Coating Decks

No matter how well you maintain your deck, over a period of time, it begins to look old and tired. Over the years, the elements, kids and pets take a toll on what was once a fine deck. Sometimes it looks bad enough for you to think of scrapping the whole thing and replacing it with a new one.

Most decks get the way they do because of neglect. If maintained regularly, they will get a new lease of life. One thing to remember is that renovating a deck costs a lot less than going for a total revamp.

The weather is an important factor to consider before you start on your project. Wait for at least two dry days before you begin work. The work on the deck can take up to two days, but it is best to spread it out over a couple of weekends so as to let the paint or varnish dry thoroughly.

Some tips on how to go about it

  • Clean the deck thoroughly. You will find suitable cleaning products in the market. All you need to do is hook up the applicator to the garden hose. You may need to give it a good scrub using a tough bristle brush. Wear a protective mask and see to it that the plants nearby are properly covered.
  • Check the deck for repairs. This includes the posts and the stair joists. Inspect the railings and deck for any wood that may be loose.
  • Make sure to properly sand the stains, splintered areas and grade stamps. You can opt for a pole sander or a palm sander to make the process faster. Use the direction of the grain when you sand. Avoid inhaling the sawdust by wearing a mask. Check for popped nails and screws.
  • Remove dust and debris from the deck. Clean and make sure the deck is totally dry.
  • Slowly stir the stain or sealer well. Make sure not to shake the container or you will get air bubbles in the finished product.
  • Use a paint roller to apply the stain or sealer. Let the coat be thin and even. Work on two to three boards at a time. Avoid letting the product puddle.
  • Once the entire deck is completed, use a paint brush and tackle the steps, the railings and the corners.
  • You can opt for a second coat if you so wish. You can apply a clear water repellent between two stainings if it’s extra protection that you are after.


It may seem like hard work, but the end results are worth it. And if you find that the work is more than you bargained for, a professional is just a phone call away.