Is your composite decking showing its age? If yes, then updating such kind of a surface is required. But what is the material that you can choose to give your old surface a durable and beautiful look? For this, there is no other option than decking tiles which is both quick and affordable options. know all about Composite Decking Tiles – Installation, Benefits and Disadvantages.
Why choose composite decking tiles?
When your old outdoor surface gets cracks and stains, it won’t look beautiful. And, you might think about the materials which are easy to install and less time-consuming. So, thesetiles are one of the materials that you are looking for. On the other hand, replacing a surface is more expensive and a time-taking task for sure. These tiles are an economical alternative that can cover a variety of outdoor surfaces.
These tiles also come in different types and they are:
- Wood Composite Tiles
- Stone Deck Tiles
- Grass Deck Tiles
How to Install Composite Deck Tiles?
Deck tiles are specifically used for constructing a deck. So, before you buy them, you have to calculate how much deck space you want. Take a tape and roughly measure the area where you install the deck. Once you’re ready with the calculations, ensure that you are ordering always 10% more tiles than what you require. It will be helpful when any of the tiles get broken or you need an extra or two for the decking.
- Flat down the surface:
The first step in building a deck is the installation of deck tiles is to prepare a flat and solid surface. You can also go with the semi-flat option. If there is any kind of dirt, the tiles wouldn’t stick well and look uneven. So, first, put down some sand and crushed gravel to flatten the ground. But before putting sand, make sure the sand is well compacted with that area.
- Assemble the tiles:
Assembling deck tiles is not a tricky task. It is simple to just align the dovetails of two tiles. After that put down both tiles together. Because they have the feature of four-way locking, you can install them in any direction and make a variety of composite decking boards.
- Start on the outside:
While installing, begin from the outside of the deck and start working towards the inside. This helps the dovetails of tiles to remain intact while installing trim pieces.
- Takethe right measurements for cutting
Maybe not all tiles will fit and you need to cut some of them. If this is the situation, cut the tile facing the house or wall. When you reach a point, where you need a cut the tile, carefully measure the area and mark the same on the tile. Flip and check the tile. The cut line must not be near the screws that hold the tile. If the line is near to them then you’ll need to replace the screw points or adjust your measurement.
- Cut the tiles:
Composite deck tiles can be cut with the saws specially designed for them. Before cutting, smooth down the area with sandpaper of 180 or higher grit. And, then follow the cut line to get the right piece.
- Install the trim:
Trims come up with three different types – straight section, inside corner and outside corner. These trims should be placed where people will walk to avoid tripping on the tile. A straight trim covers the front edge of the tile while the other ones cover inside and outside corners.
- Install the fascia:
This is an additional option if you wish to give your deck an elegant and finished look. Just like trim, fascia pieces also come in the same three types that cover straight edges, inside and outside corners of tiles.
This is the basic installation process by using decking tiles. Additionally, you can use these kinds of tiles for constructing other outdoor structures like patios, balconies, pool decks, etc. As these tiles allow easy removal, you can replace them whenever you want to match your liking.
Now let’s see the pros and cons of these tiles that tell you whether you can invest in these tiles or not:
Benefits of Composite Deck Tiles:
- Composite deck tiles are easy-to-install and feature interlocking dovetails. If this feature is absent, they can also easily adjust to each other.
- These tiles are less time-consuming. Thus, there is very little time you need to install them instead of other materials.
- These tiles are so natural looking that it is hard to distinguish from the real.
- Deck tiles can be cut into a variety of sizes.
- These tiles can be disassembled at any time to replace or change.
- There is also a variety of composite deck tiles colours, sizes, and styles in the market.
- They are perfectly eco-friendly and economical that fit in your budget.
- Deck tiles required very little maintenance.
- They provide durability and no need to replace frequently.
Disadvantages of composite deck tiles:
- It’s an economical option but composite decks are more expensive than wood. This makes it a pricey alternative against the wood.
- Composite deck tiles are not natural. They only look like natural wood but are fake.
- They are not completely maintenance-free. You need to wash them periodically and clean debris from them.
- These deck tiles will also show the signs of wear after some time and you’ll need to replace them.
- The material is soft comparatively and can be marred with animal claws.
- Fading is another disadvantage of these tiles.
The Bottom Line
Composite deck tiles can be the best alternative to real things like wood, stone or grass, etc. if you’re thinking about what is the best between timber and composite decking. With a variety of sizes, styles, and patterns, they offer extraordinary elegant designs to your outside space. Also, they are perfectly safe for children and pets.
Installation of this decking is simple and you can do it by yourself without any expert help. But if you are not technically comfortable, better approach a professional. Now, after considering all the benefits and disadvantages, we hope that you reached an informed decision.
Erika Rhein, a professional writer and blogger by profession. I write on various niches, however, I prioritise writing on composite decking types and fashions. I always strive to provide users with useful and informative articles in a readable format. I aim to achieve a difference in my writing.