Redwood or Composite Decks?

Answered by Brendan ~ December 5, 2010 ~ Comments

I love the look of redwood decks, but the lack of maintenance of composite materials. Which will last longer on a sunny east side in Corvallis, Oregon--oiled redwood or composite decking?

Pauline T. ~ Corvallis, Oregon

Brendan Fowler

There is no doubt about it, natural wood looks great on decks, but it needs maintenance every other year at a minimum to look good. The question is, which will last longer? If you maintain a wood deck it will last for 20-30years, provided that the framing does not fail. The same should go for a composite deck, however there are no 20-30 year old composite decks to see if they really last that long. I have fixed many decks, and decks fail because of rot due to water in contact with wood. Most of the repairs would be necessary regardless of what the surface of the deck was made of. What I am trying to say is that no mater what you use on the surface of your deck be sure to build it in such a way that will prevent the framing from rotting before the surface needs replacing. I believe that properly maintained wood decking will last just as long as composite decking.

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