A Tale of Three Piers

If three families all purchased docks in 2015, one with pilings made of Southern Yellow Pine which are treated, one with pilings made of Greenheart wood and one made of Pearson composite fiberglass pilings, who pays more?

pearson cost effectiveness graph

The Pines might pay around $17,000, the Greenhearts almost $20,000 and the last family (let’s call them the Pearsons) might pay less than $18,000 for their pilings. The Pines are feeling pretty self-congratulatory regarding their decision. But which family purchased the most cost-effective pilings?

After 15 years, in 2030, the Pines would most likely have to replace their pilings due to wear an tear and corrosion, bringing their investment to more than $37,000. Now the Greenhearts are smug.

But only ten years later, in 2040, those same Greenhearts will probably have to replace their pilings, bringing their total investment to over $40,000.  Who’s laughing now?

Certainly not the Pines, who in ten more years will have to replace their pilings a second time, bringing their total cost to close to $60,000! Meanwhile, the Pearsons have invested in a new sailboat.

So in 2050, 35 years after the initial investment, the Pines have spent upwards of $60,000, the Greenhearts have shelled out more than $40,000, and the Pearsons haven’t even spent $18,000 yet on their cost-effective pilings. In fact, the Pearsons can continue to enjoy their strong, durable pilings for generations to come without having to worry about rust, rot or splintering.

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