Virginia Beach home repairs

Virginia Beach Handyman

Deck Makeovers: Tips and Tricks


All of us who own a home with a deck know how much work is required to keep your decks looking great; pressure washing, staining, painting and even changing deck boards. We all have done it or at least paid someone else to do it.

Even after maintaining a deck you still have to live with lose boards, hot surfaces and splinters. Not to mention the expense every two to three years to keep it in good shape. There are many new products on the market today that advertise a quick fix in a can- some even boast a lifetime of carefree decks.

Our findings are that a deck has a useful life span that can be increased with proper maintenance, however replacing the deck becomes inevitable. One can’t expect any of the products on the market today to turn your old worn out deck into a new deck.

Here are a few suggestions…

1. Inspect your deck surface, railings and structure for issues. If you can’t, hire a contractor that can give you a written structural report

2. If you find that the repairs are more than half the costs of a new deck you should start thinking about replacing it.

3. If the structure and the decking are sound then plan on pressure washing and coating the deck. You should decide if you want to have a color or a clear coat. Remember, if you use a solid stain you will have to stay with that color or it will have to be sanded off the deck (increasing your costs). We recommend the use of a toner- a colored stain that can be removed by pressure washing. If you have never stained your deck then a clear coat sealer will work.

4. If your structure is sound but you have cracked and not-so-attractive deck boards, then you can apply a product that will cover up to ¼ inch cracks and renew the look of the deck . This option is more costly than staining but less than replacing the deck altogether. You should be able to get an additional 2-3 years out of your deck after applying one of these products. Again, it will be very difficult to remove these products later on, so at some point you would have to apply it again or replace the deck. We have seen the best results from Olympic Rescue it or Behr Deckover.

Do not ignore your deck. You should inspect it on a regular basis, especially if it is attached to your home above the first floor. Change deck boards when needed and always remember to check the integrity of your railings, steps and structure. Plan on pressure washing and coating every 2-3 years and use a premium sealer to make your deck last longer and look its best!



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