You are able to take advantage of several design benefits of using Ipe hardwood decking over other materials. This Brazilian hardwood is naturally fire resistant and difficult to burn. This wood has a service life of 50 years, or longer, with the proper maintenance. It is environmentally friendly, because it was turned into decking from renewable forests. Further, the wood has resistance to termites, mold, and fungus, so it does not require any added protectants or sealants.
In order to get the most life out of your Ipe hardwood decking, it is important you perform annual maintenance. Unlike other woods, there is not much work to do. You should inspect the underside of your deck to make sure supports and joists are secure. Also inspect deck clips, plugs and other hardware, and verify it is still firmly in the proper location. The only other maintenance you may want to perform is to rent a power washer and spray down your decking to remove any debris from the wood.
Because Ipe is a hardwood, it does not require any type of sealants or protectants. However, some people do take the time to use a UV protectant when they want to retain the original color of the decking. Otherwise, the wood does fade, over time, to a natural silver-gray color. If you do decide to use an approved protectant on the wood, remember to reapply the sealant, as recommended by your decking supplier, to prevent fading. If you change your mind later and decide you want to let the wood naturally fade, simply stop applying the protectant.