Composites are one of the most well-known decking materials besides wood and PVC. Both wood and plastic have their very own advantages and disadvantages. But as for composites, they have the best traits of the other two combined. They are durable, low-maintenance, and long-lived without losing the wood-like appearance and texture. Because of this, you may have considered switching from a wooden deck to composite decking. But you are not alone. More and more people are considering using composite patios instead.
But the question is, how much would it cost you to replace an existing wooden deck to composite decking? Should you make the switch? And how would you benefit from having a composite deck?
How Much Would it Cost to Replace Wood with Composite?
There is no straight answer regarding this question. Many factors could affect how much you would end up spending on replacing a wood deck with a composite one. What are they?
One factor that can affect the cost is the quality of the frame underneath the wooden deck. Why does it matter? Composite decking is often heavier than wood decking. For it to be possible to turn your old deck into a new composite deck, the frame would need to be able to support the new materials. If not, it will make the new deck unstable and dangerous. If your decking frame is in top shape and can support composites, you will save around £300 to £500 from the frame materials. If not, you will need to make a more suitable frame, which means you will need to spend the full cost of building a new composite decking.
Aside from having a sturdy and suitable frame, building the deck yourself also can decrease the cost you’ll need to replace wood with composite. If you exclude the labour fees, you can save around £400 off the installation cost. It may prove a challenge to beginners, but there are many guides that you can follow on how to build a deck. All you need are the right tools and the willingness to try new things. Of course, if you have experience in carpentry and construction, it makes things so much easier.
Can you place composite decking boards on top of wooden decking boards? At first, it may seem an excellent idea, as you won’t have to spend that much except for the boards. However, composites and wood are entirely different materials. You may risk ruining the composites by doing so.
So when there’s no other choice, you’ll have to build the deck from scratch. To build a composite deck measuring 15 square meters, you will need to spend around £1800 all in. Less if you do it yourself. So the next question is, should you replace your wooden deck with composite?
Do You Need to Replace Wood with Composite?
In general, replacing your wooden deck with composite is a solid decision. Composite decking doesn’t have the issues that traditional wooden decks have. Some of these issues are moisture damage, insect damage, mould growth, warping, and rotting. Composite decking also lasts longer than wood decks, which can last for 25 to 30 years compared to 10 to 15 years of wood decks. Composite decking is also safer than most pressure-treated wood decks. And on top of it all, it still has a wood-like appearance. You can even get boards with grains for a more authentic feeling.
Another main benefit of owning a composite deck is that it’s easier to clean and maintain. You don’t need to put as much time and effort as you would for wood decks. Composite decking also doesn’t need staining, sanding, and sealing, all of which are necessary for wooden decking. All you need to have is a regular, thorough cleaning schedule, at least twice a year. And you will only need basic cleaning household items such as a brush and some soap.
While composite decks have so many benefits, there are times that you may want to reconsider first before replacing your wood deck. For instance, it may not be a good idea to replace a newly built deck. If you’re moving away, it may not also be a good idea to spend on a project that you won’t fully benefit from.