The Benefits Of Composite Decking
Wood has long been the popular - and only - choice for decks. Although wood decks may last for years, they are susceptible to decay and insect infestation, and require significant annual maintenance. Composite is a fairly new material but it has already been proven superior
in its construction, durability and virtually maintenance-free aspects. If you're considering building a new deck
or replacing a failing one, take a look at composite and see why more than half
of all homeowners are choosing composite decking over wood.
The Manufacturing Process
Composite decking is made from wood flour and polyethylene
, or plastic. The wood comes from recycled doors and window frames and from wood chips and scraps from lumber yards and sawmills. The plastic can be virgin or come from recycled plastic bags and bottles.
After the materials are mixed together, they are colored to resemble various types of real wood, then formed into shapes of boards, steps, and railing either through molding or extrusion methods.
Composite Is Low-Maintenance
Compared to wood, which requires annual sealing and periodic sanding, composite decking is virtually maintenance-free
. Manufacturers recommend an annual washing only and a protective sealant for darker colors every couple years. If you notice mildew spots, they can be easily scrubbed away with a cleaning solution, but rest assured that mildew will not turn into rot that threatens the integrity of the material as is the case with wood.
Composite Is Durable & Safe
Homeowners who are planning to stay put choose composite decking because it will likely outlast most other structural features of their home. A professionally installed, high-quality composite deck will last 25-30 years or longer, and resists all the common problems
that wood has such as insect infestation, warping, mold, rot, and splintering.
Composite Is Eco-Friendly
Composite decking is considered eco-friendly because of its minimal impact
on the environment compared to wood, where full-grown trees must be cut down to make long deck boards. Different manufacturers use different levels of recycled materials; some have made the commitment to using 100% local recycled materials. In either case, the result is still a significant amount of waste that is saved from landfills and instead used to create an environmentally sound, durable, lasting product that families can feel good about enjoying.
The Cost Of Composite
Manmade decking material is more expensive than woods such as pine, redwood and cedar, but it still significantly less expensive than exotic ipe which can last as long as 75 years. The initial outlay is often a sticker-shock moment for homeowners. For those who want to upgrade their home to sell, composite decking adds value
to the property as well as providing the buyer with great long term benefits listed above.
When savvy homeowners look at the hard numbers and factor in the annual maintenance on wood given its significantly shorter lifespan, composite is the clear winner for those who are planning to stay in their home for longer than 10 years.
Work With ProTek Construction
Composite decks require skilled installation, and contractors have to be certified
by the various manufacturers in order to properly install composite decking and maximize the warranty. If you're interested in a low-maintenance, long-lasting composite deck, contact ProTek Construction
to request a free consultation.