What's the difference between Recycled Plastic and Wood/Plastic Composites

Wood/Plastic composite profiles are not the same material and have different properties to the recycled plastic wood and 100% recycled mixed plastic profiles supplied by Kedel Limited.

Composite Decking Profiles contain a combination of plastic and sawdust, sometimes referred to as wood flour.

Wood-Plastic Composite planks and decking are said to have excellent resistance to rot, and are frequently guaranteed for 25 years or more.

To look at and feel, a wood/plastic composite material is very similar to wood, helped by the fact that it contains up to 55% wood flour. 

Here at Kedel, we did consider stocking these wood-plastic composite planks and decking profiles, but a chance encounter at one of our exhibitions put us off the idea.

A prospective customer questioned us about the performance of our recycled plastic decking at Greenbuild Expo, Manchester in 2012.

He had 120 sq metres of wood plastic composite decking laid at his home. Unfortunately, water had been absorbed by the wood component of the composite decking, and when the sun came out, the whole deck began to warp.

He was concerned that all similar decking would have the same problems, and asked if our 100% recycled plastic product would perform any better, which of course it does.

This particular case of warping in composite wood plastic decking was not covered by his warranty.

According to the manufacturers, the boards should have been laid at a slight angle to prevent standing water accumulating on the deck, which could get absorbed by the wood flour content in the boards. It just goes to show that you should read the small print on your warranty.

Wood Plastic Composite is also not as rot free as you might expect from the marketing.

Here's a quote from a briefing note published by The UK Forestry Commission in 2007:

"It seems clear that the marketing of WPC (Wood Plastic Composite) products was over ambitious in its rot free claims, and low maintenance. 

In the USA, the promotion of WPC as rot free and not requiring wood preservatives was challenged as scientific evidence arose of the growth of decay fungi in WPC in service, and the failure of WPC boardwalks in the southern states of America after a few years of service".

Wood Plastic Composite can be impregnated with zinc borate as a wood preservative, though this is also not ideal.

100% Recycled Plastic Decking and Planks are completely waterproof, which prevents rot due to any type of algae and fungi.

The green slim that often beds into the grain of wood decking can be jet sprayed from Recycled Plastic decking boards, or even just mopped off, as it cannot find a hold on 100% Recycled Plastic. Wood/Plastic composite decking may not have the same advantage.

Kedel's Recycled Plastic Decking and Lumber Profiles will last even longer than wood plastic composite and at least 5 times longer than treated timber decking.

This gives recycled plastic decking profiles a much lower whole life cost than any wood or even wood plastic composite decking products.

For More Information or a Quote for Kedel's Recycled Plastic Decking, e-mail Sales, or call 01282 861325