Deckorators Mineral-Based vs TruNorth Rice Hull Composite Decking

Comparing Deckorators Mineral Based Composite with TruNorth Rice Hulls Composite Decking

When comparing Deckorators decking boards with TruNorth there are 5 key characteristics to consider.

  • Appearance
  • Slip Resistance
  • Price
  • Warranty
  • Durability

How do Deckorators and TruNorth decking compare?

TruNorth has more decking colours compared to Deckorators (MBC) and is better priced. Deckorators have both better slip resistance and warranty than TruNorth.

But we will need to go a little further into this before concluding which composite decking is right for you.

Comparing how much they differ from each other.

If it’s not a clear-cut answer. What are my reasons for considering one better than the other? To see if you agree with my conclusion, could they be understood differently? Or does my reason not matter for your deck?

A good example is warranty.

At first glance, they both have a 25-year warranty. But when you dig into the details, they are not the same.

So let’s get into it, starting with where TruNorth is better than Deckorators.

How is TruNorth Better than Deckorators Decking?

Of these 5 key performance matrices for evaluating decking, TruNorth is better than Deckorators for.

  • Appearance (More Decking Colours)
  • Price

Deckorators VS TruNorth for Appearance

We are going to focus on colour options first because it’s the easiest to quantify. Then flip to the other side of appearance, which is much more subject to personal taste. Your taste.

Deckorators (MBC) has 2 lines, with 8 colours.

Voyage (MBC) Decking (6)

  • Sedona
  • Sierra
  • Tundra
  • Costa
  • Mesa
  • Khaya

Look and feel of traditional wood decking without significant wood grain patterns. But with more dark streaking to enhance the depth of the decking colour.

Vault (MBC) Decking (2)

  • Dusk
  • Mesquite

Vault has a more traditional cathedral grain look.

They also have a Dark Slate Picture Frame board 21’ long. Handi for trimming out your deck and hiding the end cuts of your decking. Not to mention the dark colour pops with contrast with the other deck boards.

But because of its single design use, we did not include it with Deckorators (MBC) colour options.

TruNorth has 2 Collections, Enviroboard (6 hollow cylinders) and Acuspan (solid) of composite decking, with 12 Colours.

Solid colours

  • Stone Grey 
  • Mocha
  • Caramel
  • Red Bordeaux
  • Sand
  • Brulee

Variegated colours  

  • Ash Grey
  • Tigerwood
  • Amazon Grey 
  • Tropical Walnut
  • Brazilian Cherry
  • Hazelwood 

One thing I appreciated about TruNorth is that their colours are not exclusive to a decking collection. You can have any of the colours regardless if you want a solid board (Acuspan) or save a little money with a hollow decking Opens in a new tab.(Enviroboard).

Allowing you to pick the colour of the board and price of the board separately.

What is a little more subjective and depends on what you are looking for in a deck board.

  • Wire-Brushed vs Cathedral Wood Grains
  • Hair Texture vs Deep Grain Embossing
  • Variation vs Consistent Colouring
  • Streaking over Solid Colour

For that, you are better off getting a sample in your hand to determine which is right for you.

But for the number of colours and versatility of colour, TruNorth takes this one.

Deckorators VS TruNorth Price

As much as we would like to all pretend that money is not a factor. It is.

Finding low-maintenance decking at a price you can afford is important.

Lineal Price
TruNorth Enviroboard (Hollow)$3-3.50
Deckorators Vault (MBC)$5-5.50
TruNorth Acuspan (Solid)$5-6.00
Deckorators Voyage (MBC)$6-6.50
Decking Costs

TruNorth’s hollow boards (Enviroboard) will save you quite a bit of money compared to Deckorators (MBC) and their own Acuspan (solid).

For a 12′ X 12′ deck, with 26 boards.

Enviroboard will cost $1 092 if you pick a variegated colour. Giving you more variety in decking appearance.

Compare that with Deckoroators Vault (MBC) $1 716.

That’s a saving of a little over $700 just on a smaller deck. The bigger deck design for entertainingOpens in a new tab. will save you even more.

Comparison between Acuspan and Voyage is not as significant. In fact, it’s possible that they will cost the same.

And yes, you can pick any decking colour with any board, but variegated colours will cost you more than solid colours. Similar to Trex’s Enhance line with Basic and Natural.

Overall, TruNorth is better-priced composite decking.

If you live in the True North (Canada), this price spread becomes even more significant. Manufactured in Canada, TruNorth does not have the exchange rate working against it.

How is Deckorators Better than TruNorth Decking?

  • Slip Resistance
  • Warranty

Deckorators VS TruNorth for Slip Resistance

Staying on your feet is key to deck enjoyment. The level of slip resistance makes all the difference.

 DryWet
Deckorators (MBC) 0.73-0.74 0.66-0.69
 TruNorth 0.57 0.53
Slip Resistance

Neither has the best slip resistance of composite deckingOpens in a new tab., but they both exceed the Canadian Construction Material Centre (CCMC) minimum of 0.5.

But Deckorators does better. Almost 30% better dry in the sun. But still, over 20% better when the clouds start to rain.

Not quite as good as they claim (35%) but still much better.

This is why we choose Deckorators (MBC) for best slip resistance compared to TruNorth. And if traction is essential, you should too.

Deckorators VS TruNorth for Warranty

None have the best decking warranty in the market. If fact, besides Deckorators’ structural warranty, their length of warranties are short.

  • Deckorators 25 years fade & stain, 50 years structural
  • TruNorth- 25 years fade, stain, & structural

There are some slight differences between each warranty.

For example, with TruNorth, you have a full week, 7 days to clean up spills before voiding the stain warranty.

Compared to Deckorators with only 2.

The level of compensation also differs.

Prorating

Warranties are about peace of mind that the decking will last. But in the event, they don’t.

It’s about money.

How much will you receive to help with the repair?

Deckorators warrantyOpens in a new tab. is 100% for the first 6 years, Reducing the amount of payout every few years till the end of the warranty.

This is were TruNorth warrantyOpens in a new tab. is better. They payout 100% for the first 10 years. Giving you an additional 4 years of full coverage and then continuing to pay out more to roughly 17 years of deck enjoyment. That is for the 25-year fade and stain warranty.

At first glance, structural aside puts TruNorth in the lead for the best warranty between the two.

Labour Warranty

Deckorators include a 25-year labour warranty. Yes, it’s pro-rated also, but at 10 years, they will cover 80% of the labour cost to replace the failed boards. The first 6 is 100%

Labour is a huge part of the cost of building a deck. Making this super valuable.

If you go with installation being equal to material cost.

For year 16 when TruNorth is paying out 60% of the decking material cost.

Deckorators (MBC) is paying out 80%. Flipping the amount of payout on its head.

Plus, with Deckorators, this does not have to be a Deckorators certified installer like with many brands but includes you, a DIYer installing it. As long as you install it as instructed, which I know you can do.

Despite Deckorators prorating shrinking faster, with the labour portion, they pull ahead for a better warranty. Along with their decking being guaranteed not to break for 50 years.

For these reasons, we put Deckorators as the winner for warranty.

Deckorators VS TruNorth for Durability

Beyond what it says on paper, the warranty. How will the decking material perform?

As Deckorators (MBC) and TruNorth are distinctly different decking materials.

What is Deckorators Made Of?

Decorators (MBC), like the name says, are composed of minerals and virgin polypropylene. The minerals making all the difference.

  • 34% better traction
  • 35% lighter than traditional composites
  • Virtually no thermal expansion or contraction
  • Warrantied for installation in the ground or water
  • Nothing for mould and fungi to grow on

The minerals do make it harder to cut. You can still use standard woodworking tools, but it does not cut as easily and will need additional time to file the edges smooth.

But virtual no expansion and contraction as the temperature rises and falls, opening up possibilities for unique decking patterns and inserts. Designs that cannot be done with TruNorth when allowing for expansion and contraction.

Plus, Deckorators can be installed near and in water and not void their warranty.

Deckorators is also slightly thinner (7/8″0) compared to TruNorth. Which measures a full 1″ thick.

For flame spread ratings, they both are class B. With only a slight difference, TruNorth cap scored 60 for flame spread, Deckorators 100. The lower the number, the slower the fire spreads.

What is TruNorth Composite Made of?

Composed of a blend of Arkansas rice hulls and recycled (95%) high-density polyethylene (HDPE) with UV inhibitorsOpens in a new tab.. Unlike the more common wood fibres, rice hulls absorb less moisture reducing the chance of mould and other rot-related issues. The rice hulls also are more durable, resisting impact damage better than wood-based composite.Opens in a new tab.

  • Cooler boards with Heat Blocking Technology*
  • Capping on all 4 sides, Decorators is only capped 3 sided
  • Reversible boards with Wood grain texture on top and bottom
  • Low moisture absorption with rice husks

The ability to flip damaged boards, I think, is an under-appreciated feature. Even during construction, the ability to flip a board to hide minor forklift damage saves running to the store to exchange an overwise good board.