Building a deck: Trex or Cellular PVC?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by DaveF, Mar 3, 2014.

  1. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    We're having a deck built. It must be composite decking (Conventional stained wood is not an option, as composite materials are required by the HOA). The builders we like use either Trex Transcend or Clubhouse (a cellular PVC). Is either one significantly better than the other?

    Our deck will be within 30" of the ground level and pretty well shaded (North side of the house, with 16' to the next house in our row-house style community). It's been suggested that the PVC is better material where it is closer to the ground with more water exposure. On the flip side, it works better with bright sun to keep it dry on top.

    I've heard the composites have had some issues over the years. And there was a class-action lawsuit against Trex. But I'm pretty ignorant of how these materials compare and if one is substantially better than the other, especially if the PVC has some price premium.

    Appreciate any insights :)
     
  2. schan1269

    schan1269 HTF Expert
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    Trex no longer makes the "had issues" composite decking(nobody else does either).

    Composite is "older"(and in its 2nd, no more issues, generation) and has more choices...cell PVC is still in its infancy, less colors to choose...but it works more like real wood than composite.
     
  3. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Thanks. I like the look of the PVC, and it's getting pushed (or marketed) by the deck builders. But if it's got less history and than the composites, that might be a risk I don't want to take.
     
  4. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Quick bump:
    Anyone have Consumers Report subscription? I'm wondering if they have any good info in their decking section, worth signing up for?
    http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/decking.htm

    I'm especially interested in info on Trex Transcend and Deuceninck Clubhouse.
     
  5. Brian Dobbs

    Brian Dobbs Ambassador

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    I built my decks over the past few years using Fiberon (Rosewood) at the recommendation of Consumer Reports. It was the highest rated on fading, scratching, mold resistance, etc.

    A 20 ft. board was about $70 in 2013. $55 in 2011.

    It's expensive, but the stuff is DURABLE and looks fantastic.
     
  6. Jason Charlton

    Jason Charlton Ambassador

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    Sorry I missed this thread, would have chimed in sooner...

    We also had a very large deck built using Fiberon Horizon decking (it was either the same Rosewood finish Brian mentioned, or it was the "Tudor Brown" - I can't remember). We absolutely love it. The color and texture is beautiful, and for us, the coordinating railing system met our requirements, too (needed to have a flat surface to rest your drink, wanted the vertical rails to be as unobstrusive as possible to preserve the view, and it needed to be solid and not look cheap).

    Here's an online album that documents the project - the second page has the pictures with the new decking.

    It's held up well in the couple of years we've had it. Maybe once a year we spray with a hose and give it a once over with a stiff brush to get up the dirt and a little bit of mildew that occasionally appears on the uncovered side - due to the copious amount of leaves and debris that dump on it in the fall, no doubt. It does not get overly hot in the summer, though it's not in direct sunlight all day long (rather, about half the day) and it doesn't seem overly slippery when wet, either.

    Best of luck with yours!
     
  7. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Thanks for the comments :) we signed a retainer with a builder last night to proceed, and compete design details. We're waiting on pricing for the cellular PVC. It looks a little better, but if it's a price premium we'll go with the Trex.
     
    Sam Posten likes this.
  8. Dougofthenorth

    Dougofthenorth Stunt Coordinator

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    And the final result was.... :popcorn:
     
  9. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    http://www.deceuninck-americas.com/Deceuninck Clubhouse brand cellular PVC. Pricing was the same as Trex Ascend, and wife thinks it looks better.
     

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