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5 things to know before you buy composite decking

5 things to know before you buy composite decking

Posted by adrac on November 13, 2022

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Where to put my decking?

To infinity and beyond, not quite. Figure out where you want to lay the decking and where to best elevate usable functional space for composite decking. For a table and chairs allow at least 3m x 3m, for a children’s area, work out if they can ride their tricycles and a comfortable space for the playhouse. If it’s a seating area you want to create, figure out how many seats you may want. A 3 and a 2-seater or sun loungers. Once you know an estimate of what you want your decking to be used for it will help decide the size of the deck.

How much will it cost?

Composite decking is available in all manner of colours and sizes. So, what is the best price to pay? As the saying goes “buy cheap, buy twice”. Composite decking has the main principle that it will last a long time with low maintenance so worth exploring in a little more detail when making a large purchase.

Typically, the products that sit around £50-60 per square metre are often the best value for money. High performance such as strength, anti-slip and fire rated for composite decking are the key factors to look for. Things to look out for in this sector is the added bonus ingredients of mould resistance, insect resistant, UV protection and a good warranty.

Experiencing the cheaper boards at £40-49 per sqm it is safe to say they won’t last long. Problems such as splitting, colour fading and grain disappearing, you are left within a couple of years a product completely ripped of what it initially looked like.

The mid to high end of £61-100 per sqm you enter the co-extrusion side of composite decking. A well-made board that is proven to bear the brunt of wear and tear. Suitable for heavy traffic areas, a layer to resist scratching and stains make it the best quality for money.

Over £100 and you start paying for the brand. In terms of strength, quality and design you don’t get much more for your money than you would from the mid-range composite decking. Service is where it matters here and be sure to get the best support you need.

Cost of fitting

DIY is free but can take a lot of time in labour if you are completely new to carpentry. We have a detailed installation guide if you can find the time. School holidays, summer projects are a great time to get working outside.

To get a composite decking fitter we see a difference between the north and South of the country. In the north prices can vary from £50 – 100 per sqm including the substructure. Further south it can be between £75-150 per sqm. We would always advise on comparing quotes and getting the best value for the project. The higher range of composite decking also costs more for fitting with prices ranging from £125 to £200 per sqm by their trusted fitters so something to keep in mind.

In order to meet your hard landscaping demands, Deckorum provides qualified fitters around the country who can visit the planned site and provide a thorough assessment of the necessary work.

Is composite decking safe?

Deckorum wants to make sure you’re safe, so the composite decking boards are tested for the highest possible fire rating B for composite decking, admirable anti-slip performance even when wet, and suitability for commercial use. They can also withstand a weight bearing load of 500 kg per 250 mm squared.

For pets and children, the products are made nontoxic material and soft enough to roll and play on. No splinters arise from composite decking so safe to walk on with no shoes.

How to install Composite Decking?

Most people can install composite decking, and the process is rather simple, especially if you are only replacing the decking planks. The fasteners make quick work of laying the boards with the correct spacing between them.

Things to have that make life easier with composite decking are power tools. A mitre saw would be a great time saver alternatively a hand saw. A circular saw is also helpful especially if you need to cut the sides to the correct size in a straight line. Another important tool would be a cordless drill driver / screwdriver. This will allow you to quickly tighten the screws between the boards. Apart from this the trusted tape measure, pencil with safety equipment is a must to have to hand.

Can I maintain composite decking?

Composite decking requires little upkeep and makes for the easy low maintenance garden. It’s good practice to remove any surface dirt from your decking a couple of times a year, usually in spring and autumn. This is quick and easy to do, requiring just a hose, a soft brush and a bucket of soapy water.  Sweep the deck to remove loose dust and debris and follow by hosing down the surface thoroughly.

With this information in mind, you can contact the Deckorum team to run by your ideas and garden plans. Deckorum offers start to finish support for your composite decking project.