Comparing PVC Synthetic Teak and EVA Foam for Rib Decks


Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIBs) are favoured for their stability, performance, and versatility in various marine environments. Choosing the right deck material for a RIB is crucial for enhancing safety, comfort, and aesthetics. Two popular options from Deckfab are PVC synthetic teak and EVA foam. Each material offers distinct advantages and potential drawbacks. This blog will compare PVC synthetic teak and EVA foam to help you make an informed decision for your RIB boat deck.

PVC Synthetic Teak Decking

PVC synthetic teak decking is designed to mimic the look and feel of real teak wood while offering enhanced durability and lower maintenance requirements. Here are the key features and benefits of PVC synthetic teak from Deckfab:

Durability and Longevity

  • Advantages: PVC synthetic teak is highly durable and resistant to UV rays, and saltwater. It maintains its appearance and structural integrity even in harsh marine environments.
  • Disadvantages: Although highly durable, PVC synthetic teak can be prone to getting hot is direct sunlight in much the same way as teak.


  • Advantages: Requires minimal maintenance compared to natural teak. A simple wash with soap and water is typically sufficient to keep it looking pristine. 
  • Disadvantages: Can requiring occasional re-sanding to restore its looks.

Aesthetic Appeal

  • Advantages: Closely resembles the look of real teak wood, adding a classic and luxurious appearance to your RIB. Available in various shades and grains.
  • Disadvantages: Some may find it less visually authentic compared to real teak, though high-quality options are very convincing.

Safety and Comfort

  • Advantages: Provides good slip resistance even when wet.
  • Disadvantages: Can become uncomfortable to walk on in direct sunlight as it can get hot in the same way as teak. Choosing a lighter colour can mitigate this to some extent. Additives within the PVC material may also assist cooling but normally to the detriment of durability and weld strength.

Installation and Customization

  • Advantages: Normally installed in pre-fabricated panel form built from a boat floor template.
  • Disadvantages: Installation can be more complex and time-consuming compared to EVA foam. Fabrication is time consuming with panels being hand made by a skilled deckmaker from full sized templates..

EVA Foam Decking

EVA foam decking is known for its comfort and excellent slip resistance. It is a versatile material popular among RIB owners. Here are the key features and benefits of EVA foam:

Durability and Longevity

  • Advantages: EVA foam is resistant to UV rays, saltwater, and general wear and tear. It is durable enough for most recreational uses.
  • Disadvantages: It is not as long-lasting as PVC synthetic teak, particularly under heavy use or in harsh conditions.


  • Advantages: Easy to clean with water and mild soap. Resistant to stains and mold.
  • Disadvantages: Over time, the surface may show signs of wear, and it can be difficult to repair.

Aesthetic Appeal

  • Advantages: Available in various colors and patterns, allowing for customization to match your boat’s design.
  • Disadvantages: Lacks the natural wood appearance, which might be less appealing to those seeking a traditional teak look.

Safety and Comfort

  • Advantages: Offers excellent slip resistance, even when wet. Provides a soft, cushioned surface that is comfortable underfoot. Is cooler thatn PVC in direct sunlight
  • Disadvantages: Is less durable than PVC over time and guarantees are shorter 

Installation and Customization

  • Advantages: Lightweight and easy and install in pre-cut panels for convenience.
  • Disadvantages: Adhesive for installation is usually a simple peel and stick backing, which can degrade over time if not applied correctly. Panel fabrication is CNC cut and requires CAD design work.


Both PVC synthetic teak and EVA foam are excellent choices for RIB boat decking, each offering unique benefits:

  • PVC Synthetic Teak is ideal if you prioritize a classic, wood-like appearance, durability, and minimal maintenance.
  • EVA Foam is perfect if comfort, slip resistance, and ease of installation are your primary concerns.

When choosing between these materials, consider your specific needs, how you use your RIB, and your personal aesthetic preferences. By weighing the pros and cons of each option, you can select the best decking material to enhance your RIB’s performance and appearance.

For more information and expert advice on choosing the right decking material for your RIB, visit our website or contact our team today. Let us help you make the best choice for your boating needs

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