Decks are without a doubt the surface
that takes the hardest pounding from the weather of anything out there. I mean come on they get everything
from snow and freezing rain to 105° ambient temperature which can equate to 130° on the walking surface. They get
water sitting on them for extended time. While we can properly treat the surface , once you have allowed
it to start to crack and decay it will require a lot more work.
The newer synthetic surfaces hold up really well but they still require cleaning and maintenance.
I think these surfaces are great and as we go forward they are making them to look better and last longer.
But like any exterior surface you can’t let them go to long or there is trouble.
Up until 2006 we had what we felt was a superior deck
treatment system using Cupernol water based tinted sealer. In their infinite wisdom,
and without asking me, Sherwin Williams decided to cancel this line. In the interim we tried a variety
of products from different vendors with OK results. At the end of last year (2007)we finally settled on
the product that we know is the best on the market and has a wide variety of colors in its stock stains (12) .
WOOD STAINS from Armstrong-Clark. The previous link takes you to their website to review the product.
No matter what product we use, decks will require regular and scheduled upkeep. When
you chose color and type of stain remember that the more opaque the color and type of stain the longer it will last, you also
need to consider the decks layout to the sun. Fully shaded decks will last longer than all day sun. Armstrong
is the only deck finish on the market today that we can apply at any temperature any time of the year.
The initial pass will require us to strip the deck and fully
sand, then the maintenance passes will require a lot less prep work. We can usually do the maintenance
pass to just the walking surfaces for about 30-40% of the full deck redo. We can refinish any deck in any
stage the difference will show up in how often we will have to do maintenance passes, the longer you have let your deck go
the more often we will have to work on it.
Decks remind me of the old Aamco transmission commercial “You can pay me now or you can pay me latter”
and we all know latter is usually way more expensive .