Although several features determine an ideal deck design, the overall style of a deck is dictated by the actual deck materials. Composite decks have become popular over the past years as the price range of decking boards continue to rise over time. There are different composite products on the market and the availability of these products may vary depending on your location. Most composite decks are manufactured from the by-products of wood such as wood chips, sawdust, and recycled plastic materials.
A combination of organic and synthetic materials captures the best of both worlds creating a durable product that is similar to wood decking. This unique combination makes composite decks expensive than other types of decking material. This article looks at whether a composite deck is worth the money and how to choose the best composite decking material.
How Much Does a Composite Deck Cost?
A high-quality composite deck is more expensive than the traditional pressure-treated lumber and its price ranges between $5.00 and $7.00 per 8-inch board. The average size of a deck is often 400 square feet which means a 20’ by 20’ deck constructed with high-quality composite material might be priced around $5,600. The same deck, build with pressure-treated pine lumber may go for around $3,000. However, the cost difference can be erased easily after 2-3 years of routine maintenance. Several other costs determine the overall cost of purchasing a composite decking material. The hidden expenses drive the decision to purchase items that are highly-priced but have higher quality and value.
Reasons Why to Install a Composite Deck
- They Offer Transferable Value
Some DIYers may not mind about the required upkeep for their pressure-treated wood decks. However, the next homeowner may not feel the same way as they may see it as a chore rather than a passion or hobby. A new homebuyer may view pressure treated wood deck as a structure that requires a lot of maintenance to create a long-lasting appeal. This can be a deal-breaker on the sale depending on the condition and size of the old deck. A high-quality composite deck has a greater appeal for potential buyers as it requires low maintenance. This means that it will retain more of its transferable value for a longer period compared to other deck materials.
- Superior Durability
Composite decks are designed to resist fading, scratches, staining, mold, or warping. They are safe and comfortable especially for families with kids and pets. Wet planter pots, dropped grill tools, and spilled food is no match for newer composite decking materials. They offer an unprecedented combination of stain, fade and mold resistance because of their exclusive protective shell and ability to withstand high-traffic.
- Highly Sustainable
Unlike other decking materials, composite decks can provide the look and feel of natural wood without the environmental impact of cutting down trees for timber. Although PVC decking is made using synthetic materials, Trex decking is made from 95% recycled content and involves the combination of wood scraps and polyethylene. Reclaimed sawdust, offcuts, and household plastic waste are combined and ground down under heat and pressure to come up with composite decking products.
- Assurance of Lasting Beauty
Most composite decks are usually backed up with lengthy warranties because of their enduring good looks and ability to withstand heavy traffic. This results in the assurance of lasting beauty which offers additional peace of mind. A composite deck is visually pleasing as it can be designed to match the look and feel of exotic hardwood or traditional timber. It comes in a wide variety of styles and designs to help you determine what works best for your outdoor living space.
- How to Choose Composite Decking
Composite decking materials have improved over time as the number of quality products continues to increase each year. Choosing the best composite decking material can be quite overwhelming given the variety of styles, colours, and brands available. It is important to choose composite lumber decking based on your budget, site and code requirements, fastener choice, and style and colour preferences. Although the price of quality composite decking will be higher than pressure-treated wood, they last longer and offer a greater appeal to home buyers when selling your home in the future.
There is no doubt that composite decking material is more expensive than wood. However, it is valued for its striking resemblance to natural wood and efficiency making it an excellent choice for decking. It is easier to clean and maintain which makes it last long enough to transfer the same value to the next homeowner.