To take their decks to the next level and create an outdoor living area that goes beyond the basics, homeowners are looking for high-quality decking products--as well as a variety of attractive railings, lighting, and other accessory options. Here are some of the new offerings in this category that you shouldn't miss.

Stronger Deck Frames
The Structural Steel Deck Support System is a line of 12-gauge steel brackets for reinforcing a wood deck frame and securing it to the house. It includes post and corner brackets, as well as ledger brackets that support more than 1500 pounds with a 4- or 5-inch standoff — perfect for brick veneer siding. The brackets are galvanized, but can be special ordered in stainless steel. Although the current versions uses bolts, the company is developing a line for use with LedgerLok screws.

Tom Cwenar

New Outdoor Storage Options
Trex has expanded its collection of waterproof outdoor cabinetry with the addition of new grill and television cabinets. The new cabinets have dense, low-maintenance resin frames that won’t warp, fade or crack, and include adhesive-welded interiors made from ¾-inch thick white PVC. Buyers have the option of customizing the cabinets with rollout drawers and shelving, as well as with marble, granite or stone tops. The company's outdoor cabinet collection is backed by a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

One-Step Dry Deck
Although there are several dry under-deck systems on the market, Admiral's SpaceMaker builds the waterproofing into the deck boards. Each tongue-and-groove board has a patented tongue with a vulcanized silicon edge that maintains a seal in temperatures ranging from -100 F to 400 F. The boards give a hidden fastener look without the need for special hardware: simply nail through the groove's bottom leg (which is wider than the top one) then click the next board's tongue into place. The system also includes edge flashings.

Engineered Tile
The Mbrico Tile Decking System for exterior decks can be installed by a carpenter rather than a tile setter. The installer slides notched porcelain tiles into place between aluminum tracks screwed to the framing. The tiles have a breaking strength to 4,000 pounds per square foot, thanks to fiberglass reinforcing plates epoxied to their undersides. The company says that the tiles have non-slip surfaces, are harder than granite, and won't freeze, thaw or stain. They're also self-gapping, which automatically creates drain slots where you would normally see grout.

Cable Rail Accent Light
Feeney's new all-weather, 24-volt LED Post Accent Light features a decorative aluminum slip-on sconce with a durable powder-coated finish. The warm white 50,000-hour LED array has a high color rendering index for truer color presentation, and a special polycarbonate lens to evenly diffuse the light. The Accent Lights are designed for ease of installation: they use plug & go wire connectors and are compatible with third-party dimmers and switches.

Dual Surface Decking
Fortress Decking's Infinity dual-surface decking looks like rough-sawn wood decking on one surface, and has smooth finish that mimics ipe on the other. The company claims that the decking's dense bamboo core is stronger and better resists moisture inclusion than other composites. It also has a co-extruded capstock that includes rubber to create more of a matte finish. In addition to decking, the Infinity line includes 12⅞-inch-wide stair treads, as well as matching post sleeves and rails.

Modular Fencing
BW Creative Railing Systems' new Cedar Privacy Fence Kit is an easy way to give clients a private outdoor space. The kit includes a pair of powder coated aluminum posts, the top and bottom rails, and a box of 4-inch wide Western Red Cedar slats. Each kit makes a 5⅕-foot high, 4-foot long fence. Posts can be embedded in concrete or surface mounted on bolts. Note that the fence is not rated as a guardrail; it's meant for use around patios or on decks that aren't high enough above grade to need a guardrail.

Danny George

Palram calls its new Mirrite product "outdoor flooring" rather than decking. Each PVC board has the image of an ipe board printed on the surface and is topped with what a company rep described as a transparent shell that protects the surface and provides fade/stain resistance. (The shell is supposed to be impervious to common staining agents including sunscreen, bug spray, citronella and charcoal fluid.) Boards come in 12-, 16-, and 20-foot lengths, with prices that are comparable to high-end composites.

Cool Deck
A common complaint about composite decking is that it can get too hot to walk on barefoot during a sunny summer day. MoistureShield has addressed this by adding CoolDeck technology to the capstock in its Infuse decking. They say this will optimize heat reflection and will ensure that the boards absorb up to 35% less heat than the companies other capped composites in similar colors. The line includes nominal 1x6 deck boards in 12-, 16-, and 20-foot lengths as well as 12-foot-long fascia boards. They're available in gray and brown.

Pleasingly Distressed
The people at Deckorators say that they designed their Heritage deck boards to bring interior design to the outdoors. The embossing creates a distressed wood-flooring look and uses patterns that don't repeat for at least 12 feet, so the boards don't all look the same. They're available in two colors — Riverhouse (brown) and Smokehouse (gray) — and in 12-, 16-, and 20-foot lengths with and slotted-edge profiles, along with fascia. The boards carry a 25-year structural, 25-year stain-and-fade and 25-year removal-and-replacement limited warranty.

Good Impression
Armadillo Deck's new Impressions line of deck boards has a hand scrapped look and comes in three colors: Java, Palomino and Night Fall. Like the company's other composite deck products, these boards are fully wrapped with capstock, are fade and stain resistant and come with a Limited Lifetime Warranty. The boards are available in 12-, 16-, and 20-foot lengths, with grooved or solid edge profiles. Fascia, riser and 2x4 handrail boards are also available.

Matte White Railing
Fairway Architectural Railing Solutions has rolled out a matte white aluminum railing finish for its A210 Slimline Aluminum Railings, in response to customer demands. Railing kits are available in 36-inch and 42-inch heights, in and in 6 foot and 8-foot lengths. The matte white A210 has a 15-year warranty, is AAMA- 2604-05 compliant and meets 2015 IBC, ASTM E935 standards and ASTM e985 standards. It can be outfitted with LED lighting if the customer wants it.

Scott Gregson

Solar-Powered Accent
AGS Stainless has added a group of decorative patterns to its Starlight line of solar-powered LED accent lights. The new Designer Series lights include laser-etched patterns in styles that range from Craftsman to Modern. They have 316 marine-grade stainless housings and brushed stainless or powder-coated black finishes. (Custom colors are also available.) The lights do not require wiring or transformers, can be installed by anyone, and generate 5 to 6 lumens of light for up to 10 hours.