The last several years has brought new choices in composite wood products used to construct a deck. In twelve months, the cost of a wooden deck spiked to nearly equal that of composite models which don’t stain and you can wash with a hose.
Homeowners who wouldn’t have even looked at alternative decking material are now giving alternatives a second look due to the price gap narrowing and because it’s what they can actually get. Composites haven’t, for the most part, had any deliverability delays and generally have inventory.
With composite decking:
- There’s less maintenance than with wood. You must decide if the look and feel of natural wood is worth the work that goes into periodic staining, painting and replacing sections that have begun to decay. If you’d rather spend your time doing something else, composites are your choice.
- Composites come in a variety of colors. Unlike wood, composites don’t need to be painted or stained to look good with your home.
- The technology is improving. Some manufacturers now produce decking with a hard plastic shell bonded to composite boards to improve durability. According to different sources, this makes the surface less prone to staining, fading, scratching and mold.
Synthetic manufacturers are putting on a marketing push, emphasizing their material’s “better staying power”. Leading that charge is the No. 1 composite provider, Trex (TREX), which Principia estimates has slightly more than 40 percent of the synthetic sector.
We all know that wood decking should be power washed each year to rid the wood of pollen and dirt that has accumulated throughout the year, along with generally needing to be re-stained every couple of years. Eventually, depending on how well you maintain your wood deck, sun, rain, heat and cold will cause it to crack, splinter off or rot. To keep a wood deck looking its best and lasting as long as possible takes time, energy and money.
Of course, enclosing your deck would help protect the wood as the elements won’t be sitting on it all year long.
Composites look, feel, and act more like wood due to them containing about 50 percent wood dust from sawmills, in addition to recycled and virgin high-density polyethylene.
Experts note that lumber prices will possibly remain high for the rest of 2021. If you aren’t in a hurry to replace, add-on or create your deck area and prefer wood, you could always sit back and see what 2022 brings. But as composite is now at a price not much higher than wood and is more readily available, along with the fact that no one really knows how high the price of wood will go or when it might start to come down, you might want to check it out.
If you do decide on having a composite deck built or a current one enclosed, give me a call and we can discuss the different types, colors and prices for it.
*https://www.travelers.com/resources/home/renovation/pros-and-cons-of-composite-vs-wood-decking *https://www.thisoldhouse.com/decking/21015447/high-tech-decks *https://www.cbsnews.com/news/deck-wars-synthetics-aim-to-walk-all-over-wood/ *https://www.consumerreports.org/decking/lumber-shortage-and-building-a-deck-a4704551478/