Composite rails vs wood rails are two railing options that are common today. Homeowners are using them because of the various features that they possess. Generally, a good railing system will beautify your composite decking and at the same time safeguard you. We recommend that you install rails around your decking if it is a few feet above the ground. Though homeowners complain that it obstructs their view, when you think of safety, you will install a rail.

Composite Rails vs Wood Rails

If you are wondering if composite rails are better than wood rails or if you should install wood rails instead of composite, then you should keep on reading this article. The kind of rail you choose depends on the type of decking you install. Let’s begin with the kind of decking so that you will know which rail fits it best.

Wood Decking and Wood Rail

Wood decking is similar to wood rails in terms of its material composition. You can now guess that the material makeup of wood decking and wood rails is wood fibre. Wood fibre is good, most especially if it is hardwood. Hardwood is naturally resistant to insect attack, and it will not shrink or splinter quickly. Softwoods like pine and spruce are also suitable. But the makers of wood decking and rails must treat them with chemicals so that they will be firm. 

This extra strength will make wood decking and rails durable and to last longer. The process of installing wood decking is straightforward. You have to build the posts and arrange the wood decking boards on the joists. If you know about installing decking, then you are good to start. After installing your wood decking, you have to finish it with rails. So, this is where wood rails come into the picture.

 Since most homeowners love wood materials, installing wood rails will be the next option for them. The reason for bringing wood decking into the scene is to emphasise why most homeowners prefer wood rail. Now to the setbacks of wood rails. Timber decking and railings have the same disadvantage. First, they will warp and splinter after using them for a long time. 

Even when their makers treat them with chemicals or if you use hardwood, the wood decking and rails will lose their durability over time. Also, maintaining your wood rails is as tricky as maintaining a wood decking. You have to paint or stain your wood rail regularly to make it look good and to make it last longer. 

Composite Decking and Composite Railing

the best outdoor rails vs other rails

We will analyse composite decking and railing as we did with wood rails. Composite or plastic wood railing and decking’s material composition is wood dust and plastic. So you should know that that is why homeowners call them plastic wood materials. The advantages they have over wood railings and decking is that they are durable and robust. 

Durability means that composite railing can withstand the test of time. So, elements of mother nature cannot attack your composite rails. Also, your composite rails will not warp or splinter when you install them. About maintenance, composite rails are easy to maintain. You don’t have to sand, oil, stain or paint your composite rails like you will wood rails. All your composite rails require is a simple cleaning with a soft brush and soapy water if oil stain is on your railing. 

If there is no grease or oil, a simple wiping with a cloth will do. Aside from maintenance, composite rails are not susceptible to insect attack, and their colours will not fade quickly like wood rails. Rain, snow, and fluctuating temperature will not have a destructive effect on your composite rails like they will on wood rails. Installing composite decking and rails is easy if you are a technical person and are skilful with your fist.

Which Is the Best?

You have seen why most homeowners use wood rails and composite rails. Also, you have seen the setback of wood and composite rails. Wood rails are like wood decking that have many setbacks. Homeowners are replacing their wood decking with composite decking. It is because of the many advantages of composite decking.

 Just think of it, within the context of the disadvantages of wood rails, will it be wise to install wood rails on a new composite decking? No, if you want your decking and its rails to match, you will install composite rails on composite decking.


Composite rails vs Wood rails, which is the best? If you want a rail that is beautiful and will last longer, it is better to install composite rails so that it will match your composite decking.

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