Five Solutions for a shabby deck
To revive a shabby deck, there are five main directions you can go, and we'll guide you through them all.
Solution 1: Clean & refinish
Solution 2: Deck Restoration Coatings
Solution 3: Replace the Deck Boards
It's not the easiest option, but replacing your wooden deck boards with synthetic decking (composite or PVC) might be your best investment, in both time and money. In just a few weekends and with basic carpentry tools, you can have a stunning deck that looks brand new and will look great for many years.
Costs vary widely for synthetic decking, but expect to pay anywhere from $5 to $10 per square foot. Be warned, however, that synthetic decking requires closer spacing of joists and stair stringers (maximum 16 in. apart), so you might have lots of framing to do.
Cost: Varies widely, but generally $5 to $10 per sq. ft.
Life Span: Can easily last 20 years or more.
- Low maintenance - just needs occasional cleaning.
- Stands up well to heavy traffic.
- Lasts for decades.
- Can use screws or hidden fasteners.
- Wood grain patterns available with many brands.
- Lots of color choices.
- You'll have to tear off the old decking first - a huge job.
- Gets very hot when the sun hits it (especially dark colors and dense boards).
- Doesn't look like real wood (but some brands come close).
- Can be slippery when wet.
- You'll need a building permit and inspection.
- It's a lot of work to install.
- You'll need a dumpster for all the old material.