Plastic decking (also known as PVC decking) is lumber made from 100% plastic. Plastic decking is often confused with composite decking, which contains plastic film, but isn't quite the same thing. Learn more about the various types of plastic decking, the pros and cons of these materials, and how plastic decking stacks up to Trex® composite decking.
Two of the most popular choices for building a deck are plastic decking and composite decking. But not all decking material is created equal. There are some important differences between the two:
Composite decking—like Trex—is a blend of plastic film and wood fibers. The plastic film that goes into composite decking can include polypropylene or polyethylene. These plastics work well with wood fibers to create a strong, resilient material that is more stable than 100% plastic decking.
PVC decking is made completely from synthetic materials. PVC consists of polyvinyl chloride, a type of vinyl typically used for outdoor siding and fencing.
PVC-wrapped composite decking is a plastic-coated board comprised of a composite core wrapped with a vinyl shell.
PVC decking is resistant to moisture and rot because synthetic fibers are not absorbent. However, it can expand with heat and contract with cold. This can cause it to crack and make your deck potentially unstable.
Some PVC decking materials can fade or peel as a result of exposure to the elements.
Composite decking does not splinter or crack and does not become as slippery as solid plastic in winter months.
Trex composite decking products are infused with stain-resistant, fade-resistant color throughout the entire board to minimize the look of any surface scratches, giving uniform color all the way through.
Some plastic decking is recyclable. Others are not. PVC decking is typically made from virgin plastics, which can be recycled after use. Although Trex decking cannot be recycled due to the mingling of wood fibers and plastics, it can be repurposed into new decking materials. Even better, it contributes to less trash in landfills and on the planet.
Trex composite decking is made from 95% recycled materials.
Trex uses recycled plastic film and reclaimed wood to build a better decking material. Trex saves 400 million pounds of recycled materials from landfills each year.
As one of the largest plastic film recyclers in the U.S., our eco-friendly approach contributes to a healthier environment.
Composite decking has a clear advantage over wood: