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The Lowdown on Wood vs. Composite Materials for Your Porch or Deck

June 13, 2023
wood stained deck boards with water on them

When it comes to designing or renovating your porch or deck, choosing materials can make all the difference in aesthetics and durability. Wood has been a popular choice for decades, but composite materials have also become a viable alternative. In this blog post, we'll give you the lowdown on wood vs. composite materials for your porch or deck so you can make an informed decision that fits your style and budget. Get ready to discover which option reigns supreme!

Introduction to Sustainable Materials for Porches and Decks

You can use many sustainable materials for porches and decks, including wood and composite materials. Each material has its own unique set of benefits and drawbacks to consider when deciding which material to use.

Overview of Wood vs. Composite Materials

Wood and composite materials are favored for building a porch or deck. Both materials have pros and cons, so it's valuable to weigh your options before deciding.

Pros and Cons of Wood

Using wood for your porch or deck has several advantages and disadvantages. Wood is a renewable resource that is easily sourced from sustainably managed forests. It is also easy to work with, making it a popular choice for DIY projects. However, wood requires more maintenance than composite materials, as it is susceptible to rot, decay, and insect damage.

Pros and Cons of Composite Materials

There are many reasons to choose composite materials for your porch or deck. Composite materials are low maintenance, durable, and easy to clean. However, there are also a few drawbacks to using composite materials. Composite materials can be more expensive than wood and may have a different look or feel than natural wood.

Comparison of Cost, Durability, and Longevity

There are several benefits and drawbacks to both wood and composite materials when building a porch or deck. Here is a comparison of the two materials regarding cost, durability, and longevity:


Wood is typically more affordable than composite material. However, regular maintenance (staining/sealing) will be required to maintain the wood's appearance and prevent it from rotting. The composite material design resists fading, staining, and decay, requiring less upkeep overall.


Wood is a durable material but can be susceptible to rot, mold, and insect damage if not properly maintained. Composite boards are designed for maximum durability and resistance to weathering, decay, and insects. However, they may dent or scratch more easily than wood.


Well-maintained wood decks can last for decades. However, composite materials often have a longer lifespan because composite materials don't rot, warp, or crack like wood.

How to Choose the Best Material for Your Home

When choosing the best material for your home's porch or deck, you have a couple of main options: wood and composite. Both materials have advantages and disadvantages that you should consider before making a final decision.

Wood is a classic porch and deck material that has been used for centuries. It is durable and long-lasting but requires some maintenance to keep it looking its best. Composite materials are a newer option made from recycled plastic and wood fibers. They are low maintenance and easy to care for, but they can be more expensive than wood.

Here are some things to consider when choosing the best material for your porch or deck:

- Maintenance: How much time and effort are you willing to put into maintaining your porch or deck? If you don't want to spend a lot of time caring for your space, then composite materials may be the better option for you. Wood will require more regular cleaning and sealing to stay in good condition.

- Cost: Compare the initial cost of the materials and the long-term costs of upkeep. In general, wood will be less expensive upfront, but composites may save you money in the long run since they require less maintenance.

- Appearance: Consider how each material will look in your space. Wood can provide a classic look, while composites can come in various colors and styles to suit your taste.


When deciding between wood and composite materials for your porch or deck, there are a few things you should consider. Both materials offer advantages and drawbacks, making either one a better choice depending on your needs. Ultimately, the decision is yours and should be based on what best meets your requirements for durability, aesthetics, upkeep, budget, sustainability goals, and other essential factors. No matter which material you choose for your porch or deck project – wood or composite – we wish you the best of luck creating an outdoor space that will last for years!