Is Composite Decking More Expensive than Wood? Not in the long term.
You know about the downfalls of wood decking, so you’re looking for alternatives. But you’re afraid to look too far; after all, every potential substitute just seems too expensive. So you start asking yourself a simple question: is composite decking more expensive than wood?
Fortunately, the answer is different than you might expect. First, composite materials have become more affordable as demand has increased and manufacturers have achieved economies of scale. Secondly, their long-term benefits actually means that in the long-term, you can save money compared to hardwood. Plan your deck prudently, and the cost savings can be significant.
So don’t fall for sticker shock, especially if you haven’t even seen the sticker yet. Instead, consider the nuances of composite decking that make it a smart investment with a high return on investment for your property.
The Basics of Composite Decking
First, it makes sense to better understand what composite decking actually is until you make a purchasing decision. Here’s one basic explanation of the manufacturing process:
Composite decking is typically made from a combination of different materials (namely, wood and plastic), which are processed to give the appearance of wood. Both the wood (which consists of lumber industry byproducts like sawdust, chips and wood fiber) and the plastic can be made from virgin or recycled material. Manufacturers mix the components, often adding a pigment and preservative. The mixture is heated, formed into board-shaped lengths and then cooled.
The result of that process is a material that’s both strong and durable. Maintenance tends to be low, and no extra staining is required for the composite to last. NexGEN specialises in capped composite, which adds a very durable cover to the core material (like what’s found on the outside of a golf ball) that further protects against the elements.
Understanding the Price of Composite Decking
Getting the wood you need for your deck is relatively simple. Finding the right composite, which has to be manufactured, is a bit more complex. That’s why so many homeowners and deck builders think composite decking is the more expensive and less convenient choice. But that doesn’t have to be the case.
In fact, some options are now just about as reasonably priced per square metre as their hardwood counterparts. Sure, you’ll always be able to find cheaper wood options. But if you want even reasonably durable materials, the more expensive hardwoods approach the price per square metre of lower-range composite alternatives.
The reason prices have adjusted so much is simple. Hardwood continues to be easily harvested but good quality is getting scarcer so the prices are increasing, but composite has become more popular. Improvements in manufacturing efficiencies have made even high-end options more attainable with a reasonable budget. And that’s before we even begin to consider the long-term benefits of this decking material.
What Benefits Can Decrease the Long-Term Costs of Capped Composite Products?
Don’t make the mistake of assuming that your deck’s costs only relate to installation. In reality, maintenance costs just as much if you choose wrong. A cheap deck could have a major impact on your yearly budget if you have to continue painting, staining, and repairing various parts each year.
That’s where capped composite decking and cladding truly begins to shine. It requires little to no maintenance, and is built to last. In fact, quality capped composite products will not fade or rot even under the most harsh environmental circumstances, requiring no regular painting or extra boards just to keep it safe for you or your family.
That, in turn, increases its return on investment. If your decking maintenance is minimal, that means your investment is limited to your initial installation. Over time, you will more than make up for that initial investment with significant maintenance. The unique benefits of capped composite decking, in other words, significantly decrease its long-term costs for any property it lives on.
Hidden Cost Savings in the Installation Process
Another potentially significant benefit of this material consists of the ways in which you can install it. With the right installation, you can save both tangible and intangible costs for yourself and everyone around you.
First, composite decking requires no nails to put the deck together. That means not just avoiding injury at better rates than hardwood, but also increasing the ease with which you can construct the deck yourself. We don’t have to tell you that not having to hire contractors, or at least being able to help them or speed them up, will save on installation costs.
Other benefits of installation are more intangible. Because the material we offer has no visible repeats or easy-to-discern patterns, you benefit by not having to pay a premium for expensive alternatives while also increasing the appeal of the deck itself. Finally, our capped composite materials are made from recycled materials, decreasing the cost on nature and significantly raising the environmental friendliness of your home and outside space.
Find Capped Composite Decking Options at NexGEN
All of the above benefits, of course, may seem theoretical to you. After all, you don’t know whether the high-quality promises made throughout actually apply to the vendor from which you buy the composite decking boards. That’s why we’re so proud of our credibility, which is based on the materials we offer.
Our capped composite has been manufactured in the USA since 1997, for more than 20 years. The result is a high-quality building process that reflects itself in the durability and strength you get. It’s also why we feel so comfortable offering a 25-year stain and fade performance warranty for all capped composite we sell.
To further increase that quality, we only use marine grade stainless steel fixings. Those fixings hold together our double-sided reversible boards, which make sure that you can easily enjoy your deck without worry about failure or injury. Add that to the long-term cost savings and the lack of decking maintenance as a core reason why capped composite is the right choice for you.