Beyond cost, there are numerous environmental benefits to selecting a wood over a composite deck. In a side-by-side comparison, wood vs. composite decking:
|Wood is biodegradable.||Composite decking ends up in a landfill.|
|Wood decks store carbon throughout their lives, making for a much lower carbon footprint.||The carbon emissions from a composite deck are more than double that of a wood deck.|
|Wood is a renewable building material. More trees are planted than harvested every year in the U.S.||Composite decking is made from finite fossil fuel sources.|
To ensure a safe deck, it is critical to build it using proper connections and adhering to local building codes.
When it comes to decking, nails are not enough. A safe deck features the use of heavy-duty, metal hardware throughout the entire structure, spanning from the house to the posts in the ground. Reference the DCA 6 Prescriptive Residential Deck Construction Guide to ensure a safe design and build.
Once a deck is built, keep it in great shape with regular maintenance and annual deck safety checks. Proper maintenance with annual wood deck safety checks and periodic refinishing will extend the life of the deck. A well-maintained deck can last twice as long as a neglected deck, with a life expectancy of up to 20 years.