Timber or Composite Decking – Which is Suitable for You?

Timber or Composite Decking – Which is Suitable for You?

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Are you considering building a new deck at your home? With many options to choose from, the most popular material choices for homeowners are timber and composite decking. Both decking options will bring beauty and warmth to your outdoor area and create a welcoming feeling when hosting family and friends. Choosing the most suitable decking option for your outdoor space will largely depend on functionality and the kind of look and feel you want to achieve.

Discover the difference between timber and composite decking so you can decide on the most suitable type to meet your needs.

Durability

When it comes to durability, both timber and composite decking are great choices for your outdoor space, especially for high traffic areas. Since composite decking is generally made from a mixture of plastic and wood fibres, it offers greater durability, strength, and requires less maintenance to keep it in good condition.

Unlike timber decking, the naturally sourced material of composite means it doesn’t splinter, making it a safe choice for young children and pets. Composite decking is also more resistant to moisture, helping to reduce the risk of slipping on rainy days.

Composite decking is also fade and stain resistant, giving it a longer lifespan than timber decking. This makes it a perfect choice for high traffic areas, or if you live in an area that’s exposed to hot sun. However, if timber decking is well maintained and kept in good condition, it will enjoy a similar lifespan to composite decking.

Maintenance

While timber decking requires minimal maintenance, it’s important to keep it in good condition to help it look its best. Take the time to regularly sweep your deck with a bristle brush to remove excess dirt, dust, and other debris from the surface. This general upkeep will help preserve the timber appearance and help avoid damage over time, such as moulding, rotting and discolouration.

For a thorough clean, you can also hose down your deck using a mild cleaning detergent. Steer away from cleaning products that contain harsh chemicals as this can damage the timber coating. However, if you are using an appropriate cleaning chemical or a special deck cleaning solution, you only need to give it a good scrub once a year. This will remove any grime or grease build up, while restoring the beauty and vibrancy of the timber.

If your deck is constantly exposed to inclement weather, maintaining your deck regularly will let you enjoy it for years to come. Staining or oiling your deck once a year will keep it looking fresh and can help to maintain its rich timber colour, protecting it from harsh UV rays and heavy foot traffic.

Composite decking on the other hand, requires much less maintenance than timber decking. Without the need for staining and oiling, it can simply be hosed down as required. The only maintenance required is periodic cleaning so that your decking doesn’t develop mould or fungus.

Aesthetics

Decking is a popular choice for homeowners as there’s nothing quite like the beauty and warmth of natural timber. The versatility of timber decking can work for a modern, contemporary style home, but is typically more suited for traditional style homes, giving your backyard a rustic feel. Plus, with various colours and textures available you can easily pick a style to complement your home setting. The deep warm timber also contrasts nicely against the greenery in your backyard, creating an inviting space for entertaining family and friends.

different timber textures

Designed to look and feel like natural timber, composite decking can help to add an organic design element to your backyard. Like timber decking, you can choose from a wide range of colours and finishes to perfectly suit your outdoor space. With more earthy, neutral tones available, you can easily achieve a range of styles from contemporary to country cottage or modern coastal.

Whether you opt for composite decking or timber, your decision will ultimately depend on the intended use. Composite decking is suitable choice if you have children as it is less slippery and splinter-free, nor does it require as much maintenance. Otherwise, if you prefer the look and feel of natural timber with a polished finish, and don’t mind the upkeep, then timber decking is the optimal choice.

Australian Outdoor Living is passionate about helping people bring their backyard dreams to life. We offer a range of products, including:

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