17 Mar How to Repair an Old Deck
Maintaining a deck is a full year job. The benefits are worth it of course. Those warm summer nights hanging out and grilling. The fall days spent outside with your family. Those moments are priceless. Deck Maintenance isn’t priceless but it is pretty easy. Here are some tips on how to keep your deck beautiful for years to come.
1. Clean it with a cleaner that you can buy from a home improvement store. Be careful of skin and eyes so make sure you wear protection. Use a garden sprayer to apply cleaner. You can also use a pressure washer to clean off the cleaner but be careful. Pressurized water can damage wood if held on too long. They make attachments for pressure washers which make it really easy to wash off and clean the whole deck surface. A pressure washer can be rented or bought from a home improvement store. Allow the deck to dry thoroughly before doing anything else.
2. Replace broken or rotted boards with new ones. Sand down splinters on railings to help prevent injuries. Replace protruding nails with deck screws. You can use a screwdriver to check for structural damage. If you can sink the tip of a screwdriver into a post or joist, it means the you’ve got rot and it’s time for a major renovation or at least a board change. Also, inspect the deck-to-house connection because screws and bolts can loosen and rust. Be watchful for black rot which means moisture is creeping in and needs to be stopped.
3. Apply the sealer with a garden sprayer again if you can or use ones that attach to a garden hose. Spray an area and then use a paint brush to put it into the wood. Newer decks can use a transparent or clear finish to really highlight the wood. However, with an older, not as well maintained deck, you will want to use a semi-transparent deck finish. That way the beautiful grain of the wood still shows through but the color of the stain renews the look of the deck. Use the sprayer to spray the deck parallel to the boards. Then use a paint brush to get around the posts and the ends of the boards. It might take 2 or even 3 oats to get the deck to absorb all the stain and look amazing.