Outdoor decks continue to rise in popularity, and the reasons for this are pretty obvious. They’ve always provided a space for grilling and entertaining, but homeowners today are also expanding and reimagining the uses of an outdoor deck. Decks can have a roof, a fireplace, and even a kitchen. They have built-in seating. They can house exercise equipment. They can provide a perfect place for yoga or pilates. And they can be built with a variety of modern material that make them last longer and look better.
Many homeowners would probably consider adding a new outdoor deck if they didn’t already have a deck. And often times, these existing decks are old, outdated, and poorly maintained. It’s no wonder they don’t get used as much as they should.
What you might not realize is that tearing down the old deck and putting in a brand new one is not your only option. If you have an outdoor deck that doesn’t look so good and doesn’t get much use, you might be able to bring it up to speed for a fraction of the cost. Here are three simple ways to restore your outdoor deck.
1. Clean it up!
Sweeping and leaf-blowing can go a long way toward cleaning the surface of your outdoor deck, but if this doesn’t work, you could try using a mop or even a pressure washer. It’s important to understand what type of material your deck is made of, and whether various cleaning practices could inflict damage on your deck, before you go ahead. When it doubt, contact a reputable deck specialist. If you’re able to contact the original builder of the deck, you should be able to get valuable information on the materials your deck was built with, and any outstanding maintenance requirements.
2. Have it refinished
If cleaning your deck doesn’t improve the appearance to the degree you wanted, it may be time to think about refinishing. Does water collect in “beads” on the surface of your deck, or does it seem to “soak in” to the floorboards? If it’s the latter, your deck may need to be sealed as well. Refinishing and sealing are usually recommended every few years for outdoor decks, but several years often pass in between treatments. Find out when your deck was last treated and refinished, and/or talk to a qualified outdoor deck company before proceeding.
3. Have it resurfaced
Deck resurfacing is a fantastic way to breathe new life into your existing outdoor deck. A qualified specialist will be able to determine whether the underlying structure and framework of your deck is safe and sturdy. If so, resurfacing is a definite option. The existing floorboards and railings will be stripped away, leaving only the basic framework. Then, a new material of your choosing (composite or natural hardwood) will be laid over the old framework. Your deck will appear brand new, and you’ll pay a fraction of the cost of a new deck.
Enjoying your deck for years to come
Keeping up with outdoor deck maintenance isn’t always the highest priority for today’s homeowner. Time/weather also play a part in causing outdoor decks to look old and worn. But if you talk to any reputable outdoor deck specialist in your area, you may be surprised at the options available to you. You might be able to restore your existing deck, and even expand its functionality, without dipping too far into your pockets. On the other hand, if your deck is structurally compromised, you’ll have greater peace of mind knowing that it has to be removed, whether or not you want to replace it.
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