The Lifetime Cost Of Composite Decks

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Nothing beats the feeling of stepping onto a well-built deck out in your yard on a hot summer day, with your barbecue at the ready and the sun coming down strong. If properly constructed and maintained, your deck can last for decades, providing a place for plenty of good memories to be made for you and your family.

But before all of that happens, the deck first has to be built – and with the sheer amount of different woods and materials, it can be confusing to try and figure out the best cost-to-quality ratio. Ranging from a few dollars per square foot for wood decks to $20+ for composite – made from wood fibers, plastic, and various other fillers – what you choose can make a big difference to the final price tag. Of course, you want to save money, but if you go with the cheaper option, will you really save a lot over the long term?

The initial installation cost of composite decks will be more expensive than wood, but the trade-off is that the maintenance costs will be far lower in the years to come. This comes down to three main areas:

1) Physical Maintenance

Physical maintenance advantages must be factored into the composite deck cost.  Wood planks on a regular deck need to be deeply cleaned, sanded, and stained or painted every few years. Costs for this, between labour and supplies, can run up over a thousand dollars every time – so you’re likely already exceeding what you would have spent on a composite deck, which only needs to be cleaned a few times a year to stay pristine.

2) Durability

Composite boards are resistant to stains and handle precipitation and temperature swings a lot better than regular wood. They don’t rot or splinter, which saves quite a bit of headaches around areas with nails or edges, and they are far more resistant to insect damage as well.

3) UV Resistance

When it comes to composite deck pricing you have to keep in mind the huge benefit of UV resistance.  You won’t have to worry about fading or discolouration with composite boards, and they retain their look long after regular wood would have lost its sheen. If the deck lasts 25-30 years (as is the average, but they can go longer), that represents a huge advantage over typical wood, which could be expected to last half of that, or even less.

The lifetime cost of composite decks is much lower than traditional wood decks.  The difference in maintenance costs and requirements is drastic, and will add up to thousands of dollars’ worth of work over a decade. That’s several paint jobs and most likely some repairs and even replacements for wooden planks – all while the composites are still going strong.

If you’re getting ready to build a new deck this summer, and you’re still not sure about what material to use, let us know the details and we can give you the average cost of composite deck boards and help you decide. We’re Calgary’s deck experts, whether you’re using high-quality Trex products (some of our favourites!) or choosing to stick with the classic appeal of pine or cedar. Whatever your grand vision is for your yard, Maritime West Construction can help you achieve it. Contact us for a quote on your project today!

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