Decking Tips: Four Top Boat Decking Options

I believe the old saying says, the happiest day of a boat owner’s life is the day he bought his boat, the second happiest day is the day he sells it. This is because of all the maintenance that goes into a boat to keep it running well and looking good. Let’s take a look at some solutions for boat decking that will make the maintenance a bit easier for all you boat owners out there.

Wood Boat Decking

A traditional wood deck consists of planks which are caulked and tarred. High class boats might have the deck canvassed with the fabric laid down in a thick layer of paint or sealant. This style of boat decking has been replaced mainly with a fiberglass deck that is laid over treated plywood layers for easier repair and cost effectiveness, as well as options in color and weight.

Fiberglass Boat Decking

Fiberglass is lightweight and weather resistant among many of its features; however, it is also a bit tedious to maintain and/or repair. Wikipedia defines fiberglass as a “material made from extremely fine fibers of glass. It is used as a reinforcing agent for many polymer products; the resulting composite material, properly known as fiber-reinforced polymers (FRP), is called “fiberglass” in popular usage.” The installation of fiberglass material can be a job that is a bit out of the average boat owner’s league, so might cost more in the long run as well.

Treated Plywood

The EPA has laws as to what types of chemicals wood can be treated with. The plywood available for marine use is the only plywood the EPA still allows to be treated with arsenic rather than a copper compound. The arsenic treating allows for the use of marine carpeting and hardware without destroying the materials used on your boat decking. This material is used in rebuilding or re-decking pontoon boats and can be found at

Plastic Boat Decking

PlasTeak offers a teak wood look in a plastic material that boasts “No Maintenance Ever!” If you are looking for the deck solution that will allow you more time to enjoy your boat and less time making it looks good, this might be the perfect alternative to the traditional decking. This material is non-slip and environmentally friendly and will give an upper class look to any boat without the maintenance that comes with other boat decking systems.

Carlo Morelli
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