How to Install Trex Decking


Trex decking is a popular choice among homeowners due to its durability and aesthetic appeal. Furthermore, this sustainable building material comprises recycled materials and wood fibers for added sustainability.

Installing a Trex deck is relatively straightforward, but there are some essential items to get you started. Begin by gathering all of your required tools.

Start with the Joists

If your deck is already constructed, chances are it has joists that aren’t level across the whole surface. This could cause a wavering appearance and may not be suitable for installing trex decking.

To guarantee a uniform appearance, lay out the planks before installing framing joists. Additionally, if you have any accent pieces, such as stairs or other elements that need particular spacing between posts, it’s wise to install these ahead of time.

When laying out the boards, set up starter clips at both ends of the frame and on top of the joists at regular intervals. These clips securely hold grooved composite decking boards in place at about 16 inches (410 mm) apart, aligning with posts at each end.

Lay Out the Planks

Before you begin installing deck boards, ensure you have the necessary tools. Opt for a circular saw and cordless drill for a fast and straightforward installation.

A jigsaw can be utilized for precise cuts, while an oscillating tool allows you to reach into tight places.

Trex recommends making an extended, precise cut before installation to guarantee the ends are clean and square. Doing this makes the product more aesthetically pleasing and helps avoid color variation issues.

When installing grooved boards, begin at the edge of your deck frame and slide in your first board, so it is flush with the joists. Once you are confident with how centered each panel is, predrill holes for screws.

Fasten the Joists

As you install your deck boards, please take a moment to ensure they have the proper spacing between them. Doing this helps avoid warping or twisting as the boards expand and contract over time.

Joists can be fastened to planks using either traditional deck screws or hidden fasteners that blend in with grooves along the board’s surface. Trex Hideaway Universal Hidden Fasteners are an excellent choice, as they don’t crack or shred composite material during installation.

Whether you use metal framing or wood, following the manufacturer’s installation instructions for minimal gapping between composite deck boards is critical. Doing this helps avoid buckling or warping as materials expand and contract from summer to winter temperatures.

Fasten the Planks

Once the joists are installed, it’s time to fasten the planks in place. There are several methods for doing so – screw-down deck plugs or hidden fastening systems can be used.

TimberTech’s Cortex ™ provides a discrete, hidden fastening solution for perimeter boards and stairs. This system includes a color-matched plug and top-of-the-line Cortex screws – making for an easy installation that looks professional.

Screws should be installed perpendicular to the plank surface and driven flush; do not overdrive, as splitting may occur. Pre-drilling is necessary when within 1-1/2″ of both ends of a plank and for temperatures below 45 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid end splitting and screw shear.

Finally, fasten the perimeter board to the joists with composite deck screws. Draw a chalk line around the entire perimeter before installing your final board.

Fasten the Railings

After you lay out the planks, it’s time to attach the railings. For this step, use Trex Hideaway Universal Hidden Fasteners, specifically designed not to crack or shred composite material.

Hideaway Fasteners feature a patented design that conceals them within grooves along the edge of each plank, keeping your deck surface pristine and uninterrupted.

You can reinforce the bottom center of each rail with a small block, helping prevent them from sagging in the future. These blocks can be found at any home improvement store.

Measure the height of your posts to meet building code requirements. A deck’s top rail must be 36 inches high, and if you want them to hang over the frame of the deck, add 4 inches at the bottom. Finally, finish by installing post caps for extra protection.


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