As you are probably aware composite decking will fade in the sun, and you will lose colour over the years unless you are willing to invest in ASA decking, which costs roughly 4.5x the price of standard composite decking.

The amount that the boards will fade will differ depending on the range of composite decking that you choose. First-generation boards will lose 20-40% of their colour throughout their lifespan, whereas second-generation boards will lose between 10-20%, which is rather hard to notice.

If you hate the thought of your decking fading over the years, you always have the option to construct a shaded area such as a pergola or a large umbrella to prevent this from happening.

It is also worth noting that during the hotter seasons, your decking will absorb heat, and the temperature of your decking will quickly rise.

Darker colors, such as anthracite grey or black, will definitely absorb more heat in the summer, and you will want to wear some form of footwear if you are not willing to build a shaded area. On the other hand, colours such as teak or light grey will absorb a lot less heat.

Taking these factors into consideration, when a customer asks for advice on whether it is worth building a shaded area, the answer is different for everyone.

Case Study:

Customer 1) *Purchases first-generation anthracite grey decking boards and has a south-facing garden.

“Is it worth investing in a pergola?”

If you are not too keen on the fact that your decking may lose up to 40% of its colour and you will potentially have to be wearing footwear on your decking in the hotter months – the answer is yes. Building a pergola is not only an aesthetic feature, but it will also solve these issues.

Customer 2) *Purchases second-generation, teak composite decking boards and has a north-facing garden. 

“Is it worth investing in a pergola?”

If you are purchasing a pergola solely because you do not want your decking to fade and you do not want to wear footwear on the deck, then a pergola is not necessarily needed due to the quality of the plastics used and the colour of the deck.

1 Building a Pergola

A pergola is a structure built with posts and beams that will create a shaded area. They are typically used as an extension and are attached to a building. Pergolas have a more open structure, unlike arbor, which is generally more enclosed. In the past, pergolas have been built with stone, brick and wood; however, the materials you see in pergolas today are more versatile. The possibilities for pergolas are endless, and you can use them to build shaded areas, extend living spaces, create green screens and also add partitions with a pergola. Building a pergola would not only be an additional aesthetic feature to your garden, but it will also protect the decking from the sun.

2 Pergola Fixed to the Decking

Building a corner pergola is a great solution for those that struggle for space. This type of pergola can provide great privacy and shade for your decking area. Typically a corner pergola will have three posts rather than four. This makes it easier to install and also less expensive. 

When trying to calculate costs for a pergola, many things can affect the affordability of the project. The material you use, the size of the pergola and where it’s being fitted will all play a role in the cost. Pergolas can range from £350 to £5000, depending on the things we have just mentioned. You can choose to install the pergola yourself if you are confident with your DIY skills. You can even purchase a pergola frame kit that is bespoke to your specifications. This can drastically save time during the installation of the pergola. There are many different ways to put your spin on a pergola, such as painting them a certain colour to compliment the theme of your garden.

3Building a large umbrella

Building a shaded area will give excellent protection from UV rays. Not only will this prevent your decking boards from losing colour, but it will also protect the decking from high temperatures. This option is only really appropriate for smaller decking projects or potentially average-sized decking jobs. There is a huge variety of distinct umbrellas available, meaning you can find the right colour and design for your home. Here are seven different types of umbrellas you could use; table patio umbrella, tilting umbrella, cantilever or off-set umbrella, palapa tiki-style umbrella, sail umbrella, commercial patio umbrella and a cobana solar LED umbrella.


You can build a shade over your composite decking if your locality is hot. A pergola is one type of shade that you can build, and it can be built easily. 

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