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Comparing Trex Lineage, Transcend, Select, and Enhance Composite Decking Lines

June 12th, 2023 | 6 min read

By Michael Flory

trex composite decking lines comparison outdoor living space custom built lansing mi

If you’re reading this article, chances are you've been longing to build a luxurious deck for awa while.

If we’re right, you may have stumbled on Trex composite decking during your research. On top of that, you have seen the symphony of reviews with conflicting opinions and experiences. 

For all you deck dreamers, we'll help you cut through the noise and learn more about what Trex has to offer.

At Custom Built, we have over 15 years of experience designing and remodeling beautiful decks and outdoor living spaces in Mid-Michigan homes with Trex composite decking in most, if not all, of our successful builds.

In this article, you will learn more about the following four types of Trex composite decking:

  • Trex Transcend Lineage
  • Trex Transcend
  • Trex Select
  • Trex Enhance

From durability to aesthetics, you will learn more about each line and discover which one is right for you:

What are the Four Grades of Trex Composite Decking?

At their core, all four grades of Trex composite decking are 95% recycled materials ranging from reclaimed plastics to sawdust and timber. Here is how each type of composite decking stacks up against each other on a basic level:

Trex Transcend Lineage (Best)

Built off the Transcend base platform with UV-inhibiting cooling technology, visually-appealing color options, and wood-like graining, Lineage is the newest Trex premium decking line and the highest-quality option.

Trex Transcend (Excellent)

Transcend is a high-performance composite decking brand with outstanding durability and resistance to fading, stains, and mold.

Trex Select (Better)

Select is a basic composite decking line that offers a durable and cost-effective decking option is cheaper, yet features quality materials that are durable and long-lasting.

Trex Enhance (Good)

Enhance is an entry-level composite decking line that is slightly more susceptible to scratches than its three counterparts. This line comes in two color group options: Naturals (mimics traditional wood patterns) and Basics (solid colors).

Pricing and Performance

We’re starting off strong with perhaps one of the most important factors in choosing a Trex composite deck: cost. All four lines feature reliable materials that’ll last until your kids come home from college and decide to leave again.

But here’s the kicker for each selection: the higher the cost, the better the durability, aesthetic, and realistic wood appearance. Here’s the cost breakdown:

Type of Trex Decking

Material Cost Range per Square Foot

Trex Enhance

$5 - $7

Trex Select

$7 - $9

Trex Transcend

$10 - $12

Trex Transcend Lineage

$12 - $14

Trex Enhance (Good)

Coming in between $5 to $7 per square footage, Trex Enhance is the most cost-effective option for homeowners. With scalloped bottoms built to improve drainage and ventilation, this decking guarantees basic mold and mildew prevention and less material than Transcend boards - making it the most economical choice.

While it is more scratch-resistant than other budget-friendly Trex options, Enhance might not deliver the same durability simply because its protective shell isn’t as thick compared to other lines.

Trex Select (Better)

Ranging between $7 to $9 per square footage, Trex Select is one of the more balanced options regarding value and durability. In contrast to Trex Enhance, this line is slightly more durable with five high-end monochromatic color options.

Trex Transcend (Excellent)

The second-best Trex composite decking line clocks in between $10 - $12 per square footage. Here’s where Transcend kicks it up a notch durability-wise.

Considered one of Trex’s most popular options, Transcend is on the high end of the strength spectrum thanks to its thicker material. A slightly more affordable option than Transcend Lineage, this type of decking board delivers about the same scratch and mold resistance as its more expensive sibling.

Trex Transcend Lineage (Best)

There’s a reason why Trex Transcend Lineage is the more expensive option on our list. At $12 - $14 per square footage, this composite decking features UV inhibitor capping, making your deck cooler on hot summer days.

Additionally, it is more difficult for debris or dust to lodge into the ridges because the long, linear grains aren't as deep or wide as the conventional Trex Transcend texture. Offering a more high-end look, Transcend Lineage is designed to deliver an aesthetically-pleasing option that can withstand the test of time.

If you want to learn more about how to understand your deck-building quotes, read up on our guide today.

Aesthetics and Design Options

Once installed, your deck is (literally) out there for the world to see and you get to use it to build meaningful memories ranging from family dinners to therapeutic book-reads with a glass of wine.

Fortunately, Trex features a variety of exciting aesthetic and color options ranging from solid grays to wood-realistic patterns:

Trex Transcend Lineage

Looking for a deck board with all the natural wood aesthetics with none of the wood itself? Lineage is perhaps the closest you can get to installing wood decking without actually installing wood - even with non-wood color finishes.

This realistic wood appearance is thanks to Trex’s embossed grain in each line’s plastic. Each option varies in woodgrain embossing, with Lineage offering a more realistic wood aesthetic and feel.

Transcend offers four unique, multi-tonal (more natural look) color choices, all capable of elevating your outdoor addition with splashes of vibrant hues. Let’s take a look at the color wheel:

trex lineage composite decking colors custom built lansing mi

  • Biscayne: Light brown hue with honey tones
  • Carmel: Sandy/toasty brown with gray undertones
  • Rainier: Mountain-like gray with soft white undertones
  • Jasper: Deep mocha with a rich umber hue and delicate streaking

Trex Transcend

Transcend features the same classic wood-grain appearance, with more color options available to choose from. Split into Premium Tropicals and Classic Earth tones, the opportunities are endless with the following 8 hues:

Premium Tropicals Tones (Multi-Tonal)

trex transcend tropicals tones multi tonal composite decking colors custom built

  • Lava Rock: Rich reddish-black undertones, mimics redwood
  • Island Mist: Calming silver tones, mimics the weathered look of driftwood
  • Spiced Rum: Burnt umber with onyx black lowlights, mimics tropical ipe
  • Tiki Torch: Easygoing light brown with hints of nutmeg and ginger, mimics tropical teak
  • Havana Gold: Warm brown with a blend of caramel and honey hues, mimics tropical teak

Classic Earth Tones (Monochromatic)

trex transcend classic earth tones composite decking line colors custom built

  • Gravel Path: Stony gray
  • Vintage Lantern: Deeply polished brown
  • Rope Swing: Pale, sandy gray with a tinge of brown

Trex Select

Splinter-free and finished with wood-grain aesthetics, Trex Select comes in five earthy, monochromatic colors perfect for any outdoor entertainment and exterior design:

trex select colors composite decking lines custom built

  • Madeira: Rich auburn red
  • Pebble Grey: Lighter heather gray
  • Woodland Brown: Darker umber hue
  • Winchester Grey: Dark, inky charcoal
  • Select Saddle: Sunny medium brown

Trex Enhance

While Enhance is towards the lower end of durability and quality, it still showcases an impressive array of 7 colors - all of which can accommodate your home’s appearance:

Naturals (Multi-Tonal)

trex enhance naturals multi tonal colors composite decking line custom built

  • Coastal Bluff: Earthy taupe hues
  • Rocky Harbor: Rustic slate gray with sandy undertones
  • Foggy Wharf: Modern neutral blend of gray hues and dark silver
  • Toasted Sand: Tawny seashell brown with dark-brown splashes

Basics (Monochromatic)

trex enhance basics monochromatic colors composite decking line custom built

  • Beach Dune: Easy-to-match shade of light brown
  • Clam Shell: Easy-to-match shade of medium gray
  • Enhance Saddle: Easy-to-match shade of medium brown

We all love a good color swatch comparison. If you want to see how each color looks with a completed deck build, check out Trex’s Color Selector today.

Warranty Coverage

Did that Trex Select Madeira catch your eye too? Well, no matter which color/deck board type you choose, Trex's selection of warranties will cover you. In the event of Merlot stains or decades of sun exposure, here are the different types of warranties each line offers:

  • Trex Lineage: 50-Year Limited Residential Warranty
  • Trex Transcend: 50-Year Limited Residential Warranty
  • Trex Select: 35-Year Limited Residential Warranty
  • Trex Enhance: 25-Year Limited Residential Warranty

We all hope that we don’t have to actually call on our warranties to fix any post-construction issues that may arise, however, each option presents lengthy solutions that’ll guarantee decades of maintenance support.

Maintenance and Upkeep

You can expect various performance and durability capabilities for all 4 lines of Trex composite decking products. However, each option has one thing in common: maintenance and upkeep.

As simple as it sounds, general at-home composite decking maintenance requires four things:

  • Warm water
  • Dawn dish soap
  • Deck or scrub brush, cotton towel or paper towel
  • Discipline

Your future Trex composite decking will require care regardless of spills or overall upkeep (but not as much as traditional wood). However, due to Trex’s long-lasting materials, cleaning your deck will be similar to cleaning any interior floor - meaning you won’t have to stain your boards to get the authentic look back.

You can also schedule a professional deck cleaning once per year or as needed, but your Trex composite decking will last for years to come.

Next steps to choosing your deck building materials

When it comes to building your dream deck, it’s important to recognize and tell the difference between all of your Trex options.

Without proper research and consideration, choosing the wrong line for your project can leave you feeling unsatisfied with an eyesore for the foreseeable future.

We will always recommend Trex for all of your deck-building needs. But as remodeling experts with over 15 years of experience, we believe you deserve to understand the pros and cons of each option before making a financial commitment.

An essential part of that process is taking the time to learn and research, just like you are right now reading this article where we have just compared the differences between:

  • Trex Transcend Lineage
  • Trex Transcend
  • Trex Select
  • Trex Enhance

If you’re planning to remodel or build your deck and are interested in learning more about our services, contact our experienced sales advisors. We’d be happy to discuss if we’re the right fit for you and your home remodeling needs.

To learn more about Trex composite decking, read the following articles:

Michael Flory

Michael brings over 2 decades of building and remodeling experience to his position as the Owner and Visionary of Custom Built. Michael’s passion to make an impact on the home building industry has led him to serve for over ten years at the local and state Home Builders Association, culminating as President of the HBA of Michigan in 2020.