Category Archives: Composite Decking Reviews

What is Capstock Decking? New Composite Decking Review

Composite PVC Decking - capstock

Is the new composite decking option right for you?

You might have heard about the latest type of composite decking. There are multiple decking brands using what’s known in the plastic industry as “capstock.”

What is Capstock decking? Basically, Capstock is a new kind of composite decking material that combines composites (plastic and wood fiber core) with a “durable” exterior layer of vinyl (PVC). Think of it as a composite and PVC deck hybrid.

Like with most new products in the decking market, the companies that sell this kind of synthetic decking are doing their best by spending millions of dollars  to convince you that, FINALLY, this is a composite wood product you can trust. These brands are also trying their best to convince you and deck builders across the country that it is “as good as, or better” than natural hardwood decking in terms of durability and looks.

They even offer a 25-year warranty on their product. However, if you’ve done research, you will learn that, for many, composite decking warranties aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on. Many people complain and have sued these artificial decking companies for not complying with the terms of their warranties. Ironically, even a reputable publication like Professional Deck Builder says about the latest trend in capstock composite decking, “The lengthy warranties – most up to 25 years – indicate that manufacturers stand behind these products (though perhaps you’ve heard that before).” That’s a direct quote, folks. Even the home-building press is skeptical about these products and for good reason.

Another interesting fact that arose out of our research is the resistance of all composite decking companies to disclose the chemical makeup of their new decking materials. In fact, when FineHomebuilding Magazine was conducting their own research into these products for their article entitled “In Pursuit of the Perfect Plank” the author noted, “None of the manufacturers I spoke with would reveal what was in their proprietary polymer.” Why is that? Continue reading

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Deck Maintenance – Is Flipping Deck Boards Ever a Good Idea?

composite decking problems

2 year old composite decking with visible green mold.

Although Advantage Trim & Lumber refuses to sell, recommend, or have anything to do with composite decking products we often receive calls from composite deck owners who are having maintenance issues. Surprisingly, they call us for composite deck maintenance advice after they spoke with the manufacturer or the store where they purchased it.

A question that we sometimes get asked is, “I have composite decking that is starting to mold and don’t want to spend the money to replace it. Can’t I just flip over the deck board?

Our answer is always the same. Continue reading

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Green Decking Options – 5 Things You Need to Know

Tigerwood is a green decking option.

A Tigerwood deck highlights how wood decking is beautiful, versatile, & eco-friendly.

These days, being green and using eco-friendly products is more than a trend. Our whole economy is starting to recognize and value materials and items that have been manufactured and/or promote a healthy, green, and eco-savvy lifestyle. Even the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has shown us that there can be a heavy price to pay when we rely too much on environmentally problematic and damaging resources and materials.

What does this have to do with wood decking?

Well, there is a huge marketing push led by composite decking companies to cast all wood decking as non-eco-friendly. These companies want you to believe that all wood decking comes from illegal logging and that it decimates the world’s forests. Here’s the truth, as an FSC certified lumber supplier, the wood decking that we sell here at Advantage comes from eco-friendly forestry practices.

Here are 5 things you need to know about Green Decking: Continue reading

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Decking Reviews – Compare Composite & Wood Deck Materials

Ipe wood decking

Genuine wood decking creates a sanctuary you won't soon forget.

If you found this blog post searching for “Decking Reviews”, congratulations! You’re right to do your research. You might have even read some negative feedback or heard a lot of marketing hype from both hardwood and composite decking companies. Hopefully, this post clears the confusion about which direction to go in and what material to choose for your specific project.

If you’ve ever heard the saying, Continue reading

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Composite Decking Reviews Uncover Major Recalls & Lawsuits

Once again, while searching for composite decking reviews, I was once again struck by how many people regret spending their hard earned money on an expensive, yet inferior product. It’s no secret that I am not a fan of composite decking. However, my reasons are not because I think the decking is ugly or that the cost is too high. On the contrary, I hate to see people save, plan, and then build a deck, only to have it crumble or worse, transform before their eyes. What do I mean? Well, just take a look at these pictures:

Composite Decking Pictures:

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Need further proof that composite decking is not all that it’s cracked up to be? I’ve posted these before, but it’s worth noting again that the US Government has already warned consumers about plastic decking. All of these issues, problems and composite decking complaints make you wonder…is composite decking the next asbestos?

Composite Decking Recall #1

Composite Decking Recall #2
Oh, and here’s some info on a pending composite decking lawsuit too.

Using hardwood once again is the best option for all your decking needs.

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Composite Decking Problems & Recalls

If you read this blog on a regular basis, you know that I am not a fan of composite decking. After all, there’s a good reason why this blog is called the “Ipe Decking Blog”! 🙂

However, despite my own personal reasons, if you conduct your own research into composite decking comparisons and composite decking reviews, you will run across countless complaints and maintenance issues. These complaints are coming from hard-working people like you who have invested their hard-earned time and, above all else, money, building what they thought would be a beautiful addition to their home. If you put yourself in their shoes wouldn’t you want to make sure that no one else goes through what they just went through?

If those composite deck reviews and complaints aren’t enough to prove that composite decking problems can’t be ignored, then would information on composite decking recall notices from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission be of any interest?

Composite Decking Recall #1

Composite Decking Recall #2

If you want to build a deck, or replace your composite deck with decking that will last, then choose a hardwood such as ipe decking. If you look through the other posts on this blog, you will see that ipe decks are vastly superior to composite decks and can even be cheaper to build too!

Last, but certainly not least, if you’re convinced that using ipe hardwood decking is the right way to go, call us at Advantage Trim & Lumber Company. We’d be honored to help you build the deck of your dreams and avoid the nightmare of dealing with fixing your composite deck.

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Ipe Price Comparisons Reveal that Ipe Is More Affordable than Ever!

ipe price

Great news! Ipe price comparisons are showing that, due to the volatile cost of oil, ipe prices are now more affordable than most composite decking and other synthetic decking materials.

How did ipe prices get this competitive?

It’s simple math. Composite decking uses polyurethane as a core ingredient. Polyurethane is a plastic derived from oil. And, due to the rapid overall rise of a barrel of oil, plastics and all other oil-based products have also risen. So, when you go to a large retailer and they tell you that composite decking is cheaper than ipe decking, you can tell them that is not the case any longer!

Ipe decking prices are not only better than most composite decking, but ipe decking in itself is also leagues better in terms of quality, health, and overall enjoyment!

Why? Continue reading

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