Styles & Colors Composite Deck Customers Want in 2018

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When it comes to the style and colors available for composite decking, there are many more choices for homeowners to consider than there were just a few short years ago. Long gone are the days when selections were confined to a few different types of composite blends that had very little in common with the “natural” look of the pressure treated lumber decking they were typically replacing. 

Over the past several years, advances in mixing and manufacturing equipment have greatly increased not only the color availability, but also the ability to mimic the look of natural wood. For example, polypropylene capped composite decking in the Duralife Hardwoods Collection colors are created using a random dispersal process which creates unique and non-repeating color variations within each board. 

More Composite Decking Options to Choose From

The additional choices can sometimes make it difficult for homeowners to decide which type of new composite decking is right for them. As you talk with prospects and customers this spring and summer, here are a few trends that other builders have identified for 2018. Use them to help guide your customers towards making a decision that they’ll be pleased with for many years to come.

Natural wood grain – First and foremost, homeowners have said that they like the ‘look and feel’ of natural wood – they just don’t like all of the time and effort it takes to keep lumber looking its best. After each polypropylene capped composite deck board is produced, manufacturers such as Duralife use what’s called a hot roll emboss process to imprint a wood grain along the top of each board, giving the long-lasting composite a variegated texture and mimicking the appearance of real wood. DuraLife’s best-selling Hardwoods collection delivers all the beauty of exotic lumber such as teak, cherry and walnut, without any of the maintenance.

Regional bias – As with many things, the region that a customer lives in can have a lot to do with the type of look they want for their outdoor living area. For example, here in the New England and the Northeast, many homeowners prefer the coastal ‘weathered’ look of the Duralife Garapa Gray decking. The silver tone of this hardwood composite decking is reminiscent of weathered cedar shakes, often found on coastal beachfront homes. On the other hand, in southern states and throughout California, customers are attracted to the look of tropical hardwoods such as Brazilian Cherry and Golden Teak. 

Mixed colors – Variety is the spice of life, and rather than building a deck made entirely of the same color, homeowners often opt to add a few boards of complementary colors to the palette. Purposely picture-framing with contrasting breaker boards can really amp up the visual appeal of a new composite deck. Again, some contrasting can occur organically by choosing a composite decking manufacturer with the ability to combine multiple colors into their processing.

White trim – Regardless of the color selection, one trend that seems to never fade is white railing and fascia boards. Providing a clear and highly visible boundary for the outdoor space in both daylight and in dark, homeowners will often select white deck railing systems to go along with their new composite deck. Another consideration that is here to stay is that while homeowners may like the look of white railings, they don’t want to spend countless hours painting and staining them every season. Fortunately, composite railing systems are now available that are designed to be stronger and longer lasting than ever before. Additionally, the trend of replacing multiple sets of balusters with materials such as glass and steel cabling is also proving to be a very popular choice for homeowners.  And if white railing or fascia don’t work for your design, DuraLife also offers multiple color options that will likely work with your specific palette.

Coordination – Lastly, no matter what composite decking color a homeowner selects, as a building professional it’s important to make sure that the customer considers how it will look in close proximity to the home and other existing landscape elements. While certain color schemes may seem to deliver the ‘statement’ that the homeowner says they are looking for, it’s critical to communicate whether that statement appears to fit in naturally with the rest of the construction happening in the area. At the end of the day, a deck – or any outdoor element that shouts, ‘hey, look at me!’ is likely delivering the wrong type of message.

Helping Your Composite Decking Customers is Key 

When possible, contractors should employ technology solutions that can give homeowners a clear, visual reproduction of size, orientation and color of the new composite deck in relation to the style and color of the homes exterior.  With so many choices now available in composite decking, it’s more important than ever for deck builders and contractors to help customers navigate the field and deliver a low-maintenance outdoor living space that they can enjoy for many years to come.

Get free samples of the DuraLife Step-Clip Fastening System with every Free composite decking sample we send out. Order yours now! 


This article is made possible by DuraLife. DuraLife’s unique polypropylene and hardwood composite decking materials simply outperform all other wood and composite decking products. More solid and safe under foot, DuraLife decking is backed by a 25-year warranty. It is stain and fade resistant, mold and mildew resistant, and is available in the colors and deck railing options you want. Get Free Samples, try our Composite Deck & Railing Visualizer, or contact DuraLife now to learn more.