Composite fencing as a next-generation product
Composite products have risen in recent years as a newer generation alternative to wood and fully-plastic materials. Composites combine natural and man-made elements for a stronger and aesthetically different product than traditional PVC-based materials. They have been substantially successful in decking, siding, and flooring applications gaining traction year-over-year. Companies like Fiberon, Nature’s Composites, Timbertech, and Trex that have been successful previously with composite decking or other products began introducing composite fencing profiles in the mid-2000’s.
Until recently, adoption of composites in fencing has lagged. Key limiting factors were poor product design and quality, high production costs, and difficulties in using traditional distribution channels. Introducing new products also mean significant investment in marketing to build product and brand awareness. In principle, the key attributes of composites dictate that they are the most likely alternative to vinyl fencing. Composites are stronger and more durable than other synthetic products. They use a dense, thick-wall profile that makes them resistant to the types of breakage common in vinyl or other PVC products. For example, in tests where Trex Seculsions posts and pickets were subjected to strikes from objects such as gravel, golf balls, and baseballs, the material did not break. In a Miami-Dade County wind test, Trex also performed well sustaining 110 mph constant and 130 mph burst speeds with no failure.