Possible to Mix Composite Decking Material w/Pressure Treated Wood?


We have pressure treated wood stairs leading up to our front door from the street level. At some point someone decided to paint that material, and EVERY year, I have to repaint, because the paint doesn't seem to really "stick" well to the pressure treated wood material. It peels off in ugly patches. Not how I want my front entryway to appear of course! One thought I had is to replace the most visible pieces, (stair treads and rails) with new composite planks. However, I am not sure it is possible or advisable to mix and match these materials?
Thanks for any suggestions!
-Chuck
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chuck W1CEW wrote:

Pressure-treated wood paints pretty well, as long as it's prepped properly. That would include a good cleaning, sanding where needed, and the proper primer before the paint. Oh, and you're supposed to wait three months or more before painting new PT wood--it's too wet otherwise. I bet that someone in the past skipped the prep steps, just slapping on a coat of paint, and you have to suffer for their laziness.
I recommend you take your problem to a real paint store. The people there will have lots more experience than the highschool student at the big box store[1].
Here's my suggestion: * Power wash the steps to get stuff loose (and clean). Let dry. * Scrape to get off the stuff you just loosened up. * Sand the entire thing to get rid of the edges where paint chipped. * Wash with tri-sodium phosphate (TSP). * Caulk * Prime * Paint, two coats
If you really want to replace the wood, composite should do fine. Check with the supplier first to find out whether it takes paint. Composite is a mixture of sawdust and plastic, so you might have to do something special with it.
[1] To be fair, I _have_ occasionally found good paint people at the borgs, but it's rare.
--
Steve Bell
New Life Home Improvement
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Some pressure treatments for wood are paintable. FWIW, my basement stairs still look fine after a decade in typical old basement/crawl space conditions. However,the coarse grained wet treated kind of wood seems to be a different sort as I found out by attempting to paint an outdoor rose arbor. There may be primers and paints that are rugged enough for what you need, perhaps an epoxy paint. Ask at a pro paint store for best advice. Your reservations about mix and match materials is valid. Even if it worked it might not be esthetically pleasing. You might want to consider some of the prefab assemblies at the box stores for a complete relacement. Good luck.
Joe
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Thanks Joe, Steve and the bunch... great suggestions. Last year I did rent a power washer and the folks at the paint store said to try a *stain* rather than what appeared to be latex paint. I may go the epoxy route if I can blow the loose stuff off. BTW, it ends up making a huge mess that it really hard to clean up, paint chips all over the yard. My wife really just wants to rebuild the thing because they look so terrible.
Anyway, thanks again -- I'm probably eventually headed the "prefab" direction, though it may need to wait until Spring at this rate.
-Chuck
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I just finished building steps for a deck, and it's a fun project. You'll be frustrated for a while figuring out rise and run, but once you figure it out, the project will fly. Come back here for all the help that's not fit to print.
Remember to make the steps tilt a little toward the edge so water runs off.
--
Steve Bell
New Life Home Improvement
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chuck W1CEW says...

Yes, if you're asking what I think you're asking.
Composite decks are normally built with pressure-treated framing, with the composite decking on top of that. Many brands need air flow underneath, so you can't just screw it down on top of old pressure treated deck boards, those have to come up first. There's also special screws that you will want to use, and they are expensive! But they make for a much neater installation as the material will not 'mushroom' when you drive the screws in.
I just finished installing about 200 sq feet of GAF Cross Timbers decking over my old pressure treated deck frame. The treated deck boards were deteriorating and I was tired of them, so off they came. My framing was still sound so didn't change it.
Some composite decking may take stain or paint, but it doesn't sound like you really want to do that anyway.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chuck W1CEW wrote:

Is the bottom side painted? If not, it likely soaks up moisture that makes the top peel, assuming that properly prepped in the first place.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.