20th December, 2022

Marine Pilings: Is Concrete or Plastic the Best Material?

Marine pilings are essential aspects of marine architecture and infrastructure. There are many types of marine pilings, but concrete and plastic are two of the most popular. Our guide will compare concrete and plastic marine pilings to understand better which material is best.

What Are Marine Pilings?

Marine pilings are support beams for marine structures that prevent them from sinking into the water. Even if you’ve never heard the term, you’ve almost definitely seen marine pilings, as they’re common on bridges, docks, piers, and many other structures.

There are many kinds of marine pilings, including wood, concrete, steel, or plastics like HDPE. Two of the most common marine piling materials are concrete and plastic, but which is the best?

Plastic vs. Concrete Pilings

While each material offers some advantages, the benefits of plastic marine pilings are evident—especially regarding their versatility, durability, and positive effect on the environment.


One of the prime advantages of plastic or HDPE marine filings over concrete pilings is that they offer builders many more options. With our selection of 11 color options at Tangent Materials, builders can get plastic marine pilings in practically any color or design.

With concrete pilings, it’s typically one option and one option only. Don’t miss the opportunity to make the marine pilings of your project blend and fit with the overall design and aesthetic of the structure!


While we all know that concrete is durable, what about plastic pilings? When it comes to longevity and durability, plastic marine pilings are second to none, thanks to their synthetic composition and durable construction.

Plastic marine pilings are entirely waterproof, so they won’t rot or splinter even after decades of abuse from the water. Even concrete, after so many years in water, can start to degrade.

Environmentally Friendly

Marine pilings, as well as structures like bridges and piers, can have significant impacts on the marine environment and ecosystem. Plastic marine pilings are much more beneficial in multiple ways.

Firstly, our plastic marine pilings are built from recycled HDPE, making them much more sustainable than concrete. Secondly, plastic marine pilings are completely free of leaking pollutants that can poison the environment and are entirely impervious to wood-boring organisms.

There are many ways to look at it, but at the end of the day, marine pilings offer many clear advantages over their concrete counterparts.