Crafting beautiful decks and outdoor living spaces for Overland Park, Olathe, Leawood, Lenexa, and more of Kansas​

Is Composite Decking Hot?

We often get asked if composite decking gets hot in the summer. The short answer is yes, but it’s more complicated than that. Complicated because, well, it’s summer, and everything gets hot.

Luckily, we’ve spent a lot of time studying, installing, and repairing decking, so we know our stuff!

A deck on the same level with the ground with a big closed umbrella and stairs

How Hot Does Composite Decking Get?

The answer here depends on what color and type of composite decking you choose.

I often compare this to wearing a dark or light shirt in the summertime. We all know that a white shirt keeps you cooler than wearing a black shirt in the summer heat. Well, the same applies to deck colors.

A lighter-colored decking will keep your feet much more comfortable than the real dark colors. That doesn’t mean deck boards in a lighter color don’t get hot. They do, but the heat is much more tolerable.

This happens because light colors reflect heat, whereas dark colors absorb it.

So, how hot does it get? TimberTech AZEK composite decking, for example, is engineered to stay up to 30 Fahrenheit cooler than competitive products.

Decking Material Matters

Another thing to consider is the type of decking.  A wood plastic composite decking (WPC) tends to hold more heat than a colored mineral-based or all-plastic composite (MBC or PVC).  I’ll try to explain it the best I can without diving too much into details. The wood plastic composite decking is denser than the all-plastic composites, so they tend to stay hotter for a longer time. All-plastic decking might feel a little cooler on your foot, even though the surface temperature might be the same.  The reason behind this is simple: the all-plastic decking cools down at a much higher rate. Find out more about the difference between WPC and MBC/PVC decking here.

Picking The Right Decking

First, you’ll need to determine how hotter decking colors play into your plans.

If you want to run on your deck barefoot all summer, or if you don’t like using flip flops near your pool, you’ll want to get the lightest color available. If you’re alright with throwing on some sandals before walking outside, the heat may not even be something you worry about.

Make this decision considering your family’s needs as well.

If we were to assume you’re looking to get the coolest deck, let’s look at some decking options.

Decking manufacturers like Trex, Deckorators, Timbertech/Azek, Fiberon, and others have narrowed down most of their decking options to browns and grays.

MoistureShield products are also good decking boards that reduce heat absorption up to 35%.

However, that’s not to say there are no other options. They have a huge selection of decking options, and even within those two colors, there are different shades and textures for your decking boards.

When looking through all these options, look at the lighter colors, as they will make a big difference on your feet!

An elevated deck with railings and a pergola

Add Some Shade!

Shade remains the best method to help your new deck stay cooler.

If you have trees overhead, decking color might not be such a deciding factor. On the other hand, if you don’t have any trees, there are some cool alternatives.

Shade structures, such as pergolas above your deck, are great if you want to keep your deck cooler during the hot summers of Kansas City.

These not only provide ample shade, but they also give your deck an incredible look. If a new custom pergola isn’t in the budget, there are other options as well. 

Conclusion

Adding shade will keep your decking, furniture, and, most importantly, yourself cool and relaxed during the hot summer months!

But if you’re still not sure what would work best for your outdoor space, why not ask an expert?

Your local deck builders from Hankins Decks know the most effective way to keep your deck cooler. You’ll love seeing your loved ones running barefoot on the deck and having the fun of their lives!

Get in touch with our experts and discover the best solution for your particular situation.

(takes 1-2 min)