Early Composite Decking Issues



In this article, Ultra Decking discusses some of the bad press composite deckings received some years ago.

It’s fair to say that the first generation of composite decking suffered defects like warping and splitting. Over the past 20 years, these defects have been completely resolved with the introduction of higher quality composite decking. Some low-quality composite decking manufactured with low-grade or cheap raw materials still suffers from warping, fading and splinters.

Therefore, here at Ultra Decking, we want to educate our customers on the issues with the earliest composite decking systems and how you can spot a first-generation or lower quality composite decking solution.

Below are some homemade tests you can do with first-generation or lower quality decking samples you may have ordered.


Modern composite decking is resistant to UV rays, although you should expect to see natural weathering after the first 12-week periods. First-generation and lower quality decking will fade at extremely fast rates.

One homemade test you can perform on samples is to place them into hot water, then add washing up liquid soap. Keep the water as hot as you can for the next 24 hours. When removed from the hot water, you will immediately notice with the lowest quality decking that the colour has faded. You should also check if the deck has a wide grooved surface; this too will have almost completely faded.


3Staining and mould

The latest capped (co-extrusion) composite decking is completely resistant to stains, mould and mildew throughout its lifespan. Traditional composite decking is not completely maintenance-free and requires periodic cleaning. Simply wash it down with water and a soft brush to ensure no issues for years to come.



No modern composite decking should warp. If they do this, it is generally due to poor installation.

5Too much water

Capped (co-extrusion) decking has ultra-low water retention in the region of 0.85%. Modern traditional composite decks will retain water below 2%. That said, water absorption must occur; otherwise, the boards would become brittle.

Tip: Always cap off your decking boards with either skirting trims or the correct end cap designed for your boards.

All early composite decking issues have now been resolved. Today, composite deck boards have become ideal replacements for regular wood or timber decking. Material and technological advancements in shielded or capped (co-extrusion) composite decking technology continues to grow, making the deck board a smart choice with all the added benefits compared to regular timber decks.

As a result, up to 80% of new UK decks are now built with composite decking as the advantages and benefits are so vast.

With the introduction of Ultra Decking’s Signature and Platinum ranges offering the latest advanced technology here in the UK, you will get the most natural wood appearance the industry has to offer.

Free Samples

When ordering your composite decking Ultra Decking offers a delivery service via a third-party courier....

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