Just as there are many options when it comes to wood and other materials, there are many options and variations when it comes to decking and fencing. The best part is that some of these products look just like the real thing, but they are often more practical, require very little maintenance and are easy to install. Composite fencing is just such a material.
Why Use Composite Fencing?
There are many reasons to go with composite fencing over any other material. It has many great benefits and is becoming more popular for the material of choice for fencing, as well as decks. Wood plastic composite is made mostly of wood flour. This key ingredient makes it extremely durable. There are softwoods that are not quite as durable, and they tend to absorb more water. Hardwoods are much more durable. Hardwoods include walnut, oak, teak, and Ipe. Teak will last well into the 25-year mark while larch, which is a softwood, will last anywhere from about 5 to 10 years.
Some composite woods will be made with waste timber to reduce waste and to keep the cost down. The products made of this material will typically be considered a softwood and will not last as long as a composite made of hardwoods, but it is also less expensive. Some composite woods will be made of recycled timber, which is a bit of a higher grade than the composite products made of waste timber. However, it can be hard to gauge just how much wood flour there is in recycled woods so the quality can vary somewhat. Other products are responsibly sourced, and it is possible to ensure that the origin, as well as the species of the trees used, are made of high-quality materials.
Composite Decking Options
Some decking products are made of bamboo and are a sustainable material. The lifespan of composite products that contain bamboo will not last as long as, say, composite products that are made of hardwood, but the draw is that it is an eco-friendly product.
Still, other composite products are made of polyethylene or polyvinyl chloride. Polyethylene is a common component in composite wood plastic fencing and decking and comes in a variety of different forms; it offers flexibility and is durable. Composite materials made of PVC are also durable, but it is a much stiffer material. It can be less able to absorb a shock in colder temperatures.
Key Composite Decking Considerations
Look for composite decking that is quality controlled and tested. Another thing to look for is whether or not additives have been added. Additives, such as UV stabilizers, antioxidants, and filters, will help to protect your decking for UV trays and will be less likely to warp or lose its color in the sun. It will increase the overall longevity of your decking while keeping it looking its best for many years to come.
Another thing to consider is whether you will choose a hollow decking material or a solid material. A hollow deck will not be as strong, but it will be more affordable, while a solid deck will cost you more. A hollow composite material may be more ideal for a fence while a solid material would be ideal for a deck.
A standard composite, such as HD Deck XS and 150 is pretty much the basic choice when it comes to composite wood plastic, but there is much more. You can also go with fully capped products which offer extended life and durability. Since they are capped, they are better protected from the elements and water will not get easily absorbed. It is also easier to clean since it will not absorb liquids such as grease or oil as easily.
When choosing composite fencing, it all depends on what you want and how long you want it to last. There are many options to choose from, and this is a material that will be very easy to maintain once installed. It also comes in a variety of colors and looks like the real thing. There are many benefits to choosing composite fencing or decking; it won’t break the bank either.
Have you used or considered using composite decking or fencing?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.