Types of Manufactured Decking
Beyond wooden decking materials, there are several other options available to help you build the deck of your dreams. Learn more about composite and vinyl decking to decide which is the best choice for building a new deck to enhance your home or business.
Composite decking is decking material that has been made using a combination of wood and other materials. The composite is designed to give you a beautiful look, while still providing the strength and durability of a wooden deck. This type of deck is becoming an increasingly popular choice because it is cost effective, available in a variety of appearances and styles, and can work with nearly any climate condition. Composite decking can be comprised of several different materials, but the most common composite is made of wooden fibers and plastic.
Composites require less maintenance than wooden decks, are considered “green” because most of them are made from recycled materials, and are resistant to moisture, insects, and decay. They do have a tendency to fade over time, resulting in a spectrum of colors on the deck. Some composite decking materials have come under fire with class action lawsuits, so while they are a good choice, doing research is important.
Vinyl decking is a decking material made from vinyl or PVC. The vinyl material offers a stronger low maintenance option for your deck than wooden or composite materials. It is available in a hollow form, as well as a solid form. Hollow forms are still rated for strength and must be as strong as a solid board, but there are some instances where a solid board may be the only choice. When you choose a hollow board for your decking, you will see a difference in the way the ends of the deck look.
A vinyl deck will not splinter, crack, peel, or fade. You must have a rail and trim system to match if you want to complete the look as you would with any other material, and those are not always available, depending on brand. You will get a uniform appearance that generally hides the fasteners, with a material that is much less susceptible to rot and decay than a wooden deck. A vinyl deck will cost more than pressure-treated lumber, and will not look like real wood. Some may find issues with noise and squeaking, and some believe a new vinyl deck does not look as good as a new wooden deck.
The right decking material for building a deck is based on a variety of factors including: cost, appearance, climate conditions, and availability. No matter which material you go with, you will have a long lasting place to enjoy the outdoors, while adding value and beauty to your home.