When you think of one of the best composite decking brands, that maintenance-free decking, what’s the first brand that comes to mind? I’m willing to bet it’s Trex.
It’s a household name in the industry, especially considering its founder invented the first round of wood-plastic composite material decades ago. And over the years, Trex has continuously improved on its products and won multiple awards for its efforts.
But many other great composite deck manufacturers have also joined the ranks, leaving the age-old question of “who’s the best” open to debate.
Well, as custom deck builders with extensive experience using Trex, we’re going to share the five reasons we believe Trex is on of the best composite decking brands on the market.
1. Trex Commits to Being Eco-Friendly
According to its website, “Trex saves 500 million+ pounds of plastic film and wood from landfills each year.”
That’s impressive! And it makes Trex one of the largest plastic film recyclers in the United States. That also means the company never has to cut down a single tree to create its products. Trex has designed its decking to utilize as much recycled product as possible. Here’s how:
The core of a Trex board, which makes up 95% of it, is a composite of recycled plastic and recycled wood. (Hence the name, composite decking). The remaining 5% is the cap on top of the boards, which is made of virgin polymer plastic. It protects the core of the board while also adding in color and natural grain patterns.
On top of that, the company also uses some of the country’s most eco-friendly manufacturing processes—recycling waste and eliminating the use of harmful chemicals. (If you’d like, you can read more about Trex and its eco-friendly processes here.)
Trex doesn’t just use reclaimed materials; it actively encourages and participates in the entire recycling process. In 2020, its recycling programs:
- Were involved with more than 2,500 community groups
- Helped remove approximately 850 thousand pounds of plastic waste
- Invested $512,000 into the community, including corporate and employee donations
2. The Durability & Testing of Its Decking
Trex is a leading player because of its dedication to being green. But also because it creates one of the world’s most durable composite decking materials.
The boards are wrapped on three sides (the top and both sides) during manufacturing, allowing vapor to escape from the bottom. Then, the cap is created and applied to the board while it’s being molded, so it becomes part of the board itself.
So even if you managed to pry something between the cap and its core, you wouldn’t have an easy time trying to peel it off. It’s on there for good!
In contrast, some other composite manufacturers don’t add the cap until the composite core is cooled. And in these instances, we’ve seen cases where the cap has completely separated from the core of the board itself.
After production, Trex performs extensive in-house testing on its boards at its USA-based manufacturing facilities. This process includes testing for:
- UV resistance
- Heat resistance
- Scratch resistance
- Pressure and strength
- Proper size and width specs
- Minimum cap thickness
- Defects, etc.
Speaking of manufacturing, in 2020 Trex was able to:
- Recycle approximately 100% of factory scraps back into their manufacturing processes
- Reuse about 99% of water at its Virginia and Nevada manufacturing facilities
- Reduce the energy used to cool its plants by about 40%
- Have zero environmental compliance issues
3. The Beauty & Variety of Its Products
Composite manufacturers have come a long way. But where some other boards still look synthetic, Trex decking offers natural grain patterns and beautiful but subtle streaking that genuinely looks like wood. And you get to choose from more than a dozen rich colors to create a space that truly suits you.
Decking for Every Budget
Trex also offers three lines of decking, so there’s an option for every budget. And there’s no need to sacrifice good looks and quality if you’re looking for something more affordable.
The tiers are considered good, better, best (Select, Enhance and Transcend). But all three are high-performance, low-maintenance, and protected by Trex’s latest shell technology.
And as a bonus, Trex has an entire lineup of outdoor living products. From pergolas to patio furniture and even spiral staircases. It’s your one-stop shop to help you create a functional and downright amazing deck from top to bottom.
4. Unmatched Warranties
Trex offers a 25-year warranty against defects on almost all of its products. Plus, a 25-year stain and fade warranty on its high-performance decking.
That’s quite the guarantee, but we all know that actions speak louder than words.
In our experience, the people at Trex take warranty claims seriously and always follow through. Though honestly, we haven’t been part of many claims because they genuinely have a great product. But they’ve done a great job supporting us (and other local builders) when problems come up.
Trex has manufacturer reps all over the country. And you can get your local reps’ contact info by calling 1-800-BUY-TREX.
5. Trex Is Better Than PVC
We’ve made our claim as to why Trex is one of the best composite decking brands. But considering PVC is another common alternative to wood, it’s often compared and even confused with composite sometimes. So it wouldn’t be right of us not to mention it and take a look at how it compares to Trex.
Let’s start with its composition.
PVC is made from 100% synthetic plastic that’s typically used for outdoor siding and fencing. Whereas Trex, as we know, is mostly made of wood and plastic composite. And much of that plastic combines very well with wood fibers, which creates a much more robust and durable material.
Resistance to the Elements
PVC is also low maintenance and resistant to moisture and rot. And while both PVC and composite decking expands and contracts with the temperature, PVC decking expanding and contracting may lead to cracking.
On top of that, some PVC decking will fade and peel over time due to prolonged exposure to the sun.
PVC is much more likely to have a chemical reaction to certain substances than Trex.
For example, PVC chemically reacts with rubber and water, resulting in an unwanted haze on the PVC decking boards. So it’s not a good idea to use rubber mats on a PVC deck if it’s not sheltered from the rain and snow.
Also, PVC decking can react when it comes into contact with other chemicals and cosmetics such as bug spray or sunscreen. If you were to spray something like sunscreen or bug spray and the spray got onto the bottom of your feet and you walked across your PVC deck, you may very well have permanent footprint marks on your deck. This is just the nature of PVC.
Conclusion on the Best Composite Decking Brands
There you have it, the five reasons why we believe Trex is the best composite decking choice of composite decking brands. Its proven track record of quality products, customer service, and dedication to being green makes it a truly amazing company that we’ve loved building with year after year.
If you’re thinking about building a new deck, let’s chat!
At Custom Deck Creations, we build composite decks for clients using the best composite decking brand (Trex) across Southeast Michigan. We’ll work with you to design and build the deck that matches your vision and budget (using Trex, of course!). Feel free to get in touch or check out some of our most recent builds.
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