Building composite decking is not an easy task. Aside from the materials, the cost of having one made by professional installers are also not cheap. The truth is, many experts estimate that you’ll spend around 25% of your total expenses on paying the professional tradesperson. For this reason, many homeowners look at the prospect of building the decks themselves. For experienced builders, it may be easy. But what about those who have no prior experience in construction? Is it hard? Or should you stick to hiring tradespersons?
Is It Hard Installing Composite Decking?
Building a composite deck is possible without any prior experience or knowledge on how to do it. That means you can save around £500 to £600 if you plan to build a £2000-worth composite decking. That money can go to making your outdoor space more beautiful. You can use it to add accessories, such as pergolas, lighting, and decorations. But the question is, how hard is it to install composite decking?
The answer depends on your skills and ability to follow instructions. There are many guides on the internet on how to do it. In most cases, when you purchase composite decking boards, the manufacturers also supply you with installation guides. If you have followed installation manuals similar to these, you may find building a deck manageable. Moreso if you know about handling simple construction tools, such as saws, hammers, and screwdrivers.
So how do you build or install a composite deck? As mentioned, you may want to stick with instruction manuals that come with the boards. But in general, you will need to prepare the installation site, build a frame for the deck, and install the decking boards. You may find out more detailed information on how to do these steps in the said guides. You may also find watching videos of tutorials and DIY guides helpful.
All in all, it can either be easy or hard, depending on each person. But for most people, it’s not too hard as long as you know what you’ll be doing. If you do have questions, you can find answers all over the internet.
Challenges in Building Composite Decking
Of course, there are a couple of challenges that you can and will encounter when installing a composite deck. What are they and how should you prepare for them?
Composite Decks Can Be Heavier
The first challenge can be from the very beginning, acquiring and transporting the decking boards. Because composite decking is denser and more durable than other decking options, expect it to be much weightier than usual decking boards. Even installing them can prove to be a challenge if you have no helping hand. So what’s the solution?
If you think that you won’t have a lot of helpers for your decking project, consider using hollow decking boards. They can be as durable as solid decking boards, but they weigh less. Of course, it has a few other advantages and disadvantages that you’ll want to consider. In any case, using them can make building a composite deck easier.
You May Need to Get Some Tools
If it’s your first time doing a construction project, you will need the right tools to do it. The problem is, not all people have these tools. If that’s the same for you, you can consider a few options. One option is that you buy them. It may be the best time to invest in excellent tools, especially if you plan to do other projects in the future. Another option is to borrow them from a friend or a family member. Alternatively, there may be some tool hire services in your area.
Aside from usual construction tools, you may also need to get some specific equipment. For instance, if you need to cut the decking boards, you may need to use different kinds of saws. For general purposes in construction, a hand saw can be enough. But for precision cuts, you will need mitre saws and circular saws.
Lastly, you will need to know how to use the necessary tools. Of course, it wouldn’t be a problem if you’re familiar with them. But if it’s the first time using them, it’s best to read safety guides and instructions. A few rounds of practice would also help.
In any case, building composite decking can be a challenge. But if you can follow instructions, use construction tools, and have a positive attitude, you may find it easy, enjoyable even. And the best bit is, you’ll save a lot of money if you do so. So it’s definitely worth a try.