Are you considering building a deck but unsure which material to choose? Look no further than composite decking!
In this comprehensive guide, we will cover everything you need to know about composite decking. From what it is and what it’s made of, to its longevity and cost-effectiveness compared to traditional wood decking.
We’ll also walk you through the installation process and provide maintenance tips to keep your composite deck looking pristine for years to come. Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or planning to hire a professional deck builder, this guide will equip you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about composite decking.
Get ready to transform your outdoor space with this durable and low-maintenance decking option!
What is Composite Decking
Crafted from a blend of wood fibers, recycled plastics, and binding agents, composite decking is a resilient and low-maintenance alternative to traditional wood decking. It provides a natural wood-like appearance without the need for frequent staining or sealing. Composite decking offers resistance to rot, decay, insect damage, and splintering. This innovative decking option is available in a variety of colors and styles, allowing homeowners to create customized and visually appealing outdoor spaces.
How Long Does It Last
Composite decking has an impressive lifespan of 25 to 30 years, making it a durable choice for outdoor spaces. Factors like exposure to sunlight, moisture, and foot traffic can influence its longevity. To ensure a longer lifespan, it’s important to clean and maintain the composite decking regularly. Proper installation and sealing or staining can also help protect it from wear and tear. With warranties available from manufacturers, homeowners can have peace of mind knowing their composite decking will last for years to come.
How Much Does It Cost
The cost varies depending on the area you live and the contractor you choose. Most contractors will include installation in the cost. But railing systems and accessories may be an additional expense. While the initial cost may be higher than traditional wood decking, the minimal maintenance and longevity of composite decking make it a cost-effective choice in the long run.
Caring For Your Composite Deck
Learning how to care for composite decking is important to maintain the durability and appearance.
To maintain the appearance and longevity of your composite decking:
- Regular cleaning is essential.
- Keep your deck clean from debris to avoid stains.
- Inspect for for mold or mildew regularly.
- Apply a protective sealant.
Note: Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for maintenance suggestions.
How To Clean A Composite Deck
Clean composite decking using a mild detergent and water solution to keep it looking its best. Avoid harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners that may harm the surface. Use a soft-bristle brush or sponge to scrub away dirt and grime thoroughly. Rinse with water to remove any residue and prevent staining. For tough stains such as grease or oil, consider using a specialized composite deck cleaner.
Can It Be Painted
Composite decking, in contrast to traditional wood decking, does not require painting for maintenance. However, some homeowners may opt to paint it to enhance its aesthetic appeal or give it a fresh look.
Before painting, ensure thorough cleaning of the composite decking surface, removing any dirt or debris. Choose a high-quality acrylic latex paint formulated for outdoor use and superior adhesion to composite material. Follow proper preparation and application techniques, including utilizing a primer for a successful paint job.
Can You Stain Composite Decking
Staining composite decking is a popular option for homeowners who want to customize the color or enhance the natural look of their deck. Unlike traditional wood decking, composite decking does not require staining or sealing for maintenance. However, by using a stain specifically designed for composite materials, homeowners can achieve their desired aesthetic.
Before staining, it is important to thoroughly clean and prepare the surface to ensure proper adhesion. With the ability to stain composite decking, homeowners can enjoy the benefits of its low maintenance and durability while still adding their personal touch.
Can You Power Wash Composite Decking
Pressure washing is generally not recommended for composite decking due to the potential risks involved.
While pressure washing can be an effective method for cleaning other surfaces, it can cause damage to composite decking if done incorrectly. The high pressure and close proximity of the water stream can lead to etching or scratching of the surface, resulting in a less attractive appearance.
Additionally, excessive pressure can weaken the structural integrity of the deck boards over time.
It is important to follow manufacturer guidelines and use caution when considering pressure washing as a cleaning method for composite decking. Alternative cleaning methods, such as gentle scrubbing with mild detergent and water, are often recommended to maintain the beauty and longevity of composite decking.
What Is The Best Composite Decking
When selecting composite decking for your project, it’s important to consider a few key factors. Start by evaluating the material composition, opting for durable options like PVC or those made with recycled materials. These composites offer resistance to fading, staining, and mold/mildew. Additionally, explore the variety of colors and textures available to match your desired aesthetic. Finally, compare warranties among brands to ensure a long-lasting investment.
In conclusion, composite decking offers a durable, low-maintenance, and eco-friendly alternative to traditional wood decking. It is made of a combination of recycled materials and provides excellent resistance to moisture, rot, and fading. With proper installation and maintenance, composite decking can last for decades, saving you time and money in the long run.
Whether you’re looking for an affordable option or the best composite decking on the market, it’s important to do your research and choose a reputable contractor. If you’re in the Dartmouth, New Bedford, Fall River area and ready to upgrade your outdoor space with composite decking, contact us today for a free consultation and find out why it’s the right choice for you.