Deck wood vs composite wood cost. When it comes to building a deck, one of the most important decisions homeowners will need to make is choosing between wood and composite materials.
Wood has been a popular choice for decking for many years, offering a natural look and feel that is hard to replicate with synthetic materials. However, composite materials have become increasingly popular in recent years, offering a range of benefits that make them an attractive alternative to wood.
Homeowners will need to consider several factors, such as cost, durability, maintenance, and aesthetics, before deciding which material is right for their deck.
In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of wood and composite decking, helping homeowners make an informed decision that meets their needs and budget.
Deck Wood vs Composite Wood Cost
When it comes to cost, wood decking is generally less expensive than composite decking. The cost of wood decking can vary depending on the type of wood used.
On average, homeowners can expect to pay between $8 and $22 per square foot for wood decking, depending on the quality and type of wood used. Composite decking, on the other hand, can be more expensive upfront, with an average cost of $9 to $16 per square foot.
See what Bob Vila has to say about composite decking and how it’s becoming a favorite among homeowners everywhere.
However, composite decking requires less maintenance and lasts longer than wood decking, which results in cost savings over time. Homeowners should carefully consider their budget and long-term needs before deciding between wood and composite decking.
Things to Consider When Choosing Decking Material
- Cost of materials and installation
- Resistance to weather, pests, and rot
- Maintenance requirements
- Aesthetic appeal
- Environmental impact and sustainability
Pros and Cons of Ipe Wood
Ipe wood is a popular choice for decking due to its durability and aesthetic appeal. However, there are both pros and cons to using this material. One of the biggest advantages of Ipe wood is its durability.
Ipe wood is extremely dense and will withstand harsh weather conditions, making it an ideal choice for outdoor use. It is also resistant to rot, decay, and insect damage, which helps to extend the lifespan of the deck.
Additionally, Ipe wood has a beautiful natural look that enhances the aesthetic appeal of any outdoor space. However, there are also some drawbacks to using Ipe wood for decking.
One of the biggest cons is the cost, as Ipe wood is more expensive than other types of decking materials. It is also very dense, which makes it difficult to work with. What’s more, is that it requires special tools for installation.
Check out our Ipe wood service page, if you think this wood is the right choice for your new deck.
Pros and Cons of Cedar Wood
Cedar wood is a beloved choice for decking due to its natural beauty and durability. One of the biggest pluses of Cedar wood is its resistance to rot, decay, and insect damage.
This makes it an ideal choice for outdoor use, as it can withstand harsh weather conditions and pests without the need for chemical treatments. Additionally, Cedar wood has a beautiful natural color and grain pattern.
Cedar wood is also easy to work with and can be cut, sanded, and stained to achieve a variety of looks. Although, there are also some drawbacks to using cedar wood for decking.
One of the biggest cons is its softness, which it is prone to scratches and dents. Cedar wood also requires regular maintenance, such as cleaning and staining.
Cedar is known for being a fairly expensive decking choice, but it is important to note that it is less expensive than Ipe and Redwood decking.
Cedar wood, especially Western Red Cedar, has been a long-time, cherished favorite for decks. Go to our Western Red Cedar service page and find out how to get current pricing information.
Pros and Cons of Redwood
Redwood is a favored choice for decking due to its elegance and longevity. Similar to Cedar wood, Redwood is also tolerant of weather conditions and pests, which means it will not rot or decay.
Moreover, Redwood has a beautiful natural color and grain pattern that will transform any outdoor space. Redwood is one of the strongest woods, but it is also easy to work with.
Another advantage of Redwood is that it is a sustainable and eco-friendly choice, as it is a renewable resource and is sourced from responsibly managed forests. However, there are also some drawbacks to using redwood for decking.
One of the biggest cons is its cost, as redwood is another costly decking material. It is around 20-22% more expensive than Cedar wood.
Furthermore, Redwood requires consistent care in order to stay looking its best.
Finally, Redwood is not as hard as some other types of wood, although it is more durable than Cedar. See what Bob Vila has to say about using redwood in his article, “Backyard Decks Go Green with Redwood Construction.”
Pros and Cons of traditional composites
Traditional composites are a trendy option for decking due to their robustness and low maintenance requirements. They are made from a blend of wood fibers and plastic, which makes them resistant to rot, decay, and insect damage.
Next, traditional composites are available in a wide range of colors and styles, which is appealing to homeowners. Another advantage of traditional composites is that they are easy to clean. This fact alone is a reason people choose traditional composites for their deck.
Nevertheless, there are drawbacks to using traditional composites for decking. One of the biggest cons is that they are prone to fading over time. This is especially true in areas with high UV exposure.
Also, traditional composites are not as eco-friendly as other types of decking materials. They are made from a blend of plastics and wood fibers that are not recyclable.
Finally, traditional composites are high-priced compared to natural woods, but less costly than capped composites or PVC decking. Thinking that traditional composites are the right choice for you? Hop over to our composite lumber service page for more information.
Pros and Cons of Capped Composites
Capped composites are a newer type of decking material that offer several advantages over traditional composites. One thing about capped composites is that they are coated with a protective layer. This layer makes them resistant to fading, staining, and scratching.
Like traditional composites, there are many options to choose from in terms of colors and styles. Another advantage of capped composites is that they are made from a blend of recycled plastics and wood fibers. Capped composites are also low maintenance, requiring only occasional cleaning to maintain their appearance.
With that being said, there are also some drawbacks to using capped composites. One of the biggest cons is that they are more high-priced than traditional composites. Finally, capped composites can be prone to heat retention, which can make them uncomfortable to walk on in hot weather.
Pros and Cons of PVC decking
PVC decking is a popular choice for decking for many reasons. One of the biggest ones is that PVC decking is made from 100% plastic. So you won’t have to deal with rot, decay, or insect damage.
Because PVC decking is made from plastics the lifespan of the deck will be between 25-30 years. Additionally, PVC decking is available in a wide range of colors and styles, which can enhance the aesthetic appeal of any outdoor space.
Another advantage of PVC decking is that it is low maintenance, requiring only occasional cleaning to maintain its appearance. PVC decking is also lightweight and easy to install, which can save homeowners time and money over the life of the deck. However, there are also some drawbacks to using PVC decking.
One of the biggest cons is that PVC decking is more expensive than both composites and natural woods. Additionally, PVC decking can be prone to heat retention, which makes it uncomfortable to walk on in hot weather.
Both wood and composite wood are good choices for decking materials, depending on the homeowner’s needs and preferences. Natural wood, such as Cedar or Redwood, offers a beautiful natural look and feel.
In the wood world, Ipe is the most expensive decking material. Redwood is the next costliest decking choice. Cedar is the least expensive of these 3 natural woods.
As we have previously discussed, composite decking and PVC decking options are more costly than natural wood options, but they do provide greater durability and less upkeep.
At the end of the day, homeowners must consider the pros and cons of all decking options and decide which is the best choice for their budget and lifestyle.