One can say the luckiest Branford homeowners exist in 2018 because they have superior construction materials. However, more choices also mean confusing and time-consuming decision-making. Composite decking vs wood decking is one of the biggest questions in a homeowner’s mind.

However, Branford’s best contractors can definitely help you know about each materials’ impeccable advantages and disadvantages. After reading this post, you’ll learn:

  • What is Composite Decking
  • Its Advantages
  • And Disadvantages
  • What is Wood Decking
  • And its respective Advantages
  • and Disadvantages
  • The Best Choice for Your Home

What Is Composite Decking?

The question of which is better composite vs wood decking begun with the rising popularity of composite decking.

The primary alternative for wooden decks, composites needed low maintenance and offered a better lifespan compared to wood. It is made from an equal mix of wooden fibers and recycled plastic composites, which includes PVC and rubber. In addition, manufacturers provide an average of five years for all composite decking materials.

Should you choose composite decking for your home?

Advantages

Long Lifespan

Composite decking has a higher lifespan compared to traditional wood deck materials. In the question of composite decking vs wood decking, the latter outshines the former. The secret: its plastic composites.

Many environmentalists condemn plastic as the biggest pollutant on the planet. However, if innovators use them in infrastructure-related projects and materials such as composite decking, then they strengthen or offer alternatives for traditional building materials.

Manufactures use PVC and other materials for roofing, gutter, and siding purposes. In the future, these innovations will make materials last for more than the 25-30 years they have today.

composite decking materials with a natural wood finish

Composite decking can imitate the wooden, grainy finish of wood.

Immune to Rotting

Plastic is never a bacteria, mold, mildew, and fungi’s food of choice. On the other hand, wood is an organic material these life forms consider part of their regular diet.

Additionally termites will stay away from composite plastic as much as they can (there have been instances they ate plastic materials). However, in the question of composite decking vs wood decking, composite wins when it comes to rotting.

Like plastic is a centuries-lasting environmental problem, it is a centuries lasting solution for roof decks. It can last for 20-25 years and remain impervious to rotting and moisture.

Requires Little Modification Work

In the question of labor between composite decking vs wood decking, Branford’s reputable contractors need not to sand, stain, and seal composite decks. Additionally, they do not require any painting for added protection.

Composite woods have a tough surface finish that is stain and fade-resistant. It requires only semi-annual cleaning with a household cleanser is all you need. You won’t need special equipment or materials. In fact, you’ll even avoid re-boarding your decks because the entire set ages at the same time.

Imitates Traditional Hardwoods

This is where composite wins in the question of composite decking vs wood decking. Composites can imitate the surface of traditional hardwoods. While they will certainly feel smooth and have no grainy impression when you touch them, they will at least look like real wood from the curb.

Most manufacturers offer a huge variety of wood pattern choices for homeowners. This gives you many options to find which one will improve the aesthetic of your home.

Disadvantages

A Bit More Expensive to Purchase

Their added durability and truly incomparable aesthetic improvement make composite decks a must for every Branford home. Unfortunately, they’re a bit more expensive than wooden decks.

However, the returns on investment are definitely clear especially if you’re focused on longevity and durability.

a simple composite decked home with wooden furniture and a brown hue

Composite decking materials are made from plastic-reinforced wood material that make them last 10 years more than traditional wood.

What is Wood Decking?

Wood deckings are the traditional planks contractors use to build elevated decks for properties. They’ve been used for centuries mostly on colonial farm homes across Branford and other areas in the country. Their design and appeal have withstood the test of time.

However, do they still hold up well against low-maintenance composite roof decking?

Advantages

Affordable

Wood is much more affordable than their hybrid counterparts. Pressure-treated lumber requires less manpower than breaking down and infusing wood parts with plastic components. In addition, they have a natural look that requires no additional imprints unlike the alternative.

Their affordability makes them accessible to anyone who wants to deck their homes. This is the go-to solution of residential property sellers when they need an excellent curb appeal for the property they are selling.

Traditional Aesthetics

Trees are beautiful to look at and natural lumber exudes the same aesthetic. Even after getting them painted and laminated, the natural grainy look and feel of lumber still stands out for many decks.

Even if they might come with a host of rotting and natural aging problems, wood still introduces the traditional aesthetics of a western home with an elevated deck.

beautiful wooden decks with natural wooden texture

Nothing compares to the traditional, grainy appearance and texture of wood.

Customizable

Composite decks are customizable but only to a point. Manufacturers build them as a set. Therefore, for every composite deck, you have a fixed set of composite woods that restrict you from future modification. For example, if your project needed a design U-turn, you will have to buy a new set.

Meanwhile, wood decks offer more customizability on the go. If you need to re-design a particular area, you can purchase additional wooden planks instead of a set.

Disadvantages

Shorter Lifespan

Wood is a naturally-biodegrading product. Therefore, lifeforms will start feeding on the foundations of the deck. Moisture permeates quickly inside the material.

Laminated wood will defend the material for at least 5-10 years. However, beyond this, the wood will start to degrade and crumble against the weather. An average lifespan of a wood deck is at 10-15 years.

Fire Risk

Organic materials such as wood are susceptible to fire. Therefore, both natural and laminated wood decks are serious fire risks. Composite woods are less likely to engulf and contribute to fires because of their plastic composites.

a slope-elevated deck with a jacuzzi on top

Wooden materials age and rot quicker than composite decking. Moisture can penetrate the material and cause massive damage quickly.

Wrapping Up

In answering the question of composite decking vs wood decking, both materials offer excellent benefits that will improve your home and reduce their impact on your budget.

In this light, both materials are excellent choices. To make the right choice, consider answering the following questions:

  • How much do I have for decking materials and labor?
  • Will the material suit the front aesthetic of my property such as the color of my door and siding?
  • Do I need a long-lasting deck or just a beautiful one?
  • Is my decking design final?

Once you have answered these questions, you will definitely make the right decision for your decking materials.

Have you constructed your decks recently? How did it go? Which did you use? Share your experience with us below!