Composite materials have revolutionised home design. From stylish doors to worktops they are versatile and very hardwearing, and the same can be said about composite decking.
If you want an outdoor area that looks good, is anti-slip and doesn’t require lots of maintenance (who’s got time for sanding and re-painting every year) then composite decking is the choice for you.
First Of All, What Is Composite Decking?
The reason that composite decking is so durable is that it is made from a mix of wood flour and PVC which creates an extremely strong material. This makes it weatherproof and stain-resistant.
It’s also ecological, very low maintenance and comes in lots of different colours. You can choose a traditional wood colour or a modern shade of grey.
Loads Of Choice
Available in different finishes, thicknesses and widths, composite decking can be used almost anywhere. You can use it to create a flat deck or a raised platform with steps, you can even create a bridge with it or use it for the surrounding area of a pond or pool.
There are a number of really good brands that supply composite decking including DuoFuse.
How To Install Composite Decking
The composite decking which we supply comes in both hollow and solid form that will not rot, swell, splinter or warp. They come as a complete system with all necessary fittings and accessories to make fitting them easy.
An aluminium substructure forms the foundations of the decking and guarantees an easy and fast assembly of the composite decking boards.
The composite decking boards can be installed either 35 mm or 48,5 mm from the ground. No screws or nails are required thanks to the specially designed clips boards which are fastened to the wood composite beams. The boards come in various finishes from the smooth brushed finish to rough ribbed with matching skirting boards and clips.
This system is proven to be 50% faster to install than traditional wooden decking and has many fantastic features, including:
- Faster assembly
- Straight beams
- Dimensionally stable
- Easy installation
- 100% recyclable
- Pre-drilling not necessary
- Invisible fixing
Now you know the basics here’s a step-by-step guide to fitting your deck.
Basic Fitting Guidelines
Step One - The Ground
It’s important to make sure that the ground where you want to install your decking is suitable and prepared. The ground must:
- Have sufficient ventilation under the boards so that they can dry after a shower.
- Be flat and stable.
- Have a slope of 10mm every meter in the direction of the board so that the water can drain and not remain on, in or under the board.
Step Two - Fixing The Beams
- The decking boards are installed on beams so the next step is to install them.
- Align all beams, so that the starter clips can be fixed at the front of every beam.
- The distance between the beams should be a maximum 500mm. ( You must also Install an extra beam 200mm from the first and the last beam at the beginning and the end of the decking.)
- Beams should be fixed to a concrete foundation or on a supporting structure every 500mm.
Step Three - Fixing The Boards
- Boards should be placed in the same direction (there is a mark on the inner side of every board).
- Boards should be placed 5mm/m apart to allow expansion, with a minimum of 15mm away from every wall.
- Holes must be pre-drilled before fixing the clips.
- The first and last board must be fixed using starter and finishing clips. The next board after the first can then be inserted into the previous clips and secured on the beams with standard clips.
- Butting clips allow the boards to be joined lengthways with spacing between the short sides of 10mm.
- Once all boards are installed the starter and finishing clips must be installed at the end of all boards.
- The boards must not overhang the last support beam by more than 50mm..
- The terrace can be finished with a skirt or L-Profile.
Composite decking is also suitable for higher placement such as on roof terraces. You can use polypropylene pedestals that allow heights of more than 200 mm.
Now you've installed your decking you'll need a safe way to finish it off. If you're decking is raised then it's especially important to consider safety, particularly if you have small children. The right decking balustrade will finish your decking off, make sure it looks great AND it’s safe.
There are lots of options to choose from for the edges of your decking. You can incorporate seating or raised flower beds or be finished with some edging and left open. However, if your decking is raised from the ground it is sensible to have some form of fencing or a decking balustrade in place. This can be achieved with wood or a composite material, however, this can spoil the view into your garden.
Glass Decking Balustrades
Another option is toughened safety glass which can be installed using hardware which perfectly matches your decking and general outside area. Toughened glass is really low maintenance, strong, weather-proof and won't rust or rot. This type of safety glass is designed to be heat and impact resistant and is completely safe for use in and out of the home. It can provide the finishing touch to your decking area and won't interrupt your view of the garden.
What Are You Waiting For
If your patio is crying out for a makeover then composite decking boards are a great solution for an easy to install, low-maintenance but very stylish deck.
Made from extremely durable material and supplied with a complete system of fittings and accessories, they make both fitting and maintaining fast and hassle-free.
If you’re looking for an outdoor glass balustrade to complete your decking then get in touch with our friendly team who will be happy to help you.