MoistureShield Composite Decking FAQ

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How did A.E.R.T. get started in Composites?

Since 1989, AERT has pioneered the use of recycled polyethylene plastic in the manufacturing of composite building materials.

Where are MoistureShield products manufactured?

MoistureShield products are manufactured in Springdale Arkansas.

What is MoistureShield made out of?

Recycled wood fiber and polyethylene plastic.

Why should I buy MoistureShield instead of a competitor product?

Our decking materials continue to pay for themselves with low costs and long-lasting durability. Unlike some composite decks, we don't need a protective coat to cover our boards. Our advanced technology protects against stains, mold and mildew all the way to the core. It is the only deck product that can be installed on and/or in the ground and underwater.

How is MoistureShield priced compared to other composites?

We are a mid-range priced composite with top quality features and benefits, offering the best value in the marketplace.

Why does MoistureShield® have a limited lifetime warranty and other composites have much shorter warranties?

Because of our total encapsulation, our products are manufactured under several unique patents wherein the wood fibers are aligned and encapsulated in plastic. The plastic surrounds and bonds to the wood fibers, making them moisture resistant.

Can MoistureShield be installed in a submerged condition?


Will MoistureShield show scratches and gouges from foot traffic and outdoor furniture being moved on it?

Any surface will show evidence of normal wear and tear. Scuffs and scratches should be no problem as MoistureShield is a dense product.  Gouges from furniture cannot be removed but allowing them to weather will bring the color consistency back to a point that will make it less noticeable.

Will my kids get splinters when walking barefoot on the deck?


Will MoistureShield burn easily? What is the fire rating?

MoistureShield has a class C fire rating which is the same as wood.

What do you use to get rid of stains on MoistureShield?

It would depend on the type of stain. Check the instructions under Care and Cleaning on the website or call 866-729-2378.

Does MoistureShield fade?

MoistureShield will stay within the same family of colors it is in. Our colors are designed to weather slightly to more natural shadeswithin six months of installation. Over time, UV rays from the sun will fade ANY outdoor product.

Which colors will hold their original color better?

Cape Cod Gray will maintain its original color the best. However, some fading should be expected for any decking material due to age and weathering.

Can I power wash my deck?

Yes, using no more than 1300 PSI and keeping the wand at least 8 to 10 inches from the surface.

Will my deck get slippery if it gets wet?

Any wet surface can be slippery; MoistureShield has approximately the same coefficient of friction as smooth asphalt. It will not be as slippery as wood. Our static coefficient of friction actually gets better or goes up when wet. (Dry= 0.59/0.64; ASTM D23942. Wet= 0.92/0.84; ASTM D2394)

Will the recycled plastic used in the production of MoistureShield make it weaker than using virgin plastic?


I want to put a hot tub, grill, and kitchen on my deck. How much weight can it hold without falling through?

If the application is a flat surface the sub-structure is holding the weight not the decking. If the application is installed on legs, i.e., grills or cabinets on rollers then contact A.E.R.T. 866-729-2378 to figure feasibility.

How is MoistureShield to work with compared to wood? Any special tools needed?

MoistureShield decking can be installed using common wood working tools. Use a carbide blade with the least amount of teeth possible (fewer than 20 is recommended) to avoid excessive heat, which can lead to a rough cut.

Where can I get installation instructions or installation assistance?

Installation instructions are available on the website, or you can call our Customer Service Department at 866-729-2378.

Where can I get a list of certified contractors?

Go to the contractor locator and select your state/province to locate the builder/contractors in your area.

What type of fastener should I use with MoistureShield?

We recommend a 2 ¼ #7 stainless steel trim head screw with our non-grooved boards. Based on product testing The Mantis Clip™ is the preferred hidden deck fastener for use with MoistureShield® grooved decking. Although this fastener is recommended, it is not warranted or guaranteed by the MoistureShield® manufacturer. Please see or call 1-800-951-2222 for more information on the Mantis Clip Warranty.

How many screws do I put in each board?

Two screws per board per joist is recommended. Screws should be a minimum of 1/2-inch from the board end.

How can I hide the screws and get rid of mushrooms?

We recommend 2 ¼” #7 trim head stainless steel screws. Counter-sink them 1/8 inch, run your thumb slightly over the hole, and use a hammer to lightly tap the product over the screw. Hidden fastening systems are the best way to avoid mushrooms and screws.

Can I install my boards without spacing?

No, for three reasons. Thermal expansion, proper ventilation and drainage require a ¼” gap between boards.

Can I use MoistureShield components as structural members?


What is the allowable load rating for MoistureShield?

150 lbs. Per square foot at 16" joist span, 200 lbs. per square at 12" joist span.

Will the new ACQ treated lumber react with MoistureShield where they touch?

MoistureShield has the same reaction to solvents and solutions as plastic surfaces. ACQ will not harm MoistureShield

What types of MoistureShield railing systems are now offered?

Our railing components are now offered with a woodgrain embossing. Please check the product section for more details.

How do I install the balusters to maintain even spacing?

Review installation instructions or call customer service at 866-729-2378.

Can you bend or shape MoistureShield?

Yes. However, every application is different. You should contact the Customer Service Department at A.E.R.T., for guidance. The warranty does not cover the product after it has been altered in this way.

Can MoistureShield be painted and stained? If so, what type of paint is recommended?

The manufacturer does not recommend painting or staining MoistureShield decking and railing. However, if you choose to paint or stain, please follow these recommendations:
Handrail can be painted or stained using two different methods:
a) Allow the handrail to weather 2-3 months in direct sun. If painting, apply an oil-based primer following the weather process. Paint using high quality acrylic latex paint. If staining, primer is not needed. Stain using a high quality oil-based stain.
b) If weathering the product is not an option, use a shellac-based primer and an acrylic latex paint. Decking can be painted or stained only if allowed to weather. Use method “a” above.

Where can I get a sample of MoistureShield?

A local stocking dealer or by getting in touch with us through our Customer Service Department at 866-729-2378 or Request a Sample.

Are there any toxins in MoistureShield?


Is your product less harmful to human health than a comparable conventional product?

Yes. MoistureShield® decking and accessories contain no added arsenic, or other preservatives that are likely to be toxic under normal exposure conditions. Conventional wood treating processes impregnate the wood substrate with toxic chemicals to prevent rot and decay. MoistureShield is naturally resistant to rot and decay without the toxic additives.

Does your product contain over 25% recycled materials?

Yes. MoistureShield decking and accessories are made with 95% recycled materials, of which, 38% is post consumer in origin.

Does your product help conserve water?

Yes. Since MoistureShield decking and accessories are made with 95% recycled content, water consumption is reduced or eliminated in the raw material extraction and processing stages that similar virgin based products would experience.

Does your product help save energy?

Yes. MoistureShield products are made with a mixture of recycled polyethylene plastic and recycled wood. Recycling one pound of wood conserves approximately 8,500 Btu's of energy. Similarly, recycling one pound of polyethylene conserves approximately 28,350 Btu's of energy. Consequently, building a 12' x 12' deck with MoistureShield saves an amount of energy roughly equal to 110 gallons of gasoline.

Does your product help reduce fuel consumption?

Yes. Because MoistureShield is made with 95% recycled content, the fuel consumed during the extraction and processing of virgin raw materials is eliminated. A large part of the energy savings associated with recycling polyethylene comes from the reduction of fuel use during these two stages.

Does your product operate on a renewable form of energy?

No. Our product requires no energy to operate. However, the manufacturing plants where MoistureShield is made are partially powered with biomass energy. Approximately one-fourth of the energy input for the manufacturing process is derived from renewable biomass sources.

Is your product's packaging reduced to a minimum?

A.E.R.T., Inc. is always looking for ways to reduce the packaging burden and is careful to make sure that the packaging used is 100% recyclable.

Does your product generate a minimum amount of waste?

Yes. MoistureShield is manufactured to specific standard construction dimensions and has no wane, knotholes, or other bad spots that require cutouts and create waste.

Is your product made from waste material(s)?

Yes. MoistureShield is made from 95% recycled materials, of which, 38% is post-consumer in origin. MoistureShield has one of the highest recycled materials content in the composite landscape decking industry.

Does your product have some other environmental advantage that isn't mentioned above?

Yes. When a product such as MoistureShield decking and accessories is made from recycled materials, the entire environmental waste spectrum is positively impacted. The recycled content in MoistureShield results in reduced energy consumption, reduced landfill waste, reduced hazardous waste, reduced air emissions including greenhouse gases, reduced water consumption, and reduced wastewater.

How are MoistureShield claims handled?

Written notice to the manufacturer is required within 30 days of the discovery of any claim, defect or failure covered by the warranty and before beginning any permanent repair. Call 866-729-2378 and we will guide you through the process.

How do I reach someone if I have questions about MoistureShield products?

Contact our Customer Service Department at 866-729-2378 or via email at