Many manufacturers are now producing a variety
of synthetic decking materials
better than ever. Synthetic decking
number of advantages over wooden
- It is extremely durable and will not rot,
crack or peel.
- It can easily be cleaned by hosing it off;
no other maintenance is required.
- Synthetics are also easy to install with
ordinary power tools
- There is no waste from the kinds of defects
(knots, cracks) that can be found in wood.
These new decking products are available
in a variety of convincing colors and textures.
Many of them are nontoxic and are made from
recycled products. Attractive matching handrails
and trims are also available.
Consider the following if you
in synthetic decking:
- Polyethylene based composites are a mixture
of wood and plastic. These are the most popular
of the synthetics. The decking is durable
and strong and easy to install, but this
material is a bit softer than other synthetic
decking. As a result, it wears a little more
and there are stricter limits on the joist
- Polypropylene and wood fiber composites use
a stiffer and denser plastic
in a plank that can span a
This decking has a very durable
- Wood free plastics are a growing part of
the synthetic market. This decking can be
manufactured from polyethylene, polypropylene,
polystyrene, or PVC. Some manufacturers also
add some non wooden fibers to their composites.
These materials are less prone to expansion
and contraction from heat and cold. Because
they do not contain any wood, there are no
problems with moisture. This decking can
also be reinforced with glass or carbon rods
to create true structural products.
If you are interested in purchasing
a “green” decking material, check
to make sure what you choose
made from recycled materials.
Not all synthetic
decking can be produced from