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Wood Deck Alternatives
Written by Elizabeth Wood
Editor In Chief, United Home Improvement


As you probably already know, wood decks require a lot of maintenance in order to keep their lasting appeal. Outside elements cause wood decks to rot, warp, split, and discolor. You must be responsible for sanding, sealing, and painting a wood deck. If this sounds like too much of a hassle for your lifestyle, consider wood deck alternatives.

Composite decking and plastic lumber are two alternatives to a wood deck. They offer low maintenance mixed with a similar look and feel of wood. Composite decking is a blend of wood products and certain forms of plastic (typically PVC). This blend of materials is made to be rot resistant, crack and split resistant, and guarded against weathering.

Composite decking offers a wide array of colors and textures. With its unique blend of materials, manufacturers have the ability to create a product that resembles the warm look and feel of wood. It is, however, more costly than treated pine. Keep in mind though that you will be saving yourself thousands of dollars on maintenance over the years.

Plastic lumber is another alternative to wood decking. However, unlike composite decking, plastic lumber does not contain any wood products in its make up. Plastic lumber is made from a blend of recycled plastics. This unique blend creates a fade free, stain free decking product. Similar to composite decking, plastic lumber is significantly more expensive than wood.

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