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What is the difference between Composite decking, PVC decking and Capstock?

If you’re thinking about low-maintenance for your new deck in Oakville ON, Mississauga, Burlington ON or Milton ON, there are several choices available to you. At first glance, the choices may be dizzying. They have different features, different colors, different textures and there are several different brands such as TimberTech, Trex, and AZEK just to name a couple. In this blog, we will take you through the important things to know when selecting decking material for your new deck or porch.

Believe it or not, composite decking has been around for over 20 years. Way back when the category was created to be more environmentally friendly. This was achieved in 2 ways. First, the manufacturing of ethylene products generated waste that was not otherwise utilized. But secondly, there was a goal to create things like park benches that would last longer, would not splinter, and that were otherwise contributing to the environment. To achieve this, wood fibers were mixed with plastic from manufacturing and other recycling processes. Trex was one of the early manufacturers of composite wood.

Composite boards are created from varying compositions of different materials. Some use recycled plastics such as from grocery bags. Some add wood fibers. Some use original PVC plastic and there are many variations thereof. This is important to know because you may have heard of years’ old troubles with older composite decking such as mold issues. These issues have long been solved to the degree that the composite companies now provide warranties – most ranging from 25 – 30 years. Because composite decking includes a mixture of varying compositions, its pricing is the most economical in the category of synthetic decking products.

On the other end of the scale is PVC decking. PVC is one of the strongest manufactured decking boards having additional qualities that make it at the high end of the pricing scale. PVC is not a composite material. It doesn’t have any wood fibers and there are no recycled materials. It carries some of the best fade and stain resistance of all the boards. AZEK manufactured decking exclusively offers solid PVC decking products. These products are also used for porch floors especially when the deck and porch adjoin.

Encompassing the best of both technologies, there is a relatively new type of board that has a composite core with a PVC cap. This offers the more economical pricing of a composite board with a superior exterior PVC shell. Both TimberTech and Trex provide a cap stock decking line.

Regardless of which board you select, all provide performance that is superior to wood. With the entire synthetic decking category covered above, you are provided with warrantied protection from splitting, splintering, rotting, and structural damage from termites or fungus. No splinters, ever. It is important to note that the manufacturer’s warranties can be voided if your decking is not properly installed. These manufacturers require particular spacing between the structural joists and maintain other building requirements for the warranty to be valid. That’s why it’s critical that you work with a company such as Archadeck that has longstanding successful relationships and building with these decking lines.

If you have an idea of which board you would like, that’s terrific. If you’re not sure which performance you prefer, make sure to request additional assistance and consulting from a building design consultant.

After you have decided the level of performance you are seeking, your next decisions are brand, color, and board. Each of these companies manufactures several different lines that each have different colors and differing textures. Here are a few.

Are you thinking about using Trex for your Oakville ON deck?

  • The Trex Transcend Collections is one of their most popular collections. The board uses 95% recycled materials and has 3-side shell protection. The Transcend line includes 10 colors. The Premium Tropical colors include warm “Havana Brown”, the very popular deep brown “Lava Rock”, the also very popular warm brown “Spiced Rum”, a lighter brown “Tiki Torch” and a gray “Island Mist”.
  • The Classic Earth Tone shades within the Transcend line include two deep brown shades – “Fire Pit” and “Vintage Lantern”. The lighter brown shade in this collection is called “Treehouse”. The collection also includes a beige color called “Rope Swing” and a lighter gray called “Gravel Path”.
  • The Trex Select Collection comes in 5 shades including a warm brown called “Madeira”, a lighter brown called “Saddle”, a light “Pebble Gray”, a darker "Winchester Gray and a dark “Woodland Brown”.


  • TimberTech’s Terrain Collection has authentic graining that also mimics natural hardwood. Colors include “Brown Oak”, “Rustic Elm” and 3 lighter shades “Silver Maple”, “Sandy Birch”, and “Stone Ash”.
  • TimberTech’s Legacy collection is a capped composite that emulates interior hardwoods with a hand-scraped texture and a color pallet that resembles interior hardwoods. The collection also includes Tigerwood, a richer brown “Mocha” and a lighter warm shade “Pecan” that closely resembles that of the authentic pecan it emulates. For a darker gray, the line also includes “Ashwood”.
  • TimberTech’s Tropical collection includes “Caribbean Redwood”, “Antique Palm”, and “Antigua Gold”. To offset this collection is a rich dark gray “Amazon Mist”.


  • AZEK’s solid PVC Harvest Collection includes a chestnut-colored “Brownstone”, a more reddish medium brown “Autumn Chestnut”, two gray shades including “Island Oak” and “Slate Gray” and one very deep dark born “Kona”.
  • AZEK’s Vintage Collection is a PVC board capped with a PVC coating providing additional fade and stain resistance. The boards in this collection have a rustic scraped texture and come in rich deep colors such as the medium brown “Cypress”, dark brown “Dark Hickory” and the reddish-brown “Mahogany”.
  • AZEK’s Arbor collection is a solid PVC collection that comes in quite a few colors including Acacia, Mountain Redwood, Brazilian Walnut, Morado, Silver Oak, and Hazelwood.

You have come to the right place if you are looking for a composite, PVC, or capstock deck for your home in Oakville ON, Mississauga, Burlington ON, or Milton ON. Give us a call for a free consultation at (877) 362-5802 or drop us an email us