Composite and vinyl are among the most commonly used decking materials. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each to determine which will work best for your new deck!
Composite is made from recycled wood fibers and plastic, making it a very environmentally friendly choice when it comes to decking materials. It is lightweight and imitates the look of real wood decking. Some composite decks come with planks that have concealed screws, giving it a more smooth and natural look.
PROs: With composite, you get the beautiful wood look without the maintenance that wood decking material demands. It is available in many different textures, colors, and designs. Composite decking is not susceptible to insect damage or rot and is easily cleaned with a simple mixture of soap and water.
CONs: Composite decking can get pricey, especially if you use custom colors or textures. Pricing usually starts at around double the cost of natural wood decking. Dark colored composite has a tendency to fade and visibly show weathering as it ages. Composite decking that sits primarily in the shade can be an inviting home to mold and mildew.
Lifespan: Composite decking can last anywhere from 20-50 years.
Vinyl, also known as polyvinyl chloride (PVC), is a decking material that is made of high-density plastic. This material never splinters and is relatively low maintenance. Unlike composite decking, however, it is difficult to achieve a natural look with vinyl decking material.
PROs: Vinyl decking is highly resistant to stains and fading, even if your deck sees a good amount of sun exposure throughout the day. It is easy to maintain over the years because it doesn’t require any sanding, painting, or staining.
CONs: Some brands of vinyl tend to sag and may require an extensive support structure to be built before the decking material can be laid. Vinyl is essentially plastic, so it can get very warm to the touch on hot summer days. It can be customized in a variety of colors, but it is difficult to make vinyl decking look natural like composite or wood.
Lifespan: Vinyl decks are made to last over 30 years.
Looking for a reliable decking contractor in Maryland? North American Deck & Patio has a wide variety of decking materials available for your next decking project, including composite, vinyl, pressure-treated wood and more. Contact us today to request a free consultation with one of our decking professionals!