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Installing a composite deck over a wooden deck

If your wood deck has begun to creak, wobble and rot, the signs are there that you should probably start thinking about getting it replaced. Not only will it start to look bad, but a deck that has surpassed its time can be a major safety hazard. By replacing your wooden deck, you'll be doing yourself and others a huge favour. 

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There's a common misconception that composite decking has a 'plastic' or 'fake' appearance. Back when composite decking first appeared on the market, this might have been true, but now we have manufacturing tools that allow us to create composite deck boards with all the character and charm of real wood. 

One of the many drawbacks of choosing the real thing is that it actually loses its beauty over time because it's easily weathered. (Take a look at the comparison image above if you don't believe us!)For that reason, you're actually better off choosing composite decking if you want to keep a real wood look for longer than a few years. Unlike real wood, composite decking doesn't need to be sanded, stained or sealed to keep it looking fresh.

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Our June sale has arrived!

We all dream of lazy summer days relaxing in the garden. And thankfully, summers in the UK seem to have become much brighter. This means many people are wondering about the best way to create an area where they can sit and enjoy the company of others. Decking has become a very popular choice and there are many different materials it can be made from. 


Composite decking is one of the best materials to use

VertiGrain 2 is one particular type of composite wood that is able to combine the look and beauty of real wood together with the durability and minimal maintenance composite wood products require. Its surface has an attractive grain that really makes it look and feel like wood. But there’s none of that time-consuming maintenance you’d expect if you chose hardwood or softwood decking. It also has a natural texture that mimics the appearance of real wood perfectly and it is also missing the repetitive V-pattern that immediately gives composite wood away. There are two different types of VertiGrain 2. One is grooved and compatible with the CONCEALoc® hidden fastening. Ungrooved boards are the other option and these are fixed using colour matched deck screws.

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With so many different types of decking on the market, would-be deck owners can often find it difficult to distinguish one product from the next. Not everyone is aware, for example, of the difference between hardwood and softwood boards, or of the fact that plastic decking and composite decking are two different things.

Today, we're going to cut through the jargon and explain the key differences between two of the most popular decking materials on the market: hardwood decking and composite decking.

Materials
Hardwood decking is made of solid timber, whereas composite decking - as the name suggests - is made from a composite of natural and synthetic materials. TimberTech's composite boards, for example, are made of polyethylene, hardwood flour, and cellulose materials.

This difference in composition leads to numerous other differences, such as...

Maintenance Requirements
Hardwood decks must be cleaned and oiled regularly to preserve the boards. Composite deck boards are far less maintenance-intensive, requiring only the occasional wash to keep everything looking good.

Safety
Solid timber boards can grow quite slippery when wet; composite decking is less absorbent than hardwood, which means that it dries quicker and greatly reduces the user's risk of slipping and falling. Furthermore, composite boards are far less prone to splintering and cracking due to the difference in composition.

Appearance
Composite decking was once considered an inferior alternative to wooden decking, at least in terms of its appearance. However, manufacturing techniques have now progressed to the point that composite boards can look just as authentic as their hardwood counterparts, with attractive wood-grain surfaces that are practically indistinguishable from solid timber.

 

Environmental Impact
In many ways, hardwood decking is a very environmentally-unfriendly choice for one's garden. The wood from which the boards are made is typically harvested from tropical rainforests, and the oils that are used to seal hardwood decks can introduce undesirable chemicals into the ecosystem at large. Composite boards, as mentioned above, require no chemical maintenance, and the wood flour that's used to manufacture composite decking is made using waste wood that would otherwise be sent to a landfill.

Click here to learn more about the difference between hardwood and composite decking products. Alternatively, order a free sample of TimberTech's composite decking to take a closer look at what composite decking has to offer.

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