A deck is a valuable asset to your home. It gives you a peaceful place to relax whenever you want to enjoy some time outside your house.
Apart from that, it improves the aesthetic value of your home and makes it look better.
Deck building includes using wood or composite materials. A deck made of ordinary wood can last for between ten and thirty years.
But it can last for about fifty years if made of treated wood or composite materials.
It’s evident that a deck is a fixture that should last for many years, and it is crucial to pick the right materials when building one.
A combination of the proper material and the right deck builder will guarantee you a functional and beautiful deck that will last long.
Which is Which? The Difference Between Composite and Wood Decks
When faced with the choice between two materials, it is good to know the advantages and disadvantages of each before making the final decision.
Getting advice from deck companies helps too! So make sure to arm yourself with the basics.
Here, we will look at treated wood vs. composite decking and compare them to help you pick the most suitable one for your deck installation project.
These decks are made of natural wood and bring a warm appearance.
But, wood is not just wood, as there are different types.
The type of timber you pick for the deck plays a huge role in the longevity of the fixture and maintenance costs.
A popular option is a pressure-treated wood, which is regular wood soaked in anti-rot agents.
The natural color of pressure-treated lumber is green, but you can stain it to create the color of your choice.
Pressure-treated wood is a low-cost option but vulnerable to splitting and cracking. Which makes it costly in regards to maintenance costs.
You can always opt for the weather-resistant wood varieties such as cedar or redwood.
They offer much-needed aesthetic value while still being resistant to warping and cracking.
But you can enjoy these benefits at thrice the cost of pressure-treated wood.
These deck building materials are gaining popularity due to their benefits.
They’re made of a mixture of recycled plastic and wood fibers.
These decks are not natural and won’t offer aesthetic value. But you have a wider pool of colors to choose from when trying to mimic the natural appearance.
Comparing Wood vs. Composite Decking- Pros and Cons
It’s hard to beat the aesthetic value offered by natural wood, no matter how hard you try to mimic it. This way, it is evident that wood has the edge here.
But composite decking materials have improved over the years.
They used to look plastic and artificial, but modern-day manufacturers are making them similar to natural wood.
It has a randomized embossed grain pattern so that all boards look different, as it is with natural wood.
This way, composite materials still stand out as an ideal option if you want to enjoy the appearance of a close-to-natural deck.
Absorption of Moisture
The downside of going for natural wood for your deck is that it absorbs moisture.
This can derail the quality of the wood over time, but luckily, you can do a couple of things to reduce the rate.
Applying stains, sealers, and paints regularly will cut down the rate of absorption and increase the lifespan of your deck.
Some of the composite decks available today are resistant to moisture and can survive in humid conditions.
Make sure that you are buying a proven moisture-resistant decking material.
Once you get one from a deck contractor, you don’t need to apply a sealant and paint to keep away the water.
This is an integral part since the associated costs can sum up to huge amounts in the long run.
Wooden decks are susceptible to moisture, cracking, and warping. To protect them, you need to paint, stain and seal them regularly. This is particularly necessary for humid areas if you want to keep the deck for many years.
Composites are made to survive through weather conditions. They only need sweeping and regular cleaning to keep the decks in top condition.
They are not prone to damage by insects such as termites due to their artificial composition.
Wood is a more affordable option than most composite materials, especially when looking at the initial cost.
But it’s good to look at the long-term cost of having the deck and here is where composite materials end up paying for themselves in the second or third year.
You’ll find a variety of prices for wood and composite materials.
Generally, you will need to maintain the wood, which makes them the costly option.
The issue of comfortability is a vital thing to consider. This can be assessed by checking the surface temperatures of the two materials in different climatic conditions.
Wood decking has an advantage over composite materials since it doesn’t conduct heat and can remain within the normal temperatures in hot and cold conditions.
Composites materials can become extremely hot and uncomfortable when exposed to direct sunlight, but manufacturers are working hard to design decks that have a reduced rate of heat absorption.
If you want to hire high-quality decks to install for your home, you are better placed to choose the material you want based on the pros and cons listed above.
Wood decks are excellent in regards to the initial cost, surface temperature, aesthetics, and longevity.
Their disadvantages come in wear and tear plus regular maintenance that makes the long-term costs of having them high.
Composite decks are suitable for maintenance costs, durability, and resistance to UV rays.
Their downsides are their artificial feel, quality concerns, and inability to restore them when they start fading.
If you are stuck between the two, let our guys at Big Easy Landscaping help.
We’re not just landscapers, but deck builders in New Orleans as well.