How Long Does a Composite Deck Last?

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Decking lifespan

Deck construction and maintenance can be costly. Whether you’re a homeowner or a business person, you want your patio to last as long as possible. That’s one possible reason why you have chosen composite decking materials. They are durable, easier to maintain, and long-lasting. 

Whether you own a composite deck or are considering building one, you might have wondered, how long does composite decking last? Is it worth it?

What is the Duration Period for Composite Decking Boards?

So, how long does composite decking last? Many manufacturers market their materials, saying they can last no less than 25 to 30 years. Backed by manufacturers’ tests, some people claim composite decking can last more than 30 years. The good thing is that some manufacturers also offer extended warranties, some even for thirty years and above.

While composite decking can last quite a long, it doesn’t mean they’re invincible. Certain factors can either shorten or lengthen their lifespan. 

Things That Can Damage Your Composite Decking

Once composite decking is damaged, you will need to fix it immediately, or it won’t last long. While marketed as durable, low-maintenance and long-lasting, some things can damage composites, ultimately affecting their lifespan. To get the most out of your patio, note these dangers and avoid them as much as possible. 

  1. Rust – Composite decking is not metallic. However, if you have metal fixtures and furniture items, they might rust when exposed to moisture. The stains from these can stick to your patio. And when the stains penetrate the deck too deep, it’ll be difficult to remove them. It will also be detrimental to your patio.
  2. Improper Cleaning – We all want a clean patio. However, improper cleaning of your composite decking can damage and shorten its life. One example is misusing a power washer. Most composite decking can withstand a low-pressure, wide nozzle tip power washer. But if the pressure is too high, it can damage and chip the composite decking, which can be the source of many other problems. Another way to damage your deck by cleaning is by using harsh and abrasive chemicals, like chlorine bleach.
  3. Mould and Mildew. Composite decking materials are marketed as resistant to mould and mildew. While it is true that mould and mildew won’t grow on the composites themselves, they can be from other sources. For instance, fallen leaves, dirt, and debris can pile up if you have trees and plants on your patio. This can be a breeding ground for fungi. If not removed, they can affect the deck and the frame below it. 

How To Have A Long-lasting Deck

How long does composite deck last

As with any object, there are things that you can do to preserve a deck and make it last as long as it should be. Here are some of them.

  1. Always maintain your deck. Remember that “low-maintenance” doesn’t mean no maintenance at all. If you want your composite decking boards to last long, you must have a regular cleaning schedule. 
  2. Avoid Metal and Heavy Furniture – Since rust can be a considerable problem, avoid as much as possible using metallic furniture. You may place them over a wool rug if you have to use them. Do not use latex, metal, or plastic mats, as they can damage your deck.
  3. Have a regular inspection of your deck. When a board is damaged, from moulding, for instance, it can spread to the other adjacent boards. Not only that, but it can also be a safety hazard. So it’s crucial to identify these broken boards and fix them immediately. 

Now we know that composite decking can last for at least 25 yearsThe question is, is it worth it? Despite having a higher initial cost, it can last significantly longer than traditional decking. For instance, wood decking can only last up to 15 years and is maintenance-heavy. So next time you make a deck or upgrade an old one, consider composite decking as an option. 

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