Does Composite Decking Get Hot?

During your research on composite decking, you may have come across some common questions asked about composite decking boards during the summer months. Does composite decking get too hot? Or how hot can composite decking get?

With the rise of composite decking popularity, due to the ultra-low maintenance lifestyle and boards that offer a natural authentic wood appearance, no annual staining or painting with minimal colour changes. You need to consider if your decking area is going to be in direct sunlight.

If you want a decking area that does not heat up fast or you live in a place where it is often hot, make sure that you get heat-resistant materials. Many composites today have higher heat resistance and can be used to make decking for warmer climates.

Choose the right colour. Opt for light light-coloured composite decking boards with a hollow core for a cooler decking area. Try to avoid dark-coloured composite decking, regardless of material.

That said, here in the UK where the weather is cool with much less sun, you can install dark composite decking boards outdoors. The composite decking boards can even keep your feet warm while relaxing outdoors.

Black
Black or charcoal composite decking tends to absorb heat from the sun, making the composite decking hot. This composite decking colour is suitable for homeowners living in a region with less sunlight. Dark coloured composite decking boards are not suitable for installation outdoors in an area with a lot of sunlight.

Grey
Grey composite decking comes in light grey and dark grey. Homeowners can install light-coloured boards outdoors without erecting a shade over them, as these colours do not absorb heat. Light colour composite decking is suitable for installation in any region.

Brown
Like grey, brown composite decking comes in dark and light colours. The light colour is good for use anywhere and will not get too hot in the sun. Meanwhile, the dark brown composite decking board similar to black will get hot in the sun, making it suitable in areas with less sunlight.

If you plan to erect a structure over your composite decking to protect it from direct sunlight, you can install any composite decking colour of your choice.

Go With Light-Coloured Furniture
It adds heat to the decking area if your furniture is dark-coloured. To keep the deck cooler, try to use light-coloured furniture. If you have couches, use a sofa cover. You may also want to go with light and bright colours for cushions. Use tablecloths to cover your dark-coloured tables and blend with light-coloured carpets and rugs. Not only will these keep the boards from getting hot too fast, but they can also help you walk on them if the decking gets too hot underfoot.

Create Shades
Installing some shades is another practical way to keep your decking cool. You can buy umbrellas and parasols to lessen the amount of sunlight your decking receives.

If you have already installed dark composite decking boards in your garden, erecting a structure over your composite decking will be a barrier between the composite decking and the sun. It will help the decking surface to remain cool, even in the summer.

Use light-coloured fabrics and hang them above the decking using posts and strings. Furthermore, you can also follow online guides on making DIY covers and shades. If you have the budget, invest in a pergola.

Use a Fan
Consider using fans to keep your decking area cooler. They are cheap and easy to use. Aside from traditional fans, you can also get misting fans. These are specially designed fans for decks and patios. These fans spray water along with the air, effectively cooling your decking.

Limit Cooking Activities
Another reason your patio space can get hot is because of cooking. No doubt that you will be doing barbecue parties in your garden. To lessen the heat on your decking, make sure to limit your cooking time. If possible, you can also move the grill or any other cooking equipment away from your decking.

Conclusion
We now know that any decking will get hot, regardless of your material. Fortunately, there are many ways to keep your decking cool, even on the hottest summer days. To keep your decking cool, choose light colours to reduce heat absorption and shades to block out the sun.

1Sunlight

Like most surfaces including composite decking if constantly exposed to direct sunlight it will get hot.

The same can be said for any outdoor building products or material after a long day in the direct sunlight.

Ultra-Decking is consistently improving our composite decking solutions and use the latest manufacturing techniques to reduce the heat build-up on our products.

2Colour

The biggest factor for any outdoor product heating up and getting hot is the colour and the density of the product, which plays a difference in the overall temperature when exposed to consistent direct sunlight.

The lighter the colour and the lower the density the lower the temperature.

If heat is a concern and your decking is going to be in direct sunlight the coolest boards will be a light colour with hollow core profile (square or circle), the lighter the board in weight, mass and colour the less it retains its heat, less mass and weight to heat up the cooler the board will be.

3 Country

The heat build-up is a more frequently asked question in countries with hot temperature, as we sell our boards around the world and often experience this question in America, Singapore, Spain and Australia.

4More On Colour

If you want a decking that does not heat fast or you live in a place where it is often hot, make sure that you get heat-resistant materials. Many composites today have higher heat resistance and can be used to make decking for warmer climates.

Choose the right colour and opt for lighter colours for a cooler decking area. Try to avoid dark-coloured composite decking, regardless of material. Therefore, if you want composite decking that does not get too hot, choose light-coloured composite decking boards with a hollow core.

That said, here in the UK where the weather is cool with less sun, you can install dark composite decking boards outdoors. The composite decking boards can even keep your feet warm while relaxing outdoors.

5Black

Black or charcoal composite decking tends to absorb heat from the sun, making the composite decking hot. This composite decking colour is suitable for homeowners living in a region with less sunlight. Dark coloured composite decking boards will not be suitable for installation outdoors in an area with much sunlight.

6Grey

Grey composite decking comes in light grey and dark grey. Homeowners can install light coloured boards outdoors without erecting a shade over them as the board does not absorb heat. Light colour composite decking is suitable for installation in any region.

While the dark grey composite board is like the black composite decking. It will absorb heat from the sun and is unsuitable in sunny regions, except if you build a shade over it.

7Brown

Like grey, brown composite decking comes in dark and light colours. The light colour is good for use anywhere and will not get hot in the sun. Meanwhile, the dark brown composite decking board will get hot in the sun, making it suitable in areas with less sunlight. But if you plan to erect a structure over your composite decking, you can install any composite decking colour of your choice outdoors.

8Build a Shade over Your Decking

If you have already installed dark composite decking boards in your garden, you can prevent your composite decking from getting hot in the sun by erecting a shade over it. Erecting a structure over your composite decking will be a barrier between the composite decking and the sun. It will help the composite decking surface to remain cool even in the summer.

9Go With Light-Coloured Furniture

It adds heat to the patio when your furniture is dark-coloured. So when it is summer, make sure to use lighter ones. If you have couches, you can use a sofa cover. You may also want to go with light and bright colours for pillowcase covers. You can also use tablecloths to cover your dark-coloured tables. Furthermore, you may also want to use light coloured carpets and rugs. Not only will these keep the boards from getting hot too fast, but they can also help you walk on them if they do get hot.

10Create Shades

Installing some shades is another practical way to keep your decking cool. You can buy umbrellas and parasols to lessen the amount of sunlight your decking receives. You can also use light-coloured fabrics and hang them above the decking using posts and strings. Furthermore, you can also follow online guides on making DIY covers and shades. If you have the budget, invest in a pergola.

11Use a Fan

When the decking gets hot, consider using fans. They are cheap and easy to use. Aside from traditional fans, you can also get misting fans. These are specially designed fans for any patios. These fans spray water along with the air, effectively cooling your decking.

12Limit Cooking Activities

Another reason your patio space gets hot is because of cooking. No doubt that you will be doing barbecue parties in your garden. To lessen the heat on your decking, make sure to limit your cooking time. If possible, you can also move the grill or any other cooking equipment away from your decking.

13Research & Feedback

Ultra-Decking can confirm that the differences between wood and composite decking are minor. For example, Cedar can heat up to 157 degrees in direct sunlight. Ultra-Decking capped Co-Extrusion decking boards can heat up to 140 degrees when exposed to direct sunlight.

As a guide tests were performed in direct sunlight averaging 86 degrees all day heat. All decking solutions heated up to over 100 degrees. Wood decking solutions such as Ipe reached 137 degrees, Pine was between 119-138 degrees with some tropical woods heating up to between 135-149 and capped co-extrusion solid boards ranged from 135-149 degrees.

Ask Us How

If you are concerned about heat build-up and need additional help, please feel free to make contact for advice and guidance even if you’re not purchasing from ourselves. If not, our advice would be to opt for a lighter colour board like our Signature Teak or the Teak boards from our new Exclusive range.

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Quick Summary

Most materials including wood and composite woods will heat up in direct sunlight, although different wood solutions are cooler than others. The test reports in some of the hottest countries in the world support and confirms the difference isn’t huge between wood and composite wood. Our expert advice would be to use a light colour decking board with a hollow core profile. This will help dissipate the heat and provide as close to the same heat as wood. Like any surface, please do wear footwear when the weather is hot.

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