My Trex Stories

#MyTrexStory: DIY Deck Around a Tree with Ed P.

The proud homeowner of a historic 100-year-old craftsman bungalow, Ed P., recently replaced his wood deck with composite decking from Trex. Read along to learn about why Ed chose to DIY with Trex and his journey to turn his vision for his outdoor space into a reality.

October 13, 2022
Deck around a tree

Why did you want to replace your old deck? 

"I replaced a deck that I built in 2005 using pressure-treated wood. The deck served us well, but it was showing its age and needed to be replaced. I removed the railing, decking, and joists, however, I was able to reuse the three lateral 2”x10” sistered beams which were still in excellent shape."

Why did you choose to build it yourself instead of hiring a contractor? 

"I built it myself because I have the tools and skills. I got estimates from two contractors but, while the quotes were fair, both builders had 90-120 day backlogs and I was eager to get started. I’m retired and have the time and the ability to take my time."

What Trex products did you use and why did you pick those? 

"I used Trex Select® decking in Saddle and Trex Signature® railing in Black with Vintage Lantern posts. I used Select decking because I wanted a very solid and durable feel. I used the Signature railing simply due to aesthetics which I felt created a more open feel and a style that matches the home."

Did you work with anyone else to build your deck? 

"A couple of friends helped me from time to time. Two like-minded guys who also have good skills. One of them has a part-time handyman business and I paid him for his help."

What drew you to Trex decking? 

"I wanted the uniformity and durability of composite decking. I looked at a couple of other brands but chose Trex due to the brand’s excellent reputation."

What was the easiest part of building with Trex / easiest part of the process so far? 

"Laying the decking using Hidden Fasteners is pretty easy, but honestly, very little else is easy. It’s complicated, particularly my project. I didn’t have a blueprint, just a vision, and some hand-drawn plans, so there were a million decisions. Additionally, there’s a 60’ live oak tree in the center of the deck which added complexity. I decided to put a double picture frame around the entire deck and tree which creates lots of framing work followed by lots of precise measurements and miter cuts of the decking. I have a very high standard for my work and the finished product so that required significant thought and advanced planning of the day’s goals. It turned out really great, but I would never tell someone that “it’s easy”."

How do you feel about the project now that is complete?

"It’s an investment in our beautiful home, and candidly I’m proud to say I used Trex. So there’s certainly value there. The total project cost $15,000 and I feel it easily added $30,000 to the value of the home."

What resources did you use to help you build?

"I actually got my Trex materials inspiration from a picture in the Trex product catalog, so that was really helpful."

What is your favorite part of your new deck? 

"That’s easy. We get a lot of summer rain here in Florida, usually in the late afternoon. Once the rain stops the evenings are pretty pleasant, so I go out to the garage and get my leaf blower and blow all of the rainwater off of the deck surface. It’s completely dry by morning and so clean. Additionally, I love the uniform look of the deck surface and the double picture frame, the railing is really nice, I built new steps up from the driveway which is sturdy and inviting, and the colors work well together…I’m very pleased."

What is your favorite new memory on your new deck? 

"It’s too new for any memories, but I’m a single father of an 11-year-old boy, and it’s such a terrific upgrade to our home. My son dealt with three months of construction so just having it done and looking so nice makes every day better."

What are you looking forward to using your Trex deck for?

"I just ordered a Polywood dining set for the deck. We’re still about a month away from the eight really nice months in Florida (June-September is pretty hot and buggy) so the best is yet to come. Other family members will be with us for Christmas, so I’m looking forward to spending time with them out there."

If you could go back, what is one piece of advice you would give yourself when you started this project? 

"I think we did pretty well overall. Occasionally we went 2-3 weeks without significant progress due to schedule conflicts which could be frustrating, but those breaks were actually beneficial from the standpoint of rest/recharge. So my advice to others would be to take your time, think through every step, set a manageable goal for the day, take lots of pictures along the way, and enjoy the experience."

How does it feel to see your new deck? 

"I look out at it all the time and I’m so very pleased. You can also see part of the deck from the sidewalk in front of the house and I notice the neighbors passing by glancing at it as well. Makes me proud."

Ready to begin your own #TrexStory?

Compare colors, get a quote, and design your outdoor oasis with our online planning tools.

Price & Design Your Deck

Unable to Add to Cart

You may order up to 4 free samples. To adjust your selections, remove what you do not need and then add your new choices.