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Decking: Composite or treated?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by CentralIllinoisan, May 14, 2010.

  1. CentralIllinoisan

    CentralIllinoisan Active Member

    The wife and I are about to have a new deck installed in our back yard. We have the design all selected, the contractor picked, etc.

    Now, we have yet to decide between composite decking and treated lumber. Can anyone shed some light on the pros and cons of both? Is it worth the extra money?

    We live in the Midwest, and one contractor said the composite can get incredibly slick in the rain and snow ... but the lack of upkeep makes that option quite intriguing.

    I've read pretty much anything and everything, but need some real-world testimonials. Anyone?
  2. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    With treated, you've got to reseal it every few years. Even by doing that, you've still got possibility of cracking and warping. My FIL and I installed a deck about seven years ago here. I think next summer there will be five or six boards I'll need to replace, including two of the steps down to the yard, because of cracks.

    I've not heard that composite gets that slick. That's a new one to me.
  3. cranberry

    cranberry Well-Known Member

    What's the greener choice? Is the composite made of recycled materials like some of the new park benches?
  4. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    If you can afford the composite, I'd go with that in a heartbeat.
  5. novelist_wannabe

    novelist_wannabe Well-Known Member

    Count this guy on the treated side of the argument.


    Ever hear of Louisiana Pacific siding? I'm very wary of anything composite after working in a furniture store during college, about the time manufacturers started making furniture from particle board. The owner of the store I worked for liked to call it "glit," part glue, part shit. Now, I'm sure there have been great advances in composite technology, and the use of recycled materials seems noble. Still, it seems very hard to know what you're getting. That's not the case with treated lumber.
  6. Machine Head

    Machine Head Well-Known Member

    Have a friend who has composite and he has mentioned it gets slick during the winter. He also said some composites can develop mold. Dunno about the mold part, didn't Goolge it before I posted, so grain of salt.

    You also might want to look at hidden deck fasteners. Lots out there, and I am just starting to look myself so I don't know much about them, but it seems to make sense.

    By not having to drilling screws down through the boards you'll get a better look, avoid cracks, rot and pop-ups.
  7. Mitch E.

    Mitch E. Member

    Last year we tore up the old wood on our deck and replaced it with composite. Haven't slipped on it yet. As for the mold, we've had it only a year so that hasn't been a problem. But if you get a pressure washer, or rent one once a year, that would probably solve any problems with that.

    But yeah, love the composite, and it looks great and cleans great.
  8. Buck

    Buck Well-Known Member

  9. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

  10. Blitz

    Blitz Active Member

  11. Blitz

    Blitz Active Member

    Go to Home Depot and get the folks there to give you some real advice.
    SJ's best for whether Kagan's gay or whether LeBron's returning to Cleveland.
  12. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    Open or enclosed deck?

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