Jenfloor founder showroomChoosing outdoor decking can be difficult especially when there are various type of outdoor decking of different materials and colours.

But fret not, JenFloor flooring expert is here to back you up with everything you should know when selecting the best outdoor decking. How do we define the best outdoor decking?

It simply means the type of outdoor decking that is high performance, low maintenance and aesthetically attractive as wood decking!

This is none other than the innovative wood polymer composite decking.

Doubtful?

Read on to discover more.

1. Why Choose Composite Decking?

Composite decking is a modern decking material that is far more advanced than traditional wood deck in terms of quality, performance as well as aesthetic appearance.

Composite decking is tougher, more durable, better weather resistant and also extremely easy to maintain.

With composite decking, you can spare yourself from decking problems like splinters, cracks and fading off of colours. It is also easy to install and less time consuming. What’s more?

This amazing decking also an eco-friendly green product! If you are environment-conscious, composite decking could be a greener choice as it is produced by using recycled raw materials.

2. Composite Decking Designs & Patterns

Other than being functionally outstanding, the natural wood resemblance of composite decking is totally heart-winning! Just like vinyl flooring and laminate flooring.

Let’s check out some inspiration decking ideas…

outdoor decking

Composite decking is versatile that it can be installed for various outdoor settings like patio, balcony, swimming pool, porch, veranda, restaurants and even hotels. Choosing the right color and designs could probably bring life to your outdoor space with a touch of personality.

3. Outdoor Composite Decking Solution Provider in JB

JenFloor specialized in flooring installation which include outdoor composite decking.

Wood polymer composite decking available in our store is of premium quality and extremely high performance against sunny, humid weather as well as monsoon season.

What are included in our services?

  • Free on-site measurement for decking
  • Free consultation on decking installation ideas
  • Free quotation
  • Excellent customer service
  • Professional decking installation

3.1 Why Choose JenFloor?

At JenFloor, all our installers are well trained with years of experience in decking installation. Impressive workmanship of our installer not only adorns the outdoor areas but also ensures optimum performance and functionality of composite decking.

We emphasize on quality of our work as poor installation will indirectly results in less durable decking.  

If you wish for certain pattern arrangement of outdoor decking, talk to our flooring expert today for more ideas and advice! Don’t forget to book your date for a free on-site measurement!

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4. What is Composite Decking?

Composite decking is a high-performance synthetic decking manufactured using recycled raw material like recycled plastics, sawdust and wood fiber.

The mixture of these two main materials is also the reason why sometimes it’s called wood plastic composite or wood polymer composite.

In short, it is commonly known as WPC decking or composite decking.

Unlike traditional wood decking, composite decking does not split, splinters, warp or swell. It is definitely an eco-friendly green product that encourages a sustainable future as it consumes only recycled wood material.

 

4.1 Evolution of WPC a.k.a Composite Decking

Composite decking has made it’s way to become the top chosen material commonly used for residential and commercial decking today.

In fact, this innovative decking is not long in history. It has only been discovered after late 1990s.

Let’s look at how composite decking gradually goes mainstream after having to overcome challenges faced over the years.

Late 1990s

Composite decking is manufactured with 60% wood content. It was not as stiff as wood.

Early 2000s

Some manufacturers decided to remove the wood content and use only plastic material. This result in the brittle PVC decking.

Early 2009

New process called ‘co-extrusion’ was adopted in manufacturer to create a stronger and more resilient decking.

Year 2015

High performance of composite decking is well recognised and achieved impressive global market’s growth, particularly in the US, composite decking reached 1.3million tons.

5. Benefits of Composite Decking

5.1 Weather Resistant

The ability to withstand drastic weather changes is one of the basic criteria for outdoor flooring.

Composite decking is well protected against heat, sun, rain and high humidity of tropical weather.

It remains dimensional stable and will not fade in color, shrink or swell when exposed to irregular changes of weather and temperature.

Unlike wood decking, composite decking is superior in water resistant and will not face problems like blister, crack, rot and splinters which makes it ideal for walking on barefoot.

 

5.2 Slip Resistant

One of the safety features worth highlighting is the slip resistant properties of composite decking.

As traditional wood decking tends to become moldy overtime, slippery surface cause by growth of mold and algae is pretty unsafe to walk on.

Composite decking however is manufacture with protection against growth of mold and algae which maintains it’s surface in good condition and safe to walk on.

The slip resistant level of composite decking is also tested by manufacturers to confirm it’s safety feature.

 

5.3 Low Maintenance

Tired of frequently sanding, varnishing, sealing and staining your wood deck just to maintain it’s look and durability?

With composite decking, you can skip all the hard work and yet enjoy a longer lifespan and better durability of decking. Maintenance of composite decking is extremely simple.

All you need to do is wash it with soap and water occasionally to maintain it’s cleanliness.

Additional coating also is not necessary for composite decking as it is already well protected with layers of polymers.

 

5.4 Cost Effective

Although composite decking is slightly higher in price when compared to wood decking, it is actually more cost effective. Yes, you read it right.

Here’s why…

First off, you do not need to spend on hiring expensive professionals for maintenance.

The simple maintenance of composite decking can be effortlessly done by yourself. Any addition protection on dimensional changes, fading and splitting is also not necessary for composite decking.

By eliminating unnecessary maintenance expenses, composite decking is totally cost effective in the long run.

 

5.5 Environmental Friendly

Wishing for decking that looks like and feels like wood without adding up to more deforestation activities?

It is definitely possible with composite decking.

As mentioned, composite decking uses raw material like recycled plastics and reclaimed wood fibers which not only reduce deforestation, it also reduces the amount of waste!

Some composite deck even consists as much as 95% of recycled content.

Such environmentally friendly choice of decking will certainly help promote a more sustainable environment for our future generations.

6. Why Composite Decking is Not Perfect

Despite being superstar in decking market, composite decking also carries with it some minor imperfections especially during the process of installation.

Let’s see what are some of the things you should be expecting when choosing composite decking.

 

6.1 Permanently Fixed Color

Although composite decking looks and feels like natural wood decking, at the end of the day, it is still synthetic decking.

The color can never be changed in tint or shade via re-coat and re-varnish like what you did for wood decking. So do expect that the color of composite decking is permanent.

Cleaning using mild outdoor cleanser may helps bring back the original color by removing dirt and dust but do not hope that this will never change the color.

 

6.2 Treated Wood Used During Installation

Even though the whole set of composite decking is synthetic, but there’s a catch. Treated wood is used as a frame to provide durable and stable support for composite decks.

So eventually, there will still be usage of environmental impact material like treated wood during the installation.

The appearance of treated wood tends to be affected easily by weather and surrounding. Installer must be careful enough to ensure it is well covered under composite deck.

7. Types of Composite Decking

Generally, there are not many different ways to categorised composite decking by type. Thickness of composite decking tends to be standardized without much options left.

patio installed with composite decking

Let’s see what are some areas that distinguish one type of composite decking from another.

 

7.1 Types of Composite Decking Based on Structure

There are basically two different structures of composite deck commonly found in the decking market, which are the hollow and solid composite deck boards.

Both of them carries different advantageous. Let’s look into it one by one.

 

(i) Hollow Composite Deck Board

There are a few attractive points when selecting hollow composite deck board.

  • Lighter in Weight

    Firstly, hollow composite deck board is relatively lighter compared to solid composite deck board.

  • Easy Installation

    This lightweight feature makes installation easier and the hollow structure also serve as a perfect spot to run wiring for lighting or speaker.

  • Additional accessories

    Accessories like end caps are needed to cover both hollow end so that it can reduce chances of water accumulating internally.

  • Lower Cost

    Hollow composite deck board is also lower in cost due to less material used during manufacturing.

  • Longer lifespan

    Other than that, the hollow structure of composite deck board also experience fewer contraction and expansion caused by surrounding temperature. This will indirectly impact on longer lifespan of composite decking.

(ii) Solid Composite Deck Board

Let’s look at some interesting properties offered by solid composite deck board.

  • Close Wood Resemblance

    Solid composite deck board tends to provide a more genuine wood resemblance when compared to hollow composite deck board.

  • No Additional Accessories Required

    Due to it’s solid structure, it does not require additional accessories to cover up both end during installation.

  • Fastening Strength

    It also provide better fastener holding power as screws drive straight into the board.

  • Sound Insulation

    Solid composite deck board also provides better sound insulation. It absorbs noises of footsteps and is quieter to walk on.

  • More Dense

    The compact solid structure of composite deck board is heavier and denser. It tends to respond more to surrounding changes. In other words, solid composite deck board will expanse and swell more when exposed to changes in weather and surrounding temperature.

7.2 Types of Composite Decking Based on Material

Generally, there are three different types of material used in manufacturing composite deck. Each offers distinguish advantages that you might not want to miss out.

Let’s look at some of the properties worth highlight for each type.

 

(i) Wood Plastic Composite (WPC) Decking

wood plastic composite decking at pool side

WPC decking is produced from mixture of wood fibers and recycled plastic materials. It provides close imitation to real wood decking with high durability and lifespan.

Usage of plastic material also allow wpc decking to have strong waterproof features and totally eliminate issues related to moisture.

Taking care of WPC decking is also very easy and time saving which definitely suitable for hectic lifestyle of working adults nowadays.

 

(ii) Plastic Lumber or Vinyl Decking

plastic lumber decking for balcony

This type of decking does not contain any wood derivatives and is 100% made out of plastic. What’s surprising is, plastic lumber does look like wood decking.

You can find natural wood color and wood grain on plastic lumber decking. It is also maintenance-free and extremely easy to be taken care of.

Plastic lumber decking is also very durable and absolutely weather resistant.

 

(iii) Capped Composite Decking

capped composite decking for patio

Capped composite decking is pretty similar when compared to WPC decking.

What makes it different is this composite decking is manufactured with one extra top layer that acts like cap for extra protection.

This enhanced feature of composite decking is certainly longer in life span.

As capped composite decking is more tough in scratch resistant, the surface of decking is less likely to be worn off even under heavy usage.

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8. Composite Decking Vs. Wood Decking

It is very common that composite decking is frequently compared to wood decking in every angle.

The battle between these two has been ongoing for decades. Especially when composite decking materials has improved immensely leading to a even more competitive comparison.

Let’s look into some of the most frequently compared properties.

 

8.1 Expenses

budget for outdoor decking

Composite Decking

Price of composite decking varies according to different manufacturers. However, composite decking is generally more expensive than wood decking but do not let the price scares you off.

Here’s why…

Composite decking only requires one time pay off without the need to spend extra money for regular maintenance. You can definitely save up more without having to go through maintenance process like sanding, varnish and tint.

This is why composite decking is said to be more cost effective compared to wood decking.

 

Wood Decking

Wood decking prices are very much depends on the quality of wood selected. Cheaper wood decking are normally less durable softwood like pine and cedar.

If quality is your concern, you can definitely go for hardwood but do expect that the price of hardwood will be higher. One of the hardwood known for it’s amazing performance is Ipe wood.

Here’s one important point not to miss out.

Remember, wood decking comes with long term maintenance and it could be expensive to hire for professional maintenance. Otherwise, it’s not worth it as maintenance fees will eventually surpass your initial investment.

 

8.2 Installation

Composite Decking

Composite decking is generally easy to install and do not require much expertise. Depending on the type of composite decking, either hollow or solid, additional accessories for installation is needed accordingly.

Although the installation of composite decking is easy, diy installation is not an ideal option especially when you have no previous experience.

Treated timber frame is necessary to be used in order to provide sufficient support for composite decking.

 

Wood Decking

Similar to composite decking, installation of wood decking is also easy and straightforward.

Hidden fasteners are normally used during the installation to provide adequate anchoring force.

Certain skills are needed for installation including constructing frame, leveling and drilling of screw for perfect outcome.

Therefore, it is preferably to hire professional for a satisfactory wood decking installation.

 

8.3 Maintenance and Care

Clean and Maintain outdoor composite

Composite Decking

Many might said composite decking is maintenance free but that’s truly not the case. To be precise, composite decking is considered as low maintenance deck.

Colors and shades of composite decking can remain attractive without the need of varnishing or sanding. Appearance of composite decking can be maintained even when exposed to sun and water.

It is durable and does not split, crack or splinter easily which basically does not require extra maintenance like wood decking.

 

Wood Decking

By nature, wood decking is not as weather resistant as composite decking does. Sunlight and moisture are it’s primary enemy.

Wood color tends to fade off due to prolonged exposure of heat and UV rays. Moisture that is absorbed into wood content will lead to dimensional changes like warping and cupping.

Such harsh condition will eventually causes splinters, split and cracks on wood decking.

Therefore, regular maintenance like sanding, varnishing, waxing and tinting is necessary to preserve it’s beautiful appearance. Maintaining wood decking can be time consuming and expensive.

 

8.4 Performance

Composite Decking

Composite decking is known for it’s high durability compared to wood decking. The reason being, composite decking will not be harm easily by sun or rain.

By saying that, composite will not crack or splinter like wood decking, which makes it safe to walk on barefoot.

It is also a eco-friendly option as it is manufactured using recycled raw material without involving deforestation.

 

Wood Decking

It is undeniable that the natural wood colors and patterns are eye-catching in every way. Depending on the type of hardwood, wood decking can be durable with longer lifespan.

Other than that, wood decking is also durable and able to offer adequate strength in supporting foot traffic.

However, do take note that the durability of wood decking will be very much impacted by sun and rain which make it less prominent in weather resistant.

9. Composite Decking vs. Vinyl Decking

Composite decking is manufactured by mixture of wood and recycled plastic, vinyl decking on the other hand is produced using only plastic material.

Both types of decking carry different pros and cons which we are going to list out next.

Let’s look some commonly compared details.

 

9.1 Expenses

Composite Decking

Composite decking cost higher during the upfront payment as compared to vinyl decking which is very affordable.

The reason behind the high cost material is due to the fact that composite decking can be maintained and well taken care of without spending extra money.

 

Vinyl Decking

Initial cost of investment for vinyl decking is said to be much lower, some vinyl deck are even twice lower the price of composite decking.

It is indeed a very affordable option. But don’t forget that, total maintenance of vinyl decking can be costly in the long run.

 

9.2 Installation

Install outdoor decking

 

Composite Decking

As mentioned, composite decking installation is easy. It does not require any special skills which is definitely a good diy option.

However, things can be a little challenging if you do not have any previous experience on decking installation.

At JenFloor, our professional installer will be able to handle all the problems dealing with composite decking. So, do not worry and give us a call today!

 

Vinyl Decking

Installation of vinyl decking is not as easy as installation of composite decking. It requires certain skills to properly arrange and fix decks in place that provides excellent support and outcome.

If you are thinking of diy your own deck, vinyl decking is probably not what you should go for.

Poor installation skills not only lead to less favorable outcome but also affect overall decking durability.

 

9.3 Maintenance and Care

Composite Decking

Taking care and maintaining the condition of composite decking is effortlessly simple. Regular sweeping and mopping are all it takes to keep composite decking in it’s best condition.

The ease of maintenance of composite decking is definitely an advantages that vinyl decking can never beat. Such easy maintenance do not require any professional skills thus helps save up a lot of money on maintaining composite decking.

 

Vinyl Decking

Maintaining vinyl decking and keeping it clean is not an easy job. Periodic cleaning of vinyl decking using special cleaning products are necessary.

If you are doing the maintenance job on  your own, scrubbing off dirt and stains using can be tiring. Also do take note that the specialized cleaning solution can be strong and acidic, it should be handled carefully with full protection when cleaning vinyl decking.

Total amount spent on this specialize cleaners is said to be 75% higher than maintenance cost of wood decking.

 

9.4 Performance

performance of outdoor decking

Composite Decking

Composite decking generally has less issues compared to vinyl decking.

It is dimensional stable and will not over shrink or expand when dealing with changes of temperature and weather. This feature makes composite decking perfect for weather resistant.

It is also more rigid and provide firm underfoot feeling when walking on barefoot. Since composite decking is partially plastic, it has good water resistant.

The natural wood color imitation of composite decking makes it looks like real without the plastic feeling. It’s color also does not fade off easily when exposed to sunlight.

 

Vinyl Decking

As vinyl decking does not contain any wood derivatives, it is excellent in water resistant, scratch resistant and will not rot or decay.

As it is impermeable to water, vinyl decking will not lead to issues commonly found in wood decking like warping, blistering and splinter. However, the plastic property has it’s downside.

Common known problems including heat retention which cause decking to be extremely hot under the sun and difficult to walk on.

Vinyl decking will also become brittle and crack during cold weather. The large variance of expansion and contraction of vinyl decking due to weather changes will greatly impact on it’s durability.

10. How Long Does Composite Decking Last?

After going through clear comparison between composite decking, wood decking and vinyl decking, it is obvious that composite decking is the winner.

Now the next important question in your mind would probably be “how long does it last?”.

Nothing last forever in this world, so composite decking definitely has it’s life expectancy. Let’s go into it.

 

10.1 Average Lifespan of Composite Decking

Depending on the manufacturer and brand of your composite decking, most composite decking can last up to 20 to 30 years.

The average lifespan of composite decking is obviously longer compared to wood decking. In some cases where composite decking is well maintained, it can last even many years more than the average lifespan.

Other than that, there are various factors that work collectively in extending lifespan of composite decking. Let’s see what are some of the contributing factors.

average lifespan of composite decking

10.2 What Determine Composite Decking Lifespan?

Composite decking life expectancy could be affected by daily usage and ways of taking care of it.

Here are some factors you should know in order to prolong the lifespan of composite decking.

 

(i) Installation

Starting off with one of the crucial factor, proper installation does help to increase composite lifespan.

Improper spacing between joint and boards during installation will eventually cause sagging over time. Sagging of decks will indirectly reduces durability of overall composite decking.

Therefore, it is recommended to hire professional installation services.

 

(ii) Under Deck Drainage

Proper drainage under composite decking is important. It is considered a precaution step to prevent joist under the deck to become rotten or decomposed due to accumulation of moisture.

Do bear in mind that most joists material used are treated wood which is pretty susceptible to decay when exposed to moisture.

 

(iii) Cleaning and Maintenance

There is no certain limit of time to clean your composite decking. However, if you are using a pressure washer, make sure that you are not directing the nozzle too close to the surface.

Keep a distance of at least 12 inches between nozzle and deck surface. Make sure the pressure are not too high, below 1500 psi to protect from damaging your deck.

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11. How to Increase Composite Decking Lifespan?

After knowing some of the factors that affects the lifespan, what’s next?

Here’s what you can do in daily cleaning and maintenance for a prolonged lifespan of composite decking.

 

(i) Reduce Expansion and Contraction of Deck

Frequent expansion and contraction due to weather changes affects on durability of decking. Here’s what you can do: put some shades by placing awning or screen to protect decking from direct sunlight.

 

(ii) Adequate Ventilation

Remove dirt, leaves or debris that accumulate between gaps of composite board to allow better ventilation. Reason being, dirt and debris trapped between gaps will encourage the growth of mold and leave stubborn stains on deck surface.

 

(iii) Use Suitable Cleaning Agents

Do not risk damaging or discolor your decking by using strong chemical to clean the surface. Avoid using any wood restoration products on composite decking as these products are not meant for synthetic decking. Make sure you keep the deck surface dry as standing water may leave watermark or stains overtime.

 

(iv) Avoid Metal Tools

Even though composite decking is scratch resistant, but it doesn’t mean you can use metal tools like shovel or rake while cleaning. Any heavy metal tools will potentially leave deep scratch marks and damage your decking. 

12. How to Repair Minor Flaws of Composite Decking?

You might find blemishes on your composite decking now and there after having it installed for sometime.

This is totally acceptable especially for outdoor product that is exposed to heat, sunlight and water.

No worries, you can definitely fix these minor issues on your own without having to look for the professionals.

Let’s look at some of the common ways to tackle flaws of composite decking.

 

(i) Treatment for Black Spots

These black spots are basically caused by mildew or mould. It is difficult to get rid of these black spots as they tends to grow back every time after you have them removed.

Here’s a quick tip.

Use copper sulfate to control growth of black spots and fungus. Mix copper sulfate with water to create a solution and spray on the surface of your decking.

The mist of solution will then be gradually absorb by wood fibers and protected from growth of black spots.

 

(ii) Fix Minor Scratches

Minor scratches can be fixed with the heat of hot gun and wire brush. All you need to do is take a wire brush and brush along the direction of scratch while supply heat with hot gun pointing to the scratch.

The heat from hot gun will soften the scratched area and allow the brushing to blend scratch into composite. Remember hot gun should not be placed too close to the composite surface, leave a minimum of 7 inches distance at least.

Another method to remove scratches is to sand the area using fine-grade sandpaper.

 

(iii) Recover Small Cracks

The first thing you should do is thoroughly clean out dirt or dust from the crack by using mineral spirit.

Next, place masking tape around the crack to cover up the areas close to the crack. Make sure only expose the crack.

Fill up the crack with composite filler. Composite filler can be found in any hardware store.

Once the crack is filled, use putty knife to push the filler deep into the crack and smooth it out. Remove the masking tape and let the filler dried completely.

Lastly, smooth the filler again using medium-grit sandpaper.

 

(iv) Repair Major Damage

For damages like deep cracks, broken board or large hole with diameter more than half-inched, it is difficult to recover using composite filler.

All you can do is to replace the damaged board with a new one. Make sure you follow the manufacturer instruction clearly when you reinstall and securing new board to the deck.

13. Professional Composite Decking Installation vs. DIY Composite Decking Installation

When considering ways of composite decking installation, outcome of installation should be prioritize as it is utterly a waste of time and money if the outcome is disappointing.

To provide you with a clearer picture, here are a few comparisons between professional installation and diy installation.

Professional Installation

  • Save time
  • Experienced with tools and equipment
  • Well equipped with necessary tools
  • Firm and well structured decking
  • Precise measurement of board arrangement

DIY Installation

  • Takes long time, maybe up to weeks or month
  • No experience working on tools and equipment
  • Need to spend time looking for specific tools or equipment
  • Unskilled and decking probably not well structured

Since installation greatly impacts on the final outcome and even durability of composite decking, it is not recommended to go for DIY installation unless you have previous deck installation experience and you are confident about it.

Remember, composite decking is placed outdoor and a proper installation plays an important role in supporting it against outdoor wear and tear.

After all, it really makes no sense to sacrifice the quality in order to save more money.

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Get FREE On-site Measurement & FREE Quotation From Us Today!

Top Flooring Solution Provider In JB

Get FREE On-site Measurement & FREE Quotation From Us Today!

14. JenFloor Composite Decking Solution Provider

Professional composite decking installation is part of the services provided at JenFloor.

All our installer are skillful and knowledgeable in composite decking installation. The workmanship we offer is of top-notch quality that guarantees you a satisfactory outcome.

Our composite decking boards have close resemblance to real wood with beautiful wood grains and shades.

Come and check out our composite decking at our showroom today! Our sales assistant will be able to guide you throughout the process.

If you would like to request for on-site measurement, our flooring expert will be more than happy to serve you for free!

All you need to do contact us and we will make an arrangement according to your request. Once measurement is done, you will receive a specific quotation from us.

Call us now or email us for any of your inquiries.