Paint Life Back into Your Deck

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Considering a new deck? First learn about elastomeric paint.

The Problem

Your deck looked luxurious and inviting . . . when it was brand new. If the surface of your deck was not maintained, even exotic hardwoods and pressure-treated lumber weather quickly in the harsh New England seasons.

 

The Fix

Popular for years amongst homeowners and professionals in the southern United States, elastomeric paint is beginning to command wider attention across the country. Because of its superior ability to fill cracks in wood and concrete, provide an even waterproof surface, and withstand extreme weather and temperature changes, elastomeric paints are ideal deck treatment products. There are paints currently available for use on both freshwater and marine docks. Unfortunately, this product will not cure rot, so any affected boards will need to be replaced.

 

Project scope

The average professional deck restoration using elastomeric resurfacing paint generally falls between $2,500 and $3,500. DIYers can buy paint for $30 to $50 a gallon, but be sure to read the manufacturer’s application instructions. This type of paint should go on thick and therefore each gallon covers less surface area: 75 to 100 square feet per gallon as opposed to 400 square feet per gallon for sealer or stain.

 

A deck restoration project typically progresses in three steps. First, the deck must be completely power-washed and all old paint must be removed. Next, all handrails must be sanded and nails set below the deck’s surface. Lastly is the application of two coats of elastomeric restoration paint with a brush, roller, or airless sprayer to all surfaces receiving foot and hand traffic. Including drying time, a professional can complete this project within 5 days.

 

Pros and Cons

This product makes your deck safe for everyone’s bare feet and can prolong its life for several years, but as it is paint, the deck will lose its “natural-wood” appearance. However, the diverse color selections available make it easy to add a striking or subtle accent to your home’s exterior.

Steve Zayatz (left), Paint Manager in our Eastham Office adds: “Our paint division has completed many elastomeric paint jobs on pressure treated wood over the past few years. We have re-inspected them and they are holding up very well. This is a perfect option for anybody looking to extend the lifespan of an old pressure-treated deck as opposed to spending considerably more money rebuilding it.”

Paul Dunn (right), Paint Manager in our Yarmouthport Office adds: “If you decide to apply this treatment to your deck, follow instructions carefully! Here are some tips:

1. Apply with a brush and roller only, no spray.

2. Has to go on thick, 1 gallon covers 100 sq. ft. per coat.

4. Rusty nail heads will bleed through. Setting flush nails is labor intensive and expensive. Use filler prior to applying treatment.

5. Product can be walked on within 24-48 hours. It has to cure for 7 days or more depending on humidity before furniture can be put on it.”

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