Composite Deck Contractor

Toronto / Mississauga

Zebra Decks specializes in beautiful, custom-built composite decks. As a deck contractor, we use only the highest quality composite brands and design decks with durability in mind. We offer free estimates and provide affordable service.

Composite decks

In the cold Mississauga and Greater Toronto Area (GTA), deck maintenance poses a huge challenge for many homeowners. Extreme weather can cause deterioration of even the hardiest tropical hardwood deck, and regular refinishing is required to keep the wood in top shape. That’s why busy homeowners are increasingly turning to composite decks for a low-maintenance, long-lasting alternative to pressure treated or cedar wood. Composite decking is made from wood fibers wrapped in plastic, which adds both strength and protection from the elements. Although as a product it’s less than 25 years old, composite decking has quickly gained a significant share of the decking market

A Brief History of Composite Decking

Composite decking hit the marketplace in the 1990s in an attempt to address many of the weaknesses of wood. Manufacturers developed their products with the goal of creating lumber that would be both durable and environmentally friendly—initial composite decks were made from recycled plastic jugs and salvaged shipping pallets. As interest in composite decking caught on, manufacturers continued to improve and adapt their products to address consumer needs and concerns. Today, composite decking can include UV protectants, mold inhibitors, colorants and stabilizers for a more weather-resistant deck.
brown composite backyard

How Composite Decking Manufacturers Differ

As consumer acceptance of composite decking has grown, many different manufacturers have sprung up to meet the demand. But the quality of lumber they produce can vary drastically. Here are some key areas in which composite deck brands can differ:

Wood-to-plastic ratio

Because composite decking is made from a mixture of wood and plastic, manufacturers can vary when it comes to how much of each substance is used. Many brands use a 50x50 mix of wood and plastic, while some brands contain up to 70% wood. Because wood absorbs moisture, a lower wood level means the final product will be less susceptible to mold and rot.

Type of Plastic Used

Plastic is what gives composite decking its enhanced durability, but not all plastics are equally strong. The hardiest composite decks made using recycled materials contain High-Density Polyethylene plastics, which come from recycling materials such as plastic bottles, detergent containers, and bags. HDPE plastics don’t degenerate as fast as weaker plastics, resulting in a stronger deck.


The main criticism about composite decking has been its artificial appearance. However, advances in the manufacturing process have allowed some companies to produce decks with a finish that simulates the look of wood. Ask to see samples of the material before you buy, and examine them outdoors to get an accurate idea of what your deck will look like.

Use of Recycled Materials

What makes composite decking environmentally friendly is that it can be fabricated from recycled materials, which means fewer resources are used. Both the organic and synthetic components in composite lumber can come from recycled sources, but not all manufacturers take advantage of this benefit.

Sixteen advantages of composite decking

Over the past ten years, composite decks are gaining unprecedented popularity. The apparent reason for this is that Composite Decking has a lot of advantages compared to wood materials. Despite the relatively high cost, composite decking has an excellent combination of price and quality. Below we will talk about the main advantages of this magnificent material and why we recommend using it for your future deck project.

No staining

The composite material is covered with a plastic shell that looks like natural wood and does not need to be stained regularly.

Insect resistant

Due to its synthetic origin, the composite board has natural protection against the harmful effects of insects.

Long lasting

The composite material from top brands has a 25-year limited residential fade & stain Warranty (if properly installed).

Easy Cleaning

The durable plastic coating makes it easy to clean the deck without fear of damaging it with detergents.

Water resistant

A composite deck can be installed in wet places without fear of the deformation of the boards.

Eco friendly

In the production of composite, 95% of recycled materials are used. Manufacturing is environmentally friendly.

Not combustible

Adhesives and the plastic base of the composite are not combustible materials. The plastic coating can only melt.

No splinters

Unlike wood, splinters do not form on the composite. You can walk barefoot on the deck without fear of damaging your skin.

Mold resistant

The new generation of composite boards is coated with a special plastic that prevents mold on the surface.

Not slippery

The outer plastic layer has a deep texture imitating natural wood. The surface of the decking is not slippery.

Fade resistant

Durable modern pigments included in the composite decking plastic do not allow it to fade for many years.

Very durable

Composite is a very durable material that can withstand a load of 500 pounds per square foot.

Keep Your Composite Deck in Top Shape

Many homeowners prefer composite decking over wood because of its low maintenance requirements. You’ll never need to sand, stain or seal a composite deck. Like any other outdoor structure, however, it will be exposed to dirt, leaves and other debris from your yard. Keep your composite deck looking its best with these simple cleaning tips:


By regularly sweeping your deck clear of dirt, leaves and other organic matter, you’ll reduce the likelihood of tough stains and help prevent mold or mildew growth. It is especially important to prevent wet leaves to remain on your deck, as they can cause the boards discoloration.

Cleaning spills

Clean up all food spills as soon as possible. In some cases, your warranty may require you to attend to stains within a certain time period. Rinse the surface with a hose and apply warm, soapy water with a stiff-bristle brush.


It is recommended that you wash your composite deck at least twice a year to prevent buildup. Dirt and grime can usually be removed with a deck brush or a high-pressure water hose. For better results, use a deck cleaner that contains oxygen agents, which will remove brown stains caused by organic deterioration.

Removing mold or mildew

Although some composite decks contain mold inhibitors, mold or mildew can still grow on the surface of your deck—particularly in areas that remain shaded or damp. It’s important to tackle such growth as soon as you notice it. Use a deck cleaner with sodium hypochlorite.

Removing snow

To avoid gouging the surface of your deck, use plastic or plastic-tipped snow shovel. Alternatively, you can apply deicing materials to your deck to melt away the snow, but you’ll need to rinse your deck periodically to avoid residue buildup.

Use protection

Place a protective mat under your grill to prevent grease stains on your deck. Be cautious about what types of materials remain in direct contact with your deck. For example, it’s a good idea to keep potted plants raised so moisture doesn’t pool beneath them.

Installation FAQ

Whether you’re having a composite deck installed, it’s essential to understand what you’re buying. Because wood-plastic composites are relatively new construction material, many people aren’t sure what to look for. Here is some information you should know before purchasing a composite deck:

What type of warranty is available?

Most composite decks usually will come with some type of warranty. A 20- to the 25-year warranty on the materials is common. In more rare cases, a lifetime warranty may be available. Double check what problems are covered under the warranty, such as animal damage, discoloration, and cracking. You should also be aware of what types of actions can void your warranty.

How will the decking be fastened?

Deck boards are typically fastened to the deck frame using nails or screws. This type of fasteners penetrates the plastic boards and can expose the wood components to moisture damage. It can also damage plastic around the fasteners. Alternatively, we offer a less invasive installation method that uses hidden deck brackets to fasten the boards to the frame. This not only eliminates the potential for damage from nails and screws, but it results in a more uniform deck surface. We will not charge an additional fee for using deck clips.

Does the composite lumber contain protection against slipping?

The plastic in composite decking can cause it to become slippery when it gets wet or mildewed. Some brands, however, come with a non-skid finish for additional safety.

What kind of plastic is used?

There are three types of plastic typically used in composite decking: PVC, polypropylene, and High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE). Decks made out of recycled materials often contain HDPE, and polypropylene is sometimes included for additional strength. While virgin PVC is usually stronger than recycled plastic, it is more susceptible to weathering than HDPE and doesn’t have the same environmental benefits.

How much will the composite decking material fade?

When exposed to sunlight, most composite decks will eventually fade. That’s because the sawdust in the composite material contains lignin, which contributes to fading. To combat this, manufacturers often include UV protectants in the decking material. The amount of protection added, and the amount of fading you can expect can vary between different brands.

How can I get the most life out of my deck?

Because composite decking can vary so much between brands, it’s a good idea to ask your contractor for specific care tips based on the type of deck you’re buying.

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