twitter facebook pinterest email instagram porch houzz trex Woodland Deck Company Woodland Deck Company

Cool Low-maintenance composite decking

Composite decking in Ohio summer weather

Composite decking in Ohio summer weather

Does composite decking get too hot?

We often get asked what is the coolest decking in our low-maintenance options.  With the rise in popularity of composite and capped composite decking which offer a low-maintenance lifestyle, this is something to consider when making your product selections.  This will be more of a factor for people with pool decks or where people are more likely to be barefoot, like more of a beach setting, or a dock.

Barefoot friendly decking options?

If you are used to a standard pressure-treated lumber deck that you might have been on before, most of the low-maintenance products will be hotter than pressure-treated lumber decking.  The flip side is that you will not have any splinters to worry about, but you will definitely see a temperature increase.  That feels good on a 65-degree day, but on a 90-degree day with a deck in full sun, you will want to wear flip flops.  If you do step out barefoot in those conditions, you will know immediately. It’s definitely not pleasant to bare feet.

Colors do play the obvious role in this; the darker will be slightly hotter and lighter colors will be slightly cooler, but the difference will not be noticeable on bare feet.  In other words, if you have a lighter colored main deck and a darker border and you step from deck to border you will not be able to feel a temperature difference.  Technically speaking though, the products would show a difference if measured with a thermometer.

Heat retention in capped composite decking

Capped composites or composites will be the hottest since they have the most mass.  The lighter the board (in weight), the less heat retention it will have.  Cellular PVC boards will not retain quite as much heat, but are still hotter to the touch than wood.

The coolest decking would be a hollow profile where there is not a lot of material to heat up.  For example, aluminum decking stays pretty cool.  Aluminum decking would be a good choice if temperature is your number one concern.  The drawbacks to aluminum decking are: looks like metal, feels and sounds like tin, does not do a good job of imitating a traditional deck board and feel.  I also wonder about lighting strikes with aluminum-type of decking.

Having considered all of these factors, most people use their decks at the end of the day.  On a 90-degree day you are probably inside in the A/C.  No matter what kind of decking you have on a 90-degree day, you are hot and it really doesn’t matter if the decking is a few degrees cooler.  In our Northeast Ohio climate, we don’t have too many of those 90-degree days, and at dinner time it generally is starting to cool off.

All things considered, the benefits that low-maintance decking provides, far outweigh the heat retention that it has.  For more information of the different decking products see:

https://www.woodlanddeck.com/blog/which-is-the-best-decking-what-decking-should-i-use

http://www.deckmagazine.com/design-construction/decking/synthetic-decking-roundup_o



Steve Stelkic

Owner / Sales

About the Author

I founded Woodland Deck in 2000 to create decks and outdoor spaces to be enjoyed for generations. As a deck-building company, we are always looking for ways to better our products, services, and ourselves. We are passionate about life outside and believe that enjoying God’s creation is a rich gift to us.


Get a copy of our Deck Design Guide

Let’s talk about your ideas.

We are looking to understand your dream and vision for the outdoors, but we don’t stop there. What are your likes and dislikes? How and when you are looking to use the space?

We start with a phone or email consultation to gather preliminary info that will help us in providing effective solutions. We are interested in learning as much as possible about the specifics of the project. Not sure what the scope is? We can help!

Call Woodland Deck

(888) 401-0150

Three locations serving Northeast Ohio