Value of Various Decking Materials- P/T, Cedar, Composites, PVC and Hardwoods

What factors go into deciding “what decking material should I use?”   The big factor is usually price and performance.  With cost being a big factor  the pressure treated woods are usually used on the underside,  readily available in most building supply centers,  and on most surfaces as well.

  1. Pressure treated woods are the first option, cost wise and the most readily available
  2. Western  Red Cedar and Redwood in 5/4 x 6  and 2×6  are two options, price wise higher than P/T  but still good value for a durable softwood
  3. Composite decking   –  a lot of  different brands and designs out there,  and many different prices
  4. PVC  (vinyl decking)  – an excellent product line, and somewhat more expensive that composites- usually
  5. Hardwoods  – Ipe, Cumaru and even Tigerwood  –  durable and strong hardwoods,  excellent for high end decks and usually top of the “price ladder”

It is hard to put exact prices to each, but if you take the pressure treated as the base at 100%  the price ladder may look something like the following.  don’t look only at the price but also the performance of the options-

  1. P/T  –    100%
  2. Cedar     125-200% depending on the grade
  3. Composite   200% -250%
  4. PVC        250%- 300%
  5. Hardwoods   300% or even more- usually very high grade lumber

Regards,  Glen

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