What’s the Difference Between Natural Wood and Composite Decking?

fisher lumber composite decking

Learn more about the benefits of composite decking vs. natural wood.

Having a beautiful deck that overlooks your property and gives you a space for relaxing and engaging in some outdoor living is a great addition to your home and lifestyle. If you’ve decided to replace your existing deck or are considering installing a new one, you’re probably looking at different types of decking materials. Most people come down to a decision between natural wood and composite. Both materials have their pros and cons and both can be used to create beautiful decks. Read on to learn more about the differences between them so that you can make an informed decision. 


The biggest benefit of composite decking over traditional lumber for most people is that it has nearly no need for regular maintenance. Traditional wood decking requires upkeep and maintenance on a yearly schedule. Natural wood needs to be cleaned and sanded, and it needs to be either stained, painted, or otherwise sealed to prevent insect damage, rot, and weathering. Composite doesn’t have these issues. Composite doesn’t require sealing or sanding. Composite doesn’t succumb to insects and it won’t stain or weather like natural wood. Composite decking will need to be cleaned semi-annually or when it gets really dirty, but so do natural wood products.


The biggest drawback of composite decking for most people is that it has a higher price point than traditional wood. Composite is more expensive, but not as much as most people think. Usually composite runs $30-60 per square foot installed, which is a sizable investment for most decks. It is certainly more than you would pay for natural wood, but it isn’t as much more as many people assume – natural wood is running $25-43 per square foot installed in most areas, and that is before you calculate the costs of extended maintenance over the life of the deck.


Natural wood decks usually last between ten and thirty years, depending on  how well they are maintained. That is a good length of time for most people, but composite decking can last up to 50 years. This means that you get a double or more lifespan to your finished product without doubling your costs usually. Composite also is durable and resistant to scratching, splintering and bowing. And while most composite will not have noticeable stains or wear in most areas, if it does develop flaws over its extremely long lifespan, you can actually stain or paint it. Many people believe that this isn’t an option for composite products but it is – you aren’t stuck with the color you originally chose!

Depend on Leland Fisher Lumber For Your Lumber and Hardware Needs!

Leland Fisher Lumber is full-service lumber and hardware supplier. We’ve serviced homeowners and professional contractors in Montgomery County, Howard County, and Frederick County since 1894! Whether you want to remodel your home or upgrade your business, we have the professionalism and expertise to make any architectural vision come to life.

Be sure to visit Fisher Lumber’s Designer Showroom featuring displays of Andersen Windows, Therma-Tru entry doors, Simpson and Masonite exterior doors, as well as a wide selection of interior doors featuring Simpson, Masonite, Lemieux, and JELD-WEN. Our knowledgeable experts are ready to assist you!  Contact us at 301-424-6500 and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

This entry was posted on Friday, April 22nd, 2022 at 2:56 pm. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.