Should I Use Composite Decking in My Garden?

You know you would like to invest in new decking for your garden but which should you go for: composite or timber decking? There are a number of differences between them, from the material used to how safe they are to walk on when wet.

Composite vs Timber

So what is the difference? Composite decking is usually composed of wood from sawdust mixed with plastic and moulded to resemble a deck board. The Timber Decking and Cladding Association (TDCA) has received a number of reports of poor composite performance, though these appear to be limited to a particular type of ‘cheaper’ hollow form board. Concerns have also been raised about new decking boards being fitted over existing substructures which are often unsuitable for wood plastic composite. Manufacturing composite decking is complex, so results will vary. If you decide to go ahead and use composite decking, make sure you are going for the best product you can find. You can read the TDCA report here.
Timber decking is made from a solid, natural, renewable product: wood. Gripsure non slip decking is made using high quality, commercial grade Redwood timber. And this is just the first of many differences:


One of the most important differences is that composite becomes slippery when wet whereas Gripsure anti-slip timber does not. Our innovative decking includes a non-slip treatment. This means they stay safe even when the decking is covered with surface water, algae, fallen leaves or even ice. All our products are independently tested with Gripsure also offering a 10-year non-slip guarantee, giving you peace of mind that your family are safe from the risk of accidents in poor weather.

Value for Money

Many people assume that composite decking will be cheaper than solid timber decking. In fact, to get a reasonable quality composite decking you would need to pay about the same as for a hardwood timber deck. Cheaper composite options are likely to be very poor quality and are unlikely to last, so would not be good value in the long run. If you are on a budget, a softwood timber decking would be a better choice than a cheaper composite. If you have a bigger budget, you could get hardwood timber decking for the same price as the most expensive composite.

Long-Lasting Look and Structure

Many people go for composite decking as they believe it will be a low maintenance addition to their outdoor space. You may be surprised to hear that this wood and plastic blend needs more regular pressure washing than timber. We recommend a pressure wash to our catalogue of Gripsure products every 12 months. With composite, moisture can seep through the outer plastic layer down to the wood fibre causing it to swell, which over time can lead to holes forming in the surface of the boards. In comparison timber swells much less, reducing any structural damage that might occur. If you are determined to go for composite, do your homework and make sure you are confident you are getting the best decking you can find. We would always recommend timber as the best option for any garden. If you want safety without compromise, value for money and stunning decking in your outdoor space, then anti-slip timber is the answer.

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