Knowing when it is time to Maintain or Repair your Deck


If you have a deck at your home, you probably consider it a very important aspect of the house. People spend a lot of time on their decks with BBQ’s, parties, family functions, etc. Although most of that time is spent during Spring and Summer; your deck takes a beating from the elements year round. Heat, cold, rain, and snow, all start to break your deck down over time. Some of this wear and tear might not be noticeable right away. Unlike a car; your deck doesn’t have a “check engine” light to alert you to potential problems. That being the case, there are still things you can look for and be aware of to add longevity to your deck.

Deck Repairs

Often times it’s easy to spot areas that may need repair. Sometimes however, the damage is well concealed and not noticeable until it becomes a much larger problem. Pay attention for soft spots, squeaky, areas, loose or cracked boards and rails, loose screws or nails.  Any of these problems may be need for repairs. It is also a good idea to look underneath the deck from time to time if possible. Keep an eye out for any areas of dry rot or potential problems. Pay close attention to the “legs” or any other support areas of the deck. You may want to consult a deck contractor if you suspect any serious problems, or are  simply unsure.

Deck Maintenance

You may not even know when it’s time to maintain your deck, or what type of maintenance is required. Regular maintenance can help prevent the need for costly repairs. One of the most important things you can do to maintain your deck is to seal it from moisture. Stains / Sealers not only improve the look of your deck, but protect if from the damaging effects of sun and rain. Decks need to be cleaned and sealed from time to time. Debris stuck between deck boards needs to be washed out, allowing the deck to “breath”. Mold and Mildew should be removed, as well as the “graying” of boards. Over time the deck boards may become gray with black areas from sun exposure, like a sun burn. Decks can be washed off with low pressure soft washing and deck detergents. 

Staining/Sealing Decks

After cleaning the deck it is a good idea to have it stained and sealed . Most people will either call it “Stain” or “Sealer” . Both are usually combined in an oil (or water) based product for sealing wood.  As previously mentioned the sealers will help prevent water and sun damage. Most quality sealers usually protect for about three years. One way to know if your deck needs to be sealed is to pour water on it. You want the water to “bead” up and sit on the surface of the deck boards. This would indicate that the water is not penetrating the boards and you have rain protection. 

If the water spreads out across the boards and doesn’t bead up, then it is penetrating the wood’s surface. The boards will darken as the moisture sets in. This is an indication that the deck needs to be sealed. It is taking in moisture and has no rain protection. 

Hiring the Right Contractor for your Deck Maintenance

If you don’t plan on doing your own maintenance or repairs you will need a qualified contractor. We always suggest you check that they are licensed and insured as a bare minimum. Check their reviews and ask about  the procedures and materials they use. If you happen to be in Chico, or surrounding areas of Butte County, including Durham CA, choose SPEEDY-CLEAN Painting & Pressure Washing. We have been in business since 1995 and specialize in decks. From cleaning, staining/sealing, and repairs, to complete restoration. We do it all! 


Speedy-Clean Painting & Pressure Washing logo with registration mark



Leave a Comment