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Composite Decks: A Closer Look

Composite Decks: A Closer Look

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Whether you're planning to install a new deck or replace an old deck that's outdated or in disrepair, composite decking might be the answer to sprucing up your home's overall outdoor environment.

So, what are composite decks? And why have they been gaining in popularity in recent years? Composite decks are made of recycled wood and plastic composites. This combination of materials is considered environmentally friendly to use, durable in its longevity, and convenient to build with. There are currently two main types of composite decking to choose from.

Types of Composite Decks

  • Hollow: Hollow composite decks typically appear more man-made and are lighter-weight. Because of their lower density, hollow composite decks are more susceptible to damage prior to installation, but they are also less prone to expanding and contracting in changing temperatures.
  • Solid: Solid composite decks have a more natural, wood-like appearance. They are also heavier and more resistant to damage that can occur on-site or prior to installation. Because of their solid mass, however, they succumb to more expansion and contraction in varying climates.

Benefits of Composite Decks

First and foremost, many people choose composite decks for their durability. Because of their wood-plastic composites and their use of recycled wood fibers, these decks don't contain the same wood preservatives that so often lead to rotting and deterioration in pressure-treated wood. Composite decks are also highly resistant to temperature changes and color fading, keeping the deck material looking better longer.

Composite decks are also popular for their low-maintenance qualities and minimal upkeep. Composite decks are easy to install and don't require the frequent painting, staining or sealing that is standard procedure in many pressure-treated wood decks. However, some homeowners like to treat their composite deck with an anti-fungal chemical to keep their deck in tip-top condition. Ask your home contractor for helpful recommendations on how to increase the life and quality of your composite deck.

Many customers also appreciate the purported safety of composite decks. Since they're highly resistant to warping or splintering, the material is safe for bare skin. Composite decks are also slip-resistant so there's little concern for accidents associated with spills or wet weather.

Lastly, composite decks are environmentally friendly due to their use of recycled materials and their lack of toxic chemicals. For those who are catching on to the rising trend of green home remodeling, composite decking is one more way of implementing green materials into your building or remodeling plans.

Ask an Expert

If you'd like to learn more about the benefits and disadvantages of composite decking, get deck pricing information, or find out which current style and design possibilities are available for you, consult with a deck and patio specialist in your area. Not only can they walk you through the different decking options, they can help you determine which materials, features and designs will best fit you and your family's outdoor deck remodeling needs.

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