If your old deck is an embarrassment because it's faded, dirty, and rotted in places, you may be wondering if you should replace it. If you want to save money, deck restoration could be a better solution. The process takes work, but if you don't want to do the job yourself, you can hire a deck restoration contractor to do it for you.
The exact steps for restoring a deck depend on the type of stain or coating you intend to apply. Here's a look at the general steps involved in deck restoration.
Repair All Damaged Areas
Your old deck probably has gouges, rotting rail pieces, missing or popped-up nails, and other types of damage that can be repaired. A contractor can even replace damaged boards if necessary. The new wood will be quite noticeable against the wood on your old deck, but they'll match by the time the restoration is complete.
The deck restoration contractor will smooth rough areas to eliminate a splinter risk, drive in nails, replace boards and railings as needed, and make sure the deck is tight and secure.
Clean The Deck
Cleaning the deck is important because careful preparation helps the coating or stain adhere better. Your contractor might use cleaning chemicals, a stripper, or a pressure washer to clean the boards and rails. Care has to be taken not to gouge the wood with a pressure washer and cause even more damage to the deck. The contractor also has to protect plants around your deck by covering them with a tarp to keep chemicals off.
Pressure washing alone can make old wood look new again as it removes old coatings and oxidation to reveal the natural color and grain of the wood. As part of the cleaning process, the contractor might sand the deck to make sure all the old coating is gone.
Apply The Coating
Your deck restoration contractor can choose from different types of coatings. The coatings and stains are absorbed by the wood rather than cover the wood like paint. Coatings are often combined with sand to give the deck texture and make it less slippery. The coating or stain is applied according to the manufacturer's directions.
The coating or stain lets the grain of your wood show through while providing a protective coat that helps your deck stay looking like new for longer. The coating might need to cure for several hours or a few days. After that, you can move your grill and patio furniture back and enjoy your deck which will look new again at a much lower cost than actually buying a new deck.
For more information on deck restoration, contact a professional near you.