Author Topic: Wood Deck Restore  (Read 1958 times)


  • Stubble
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    • This Frugal Father
Wood Deck Restore
« on: April 05, 2016, 11:50:02 AM »
I plan on doing a deck restore sometime this Spring or Summer and when I went to Home Depot they tried to push the DeckOver paint on me, and it looks like there are a few products on the market like DeckOver, Rustoleum and something else, however after reading many comments it sounds like the material strips and chips after only a few months.  Our deck is around 15*20 and is painted over.  The paint is coming up however the wood is in tact and not rotting (yet).  We have a screened in porch that is out of the elements but that wood is fine so I only planned on doing the uncovered side but would like to match the gray color under the porch. 

I was planning on giving it a cleaning then using the DeckOver to paint (says covers 75 feet at 2 coats for around $35/can - so around so would need 4-5 gallons) but now I'm really nervous after reading reviews that this product and others that are similar end up chipping and peeling away after a short period of time. 

Anyone do any deck restores have any advice or used any of these products?


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: Wood Deck Restore
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2016, 04:02:48 PM »
I prefer stain; either clear or opaque.  Stained it five years ago (opaque) and it's just starting to wear.  I have never used the DeckOver paint.  This summer I plan on power-washing and restaining it.


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: Wood Deck Restore
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2016, 11:00:39 AM »
The problem with painting decks is that you're committed - if it chips, you have to either repaint, strip/sand it all off (hassle!) or replace the boards.

I have not personally used the DeckOver paint, and probably wouldn't. I just bought a place with a painted deck, and we'll probably do a full replacement this summer to get it back to stained wood, which looks better and is a lot easier to maintain.

Some folks have had success pulling the nails and flipping the boards over - this lets you paint on the wood instead of trying to paint over old paint. An exterior primer might give you better results, too.

Worst case, replace the boards and try something different.


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: Wood Deck Restore
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2016, 11:18:23 AM »
The thing about those deck restorer products is that you have to be really thorough in your preparation to ensure proper adhesion (i.e., to avoid peeling etc.). For many people the temptation is to use such products to cover up past sins rather than properly addressing them, but that's a sure recipe for failure here.

Of course that raises the question of the overall value of these products in the first place. If you do everything "right", then you're going to end up with a deck surface that shouldn't really need the heavy covering power of these products anyway. Unless of course your problems are actually caused by overly-aggressive cleaning/prep, which is a possibility I suppose.

I should note that it's not just the restore products that you have to worry about these days; due to changes in VOC content standards, even the regular stains and such seem to be more prone to chipping and peeling. I redid my deck last fall with the exact same make/model/color of stain that I had used the last time. Whereas that previous stain job lasted for several years without incident, this one is already starting to show a few small problem areas. Could be user error, but I suspect that the new stuff simply isn't as good at adhering/penetrating as the equivalent product from years ago.


  • Stubble
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Re: Wood Deck Restore
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2016, 04:56:03 PM »
Painting contractor here, but opinions vary.

I am decidedly not a big fan of "deck-over" type products.  They are basically putting a thick coating of plastic on the deck.  Any imperfections in prep, and often standing water (or snow) will cause them to peel right back off.  They are a last-ditch effort for people who really should be replacing the boards.

If your deck was previously painted, you will have the film visibly coming off.  You have to remove any that is not adhered completely.  Get any obvious areas with a scraper, and then powerwash with a mild bleach/detergent solution (like Jomax) to get off any mildew or dirt.  From there it is a good idea to sand all areas with some heavy grit (60-80) sandpaper just to feather in the edges of the missing paint and providing some roughed areas to help the next layer adhere.  Once you've done this, one coat of solid stain on uprights and two coats on horizontal areas following the manufacturer's dry times.  I use Sherwin-Williams commercially, but actually like the less expensive (5 year) Behr solid stain from Home Depot.  In most cases, coatings will not hold up past 5 years or so in most areas on horizontal surfaces- pretty much no matter what product you use.   Sun, snow, rain, whatever the climate, it will deteriorate. 

If there isn't much peeling, it was probably a solid stain, not a paint.  While there isn't much of a difference between the two, stain tends to be lighter bodied and soaks into the wood better.