Stacking the Deck – Changing the Game with Optimaxx Decking Screws

Norman Shimwell, Sales Director and founder of Optimaxx, recalls the process behind the expansion of the Optimaxx range.

In 2016, the team saw an opportunity to bring a brand new high-performance decking screw to market. The landscape at the time was very limited for customers looking for high-quality fixings that would stand up to the elements. Often companies would simply paint a fixing green, call it a decking screw and have done with it. We wanted to offer more than that, Optimaxx already had a winning formula with our wood screw the challenge became to deliver the same quality product while fulfilling different requirements.

The Design of our Decking screws

When we designed our decking screw, the aim was to apply all the features of our successful wood screws to the new fixing while giving it the highest level of corrosion protection that we could. This would see the transferal of Optimaxx’s saw tooth formation, the distinctive slash, and the razor-sharp point to the new fixing. Applying these features was a relatively simple process. However, Optimaxx Wood Screws are equipped with a unique 24-groove countersink under the head. This posed a problem as decking screws require smaller heads which allow them to fit nicely within the grooves of decking boards. As a result, we had to re-evaluate the feature. Fortunately, we found that a smaller head size would only require a 12-groove countersink rather than the full amount.

Once we had overcome this challenge, we then needed to follow up with an equally high-quality coating. A manufacturer can engineer the best screw or fastener in the world and load it with benefits for the consumer. However, without adequate protection, the fixing will begin to corrode. An uncoated steel fixing that is suffering from rust and oxidation will cause nail rot in even the highest quality timber. While there are solutions that work to undo the wood rot, it is better to stop this before it happens especially if building a deck from expensive timber.

The Testing Process

Exterior fixings need to go through a salt spray test. This process is an intensive corrosion test that involves the product being intensely sprayed with a saltwater solution over a long period of time. The test gives an accelerated method of simulating the kind of pressure that long-term exposure to the outside will exert on them. Following being exposed to the saltwater mist, the fixing may or may not begin to show signs of oxidation.

Optimaxx Decking Screws are equipped with our own unique Maxxtect Exterior Corrosion Protection that has gone through this thorough test. They were subjected to an extensive 2000+ hour salt spray test and, upon completion, they did not show a sign of corrosion. That is why we confidently offer a lifetime guarantee on Optimaxx Decking Screws. Not only will they not begin to corrode, but they will also far exceed the lifespan of the timber itself.