Being a relatively new material on the market and one that is constantly evolving, there are many questions around about composite decking. If you are building a new deck or upgrading an old one, and are considering composite decking as a material option or are simply curious, then we have answered some of the most burning questions people have about composite decking below.
- What is Composite Decking Made of?
Composite decking is made from a combination of plastic and wood fibres, put together to create a more durable decking material that replicates the beauty and style of classic timber decking. Normally made with recycled fibres, not only is it durable but it is manufactured with the sustainability mindset of recycle and reuse.
- How Long Does Composite Decking Last?
As it is quite a durable material, it has a relatively long-lasting life expectancy without much maintenance and upkeep needed. Depending on how much you pay and who you purchase from, the warranty from rot and natural wear and tear can be from anywhere between ten to twenty-five years which on both ends of the spectrum is a long time for an outdoor structure to go without any environmental damage.
- What Colours and Styles Does it Come in?
Designed to replicate timber and mimic wood grain, it does come in a wide range of colours and styles, similar to different types of wood and timber decks.
- What is the Difference Between Hollow and Solid Core Boards?
The difference quite obviously lies in the core, with hollow boards generally having a more man-made look and having ribbed centres. Solid core boards look a lot more like lumber and are solid all the way through.
- What is the Difference Between Grooved and Ungrooved Boards?
The difference in these boards comes mainly down to the edges and how they are put into place. Grooved boards have solid edges and are usually installed with nails. Ungrooved boards due to their grooved notches or channels, are installed with deck fasteners.
- How Much Maintenance Do Composite Boards Need and How Do You Maintain Them?
If you are not looking forward to caring for your deck with staining and consistent maintenance, then composite decking is the best option for you. Composite decking is very durable and not susceptible to weather damage. The occasional wash down and brush will suffice, just to remove any excess dirt, leaves and dust. Avoid power washing as that can have a destructive effect on the boards.
- Can You Paint or Stain Composite Decking?
You can, but it is not recommended. If you decide to paint or stain your composite decking, you will have to commit to the upkeep similar to that of a timber deck, thus nullifying the perks of a composite decking. As boards normally have a dye in them to mimic that wood look, painting or staining can ruin the dye.
- What Span Length is Doable for Composite Decking?
It is recommended to use spans of 40 centimeters to ensure you have a strong and solid deck, with the recommendation of 30 -40 centimeters between joists for perpendicular applications. Alternatively, if you are installing at a forty-five-degree angle, then the best result will be achieved by using a maximum of twelves inches on the centre.
- What Sort of Equipment Is Needed to Install Composite Decking?
One of the perks of using composite decking is that you do not need any special equipment to install it. The best tools for installation are just simple woodworking tools like circular saws and mitre saws. You are even able to just use regular screws and nails, so not only do you get the perks of the look of wood, you get the easy installation without the hassle of having to stain or upkeep it. How handy is that!
- Does Composite Decking Expand and Contract?
In short, yes it does. The rate in which it expands and contracts comes down to a range of the usual factors such as climate and the temperatures in which it is exposed too.
Hopefully any questions you may have had about composite decking were answered in the top ten, but if you are still curious or have any more questions about composite decking, then seek out an expert so you can get the most comprehensive information to make the most well-informed decisions for your deck.