Wood vs Composite Deck Comparison Guide

Wood vs Composite Decking Comparison Guide

Many homeowners have considered the wood vs composite decking dilemma.

What’s more important, a deck that boasts natural wood beauty and lovely wood aroma, even if it requires a lot more deck maintenance?

Or is a wood-look composite or plastic deck good enough, especially because it is nearly maintenance-free?

This guide to composite decking vs. wood decking will help you decide from these angles and more:

Both sections include the cost of popular wood types and the best-selling composite decking brands.


Wood vs Composite Decking Costs

This table shows installed deck costs for the major wood types and composite brands.

Deck Material / Brand No Deck Railing With Deck Railing Deck Warranty
Wood Decking
Pressure-Treated Pine / Lumber $9.75 $13.90 N/A
Red or White Cedar $12.95 $19.00 N/A
Redwood $14.50 $21.25 N/A
Ipe $22.00 $33.75 N/A
Composite/PVC Decking
Trex Transcend $14.25 $20.35 25 years
Trex Select $12.95 $18.00 25 years
Trex Enhance Basic $11.50 $16.75 25 years
TimberTech AZEK $20.40 $27.15 50 years
TimberTech PRO $17.50 $24.30 30 years
TimberTech EDGE $16.35 $22.65 25 years
DuraLife Hardwoods $18.00 $24.35 25 years
DuraLife Landscapes $17.65 $23.40 25 years
Fiberon Paramount PVC $12.85 $19.80 Lifetime
Fiberon Symmetry $12.40 $18.60 25 years
Fiberon ProTect Advantage $11.50 $11.50 25 years
Fiberon Good Life $10.35 $16.85 25 years
Cali Bamboo TruOrganics $12.70 $18.85 25 years
Cali Bamboo BamDeck 4G $10.25 $14.40 15 years
  1. Deck Costs are per square foot.
  2. All costs reflect a pressure-treated wood substructure (Posts and the supporting frame of the deck)

Labor on most decks ranges from $3.50-$6.00 per square foot. Labor is included in these costs.

Did you Know? Most deck cost estimating sites calculate prices that are way too low. $4 per square foot for a pressure-treated wood deck? $7 for composite? That’s not going to happen, even if you DIY.

The problem is that most look at the cost of the deck boards – wood or composite – and use that to produce a deck cost estimate. Those boards are used for the deck boards, railings, steps and fascia.

Other potential deck costs include

  • The pressure-treated substructure
  • Fasteners
  • Optional concrete to set the posts or concrete piers for posts to rest on
  • Railings and steps when local code requires them or you want them for the aesthetics
  • Fees for permits and inspections
  • Labor costs, unless you DIY

We mention this because our deck prices are accurate – and we hope to prevent “sticker shock” when you see them. In fact, for most brands, we use cost calculators they provide to produce the most accurate deck prices for materials. Then, we add appropriate labor costs to get a total average cost for the decking you’re considering.

Free TimberTech Deck Estimate


Deck Cost Factors

Wood vs Composite Deck Material Costs

Let’s start with material factors and then consider labor factors.

Deck Material Cost Factors

  • Wood Type: As you can see, price generally gets higher as wood progresses from treated pine all the way to ipe, also called Brazilian walnut.
  • Wood Quality: Cedar, redwood and ipe are graded for quality and the clarity of the wood. Boards with fewer knots, mineral stains and other imperfections are graded higher and can cost significantly more.
  • Wood Board Width: Wider pieces cost more per square foot for the simple reason that they are made from wider logs, which are less common.
  • Composite Decking or PVC Decking Grade: As the table above shows, each deck manufacturer makes products in at least two grades and usually three grades.
    • Trex, for example. It makes Enhance Basic (Basic quality), Select (Better quality) and Transcend (Best quality).
    • Fiberon makes even more lines including Good Life (Basic), ProTect Advantage (Better) and Paramount (Best).
  • Railings or No Railings: If building code requires railings or you want them for the good looks they provide, materials and labor cost can be 40% higher.
  • Substructure Material: Most decks are built with a pressure-treated substructure. A few brands makes a lightweight steel substructure option, and it can be costly. For example, Trex Elevations steel substructure costs about 35% more than a treated lumber substructure.

Deck Labor Cost Factors

We’ve mentioned that adding a railing and stairs means higher labor costs. Here are other cost factors.

  • Who Does the Work: You’ll save $3.50 to about $6.00 per square foot of decking if you install it yourself. Of course, you might need to purchase or rent a few tools for the work, so there migth be some costs.
  • Deck Design: Rectangular decks cost the least to build. As deck design gets more complex, more measuring and cutting is involved, so cost goes up. Multi-level decks can come with higher labor costs too. Stairs are time-consuming, so a long flight of stairs can really drive up labor cost.
  • Terrain: Decks built on flat, bare terrain have lower labor costs than when the crew is working with a slope or has to remove shrubbery, stumps or a lot of rocks.
  • Time of Year: Peak building periods differ by climate. Where winters are snowy, the peak season is late spring through summer. Cost estimates might be higher during that stretch than they would be as soon as the snow melts or into fall as snow threatens again.
  • Where You Live: Decks, like everything else, cost more along the coasts, especially in the Northeast and Northwest and in major metropolitan areas. Costs are average in cities of the Midwest and South and lowest in rural areas.
  • Note on ipe/Brazilian walnut: This wood is very hard. As a result, pilot holes are often drilled for the fasteners. This increases labor time and cost above the typical $3.50 – $5.50 or $6.00 per square foot.





Pros and Cons of Wood vs Composite Decks

Pros And Cons Of Wood Vs Composite Decks

We’ll look at the pros of each first and then the cons.

Wood Deck Pros

  • Natural wood is preferred for its genuine wood grain and woodsy aroma
  • Cost of a treated or cedar deck is less than the mid-rage and expensive composite decking products
  • Believe it or not, some homeowners enjoy cleaning and staining their deck every few years to refresh it – to make it look new all over again
  • You can stain your deck or paint it in a wide range of hues and colors

Composite Deck Pros

  • Composite wood and PVC is low-maintenance material that needs occasional washing but not staining or sealing
  • The material resists stains and general weathering better than wood
  • It is lighter than wood, especially PVC decking, so easier to work with
  • The price of some composite decking is competitive with the cost of pricier wood decks
  • Color, texture and style options are quite good for composite/PVC decking
  • You get a materials warranty with most composite – and that’s rare for wood

Wood Deck Cons

  • Maintenance – while some enjoy it, power-washing, repairing and staining/sealing a deck is a hassle for most homeowners
  • Maintenance costs can drive up the lifetime cost of a wood deck to the point it costs more than composite
  • Wood can split, crack, warp, etc., requiring costly repairs with new wood that won’t truly match the color of the old wood
  • Splinters, insects and woodpeckers!

Composite Deck Cons

  • Significantly higher upfront cost than the most affordable wood decks
  • Plastic decks can have a higher surface temperature than most wood decks, to the point they are uncomfortable to walk on
  • Cheap plastic decking looks just that – Cheap
  • If spans are too great, composite and PVC will sag more than wood
  • Can be slippery in wet weather, especially if mold or algae has been allowed to grow in shady areas of the deck

The Bottom Line: Wood Deck vs Composite Deck

The lower cost of treated wood and cedar vs the lower maintenance of composite and PVC is an important consideration.

But also consider:

How long will you live in the home? If it’s less than 10 years, you might not get good value from an expensive composite material or from ipe. If you plan to be there “forever,” then a good composite or PVC or elegant ipe deck is a better long-term value.

Appearance and Feel: Better grades of composite and PVC look a lot like real wood, but it aren’t, of course. PVC can feel plasticky too. Be sure to get samples of composite and PVC decking you’re considering. Does it look and feel enough like the “real thing” to satisfy you?

Green Considerations: Most composite and PVC decking has a good percentage of recycled material. But more energy and water are used in their production. PVC decking can be recycled quite easily. It isn’t as easy with composite. Wood, especially pine and cedar, is a renewable resource. Deck boards can be repurposed or used for fuel when your deck is replaced.

Free TimberTech Deck Estimate


Related Decking Guides

Envision Deck Cost Guide
How Much Does It Cost To Stain A Deck Guide
Deckorators Deck Cost Guide
DuraLife Deck Cost Guide
MoistureShield Deck Cost Guide
Wolf Deck Cost Guide
Does a Deck Add Value to a House or Home Guide
Wood vs Composite Deck Comparison Guide

 

Pool Decking Installation Cost Guide

Pool Deck Installation Cost & Price Guide

Within this Pool Deck cost guide, we highlight all the costs and common deck materials for the decking around your pool, including inground deck pools or above ground pool with deck costs and break down in deck prices.


How much does a pool deck cost?

How much does a pool deck cost

Pool deck cost averages $20 per square foot installed, or about $10,000 for a 500 square foot deck. Depending on the deck material you choose and whether deck rails are added, cost will be $12.00 to more than $35.00 per square foot.

Above ground pool decks cost 25% to 40% more than those for inground pools because they are elevated and require stairs and railings.


Pool Deck Material Costs

The cost for decking materials is contingent on the chosen material and sizes preferred. For your convenience, the spreadsheet below lists the costs per square foot for each of the eight most popular pool deck materials, installation cost and project totals.

Costs in the table are per square foot.

Pool Decking Costs
Deck Material Deck Materials Cost Deck Installation Total Deck Cost
Aluminum $13.50 – $25.00 $4.50 – $9.00 $18.00 – $34.00
Ipe $7.00 – $12.75 $4.75 – $8.75 $11.75 – $21.50
PVC/Plastic $8.25 – $15.75 $4.75 – $9.75 $13.00 – $25.50
Composite $6.75 – $14.25 $4.75 – $9.75 $11.50 – $24.00
Tigerwood $8.00 – $15.00 $4.00 – $8.00 $12.00 – $23.00
Redwood $9.00 – $14.00 $4.35 – $8.50 $13.35 – $22.50
Pressure treated Lumber $5.75 – $12.50 $5.25 – $10.00 $11.00 – $22.50
Cedar $4.00 – $8.75 $3.25 – $7.25 $7.25 – $16.00

Keep in mind that pool decks for above ground pools will be at the higher end of the ranges in the tables.

Does your pool deck need railings? See our Deck Guide to Deck Railing & Handrail Codes for the answers.

Below is a list of the Deck Railing materials prices, all prices are per linear foot.

Pool Deck Railing Costs
Railing Material Cost Per Linear Foot
Aluminum $45 – $60
PVC $45 – $60
Composite $45 – $60
Cedar $30 – $40
Ipe $33 – $45
Pressure-treated Lumber $22 – $30
Redwood $32 – $40
Tigerwood $30 – $42

As you likely know, fencing is required for inground pools to prevent accidents. Fencing costs can add significantly to the project.

Pool Deck Estimates and Quotes

 


Why Have A Deck Around Your Pool?

Why Have A Deck Around Your Pool

Ground level and above ground pool decks beautify the area/property, providing a welcoming aesthetic, but it will also create a safer walking environment. As any parent knows, kids run—even when they are not supposed to. A deck will allow for more foot traction around the pool than an open grassy area, keeping your kids and their friends safe.

As for you and your friends: A deck outfitted with deck furniture becomes a relaxing place to lounge, keep an eye on swimming kids or enjoy after your own swim.





Pool Deck Materials

Here are the most common deck materials:

Aluminum Pool Deck

$18.00 to $34.00 square foot installed

Pros:

  • A long-lasting product that will not warp, crack, or fade.
  • Lightweight (half that of wood), durable, and resistant to corrosion and rusting.
  • Will not burn and stays cooler in direct sunlight than PVC/composite or wood.

Cons:

  • Costs more than PVC/composite, cedar, and PT lumber and comes in a limited palette of colors.
  • Cutting aluminum is laborious.
  • If the deck is poorly installed or improperly coated, the deck will likely creak.

Ipe Pool Decking

$11.75 to $21.50/square foot installed

Pros:

  • Unique, rich beauty
  • Resistant to overheating, insects, fungus, dents, and scratches.
  • Unlikely to warp or twist.
  • Durable due to its density.

Cons:

  • Costs twice or three times as much as PT lumber or cedar.
  • Due to its darker hue, it can easily become hot under direct sunlight.
  • Its density makes it more difficult to install than other materials, such as PT lumber, PVC, or cedar. For example, pilot holes are usually drilled for fasteners.

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) / Plastic Pool Decking

$13.00 to $25.50/per square foot installed

Pros:

  • A plastic material, it is made to last long, as it will not rust, stain, scratch, fade, or dent.
  • Will not need staining or sealing.
  • Does not burn easily and is slip-resistant.
  • Altogether, it requires minimal maintenance and retains its coloring over time.
  • A good range of colors is available

Cons:

  • Very expensive short-term cost (higher than PT lumber, cedar, and composite).
  • Labor-intensive to install.
  • May not resist heat as well as other materials if darker surface colors are used.
  • Deck may develop creaking spots.

Composite Decks

$11.50 to $24.00/square foot installed

Pros:

  • Wood-like texturing and a range of colors and hues.
  • Will not rot, splinter, or attract insects.
  • Will neither warp, bend, nor fade in the sunlight, and it is known for being long-lasting.
  • Made of 80% or more recycled material.
  • Composite requires minimal maintenance.

Cons:

  • Prone to scuffing and staining (as from grease or food).
  • Heats up when in direct sunlight.
  • Composite also requires a higher initial cost than materials such as PT pine.

Free Pool Deck Estimate

Tigerwood Pool Decking

$12.00 to $23.00/square foot installed

Pros:

  • Visual appeal of natural wood
  • Naturally resistant to insects, scratches, rotting, splitting, denting, and chipping.
  • Works well in all climates.
  • Sealing and staining are not required but may be used in order to retain deck colors for a longer period of time.
  • Low-to-moderate maintenance required.

Cons:

  • Dark colors will absorb heat, which can be hot for bare feet.
  • Costs much more than PT lumber and cedar but tends to last longer than the two.
  • Higher installation price due to a slower installation period (in comparison to softer woods).

Redwood Pool Decks

$13.35 to $22.50/square foot installed

Pros:

  • Natural good looks compared with synthetic and aluminum decking
  • Accepts stain and allows sealer for resistance to moisture.
  • Resistant to warping, twisting, and shrinking.
  • Retains a cool temperature under direct sunlight for a longer period than many other decking materials.

Cons:

  • Requires consistent maintenance to prevent moisture damage.
  • Cheaper grades of redwood (i.e., sapwood) are prone to rotting if sealant is poorly or inconsistently applied.
  • Can be easily scratched and dented.

Pressure Treated Lumber (PT) Pool Decking

$11.00 to $22.50/square foot installed

Pros:

  • Durable and can last 12-15 years with proper maintenance.
  • Costs less than most other decking materials.
  • Resistant to insects and rotting, and it can be put into the ground with less risk of deteriorating.
  • Can be easily cut and installed.

Cons:

  • Some preservatives in the wood corrode standard screws. Stainless or coated screws must be used instead.
  • Poorer grades of PT lumber are susceptible to warping and splintering, especially in comparison to other wood materials.
  • Requires regular washing and staining in order to retain its appearance and performance.

Cedar Pool Decks

$7.25 to $16.00/square foot installed

Pros:

  • Naturally resistant to rot, insects, moisture, and it will not warp or crack.
  • Renewable, biodegradable, lightweight, and it is easy to cut and install.
  • The material is also softer for one’s foot than PT wood.

Cons:

  • Requires a lot of maintenance to retain its color, as it is susceptible to deterioration.
  • As a whole, the material will not last as long as other railing materials, such as PVC. Can dent and scratch easily.
  • Costs more than PT lumber (but less than composite).

For more information on each of these decking materials, select each of the decking materials types via this link. For general maintenance tips and deck cleaning prices, visit this link.

Free Pool Deck Quotes


An Aluminum Pool Deck?

An Aluminum Pool Deck

Aluminum provides excellent long-term value.

Unless you prefer a different deck material than above, we recommend choosing aluminum for your pool deck. In comparison to wood, PVC, and composite, aluminum’s ability to retain a cooled temperature in the sunlight means children and adults alike will have an easier time walking across the deck without the risk of burning their feet. Also considering that wood can have the possibility of splintering, an aluminum deck will save you the headache of dealing with that.

Aluminum certainly costs more than many of the other decking materials, as we noted above, but its long lifespan and benefits will certainly satisfy you and your family while saving you money over time and can also be offered by alot of the big decking brands such as TimberTech, Trex, Azek.


Negotiating the Best Price with the Most Quality

As you reach out to professional building contractors, consider these three tips below to achieve the most affordable price for you while retaining great deck quality:

  1. Ask more than one deck contractor for a quote. Comparing quotes will allow you to navigate which contractors have the best deck prices for the kind of deck and deck features you are looking for.
  2. Tell each deck contractor that he or she is competing for work. If contractors know they are competing, they will be less likely to make shortcuts in the deck building process or over price you for your deck.
  3. Do not settle on the cheapest quote without first looking into the company’s previous work. The lowest price may initially seem like the smartest choice, but it could also denote that the quality of the deck is lacking. In this case, the cheapest price will be less financially costly in the beginning, but the deck may not be up to your standards in appearance and may cost you more in repairs over time.

Pool Deck Estimates


When Planning for Your Investment

As you map out the details for your deck, it would be wise to consider the length of time you expect to stay in your house before moving. Provided that some decking materials are costlier and have longer lifespans than others, it would be more beneficial to invest in a cheaper material for a deck if you are considering moving within five to ten years. Alternatively, if you know your stay will extend beyond ten years, purchasing a higher-grade deck material will save you money and frustration in the long run.


Related Decking Cost Guides

Envision Deck Cost Guide
How Much Does It Cost To Stain A Deck Guide
Deckorators Deck Cost Guide
DuraLife Deck Cost Guide
MoistureShield Deck Cost Guide
Wolf Deck Cost Guide
Does a Deck Add Value to a House or Home Guide
Wood vs Composite Deck Comparison Guide
Deck Railing And Handrail Code Cost Guide

Deck Railing & Handrails Cost Guide

Within this Deck Guide we explain the deck railing types, deck railing styles, pros and cons and the Handrail codes standards that will need to met to allow a safe environment for your deck.

Why Have Deck Railing and Handrail Codes?

There are several reasons why builders have and must abide by codes, such as building integrity, integrating modern and efficient technologies and consistency—but at the core of it all is safety.

History has revealed the various issues, such as property damage and fatalities, that can occur when certain precautions are ignored or overlooked. As a result, standards are set in place to protect the health and welfare of all people, and codes for residential decks and their rails are no exception.

Deck railing and handrails are required by the International Residents Code (IRC) to establish a secure environment around the deck and the deck stairs. Having deck rails prevents people and animals from falling at various heights and acts as a safeguard against the wind. Handrails help users keep their balance going up and down the stairs, which minimizes the chance for falling.

For more information on the IRC, see the International Codes Council (ICC) website here.


Deck Railing Codes

Most states use or follow IRC codes in their state codes. For example, here are the standards for handrails and guards found in the current Michigan Residential Code, located in the IRC. You can use the link to find the codes for your state. Keep in mind that municipal codes may include additional standards or have varying measurements concerning the areas for which they are established.

Here are IRC Codes for deck railings and deck stair handrails.

Handrails:

  • 7.8: Handrails must be provided on at least one side of a flight of stairs (four or more steps).
  • 7.8.1: Handrail height is to be measured vertically from the tread of the step at the bottom of a staircase to the landing above the topmost step. The height cannot fall below 34 inches or be above 38 inches.
    • An exception to the rule: If the handrail fittings or bendings are used as continuous transitions between flights, between treads with non-parallel edges, from the handrail to a guard, or used at the beginning of a flight, the handrail height at the fittings or bendings may exceed 38 inches.
  • 7.8.2: Handrails must be continuous for the entire length of the flight, stretching from a point directly above the topmost riser to a point directly above the lowest riser. Handrails must also be returned or terminated in newel posts or safety terminals.
    • Exception: Handrails may be interrupted by a newel post at the turn.
  • 7.8.3: Handrail ends must be made to fit one of these types:

Type 1: A circular handrail should have an outside diameter of 1¼ inches at minimum and 2 inches maximum. A non-circular handrail should have a perimeter of 4 inches minimum and 6¼ inches maximum, and a cross section not exceeding 2¼ inches. The edge radius should be no less than 0.01 inches.

Type 2: Handrails with a perimeter greater than 6¼ inches should have a graspable finger recess on both sides of the rail profile. The finger recess should have a distance of ¾ inch measured vertically from the tallest point of the rail’s profile, having a depth between 5/16 inches and ⅞ inches below the widest portion of the profile. The widest portion of the profile should be 1¼ inches minimum and 2¾ inches maximum. The edges should have a radius no less than 0.01 inches.

For a visual understanding of this information, see page 20 on this link.

Deck Rails (also known as guards or guardrails):

  • 1.1: Guards are required along the open sides of a walking space, such as stairs, ramps, and landing platforms, that are located 30 inches from the floor or grade.
  • Insect screening is not considered a guard.
  • 1.2: The height of a guard should not be shorter than 36 inches. (Do not confuse this measurement with the 42 inches standard stated in the International Building Code (IBD), which is for commercial decks attached to apartments or businesses.)

Exception 1: Guards on the open sides of stairs may be 34 inches high.

Exception 2: If the top of the guard is used as a handrail for stairs, the top should be no shorter than 34 inches high and no higher than 38 inches.

  • 1.3: Guards should not have an opening from the walking surface that allows a sphere 4 inches in diameter to pass through.

Exception 1: Triangular openings at the open sides of stairs should not permit a sphere 6 inches in diameter to pass through.

Exception 2: Guards on the open sides of stairs should not permit a sphere of 4⅜ inches in diameter to pass through.

  • Guards should be able to withstand a linear load of 50 pounds per linear foot and a load of 200 pounds on top of it.

Railing Material:

  • 3: Plastic composite deck stairs and handrails must be decay resistant, in accordance with the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) D702.
  • 3.4: Plastic Composite deck stair treads, handrails, and guards must also be resistant to termites, in accordance with ASTM D7032.

Free Deck Railing Costs


Deck Railing and Handrail Materials with Pros/Cons

Those are the deck railing codes and deck handrail codes. Here are materials that can be used to meet those codes.

Qualifying deck railing materials include:

Aluminum

  • Pros: Lightweight, durable, and resistant to corrosion and rusting. Easy to install and come in several colors.
  • Cons: Has a modern appearance that will not match all decking styles. Can attract dust to its surface, is not easily painted, and it can dent.

Glass (Impact resistant/shatterproof)

  • Pros: Does not obstruct the view and are tempered for safety. It is low maintenance, and glass can be treated to reduce water spots. Some building companies may provide color tints.
  • Cons: May require frequent cleaning and the material can be costly, especially for shipping. Glass can chip and raise temperature on deck surface.

PVC / Capped Composite

  • Pros: Are often manufactured from recycled material, which is healthier for the environment. Made to last long, as it does not rust, stain, fade, or make dents. Low maintenance and retains its coloring.
  • Cons: Very expensive and is labor-intensive to install. It can appear bulky.

Stainless Steel (without cables)

  • Pros: Strong/durable and is easy to install. Also provides a contemporary look to the deck.
  • Cons: Heavy, making it difficult to work with, and despite the name, cheap stainless has the potential to rust.

Cable Railing

  • Pros: Low maintenance, durable, and easy to install. Does not obstruct the view and is customizable depending on the building company.
  • Cons: Moderately expensive, not child-friendly, and cables may not meet code depending on the residential area.

Deck Cable Railing Costs

Vinyl (has similar qualities to PVC)

  • Pros: Low cost and maintenance. Lightweight and easy to install. Vinyl does not necessitate painting or staining.
  • Cons: Can appear cheap, has a limited palette of color options, and does not endure the winter as well as other railing materials.

Wood

  • Pros: Has a traditional, natural look. Most is inexpensive and can be stained or painted to match the deck.
  • Cons: Does not last as long as other railing materials, such as PVC, as it is susceptible to deterioration and splintering. The material requires high maintenance. It can warp, and it can obstruct the view more than some of the other options.

Free Deck Railing Estimates

Deck Railing Designs

Having international and state standards does not mean the homeowner has to sacrifice creative thought.

Railings and handrails are available in a myriad of styles, from the Victorian age wrought iron to the modern aesthetic of composite. Each brand makes decorative caps and other accessories that allow you to customize your deck’s appearance.

It should be noted that not every railing material will work for every design, which may force the homeowner to choose some materials over others. For instance, curved designs are often difficult to produce, as some materials are harder to bend than others. Wood, for example, is not as malleable as aluminum or PVC composite. But, for the homeowner’s convenience, railing manufacturers do provide the supplies needed for customizable, creative choices.

Below are just a few railing design possibilities a homeowner can use:

Curved Railing: Having the railing curve around the deck will simultaneously break from the traditional deck style and invite a different dimension to the deck’s aesthetic. Curved railings can also be used for staircases on elevated decks. As mentioned, because some materials are easier to bend than others, aluminum and PVC are common choices for these designs.

Deck Curved Railing Costs

Aerial Railing: This is a type of curved deck rail that serves two deck levels. If the deck is dual leveled, it might feature deck railing that spirals (in an “s” shape or a semi-circle) from the top level to the base level, encompassing a seating area and/or fireplace within the curve. This style effectively maximizes the space while adding a unique beauty to the deck.

Deck Aerial Railing Costs

Cocktail Railing: This is a wider, flat railing surface that provides a practical addition for guests. Food, drinks, or handheld items of any kind can rest on top of the railing without fear of falling. If entertainment is a priority, this style is an easy choice.

Deck Cocktail Railing Costs

The homeowner should not forget to consider the types of balusters and post caps most fitting for the railing. In some cases, they may give the railing and deck a more distinctive appearance. For instance:

Glass Balustrade: Railing can be made to hold glass Balustrades. These allow for an unobstructed view and a modern aesthetic.

Deck Railing Glass Balustrade

Baroque Balusters: Made of wrought iron, they project a European ambience that cannot be captured by other styles.

Deck Railing Baroque Balusters





Prices for Deck Railing

Prices for railings are contingent on the chosen material and sizes. The chart below lists the costs per linear foot and for each provided material.

Deck Railing Costs & Prices
Deck Railing Material Railing Cost Per Linear Foot
Aluminum $45 – $60
Glass $50 – $65
PVC/Composite $45 – $60
Stainless Steel $35 – $70
Cable $40 – $60
Cedar $30 – $40
Ipe $33 – $45
Pressure-treated Lumber $22 – $30
Redwood $32 – $40
Tigerwood $30 – $42

Free Deck Railing Prices


Related Decking Cost Comparisons by Deck Design

Envision Deck Cost Guide
How Much Does It Cost To Stain A Deck Guide
Deckorators Deck Cost Guide
DuraLife Deck Cost Guide
MoistureShield Deck Cost Guide
Wolf Deck Cost Guide
Does a Deck Add Value to a House or Home Guide
Wood vs Composite Deck Comparison Guide
10 Best Modern Deck Design Ideas for 2020

10 Best Modern Deck Design Ideas for 2020

Obviously adding deck to your home will increase the value of it, building a deck can be in the homeowner’s best interest, in this article we feature 10 best modern Deck Design ideas for 2020.


Trex Enhance Decking In Beach Dune And Saddle Color

Trex Enhance Decking In Beach Dune And Saddle Color
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Trex Transcend Decking In Gravel Path Color

Trex Transcend Decking In Gravel Path Color
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Trex Transcend Decking In Island Mist Color

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Fiberon Deck Cost Guide Details

Fiberon Decking Installation Cost & Price Guide

About Fiberon Decking

Fiberon Decking began in 1997, selling composite decking and decking features, and it has been perfecting its business since. The company has a history of being the first of many things, such as selling PVC composite railings, and it has achieved several accolades. Overall, customers and contractors alike have been satisfied with Fiberon decks, attesting to the product’s quality and generous warranties, among other benefits.

Alternative materials: Fiberon has replaced typical decking materials, such as wood, with both an ecologically friendly synthetic plastic, called PVC, and wood composite that is fade and stain resistant due to a PermaTech cap layer. Check out the decking lines below to learn which decking materials are protected by the PermaTech cap on three sides and which are protected on four sides.

Colors: Fiberon provides an impressive multi-tonal color palette that can be separated into four main color categories: gray, golden brown, classic brown, and reddish brown. There are twenty-one colors total.


Fiberon Decking Lines: Good-Better-Best

Fiberon, as most leading brands, filters its decking lines through the GoodBetterBest system. Unlike most other brands, Fiberon boasts of three decking lines that fall under the “best” category. Below is an overview of the five lines currently being produced:

The Best Fiberon: Paramount PVC Decking

Color options:

  • Brownstone
  • Sandstone
  • Flagstone
  • Mineral
Fiberon Paramount PVC Deck Colors
Fiberon Paramount PVC Deck Colors

Boards can either have a grain surface or a color streaked surface. All grooved boards are designed for hidden deck fasteners, and all square edge boards are used for stair treads or picture framing. Picture framing a deck is a technique in which one or more boards are used around the perimeter of the deck in “picture frame” style. The boards might be the same as the rest of the deck, but often a complementary color is used for visual interest.

PVC Deck Picture Framing
PVC Deck Picture Framing

Features:

  • PVC decking material
  • Low maintenance (only requires a periodic soap and water cleaning)
  • Lightweight
  • Resists moisture, dents, and flame
  • Slip resistance (when wet or dry)

Board profiles

  • 1″ grooved boards, 5.5 inches wide with lengths 12, 16, and 20 feet.
  • 1″ square edge boards, 5.5 inches wide with length 20 feet.

Warranty: Back by a lifetime performance warranty and a 50-year stain and fade warranty.

The Best Fiberon: Concordia – Symmetry Decking

According to Fiberon’s website, this decking line is most ideal when used for second-story decks.

Color options:

  • Warm sienna
  • Cinnabar
  • Burnt umber
  • Graphite
Fiberon Concordia – Symmetry Deck Colors
Fiberon Concordia - Symmetry Deck Colors

Features:

  • Premium HDPE (high-density polyethylene) and wood composite core.
  • Exclusive PermaTech cap layer, bonded on all four sides of material exterior
  • Stain and fade free
  • Reversible boards, having finished top and bottom surfaces
  • Comprised of 94% recycled materials

Board profiles:

  • 0.935″ grooved boards, 5.4 inches wide with lengths 12, 16, and 20 feet.
  • 0.935″ square edge boards, 5.4 inches wide with length 20 feet.

Warranty: Lifetime performance warranty and a 50-year stain and fade warranty.

The Best Fiberon: Concordia – Horizon Decking

This decking line is also recommended for second-story decks.

Color options:

  • Ipe
  • Rosewood
  • Tudor brown
  • Castle gray
Fiberon Concordia – Horizon Deck Colors
Fiberon Concordia - Horizon Deck Colors

Features: The same as the Concordia—Symmetry decking line.

Board profiles:

  • 0.935″ grooved boards, 5.4 inches wide with lengths 12, 16, and 20 feet.
  • 0.935″ square edge boards, 5.4 inches wide with lengths 12, 16, and 20 feet.

Warranty: The same warranty for Concordia—Symmetry.

Better Fiberon: Sanctuary

Color options:

  • Multi-tonal colors that elicit a coffee-house vibe:
    • Expresso
    • Latte
    • Earl gray
    • Moringa
    • Chai
Fiberon Sanctuary Deck Colors
Fiberon Sanctuary Deck Colors

Features:

  • PermaTech cap layer on three sides
  • Premium composite core
  • Flat-profile bottom provides a sturdy feel
  • Resists fading, staining, splintering, rotting, cracking, pests, and decay
  • 95% recycled content

Board profiles:

  • 0.925″ grooved boards, 5.25 inches wide with lengths 12, 16, and 20 feet.
  • 0.925″ grooved boards, 5.25 inches wide with lengths 16, and 20 feet.

Warranty: 40-year performance warranty and 40-year stain and fade warranty

Good Fiberon: Good Life Decking

Color options: The options for this line comes in two categories of colors—the Escapes Collection and the Weekenders Collection.

  • Escapes (multi-tonal):
    • Beach house
    • Bungalow
    • Tuscan villa
  • Weekenders:
    • Cabin
    • Cottage
Fiberon Good Life Deck Colors
Fiberon Good Life Deck Colors

Features:

  • Authentic wood-appearance with distinct grain patterns
  • Three sides of HDPE and wood composite core
  • Resistant to splintering, cracking, and decaying
  • Low-maintenance, easy to clean
  • Three-sided cap layer

Board Profiles:

  • 0.93″ grooved boards, 5.25 inches wide with lengths 12, 16, and 20 feet.
  • 0.93″ grooved boards, 5.25 inches wide with length 20 feet.

Warranty:

  • Escapes Collection residential 30-year performance warranty and a 30-year stain and fade
  • Weekender Collection 25-year performance warranty and 25-year stain and fade warranty
  • 10-year Commercial Limited Warranty (against deck damage)

Outside of these decking lines are two Home Depot exclusives: ArmorGuard and Jatoba.

  • ArmorGuard is bonded on three sides for mildew, mold, insects, and weather resistance. This line has a 25-year stain, fade, and performance warranty, and a 10-year commercial warranty. Cost per square feet is between $5.15 and $7.25.
  • Jatoba is coded with a PermaTech cap layer on three sides, making it resistant to staining and fading. 25-year residential warranty against splintering, rot, and decay, and 25-year residential stain and fade warranty. Cost per square feet is between $7.33 and $9.50.





Fiberon Deck Board Pricing

These listed prices are solely for the boards themselves and do not include the deck installation costs. Also on this list are prices for additional Fiberon deck features.

Fiberon Decking Prices Cost/linear ft. Cost/square ft.
Good Life $2.15 – $2.60 $4.85 – $5.30
Sanctuary $4.23 – $4.60 $8.20 – $9.02
Paramount $5.20 – $5.80 $10.05 – $10.79
Concordia–Symmetry $5.00 – $5.30 $9.75 – $10.45
Concordia–Horizon $5.15 – $5.35 $9.75 – $10.45
Deck Features
6′ Rail $25 – $31 per linear foot N/A
8′ Rail $22 – $30 per linear foot N/A
Deck Fascia $4 – $10 per sq. ft. N/A
Fastener Kits $50 – $55 each N/A
Pyramid Post Caps $8 – $12 each N/A
Post Cap for Light $54 – $62 each N/A
Post Sleeves 39″ $60 – $68 each N/A
Post Sleeves 39″ $68 – $76 each N/A
Accented Rail Lights (2 pack) $28 – $33 Each N/A

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Fiberon Decking Prices: Sample 500 Square Foot Decks

Fiberon Paramount Deck Square Feet

The table below shows Fiberon decking costs for various decking lines available with and without deck railings for a sample 500 sq. ft. deck:

Fiberon Decking Line Deck Grade Deck Rails Average Cost Cost/square ft.
Good Life Good No $5,968 – $6,215 $10.85 – $11.30
Sanctuary Better No $7,810 – $8,261 $14.20 – $15.02
Paramount Best No $9,075 – $9,213 $16.05 – $16.79
Concordia–Symmetry Best No $8,663 – $9,048 $15.75 – $16.45
Concordia–Horizon Best No $8,663 – $9,048 $15.75 – $16.45
Good Life Good Yes $7,761 – $8,080 $14.11 – $14.69
Sanctuary Better Yes $10,153 – $10,742 $18.46 – $19.53
Paramount Best Yes $11,479 – $12,007 $20.87 – $21.83
Concordia–Symmetry Best Yes $11,264 – $11,765 $20.48 – $21.39
Concordia–Horizon Best Yes $11,264 – $11,766 $20.48 – $21.39

Fiberon Deck Builders Near Me Estimates

For your convenience, Fiberon provides this decking calculator to determine the total cost for any and all unique deck choices.

Getting the Best Price
In the circumstance you have your deck professionally installed, here are a few helpful tips for achieving the most affordable price:

  • Get written estimates from more than one deck contractor for a quote on the deck. Comparing quotes will allow you to navigate the best prices for the type of deck and deck features you are looking for.
  • Let the deck contractors know you’re getting multiple quotes, so that they understand they are competing for work. This way, they will give you their best possible price.
  • Hire based on cost and the experience and track record of the contractors. Choosing the cheapest estimate without first looking into the company’s quality of work can lead to buyer’s regret if the quality of the deck is lacking. In this case, the cheap price will feel nice at first, but the deck may not look up to your standards, and it may cost you more in the long run.
  • For any who prefer DIY projects, Fiberon has provided some useful steps on how to begin the process. See this site for additional information.

Decks are Investments

Adding a deck to your house will increase the value of the house, presuming the deck is properly cared for.

According to the 2020 national Cost-vs-Value report from Remodeling Magazine, the resale value of a composite deck at 69%. In other words, if a Fiberon composite deck costs $21,000, you can expect the project to increase your home’s potential sale price by about $14,500. However, this also indicates that you will lose money on the house if you decide to sell it immediately following the deck’s construction.

Decks are investments, so if you decide to get a deck, be sure to enjoy it. But, if you sell your house at some point in the future, your Fiberon deck will certainly be an attractive feature.

 

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