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Composite Materials

Post new topic   Reply to topic    Pressure Washing Guide Forum Index -> Composite Decking
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Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 6:31 pm    Post subject: Composite Materials Reply with quote

Within the past few years manufacturers have pushed many exterior products on consumers by selling them as “maintenance free”. Some of these products include composite decking, plastic decking, plastic vinyl fencing, and plastic deck spindles. The truth is that nothing that is exposed to mother natural is totally maintenance free. These companies not being honest about their products isn’t really anything new, years ago aluminum siding was said to be maintenance free as was vinyl siding. We all know better than that now and many of us have cleaned our homes exterior or have done our own deck maintenance, the point is these products are by no means maintenance free.

An example is composite decking, which is made from 50% wood and 50% plastic. The wood fibers in this product are prone to sun damage and will turn gray just like a wood deck if not treated with a sealer. The composite material is a magnet for mildew which appears as small black spots or blotches. Vinyl fencing, lattice or vinyl deck spindles will also get mold and mildew on them if climate and moisture conditions are right.

Even though these products aren’t completely maintenance free like the manufacturers claim they are, they can be cleaned up and maintained every couple of years to help prolong their beauty.
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Joined: 16 Mar 2009
Posts: 52

PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 11:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I'd like to know is what can we, as consumers, do to address this little piece of deception? Or is it just an industry practice like when I go and by a 2x4 and the actual measurements are smaller...more like 1 3/4 x 3 3/4.
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Site Admin

Joined: 08 Oct 2007
Posts: 862
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Wed Jul 01, 2009 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a great comparison and a good question. After thinking about it for awhile it is my belief that what the composite deck companies are doing is far more unlawful than the 2x4 comparison. With a 2x4 most people know what they are getting, they can measure the board right then and there if they'd like. So it's not like they are buying something that is going to surprise them a couple of years later. Nor do I think they are getting short changed are ripped off with the purchase of a 2x4.

Where with the composite decking, their whole sales pitch is that it is maintenance free when in fact it isn't. It's a straight up and complete lie to make a sale. It's like if I were looking to buy a new vehicle and the dealership told me this particular car gets 50 miles to the gallon. That would be a huge selling point for anyone and could easily persuade me into buying that model. Now what if I bought that car and then found out it really only gets 30 miles to the gallon? It's the same thing in my opinion and it should be considered false advertising and the deck companies should be held liable. There shouldn't be a loop hole either when they do start getting sued left and right. As I mentioned they just file bankruptcy and then start up under a different name. This must be stopped.

As a consumer, I believe the Internet can be a huge tool in helping to stop this. Education through forums like this, blogs, articles, and social bookmarking sites will catchup to these unethical companies before long. We need to just keep spreading the word. Let me just reiterate again that I don't have a problem with composite decks, they make for a fine deck surface. I just don't agree with how they are sold to innocent consumers, it's just wrong!
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