Ipe is a famous and prized Brazilian tropical hardwood that is used most often in outdoor applications, especially for decking projects. Ipe decking is world renowned for its attractiveness, durability, and overall toughness, and this outstanding reputation is well-earned because it’s known for being one of the only hardwoods that will last for as long as you own your house. Not only is Ipe strong and durable, but the wood is also quite beautiful. If it is properly kiln dried, its warm rich brown color and tight grain pattern make the wood very well-suited for indoor flooring projects. Its durability makes Ipe especially practical for high traffic areas of the home.
Ipe lumber is also known as “ironwood” as a result of its remarkable density and hardness, and because of these characteristics, the wood boasts a lifespan of over forty years. In addition to being popular for decking projects, Ipe is also used in other outdoor applications, including bridge building, boardwalks, outdoor furniture, marinas, and siding. Even if left untreated, the lumber is known to last for a great many years. Although non-treatment often causes the wood to fade to a silvery gray patina, many homeowners feel that this color is just as preferable as the brown color of the freshly installed lumber.
Ipe is truly a remarkable wood. The lumber is so durable that it has a class A fire rating, meaning that it is approximately as fire resistant as metal and concrete. Even if left untreated, Ipe lumber will outlast most other types of lumber. Its high density and extreme hardness allow the wood to resist absorbing moisture extremely well, and because of this, the amount of movement it exhibits after installation is very minimal. Ipe’s density also allows it to resist insect attacks, mold, decay, and other types of damage to which other decking woods are often susceptible.
Ipe is an exceptional lumber choice for both outdoor and indoor applications. While it’s popular as a durable indoor wood, its hardness and density make it a world famous decking material. Ipe decking will outlast nearly every other decking material, and it will do so while remaining both stable and beautiful.
J. Gibson McIlvain, located near Baltimore, Maryland, offers wholesale Ipe decking to contractors and installers throughout the United States. Contact McIlvain today at 800-638-9100 to request a price quote for your next Ipe project.
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