Composite Decking vs. Pressure Treated Lumber for Docks and Piers

Composite Decking is Superior over Pressure Treated Lumber for Floating Docks and Piers in performance and total cost of ownernship

Board Safe has manufactured millions of square feet of aluminum floating docks, piers and gangways. The goal of Board Safe is to provide the highest quality product to the owners of rowing centers, marinas and other commercial and resident dock owners. When building these products, composite decking is superior.

Many purchase pressure treated lumber due to the perceived cost savings. If the application is in a warm climate the sun will destroy the wood in less than 8 years. If the application is in the northern part of the United States, then the wood is subjected to freezing temperatures and ice, making its lifespan approximately 8 -9 years. Manufacturers of composite lumber confidently state that its synthetic wood product will last over 20 years. This being the case, the total cost of ownership for a composite wood dock is less than a dock made of pressure treated lumber.

West WildwoodTreated Lumber Today

Recently the process and chemicals used in creating pressure treated lumber has changed to become more environmentally friendly. The new chemicals have created an inferior treated lumber product that is not as durable than the pressure treated lumber of yesteryear. Additionally, the pressure treated lumber is more corrosive to fasteners. It is recommended to use stainless steel screws and bolts in lieu of the traditional galvanized steel. To jack up costs even more, the environmentally friendly pressure treated lumber is now more expensive to produce than ever before.  

Consider Composite Decking

Composite lumber is unanimously stronger and longer lasting. Within the family of composite wood, one product leaves the others in the dust – NyloDeck. NyloDeck is the only composite deckboard that Board Safe uses to manufacture their floating docks and piers. NyloDeck contains no wood particles; it is made out of recycled carpet fibers, essentially fiberglass. For these reasons NyloDeck is rated for ground contact as it is resistant to moisture, mold and mildew.  It is also the only 1-inch composite deck board rated to span joists at 24 inches on center and at 16 inches on diagonals. It is twice as strong as other leading decking materials and lighter too. On Board Safe docks, the NyloDeck boards are fastened with a unique hidden fastener system developed by Timberstrong. This means no nail pops or face nailing.

The last feature that makes a composite wood superior is the frame. Board Safe manufactures floating docks, gangways and piers out of 6160 marine grade aluminum with their proprietary extruded aluminum frame. When looking at quality for the overall investment, aluminum frame docks with synthetic wood deckboards are the way to go.

When it comes to building floating docks and piers, composite lumber is best. When it comes to manufacturing aluminum floating docks, Board Safe is the best.

Board Safe manufactures aluminum floating docks, piers, and gangways. They have designed and manufactured numerous specialty projects like rowing centers and ADA featured docks and boat launches. For more information on your rowing center project, marina, commercial or residential docks, call 610-899-0286 or visit 

ADA Boat Launch, Floating Dock and Fishing Pier

Leaser LageLeaser Lake in Pennsylvania created an accessibility park for those who are disabled or have limited mobility. The accessibility area includes paved walkways, and a wheelchair accessible boat launch and fishing pier. Board Safe was contracted to build and install the floating docks, gangways, and ADA boat launch for handicapped access to the 117-acre lake. Board Safe was selected due to their reputation as a high-end dock builder and their proximity to the lake. They also specialized in Americans with Disability Act-featured accessible commercial aluminum floating docks, boat launches and fishing piers. The project included a ADA-accessible kayak launching ramp.


Providing equal access to all is important. If you are in need of ADA featured commercial aluminum products for your marina or home dock, contact Board Safe below and see our selection of ADA featured applications. 


Board Safe specializes in manufacturing aluminum docks, gangways, and rowing centers. They offer both standard and ADA featured products. If you have a rowing center or marina project and you would like to learn more visit or call 610-899-0286. 

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