Three Common Deck Materials: Composite material, Wood, PVC Material
One of the most important choices when building an outdoor deck is what material to use. In the past, most people chose pressure-treated lumber, which is one of the most common and least expensive deck materials. Nowadays, people have a wider range of materials to choose from when building an outdoor deck. In addition to pressure-treated lumber, more and more people are choosing composite decking materials and PVC materials.
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Differences Between Materials
Composite materials are made from recycled plastic and wood fibers and are strong and low maintenance. They won’t crack or fade as easily as wood decks and are available in a wide range of colors and styles.
Wood is the traditional choice for outdoor decks. It can be made from other types of wood such as cedar, oak, and tropical hardwoods. To keep a wood deck in good condition, it needs to be stained and sealed frequently.
PVC is a man-made material that does not require much maintenance or painting. It is highly resistant to water, rot, and insects and is available in a wide range of colors and styles. However, it is very expensive compared to wood and composite decking material products.
|25 years or more
|15-25 years under decent maintenance
|Requires frequent painting
|Becomes food for termites
|Resistant to scratch
|Prone to splintering and scuff
|Gets scratched easily
|Relies on painting or oiling to resist moisture
|Bfl-s1 fire rating
|High risk of being lit
|Recyclable, made from recycled material
|Contributes to deforestation
|Requires frequent, costly maintenance
|Cost-effective in the long run
|Ends up costing more after several years
|Highly resistant to elements and weathering
|Naturally prone to humidity and heat
|Deformed easily due to heat
|Non-toxic, 100% safe
|Carries harmful paint
Composite Decking Materials
Wood Plastic Composite, or WPC, is an environmentally friendly material made from a blend of wood fibers and recyclable plastics. Using composite decking helps to protect the world we live in.
This is because not only does it help us reduce the use of plastic, but it also makes better use of forest resources and reduces the number of trees cut down. What’s more, composite materials are low-maintenance and have a long lifespan, making the home more valuable when it comes time to sell.
Advantages of Composite Decking Materials
If you want something that doesn’t require constant care, composite decking is the best option. Because this material also looks like rare wood, you get the best of both worlds.
The beauty of composite decking is that it won’t rot or crack, and it doesn’t need to be stained or covered with anything else for safety. If you have children or like to go barefoot, composite wood decking can prevent you from getting pinched.
Disadvantages of Composite Decking Material
Composite decking costs more to purchase than wood decking. Many types of composite decking boards require joists spaced no more than 16 inches apart. If your joists are spaced 24 inches apart, you will need more joists if you want to use composite decking boards.
The most common material used to build outdoor decks is traditional wood. Most wood decks are made from pressure-treated softwood. Decks made of red pine are more expensive. Imported hardwoods such as teak or IPE last a long time but are the most expensive. Most wood needs to be preserved before use to prevent rot and water damage.
Advantages of Wood Decks
If you want to save money and simply build an outdoor deck, natural wood is the best choice. You can purchase standard wood decks at lumber yards and home improvement stores in your area.
On the other hand, you must order exotic hardwoods through a specialty lumber dealer. Solid wood decks also have a more natural look and feel than other types of decking.
Disadvantages of Wood Decks
If you don’t want to have your outdoor deck serviced every two to three years, then you shouldn’t choose a wood deck. Also, make sure you know the cost of repairing your wood deck in the future.
When calculating the cost of building a wood deck, you should also consider the cost of maintaining it. Wooden decks may also need to be replaced sooner than other types of decks because they are prone to rotting and damage.
PVC decking is also known as plastic decking or synthetic decking. Some PVC decking is “capped,” which means that a protective shell is added to it to make it less susceptible to moisture.
Advantages of PVC Decking
If you want lighter decking, PVC decking may be a good choice. Like composite decking, PVC flooring won’t rot and doesn’t need to be polished. Some people prefer the look of PVC to other materials.
PVC decking looks great and is easy to care for because it doesn’t need to be painted or stained. It also won’t fade or get moldy. There is also a foaming agent used in PVC decking, which makes it lighter and easier to move around during installation.
Disadvantages of PVC Decking
PVC decking has a distinctly plastic texture that doesn’t give you the look of the natural wood grain. In addition, it suffers from the same problems as wood decking. Finally, composites typically use a higher percentage of recycled materials than PVC, which is usually made from new materials. If lowering your carbon footprint is important to you, then see what the company you want to buy from has to say about recycled materials.