Composite decking is an innovative technology. Because of its longevity, low maintenance, and versatility, it is an excellent alternative to traditional wood. When planning to install composite decking in your outside space, you may have a lot of questions. “What is the cost of composite decking?” “How long does composite decking last?” as well as “Will it warp like traditional wood?” It’s a good idea to be careful. While composite decking offers numerous advantages, several conditions can cause the deck to distort. In this post, we’ll look at why composite decking warps and how to keep it from warping in the first place.
What causes composite decking to warp?
Moisture and dampness
Moisture is a major cause of composite decking material warping. Composite decking is created by combining recycled plastic and wood fiber. This results in increased durability and a more solid appearance. However, if used incorrectly, it might cause the wood fibers to absorb moisture. Moisture and humidity are known to be crucial elements in wood, causing it to expand and contract, perhaps resulting in deck warping. This issue is especially prevalent in locations where it rains frequently.
Warping of the deck might occur if the composite deck is not installed properly. Incorrect deck spacing and temperatures can have an impact on composite decking. A densely packed deck will not have as effective a drainage system as a widely spread deck. And, as previously said, dampness is a primary cause of deck warpage. As a result, composite decking requires drainage to reduce the risk of water retention and mold formation.
Sealed decking can create wet air at the bottom, which can harm your frame and deck and cause warping issues.
It is also critical to maintain adequate spacing to allow composite deck boards to expand and contract properly. Your deck may expand and compress thermally during the hot summer months or the chilly winter months. If the decks are not properly spaced in the middle, they will squeeze together and eventually deform the composite decks.
Fixing that is too tight
Many homeowners decide to fix the deck in place all at once during installation. However, this procedure may have a number of unwanted consequences.
It is extremely safe to screw composite decking into place all at once. However, as the deck thermally expands and shrinks, it might have a variety of consequences. Set screws can exert significant strain on the deck, causing composite decking to distort.
Sunlight and high temperatures
Sunlight and high temperatures are also significant causes of warping in composite deck planks. When exposed to heat, composite decking is more heat resistant and less likely to expand than traditional wood. However, this does not rule out the possibility. In warmer areas, temperature changes can cause composite materials to expand or contract, resulting in deck warping. Furthermore, direct sunlight can cause fading and browning of the decking, which might compromise its strength. And it becomes more prone to warping or buckling with time.
How to Prevent Composite Deck Warping
Because composite decking is more robust and weather-resistant, avoiding deck warping is also fairly simple.
Installation by a professional
Composite decking installation necessitates the use of specialized tools and techniques. As a result, we recommend that you employ a professional installer to complete the installation. A skilled installer will be able to reduce risk during the installation process. This involves keeping the spacing between composite deck boards consistent and using the proper fasteners to secure the deck. Furthermore, installing at the proper temperature reduces the possibility of warping the deck.
Maintain a clean and dry deck
Moisture and humidity can badly damage your composite decking, so keep your outdoor space dry. Cleaning water from the deck surface as soon as possible might help to protect it. Although composite decking is generally resistant to moisture, moisture can harm composite materials over time.
Maintain a clean deck by frequently cleaning the surface of your deck of debris and debris. This will also help to lessen the possibility of composite deck warping.
Keep out of direct sunlight
Homeowners must take precautions to keep composite decking planks out of direct sunlight. As a result, the potential of warping is reduced. Installing outdoor blinds, such as awnings and shades, is a quick and easy solution. It can provide extra shade and shield the material from direct sunshine.
Using materials that are highly resistant to UV radiation is another option, although it will be more expensive.
Although many homeowners are unaware, it is possible to seal composite decking. Proper sealing and frequent maintenance can extend the life of your deck. However, this is not recommended, as it will require a significant amount of work to maintain your composite deck boards in the future, and some manufacturers do not give guarantees on sealed composite decks.
In conclusion, warping is uncommon with composite decking, but it will occur. Humidity, improper installation, and direct sunshine can all cause deck warping. To avoid this, homeowners should take precautions such as choosing a competent installer, cleaning the deck on a regular basis, and avoiding direct sunlight. By adopting these steps, homeowners will be able to enjoy composite decking that is both long-lasting and attractive.