Rebuild or Resurface Deck?

thaprankstaOctober 8, 2011


This is my first post on the forum. I moved into a very nice home originally purchased in 2008 and neglected a nice bit by the previous owner. To sum it up, nothing at the home was really properly maintained. The original owner had a dog and CAT....that might give you an idea of some of the main issues we are facing. :rolleyes:

Anyway, my first issue I've decided to inquire about is the deck outside. It looks pretty weathered in the 3 year span of non-maintenance. Structurally it is holding up and not feeling like it will collapse or anything drastic like that but there are rather large cracks in some of the posts. There are areas that look greenish and look mildewed as well but these are not large areas.

I want to revitalize this deck if it can be salvaged and possibly add on to it myself or hire a contractor in the future to do the work. I am very much a DIY'er but I also don't have much construction experience.

I will post pictures up ASAP that might depict the damage that's been done.

My little deck


Post with Cracks




Mold? Mildew?



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If it is structurally sound, much easier to refinish with new deck boards, faceboards and rails then to replace whole deck. Some cracks in the posts are normal. If they are not seated properly on footings, that needs to be fixed. Check if deck is level. Does deck move as someone jumps up and down?(someone other than observer). resurface and refinish is a lot of work, but much easier for inexperienced person and does not require any knowledge of structural issues.

3 important rules for deck boards
1) If existing deck is diagonal boards, either replace with new diagonal boards or add structural cross bracing.
2)Unless boards are full length, do not have adjacent boards end at same point.
4) If changing thickness of boards/materials, check spacing of joists. (Measure distance between screws on a board simplest way to check. If diagonal decking, then effectively a longer span than physical distance.) Different maximum spans for different materials. This is particularly a problem if switching to straight plastic deck boards which is very soft.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 7:21AM
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If you can post your photos directly into the message, it'll be more likely that us lazy folks will respond, as it's a pain to copy your links and paste them one by one into a new browser tab/window.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 2:15PM
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I actually would have but I have no idea how to do it. This forum is different from any other forum I've been on in the past.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 3:03PM
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In photobucket click on the code in the "html code" box and paste it into the text of your message.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2011 at 5:42PM
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