Decking material options

If you’re looking to build a deck this summer, you may have noticed that choosing a decking material has become much more difficult than ever before. Just a few years ago the only option was wood, which came in perhaps two or three species. Today, there are dozens of different decking materials available, including composite lumber and plastic decking 

Before breaking ground on your new deck, let’s take a close look at basic types of decking, each with its own aesthetics, maintenance requirements, and price range.

Pressure Treated Lumber

The most affordable option is pressure treated (PT) lumber.  It is readily available in almost any home supply store or lumber yard.  It is also easy to stain or paint in virtually any color.

PT lumber does come with some down sided.  It is not the most stable of material.  It does tend to shrink, swell, split and crack as it is exposed to the elements.

Like any decking material, PT lumber will need routing maintenance.  Power wash it once a year, and a new coat of stain or paint every two to three years will help keep your deck looking like new.

Redwood  & Cedar

Redwood and Western red cedar are the most popular option for a wood deck.  The are beautiful with deep, rich colors. A natural beauty that doesn’t need to pumped full of chemical.  They are resistant to rot and decay.

Prices range from high to low quality of the wood specified.  B-grade redwood is a solid choice, and is the most common choice.

Pressure washing once a year. New clear finish every three to four years.  If you want to maintain the natural colors of your redwood or cedar, then you need to use a semi-transparent stain that is tinted and formulated for use on cedar or redwood. 

Composite Decking

Composite Decking or PVC (Plastic Decking) are a popular choice because they are mostly maintenance free.  Composites are weather resistant, easy to clean, and will not warp or rot. All of which makes it a easy and practical choice.

Prices vary with the quality of the decking and it’s mixture of recycled material.  Some will definitely absorb and give off more heat than other.  Composites may also be heavy and need more effort to install.

Maintenance is a snap, and composites come in a wide range of colors and style.

At Coastal Outdoors, we work with all deck material variations and would be happy to discuss what would work best for you. Visit for more information.