If you are new to deck building, you might be confused when deciding on the material to use. There are different materials you can use to build a deck in your garden. Having a good knowledge of these materials will help you make the right decision. Composite decking, timber decking and plastic decking are the common types of decking materials. Knowing what materials to use to build your decking is important.

Types of Material to Build Decking

What Material Should I Use to Build My Decking?

Wood Decking Material

Wood is a natural and the oldest decking material used by homeowners in building their decks. There are three common wood choices used in the making of deckings. Cedarwood, redwood, and pressure-treated pine are used widely in making wood decking.  Redwood and cedar are a bit more expensive than pressure-treated woods. Cedars and redwoods are naturally resistant to rot. They are also naturally resistant to insects that damage wood, like termites. 

Pressure-treated pine is also a good choice for decking. It is not naturally resistant to rot and insects like redwood. But it contains chemicals that make it resistant to rot and termites. They are cheap and not as expensive as cedar and redwood. Let’s see the characteristics of wood to know if it’s a good material to build decking.

Aesthetics

When it comes to aesthetics, wood decking does not provide much aesthetic value. You have to paint or stain the wood to make it look beautiful. Even if you paint or apply a stain on a wood decking, the colour of the wood will fade rapidly on exposure to the sun. So to maintain the look of a wood decking, you have to keep staining or painting it annually to make it look its best.

Durability

In terms of durability, wood may not be as durable as you think. Although they are structurally strong, wood is prone to damage. They are not resistant to the weather. In the presence of moisture, a wood decking will swell and will eventually rot over time. Apart from that, heat can also affect wood. In the presence of heat, wood decking can warp, crack and splinter.

Wood decking is also not resistant to insect damage unless you treat it with chemicals. The lifespan of wood can extend to 15 years with proper maintenance.

Maintenance

When choosing a material to build your decking, it is important to consider its maintenance. In terms of maintenance, a wood decking requires a lot of money to maintain. You will need enough money yearly to sand your decking before applying stains or paints to it. It’s also important to apply sealers on wood decking to make it water-resistant.

Composite Decking Material

Composite decking is another material that you can use to build decking. However, it is not a natural decking material like wood because it contains plastic and wood fibre. It is a bit more expensive than wood decking, but it’s worth the money. Composite decking is a good material to build decking. Let’s consider some of its features.

Aesthetics

In terms of aesthetics, composite decking is more aesthetically pleasing than any other decking material. Composite decking will make your outdoor space look attractive for years to come. The composite decking board comes in lighter and darker colours. You can choose different colours ranging from silver, grey, brown, oak, green, anthracite grey and more. Also, composite decking colours can not fade like wood. 

Durability 

Composite boards are durable materials to build decking. You can’t compare its durability to wood. Composite decking is resistant to the elements. The presence of moisture will not swell. Also, the composite board is resistant to rot. Even when the weather is hot, composite decking will not warp. It also can not break or splinter. Composite decking is a durable material that insects cannot damage. The lifespan of composite decking can extend to 30 years and above.

Maintenance 

Composite decking is easy to maintain. It does not require painting or staining. When it’s dirty, you only need to clean the surface with water and soap.

 Plastic Decking Material

Plastic decking is also a synthetic material you can use to build decking. It has the same features as composite decking, but it’s not aesthetically pleasing like composite decking. You can not make a plastic decking look like wood because it contains 100% plastic. Plastic decking is also durable and easy to maintain. Besides that, PVC is very expensive. It’s more expensive than composite decking material.

Conclusion

The material you should use to build a deck is composite decking. Composite decking is durable and has a longer lifespan than wood and plastic decking. It is also easy to maintain.