What is composite decking made of?


If you’ve decided on composite decking for your outside space, learning more about what is composite decking made of is a good first step. Composite decking boards are made from wood and plastic particles, with wood particles ranging from sawdust to chips and plastic components being virgin or recycled. Composite decking has grown in popularity in the United States due to its resilience and long lifespan. It provides a low-maintenance solution that allows homeowners to enjoy their outdoor spaces without the time-consuming activities of staining, painting, and treatment that are associated with traditional timber decking. This detailed guide seeks to reveal the composite decking production method and composition, as well as insights into its construction and ingredients. Let’s dive more into the making of composite decking-


Composite decking is a long-lasting and environmentally sustainable alternative to traditional wood or PVC decking. It is made of using a careful co-extrusion technique that blends recycled plastic and wood fibers to create a robust material with a solid core structure. Composite decking, which frequently has a capped wood element, is resistant to scratches, stains, and moisture damage, resulting in a longer lifespan and lower maintenance requirements. Composite boards are versatile in their applications, offering adjustable design possibilities that mirror the aesthetic appeal of natural wood without related maintenance. Composite decking is a modern option for outdoor spaces that combines synthetic and conventional elements. It is low-maintenance and long-lasting.


  • Wood Fibers: A fundamental component of composite decking, wood fibers are sourced from various wood types. These fibers contribute to the natural appearance and texture of the decking.
  • Plastic (Polypropylene or Polyethylene): Polypropylene or polyethylene plastic is a key ingredient, enhancing the strength and resilience of composite decking. The ratio of plastic to wood can vary between brands.
  • Bonding Agent: The manufacturing process incorporates a bonding agent that ensures a secure and durable connection between the wood fibers and plastic elements.
  • Coloring Agent (Optional): Some composite decking products offer the option of introducing a coloring agent during manufacturing. This allows homeowners to customize the overall color of the finished deck board according to their preferences.
  • Additives: Various additives may be included in the composite decking mixture to enhance specific properties, such as resistance to UV radiation, moisture, and other environmental factors.


Composite decking boards are manufactured with great care, combining wood and plastic to create a long-lasting and environmentally friendly decking material.

To highlight environmental friendliness, the raw materials for composite decking contain a mix of wood particles such as sawdust, wood chips, and wood fiber pieces, as well as plastic components that can be either virgin or recycled.

WHAT IS COMPOSITE DECKING MADE OFExtrusion and compression molding are the two most popular production techniques. Extrusion is a popular process known as co-extrusion that involves the melting and blending of raw materials together so they are flexible, then forcing them through an opening shaped like a decking board, solidifying the appropriate size and form.

A coloring agent can be added throughout the production process to decide the overall color of the final deck board. By adding recycled materials to their composite decking, several manufacturers prioritize eco-friendly procedures. The enriched mixture of wood fibers, plastic, and bonding agents is then extruded or molded into the shape of decking boards, resulting in boards that look like typical wood decking but have increased resilience and perseverance. Some composite decking alternatives are available in both capped and uncapped forms. Capped boards have an outer coating that protects against staining and scratching and provides UV stability.

Compression molding, on the other hand, involves inserting molten materials into a mold and exposing them to tremendous heat and pressure, resulting in a physical bond. This process utilizes heat and pressure to mold and bond the raw materials in a wood grain mold, allowing for the creation of different finishes, including smooth, wood grain effects, and grooved boards.


Composite decking emerges as a contemporary and advantageous choice, presenting a spectrum of benefits that justify its initial cost relative to traditional wood. The escalating popularity of composite decking is attributed to its compelling advantages for property owners-

  • Durability:

Composite decking, especially capped options, ensures remarkable durability. It resists splintering, splitting, and rot, surpassing traditional wooden decking challenges. Proper installation prevents warping, providing longevity that exceeds 25 years.

  • Low Maintenance:

Composite decking stands out for its easy maintenance. Regular sweeping keeps it debris-free, while cleaning with warm, soapy water ensures optimal conditions. Unlike timber, it requires no treatments, stains, or paints.

  • Low-Slip Properties:

Enhanced safety characterizes composite decking with its low-slip properties. This feature makes it a secure walking surface, offering stability even in wet conditions, unlike flat plastic decking.

  • Insect and Pest Resistant:

Composite decking inherently resists insects and pests, ensuring longevity without the challenges of infestations. This resistance contributes to a prolonged lifespan, adding value to the decking investment.

  • Eco-Friendly:

Composite decking embraces environmental consciousness. Despite containing plastics, it incorporates a significant number of recycled materials, minimizing waste and maximizing performance. This eco-friendly aspect aligns with sustainable living practices.


Choosing the right decking material is crucial for your outdoor space. Let’s compare timber, plastic, and modern composite decking to help you make an informed decision.

Types of decking



Composite decking

  • Insect and pest resistant
  • Lower maintenance costs over its lifespan
  • Low-slip properties on decking products with narrow grooves
  • Higher one-off costs initially
  • Solid core boards provide better support for heavier objects

Timber wood decking


  • Cheaper initial cost
  • Authentic wood grain appearance
  • Solid construction with strength underfoot


  • Higher maintenance costs over time
  • Requires treatment and staining throughout its lifespan
  • Susceptible to rot and insects over the years

Plastic decking


  • Lightweight boards for easy installation
  • Lower initial purchase cost
  • Insect resistance and low maintenance
  • Prone to cracking, bending, and warping in hotter climates
  • Lacks the natural timber effect, diminishing aesthetic appeal

Choosing the correct decking material entails balancing the benefits and drawbacks of each alternative, considering aspects like cost, upkeep, and aesthetic preferences. Understanding these distinctions assures a well-informed decision for your outdoor living space, whether it’s the classic charm of wood, the practicality of plastic, or the sophisticated advantages of composite decking.


At Northwest Decks, we take pride in transforming outdoor spaces across Tacoma, Federal Way, Lakewood, Silverdale, Bainbridge Island, Poulsbo, Kingston, Belfair, Gig Harbor, Port Orchard, Bremerton, and more locations in the Gig Harbor and Kitsap Peninsula areas. Our commitment to craftsmanship and excellence is evident in every composite deck we create.

As your trusted decking partner, we bring innovation and durability to your doorstep. From the timeless allure of natural wood to the modern resilience of composite decking, Northwest Decks offers a range of solutions tailored to your style and preferences. Our composite decks boast stain- and fade-resistant materials, backed by a solid 25-year warranty, ensuring your investment stands the test of time.

Ready to elevate your outdoor living experience? Call us today at 253.342.4688. Contact us to Schedule a free consultation, and let’s go on a journey to design and build a composite deck that not only enhances your property but also becomes a cherished space for years to come. With Northwest Decks, your vision meets craftsmanship, creating a seamless blend of beauty and durability in every deck we craft.