The Full Range of Composite Decking Options

Posted by Brett McCutcheon on May 16, 2020 8:45:00 AM

Composite decking does not fade, is 5-16-20-bigstock-Composite-Wood-Deck-With-Metal-320783923easy to maintain, and has a longer lifespan than other traditional options. Composite lumber is made of equal parts wood fiber and plastic, mixed with pigments, UV inhibitors, and preservatives, and are typically heated and extruded. The texture, if there is one, is then pressed or cut on the warm surface before it cools. This material is available in a variety of patterns, colors, and sun resistance, making it a popular choice for decks and other exterior spaces. Here are the options outlined for easier decision making.

Types of Composite Decking Profile Options

 

  • Slotted features grooves on both sides, allowing for hidden fasteners to run along the sides without being visible on the surface.
  • Solid features two usable sides that can be face-fastened or edge-fastened, like traditional wood boards.
  • Open Flange reduces weight considerably without sacrificing rigidity, but only uses hidden fasteners.
  • Scalloped is weighty but less so than solid as it has grooves in one side, making only one side usable, but still behaves like a solid board.
  • Hollow is 25% lighter than a solid board but stiffer, plus hollow decking features end caps that prevent bugs from nesting in it.

 

Types of Composite Decking Texture Options

 

  • Textured Grain – Both sides have a grain cut that mimics natural wood grain. It helps to hide scuffs and scratches, and often has the slotted profile but can be in solid style as well.
  • Two-Faced – One side has the textured grain, the other has a brushed finish.
  • Plastic Wrapped – A resin coating around the entire piece gives stain, scratch, and fade resistance to both sides.
  • Embossed Grain – This texture is embossed into both sides, giving it a deeper grain, more often in the solid profile.
  • Weathered Vein – Embossed texture on both sides with additional pigments added to give depth and dimension to the look.

 

Pros and Cons of Composite Decking

Pros

 

  • Low Maintenance: Unlike wood materials, composite decking does not require staining, sealing, or painting. Just an occasional power wash, saving you time, money, and effort. Make sure you keep the deck clear of debris and dirt to improve its longevity.
  • Durability: While traditional wood materials have an average lifespan of 10 to 15 years, composite decking materials average 25 to 30 years with the least amount of maintenance. The quality of the composite materials will not become less effective due to changes in the weather or season. There is minimal fading and graying, which is a major drawback of wood, and these boards won’t warp, rot, splinter or attract wood destroying insects.
  • Variety: Another factor that makes composite decking attractive is the variety of readily available finishes and profiles. Regardless of the style, color, pattern, or texture you need, composite decking has designs that will complement any theme you create.

 

Cons

 

  • Price: The biggest hurdle for choosing composite decking materials is the price. These decking materials are more costly than traditional wood materials. But they last longer, they feature a better variety of designs and patterns, and offer more short-term and long-term benefits. You must compare the costs of the upfront purchase to the costs over time of supplies as well as your time to maintain the deck for composite versus wood.
  • Heat: Composite lumber holds heat from the sun more than wood. Darker boards will be hot under foot.

 

BECK is a name you can trust. Installation can be a snap with the InvisiDeck® Hidden Fastening System from BECK. Instead of using nails and screws like traditional deck builds, our system uses SCRAIL® InvisiDeck® collated fasteners, fastened with InvisiDeck® I-CLP Clips, installed with the InvisiDeck® pneumatic tool, providing a secure, hidden join in one step.

 

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Topics: Deck Fasteners, invisideck

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