Decking Materials: Composite Decking
Get all the info you need about one of the most cost effective and low maintenance decking materials: composite decking.
By: Sean McEvoy
If you've ever scrubbed mold, mildew, dust and dirt from your formerly pristine deck, or, worse yet, had to replace a rotten board or an entire deck surface, you'll be pleased to know there's a low-maintenance, long-lasting option out there: composite decking. Whether you're planning a new deck or ready to replace an existing one, this synthetic decking material could be right for you.
Composite decking's greatest advantage is also its greatest weakness, in the minds of some: it's not a natural material. Composed primarily of wood fibers and recycled plastic, composite decking comes in a wide range of colors and stains, and it won't warp, split or crack. In trade for a long-lasting deck that will be relatively low-maintenance, you may have to sacrifice the look and feel of natural hardwood.
When it comes to composite decking, the best illustration of its value is probably in the warranty. Many brands of composite decking come with a 20-year or even lifetime warranty against degradation. Obviously, a natural wood deck wouldn't come with a similar guarantee, and would also require substantial labor to maintain.
Composite decking also comes in a variety of colors and textures that mimic the appearance and even the feel, to some degree, of real wood.
One thing to note regarding composite decking is that it's generally more expensive than low- to medium-tier natural wood decking—but it's reasonable to suggest that you're paying up front for less maintenance later.
See also: Deck and Patio Design Ideas
Patio Materials and Surfaces
Learn about the different options for patio materials and surfaces.
Decking Materials: Know Your Options
Learn about decking materials and the options available for your deck project
Cleaning a Wood Deck
Learn all about cleaning a wood deck, from what materials and equipment you'll need to how to avoid splintering.
Wrought Iron Patio Furniture
Get familiar with the ornate and durable designs available for wrought iron patio furniture.
Outdoor Furniture Options and Ideas
Discover new options and ideas in furniture for your outdoor space.
Outdoor Heaters: Options and Solutions
Get all the info you need on outdoor heaters, and transform your outdoor living space into a warm and welcoming hot spot for any time of year.
Pressure-Washing a Deck
Get the expert knowledge you need for power washing a deck.
Brick Paver Patios
Learn about your options for brick paver patios and explore design ideas for your outdoor living space.
Decking Materials: Aluminum Decking
Learn all about aluminum decking, one of the most durable and long-lasting decking materials.
Decking Materials: Wood Decking
Get great info on wood decking and explore the different species of wood you may want to consider for your deck project.
We're serving up the latest news, gorgeous style, crafty DIY projects, clever entertaining tips and more. Consider these your design digests.