Painting or staining your deck can effectively enrich your outdoor space and your home. It can complement the landscape surrounding your deck based on your choice of colour. A colour wheel can definitely help you when choosing your finish as you want to keep your home’s exterior colours in mind – since the deck acts as a cohesive unit and a complement to your home.

Choosing a New Finish

Who ever thought that refinishing your deck could be fun? Every chore is an outlet for creativity if you allow it to be.

Consider the different finish products that available to you. Right now there are four main types, all of them with their own pros and cons. The one you decide on will not only determine the appearance of your deck, but also how long it will last and how it should be maintained. If its most serious problems are a few cracks resulting from weather conditions, soak-in stains may the solution. They won’t produce a surface film, but will take care of the cracks and seal out water.

Those who are mainly concerned with aesthetics might want to consider a translucent, varnish-type finish. A quality finishing product will leave your deck looking like a brand new table. Maintaining this will be very difficult though, as this type of finish needs to be completely stripped and reapplied around every three years.

If you don’t have the energy or the funds to do this, or you’re more concerned with your deck’s durability than its outward appearance, an opaque, paint-style finish might appeal to you. They almost completely obscure the wood’s natural appearance and thus may take away some of the rustic charm, but will last for about five years. This makes them the most durable of any of the finish products discussed here, and this is due in part to their great resistance to abrasion. If your space sees a lot of foot traffic, an opaque finish may be the product for you. However, this opaque finish will probably need to be redone more often.

When choosing your finish, it is important to keep general wear and tear in mind. Clear water repellents help protect your deck from moisture and the problems, such as warping, splitting, and cracking, that it causes. High quality products of this type will yield a crisp, fresh look, but you will need to strip, lighten and reapply the finish every 12-18 months.

Furthermore, these finishes don’t repel dirt nearly as well as they repel water. Mark Knaebe, a surface chemist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Products Laboratory in Madison, Wisconsin, has recommended products based on paraffin oils and preservatives as the most effective clear water repellents.

Refinishing your deck can be treacherous, and it can be very difficult for the DIY enthusiast. The preparation is even more important than the final steps, and making a mistake during either can cause the entire project to go sideways. Odd Job Handyman Services counts deck maintenance among its specialties, and we would like to help you reclaim your outdoor space. Click below to get a FREE estimate with us for service in the Greater Toronto Area!

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