One of the first decisions you’ll have to make after deciding to build a new deck is what material to use. While there are many different materials out there that you could use, the two most popular are wood and composite lumber (sometimes called synthetic decking), which is a mix of wood fiber and recycled plastic. In order to help you make this important decision, we’ll break down the pros and cons of composite and wood.
Wood is the traditional, classic choice for decks. Because it has been used the longest, the majority of decks in the US are made of wood. There’s just something about having a deck with the look, feel, and smell of real wood.
- Looks natural (because it is)
- Smells good
- Many different wood options including mahogany, cedar, redwood, pressure treated wood, and IPE
- Tend to be less expensive
- Scratches and dings can be fixed quickly
- Regular maintenance is required
- Can splinter, crack, and fade if unmaintained
- Susceptible to water damage and termites
Composite was first introduced to the decking industry in the 1990s and is quickly growing in popularity. It is made by melting wood fibers, plastic, and coloring together. Today there are many different brands and colors available. The style of composite has improved recently as well, looking more like natural wood.
- Requires very little maintenance
- Environmentally-friendly (uses recycled consumer waste plastic)
- Long lifespan
- Resists rotting and warping due to moisture
- Doesn’t splinter
- More expensive
- Sometimes looks ‘fake’
- Not as durable
- Possibility of mold/mildew growth
At the end of the day, both wood and composite make great options for decks. Sometimes there is an obvious advantage to choosing wood or composite, depending on the location of the deck and other environmental factors. The experts at DeckMaster can help you know which type of deck is right for you. They might tell you that either type of deck will work, and then it’s just a matter of personal preference.
For all of your deck and fence needs in Montgomery County, Maryland, Frederick County, Maryland, and Fairfax County, Virginia, call DeckMaster, the deck building experts with 20+ years of experience. You’ll fall in love with your deck, guaranteed.