Don’t Replace Your Deck, Restore it!
If your deck is aging and looks worn and splintered, you may be considering replacing it. But why replace it when you can simply restore it? Keeping up with deck maintenance is important to keep your deck looking its best, but it also keeps the wood healthy. At Seal-A-Deck, we only use bio-safe wood strippers, cleaners and conditioners to prep surfaces. We care about the overall health of your deck and the environment.
Use eco-friendly products
The first step of restoring a deck is washing, cleaning, and conditioning with bio-degradable products. These are safer for your yard, family, and pets, as they do not contain the harsh chemicals that are in abrasive cleaners. They also are safer for the environment. Especially when cleaning outdoors, bio-degradable products should be top priority. The water from rinsing off a deck after cleaning can run into the sewer, garden, and can even be breathed in or absorbed into the skin. If the products being used are not bio-degradable, they are harming the environment and can potentially harm you as well. We use only the best and safest products available to us and stand behind them 100%.
Avoid abrasive cleansers
Abrasive cleaners such as bleach and harsh chemicals are known to be bad for humans as well as the environment. Bleach is harmful to breathe in and can cause irritations if it comes in contact with skin. It can also kill plants, grass, and discolor surfaces and clothing. Other harsh chemicals can have the same effects. These products cause damage to wood fibers, plants, and the environment and they put your health at risk. Just because something is rinsed away does not mean it is gone. Residue of these harsh chemicals can linger on surfaces and go into sewer runoffs. Think of your deck as an investment. Why would you want to throw harsh chemicals on your deck?
Choose the right finish
After the surface has been prepped and had time to dry thoroughly, we return to sand the surface (depending on the condition of the wood we would perform a light, medium or heavy power sand) and then apply a sealer or stain to the surface by hand using a lamb’s wool pad. During this process, we would replace any boards or rails that need replacing, and secure any loose nails, etc. When choosing a sealer or stain, there are many different types of products; below you will find a list of each, and a description of what they are used for. We always encourage clients to have a look at our portfolio to get an idea of completed looks. If you need assistance choosing the finish that is right for you, we would love to help.
- Clear Waterproofing Sealer: Protects wood from sun and moisture while allowing the wood to gray naturally. This product provides minimal UV protection and is recommended when the most natural look of wood is desired. This product will stabilize wood fibers while allowing the wood to have a silvery gray patina.
- Toned Sealer: Long-lasting, penetrating product that enriches the appearance of wood with a light tone. This is the perfect balance between UV protection and not peeling. Most recommended to show the beautiful grain of wood and is the most economical to maintain.
- Semi-Transparent Stain: Provides a rich semi-transparent appearance that allows the wood grain texture to show through. With subsequent treatments it will continuously become more opaque and susceptible to peeling. This is recommended when deep blemishes in the wood need to be blended using deeper pigments.
- Solid Color Stain: Provides durable, opaque protection for all exterior horizontal wood surfaces. It will hide the wood grain and look like paint but last longer because of its elasticity. This product will eventually peel because the film dries on the surface instead of penetrating into the wood. This is recommended for previously painted decks or older neglected wood decks when restoration is not chosen. This has the most UV protection.
The initial cost of restoring a deck is more than ongoing maintenance, however replacing that same deck usually costs more than three times the amount of restoration. By completing a deck restoration, and keeping up with your light annual maintenance, its life will be prolonged and it will look beautiful year-round. You will absolutely love your newly restored deck!