It’s no longer the case that your beat up, weathered old deck needs to be torn down and re-built. Not necessarily, at least. Advances in technology, skill, and safety have brought deck resurfacing to the forefront for many homeowners. It offers a safe, reliable way to restore your outdoor deck without having to invest in tearing down the old construction and starting from scratch. This is a huge relief for many homeowners whose decks are in serious need of upgrades.
What is deck resurfacing? Essentially, it’s exactly what it sounds like. The surface of the deck, including the floorboards and often the railings and stairway structures, are completely stripped and replaced with fresh new materials, whether composite or natural wood. The underlying framework of the deck is left in place. Deck resurfacing specialists will conduct detailed inspections of the deck’s support structures before deciding whether resurfacing is an option. If resurfacing is possible, homeowners can basically have a brand new deck at a fraction of the cost.
But like any specialized trade, deck resurfacing requires a high level of expertise. It requires experience, training, and a specific set of tools. Most homeowners choose to look for professional help, but there are a small percentage who try deck resurfacing on their own.
Whether you’re talking about DIY or professional deck resurfacing, there are a number of big mistakes people commonly make, costing both time and money.
1. Resurfacing the deck when the underlying structure is unsafe
Deck resurfacing is all about safety. If the frame and support structure of the deck are in good stead, resurfacing is an option. If not, resurfacing can be dangerous. Whether you’re going the DIY or professional route, it’s still important to bring in an outdoor deck specialist to conduct a detailed safety inspection. When it comes to resurfacing your deck, safety is an absolute priority. Beginning a resurfacing project without proper safety checks is the single most dangerous deck resurfacing mistakes you can make.
2. Using the same material
There’s a reason your deck is in rough shape—it may have to do with poor maintenance, or it may be related to the quality the material used. Either way, there’s a strong argument for choosing a better, stronger material such as composite or a better variety of PT lumber. Using the same material over again, and failing to maintain it, will land you right back where you started in a few years’ time.
3. Overlooking the better contractor
There can be a significant difference in skill and training amongst competing contractors who specialist in deck resurfacing. Making a smart choice involves a bit of research, but it’s worth it. The best contractors will have solid reputations backed by consistent reviews, clear fee structures, and expert answers to your questions about deck resurfacing projects.
Steering clear of common mistakes
Even though deck resurfacing is (in many cases) a much better and more affordable option than complete deck replacement, it still represents a long-term investment that homeowners take seriously. Avoiding these common mistakes is a great way to keep your deck resurfacing project on the up-and-up.
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