Wednesday, July 10, 2013

DIY: Revitalize a Tired Deck or Patio Surface

by Sheila

The deck is done, the sun is setting, and it's time for happy hour!

The view from the deck out to the golf course on our newest investment venture 

I know I am not alone in enjoying spending time outdoors.  I like having a cup of coffee outside in the morning, and unwinding there in the evening.  This is why I am excited about some of the outdoor space in the Cairo investment property we recently purchased.  It has a great balcony off the master bedroom with a view of the golf course.  The plus side is that the balcony is a decent size (7' by 14') and gets morning sun and afternoon shade.  It is structurally sound.  The downside is that the wood has taken a beating from the Arizona sun and it appears to be leaking to the breakfast nook underneath it.  It also looks "rough" with the guardrail in need of paint and the wood itself needing sprucing up.  Hmmm, what to do?

I started with a consultation with my Dad, my go-to expert on all things construction.  He agreed that it could be salvaged.  I just needed to figure out exactly how.  I did a little internet research and discovered a product that claims to coat wood or cement surfaces and fill gaps of up to 1/4".  It rolls on like paint and provides a textured surface; comfortable to walk on, but not slippery. Along with this, they sell a caulk that is specially designed to work with this product.  I decided to give it a try.  I checked my local Lowe's store for deck coating products, and they had this one, as well as one made by Glidden.  When I compared them, the Rustoleum product only coats 50 square feet per gallon, which is half what the Glidden covers.  At first glance, you might think the Glidden product is the way to go because for about the same price, it will go further.  However, I decided the Rustoleom product was my better choice because since it won't go as far, it should produce a thicker coat.

The first step was to make sure the deck was clean.  I bought a deck and siding cleaner that attaches to the hose and sprayed it good with that product, and brushed it with a deck brush on an extension pole.  I then sanded and spray painted the railing with a paint plus primer black spray paint.  There is nothing like a fresh coat of paint to spruce things up!

I then added sections of 1 x 2 cut to size to fill gaps between the deck and the siding on the house. These were screwed in place and caulked.  The tedious part was using the caulking to seal between each of the boards.  This took 5 tubes of caulk, 7 splinters in my hands and about two and a half hours.  The last step was rolling on the Rustoleum deck product.   I first brushed it around the railing posts and up against the house, and then used a roller with an extension handle.  It goes on very thick and textured.  I recommend the roller that they sell with it, as this adds to the textured finish. It can be mixed in a variety of colors, and I chose Saddle.  

After cleaning, I added strips of 1 x 2 and caulked around these to seal the edges against the house

The caulking complete (the hardest part of the project) and the railing spray-painted

The product I used in the color Saddle
Paint around the deck rails with a paintbrush before you roll
You can see the texture here as I roll it on and it's still wet
Don't wear you new shoes - lots of splatter with this roller ;-)

Balcony restoration complete.   I'm quite pleased with the results!  Supposed to work well on cement surfaces as well.  I'd try it on a cement surface - I'm sure I'll have an opportunity before too long!


  1. I love RESTORE, used it on deck two years ago and reposted the process on my blog this Spring. I love your view!

  2. I love to see restore projects. Very cool.

  3. I'm one of many who enjoy spending time relaxing outdoors. And it's just an overall better experience when the space is clean, so I understand why you wanted to do this restoration job. Thanks for sharing, Shiela! Might try to use Restore for a deck job too.

  4. I also used to consult my old man when it comes to the kind of stain to use, especially when I encounter that type of wood for the first time. It's hard to decide which stain type and color would give a dramatic effect since certain wood species absorb stain quite differently. How's the deck looking now? It's smart that you opted for one that gives the surface some texture. The deck is one of the most active spaces and a lot can happen on a slippery floor.

  5. Looking at a very beautiful view while sipping coffee on a beautiful deck! Your mornings must be quite exquisite! It’s pretty obvious that your deck project is worth all the mess and paint spatter in your shoes. Although next time, it might be best to wrap them up with some plastic or such. Haha! David @ DAL Builders