for HardieDeck™. Stain resistance relies heavily on the application you intend for your deck. For example, if you intend to use your deck for entertaining friends and family, there is a risk of food and drink spills, so stain resistance is very important. Leaves, dirt, bird droppings and potted plants may also stain your deck. If a stain occurs, clean it immediately with a solution of hot water and suitable detergent. Refer to HardieDeck™ Sealing Guide for more information.
What type of sealer should I use?
James Hardie recommends a selection of paving sealers for HardieDeck™ boards. The recommended sealers have been tested and approved by James Hardie to ensure suitability. For more information, please refer to the HardieDeck™ Sealing Guide.
How easily does the sealed surface of HardieDeck™ scratch?
Paving sealers are designed to be trafficable and have a higher resistance to wear and tear than architectural paints. However, they are not impervious to scratching and marking. It is recommended to use protective mats, furniture pads or rubber stops on the bottom of the outdoor furniture and minimise dragging heavy objects such as furniture, barbeques or planter stands.
How should I clean my HardieDeck™?
HardieDeck™ should be washed with a soft bristle broom and warm soapy water regularly. In particularly dirty environments, dry sweep regularly to avoid scratching from dirt and debris.