When planning their decking projects, some homeowners have aesthetics or ease of maintenance as their main priority. Other homeowners, however, care more about the longevity of the decking material. If you want a deck that will last as long as possible, then you'll first need to know how long each type of decking material is expected to last. Learn about the top five decking materials for a long-lasting deck.
Cedar decking materials may last twice as long as the popular pressure-treated wood decking. Of course, cedar also costs more, and it's not as hands-off, maintenance-wise, as some of the other materials on this list (such as aluminum or PVC).
However, cedar makes up for its price with long-lasting beauty that looks great in all types of weather. Its natural weather resistance and its appearance make it a favorite among discerning homeowners, and the long lifetime of this decking material can mean that you only have to replace it half as often as you would a pressure-treated wood deck.
Composite decking materials are made of a combination of plastic and wood. Some composites have 25- to 30- year warranties - much better than that of pressure-treated lumber. And if the deck doesn't last as long as expected, a good warranty can get you a free or discounted replacement. Composite products also tend to have other great features, such as ease of maintenance.
The downside of composites is that the higher quality, aesthetically pleasing types tend to be expensive, and the less expensive ones aren't likely to last as long. In addition, some of the more affordable composite products don't look very much like wood, which can be a deciding factor for some homeowners.
Aluminum may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of decking, but if your chief concern is longevity, aluminum should definitely make your shortlist. Aluminum can be very long-lasting when compared to some types of wood. In fact, some manufacturers even offer a lifetime warranty against certain types of damage.
This type of decking also adds a unique aesthetic to your yard, which can be a bonus, depending on your tastes. Although it's not as traditionally popular as wood, it's much more likely to last for the rest of your life with minimal upkeep.
PVC, unlike composite decking, doesn't use any wood in its makeup. This means that it isn't going to look or act like a wood deck. However, it can come with a limited lifetime warranty against certain types of damage. And like aluminum, PVC is pretty hands-free as far as maintenance goes.
5. Exotic Hardwoods
Although tropical hardwoods are not as easy to work with and install as are other woods, they still deserve a spot on the longest-lasting list. Their lifespan, while not as impressive as aluminum's, easily surpasses that of pressure-treated lumber. Some types of high-quality, high-cost tropical woods can even outlive cedar, lasting for up to 40 years - or longer.
If lifespan is truly your main concern, you'll likely want to go with aluminum as your decking material. But whether you decide to go for a wood or wood look-alike deck such as cedar or settle for a less traditional look such as aluminum, these five options should give you plenty of ideas for furnishing your outdoor living space.
For more information about the types of decking readily available in your area, as well as their costs, send Superior Outdoor Designs a message today. We'd love to help you get started now with building an outdoor living space that you can enjoy for a lifetime.