Is it time to repaint your deck? The visual signs of a wooden deck in need of a little refurbishment are fairly obvious. You will begin to notice the previous coat of paint fading from the constant exposure to weather, the heavy foot traffic, and the other sources of wear and tear. Maybe the paint is even beginning to chip and chisel away, which can really make for an unpleasant look for your home.
Knowing when to repaint your deck, however, won’t only be a visual thing. You should also be financially prepared and have enough time set aside to give the project the necessary attention. It can be more work than you might think.
You have to choose the right paint and ensure that all of the necessary conditions are met, namely that you have the right materials and that the weather permits a proper painting. You will also have to set aside time to prepare the deck itself.
Getting Your Deck Ready for Painting
Depending on the nature of the previous paint job, preparing your deck can be quite extensive work but it’s necessary if you want to do things right.
You would first want to ensure that any repairs are made such as a broken or loose board. You can fill any major cracks and make sure that there are no noticeable blemishes.
You would also want to remove the previous coat of paint, probably by sanding, but if a power washer does the trick, you can use that. Either way, power washing may be a good idea and you will want to be sure that you wash the deck one way or another before painting.
Once you have washed the deck, you would want to allow it to dry for roughly 48 hours if it sits in a sunlit area. Otherwise, you may want to give it another day or more to dry thoroughly.
Choosing the Right Season to Paint
While you may assume summer to be the most appropriate time to paint a deck, this may not always be the case. As far as the actual act of painting, summer is, of course, ideal, but you may very well achieve better results painting during the fall.
Essentially, what you are looking for are the driest conditions possible. You can paint during the summer but you want to pick a few days that are expected to be dry rather than humid. Once you have painted, you want to give your deck a few days to dry properly.
Painting vs. Staining the Deck
Rather than paint, you may also consider staining your deck. Once you have stripped the wood of the previous coat of paint, you can do all of the necessary repairs and cleaning as you would with paint but instead apply a coat of stain. Stain really brings out the natural wood grain of your deck and provides a look that is both aesthetically wonderful and protective of the wood itself.