Like most of the construction trades, it is easy for someone to set up in business as a decking supplier or installer. This can lead to public concerns about the skills and qualifications of a decking company. The last thing you want to do is engage a company to build your new deck and end up paying a lot of money for substandard work.
Timber Decking Association
One great way to find out if a decking company is reputable is to find out if it is a member of any trade bodies. The main trade body for the decking industry is the Timber Decking Association (TDA). This is a non profit body that gives technical guidance to the public and its members on the type of timber and the methods needed to build top quality decks.
In the UK, the TDA is an authority on decking and sets the standards for the best design and construction practices. It aims to give home owners, builders and commercial businesses access to the highest quality materials and companies with the skill and experience to install a great deck using top quality products.
Any organization that is part of the wood timber supply-chain can join the TDA. This includes:
• Forestry associations
• Timber technologists
• Component makers and sellers
• Timber protection and maintenance
• Decking designers and installers
All of the companies that join the TDA share a commitment to the highest standards in service and product specification and follow the TDA member charter.
TDA Members’ Charter
All businesses that register with the TDA have to sign the Members’ Charter. To satisfy this, they must:
• Provide a well made product that fits the DeckMark quality assurance scheme
• Treat all enquiries with courtesy and promptness
• Offer clear and accurate information about any products or services that are on offer
• Provide clear and accurate information regarding product suitability and safety
• Offer advice on aftercare and maintenance of the products
• Produce any guarantee or warranty in clear terms and complying with current consumer law
• Adequately train any staff or subcontractors
• Refer disputes to the TDA Dispute Resolution Service
DeckMark Quality Assurance Scheme
The DeckMark quality assurance scheme accredits businesses to meet the standards that the TDA expects from them. The scheme consists of two parts:
• Products – for materials and products
• Installer – for the quality of workmanship
Each business will have to undergo an annual DeckMark visit by an independent inspector. The inspector will review the compliance with the TDA requirements.
When you are installing a deck it is important to choose a reputable company so that you get the highest quality materials and work by skilled professionals. If the company is a member of the Timber Decking Association then they have to comply with the high standards that you expect. When you are choosing a company to supply the materials and install your deck be sure to watch out for membership of the TDA and the DeckMark logo.