A Refinishing Study
Refinishing decks is actually fun for us. We see all kinds of decks and all kinds of conditions. Once we accept that a deck can be restored to its original surface condition (or near new), we attack the job. The deck pictured below was not in the worst shape but it had aging problems with deeply embedded stain and weathering in cracks that had formed. Some decks we see look worse but are easier to sand as the damage is more surface oriented.
First we clean (moderate power wash) the deck entirely to get rid of loose material from peeling and flaking, we also make sure splinters are removed and all deck screws are back into the wood and making the deck secure. In this case we had to go a bit deeper to get at the aging gray areas knowing we would need to sand deeper to get to the fresh wood.
Once the deck is ready we begin with sanding. Those with experience will know that sanding is a labour intensive process as the entire top layer of the wood needs to be shed to allow the stain to penetrate the wood. Some of you might be thinking, "well, I have a clean surface, why don't I just paint it?"- given the limitless colour options and possibly eliminating most of the labour, this is a mistake. We at King City Decks have seen countless surfaces, new and old, ruined by the smothering properties of latex paint. Wood needs to breathe and expel moisture to prevent rot and decay. With a solid covering the rate of decay is exponentially increased and can often spread into the deck frame itself. Sometimes it's necessary to begin with 40 grit paper when deck hasn't been looked after for years but we usually end up with 80/100 grit to finish and prep for staining.We sanded again with a lighter grit paper to tighten the wood pores and fibers up.
The deck is sanded, we now wait for weather to behave with about 3 nice sunny days in a row, and apply the stain/sealer in the shade selected by the customer. We use Cutek premium stain because it is simply the best available coating and sealer on the market. It's time to apply some stain. with Cutek products, the colour tones are added to the oil so there are actually many options to tint your surface to your personal aesthetic. Adding the colour tones also increases the UV protection for the wood keeping your deck looking newer for longer.
When applying stain we always complete full deck boards continuous one end to the other and we don't allow partially stained wood pieces to dry, otherwise there is a risk of lines or uneven spots showing up on the finish. We use a deck brush - typically the width of a deck board with many bristles to allow for maximum stain penetration and even distribution. The oil-based stains work by soaking deep into the wood fibers to provide lasting protection and a breathable surface. Actually, Cutek is designed to build up protection over years and a compounding effect happens the more staining that is done. Less stain is used in subsequent applications.
Voila! Your deck is looking brand new and is much more protected from the elements. We recommend cleaning the deck regularly with a light cleaner and garden hose, and reapplying stain every two years to maximize the lifespan of your deck. With constant upkeep, no further sanding is required.
Durability and Maintenance
Let's start with one of the most important factors to consider: durability and maintenance. You want your deck to be able to withstand the elements and the wear and tear of regular use without requiring constant upkeep. Some materials, like wood, require regular sealing and staining to protect against rot and decay. Others, like composite decking, are virtually maintenance-free and only need occasional cleaning to look their best.
If you're looking for a material that is both durable and low-maintenance, composite decking is a great option. Made from a blend of recycled plastics and wood fibers, composite decking is resistant to mold, mildew, fading, and stains. It doesn't require sanding, staining, or sealing, making it a hassle-free choice for busy homeowners.
Aesthetics and Design
Your deck is an extension of your home, so it's important to choose a material that complements your home's style and your personal taste. Wood decking is known for its natural beauty and warmth, and it comes in a variety of colors and finishes. Composite decking offers a more uniform look and is available in a range of colors, textures, and finishes.
When selecting your deck material, think about the overall design aesthetic you're going for. Do you want a traditional wood deck, or are you looking for something more modern? Consider your home's architectural style and color scheme, as well as your outdoor furniture and décor.
Of course, cost is an important factor to consider when choosing your deck material. Wood decking is generally less expensive upfront than composite decking, but it may require more maintenance over time. Composite decking, on the other hand, can be more expensive upfront but may save you money in the long run due to its low maintenance requirements and long lifespan.
When thinking about cost, don't forget to factor in installation costs, as well as any additional features you may want, such as built-in seating or lighting. You want to make sure you're getting the best value for your investment.
If you're environmentally conscious, you may be interested in choosing a deck material that is eco-friendly and sustainable. Wood decking can be a sustainable option when sourced from responsibly managed forests, but it may also contribute to deforestation and the carbon footprint associated with transporting and treating the wood.
Composite decking, on the other hand, is often made from recycled materials and can be a more eco-friendly choice. Many composite decking manufacturers are committed to reducing waste and greenhouse gas emissions.
Consider the environmental impact of your deck material and choose a product that aligns with your values.
Safety and Code Compliance
Finally, it's important to ensure that your deck is safe and up to code. Different materials may have different load-bearing capacities and requirements for railings and other safety features. Make sure you're aware of any local building codes or regulations that may affect your deck design and construction.
When choosing your deck material, keep these five factors in mind: durability and maintenance, aesthetics and design, cost, environmental impact, and safety and code compliance. By considering each of these factors, you can make an informed choice that meets your needs and enhances your outdoor living space.
Building a deck with a composite surface is the perfect way to create an outdoor living space that looks amazing and requires little to no maintenance. With traditional wood decks, be it cedar or pressure treated timber, the wood weathers, and ages fairly rapidly. To prevent this, you must apply oils and stains which help to keep the wood healthy and fresh looking. The process to apply stain to a weathered deck can be costly as there are many steps including cleaning, brightening, and sanding before any stain can even be applied. Over the lifespan of your deck, say 25-35 years, you would do this at least 5 or 6 times so you can imagine how the maintenance costs can start to add up.
Now if we consider using composite or pvc, yes there is a higher upfront cost, but over the course of 50 years (which is the warranty of many of the products that we, at King City Decks install!) those higher costs turn into long term savings.
The installation process of these boards is unique as well. We use a clip-fastening system that ensures there are no visible screws and perfectly straight and equal board spacing. With the different colours and styles of boards available, it is easy to customize your deck with different borders or accents which can add a unique element of style to your project. As for the sides of your deck there are matching boards and specialized fasteners to cover the entire deck frame (unless your deck is elevated in which case click "HERE" to see deck under-siding options).
When it comes to building a deck, there are many different styles to choose from. Each style has its own unique advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to carefully consider your needs and preferences before making a decision. In this article, we'll take a look at some of the most popular deck styles and discuss the pros and cons of each.
The traditional deck style is perhaps the most popular and recognizable. It usually features a rectangular or square shape with a railing around the perimeter. Traditional decks are great for hosting parties and gatherings, as they provide plenty of space for seating and socializing. They're also relatively easy to build and can be customized with a variety of materials and finishes.
A wraparound deck is a great option if you want to take advantage of a beautiful view or create multiple access points to your yard. This style features a deck that wraps around the entire perimeter of your house, providing plenty of space for outdoor living and entertaining. Wraparound decks are also great for maximizing the amount of usable outdoor space you have.
If you have a small yard or a limited budget, a platform deck may be the best option for you. This style features a simple, low-profile design with a flat surface that is perfect for small gatherings or intimate dinners. Platform decks are also great for adding a pop of color to your outdoor space with colorful rugs, cushions, and accessories.
In conclusion, choosing the right deck style for your needs and preferences will depend on a variety of factors, including the size and shape of your yard, your budget, and your desired level of maintenance. By carefully considering these factors and weighing the pros and cons of each style, with the help of the professionals at King City Decks you can choose the deck that is right for you and your family.
If you’re looking for some fresh deck design inspiration to take your outdoor living space to the next level, look no further! In this blog post, we're going to explore some creative ideas for designing a deck that will make your backyard the envy of the neighborhood.
Add Some Shade
While soaking up the sun on your deck is great, sometimes it can be too much of a good thing. Adding some shade to your deck design can make your outdoor space more comfortable and enjoyable, especially on those hot summer days. Consider incorporating a pergola or retractable awning into your design for a stylish and functional touch.
Go for the Greens
Adding some greenery to your deck can instantly liven up the space and make it feel more inviting. Consider incorporating some planters, hanging baskets, or even a vertical garden to add some natural beauty to your deck design. Not only will it look great, but plants can also help improve air quality and reduce stress.
Get Creative with Lighting
Outdoor lighting can set the mood and make your deck design feel cozy and inviting. Consider incorporating some string lights, lanterns, or even a chandelier for a touch of elegance. Don't be afraid to get creative with your lighting design and experiment with different types and styles.
Mix and Match Materials
Don't be afraid to mix and match materials in your deck design to create a unique and eye-catching look. Consider incorporating different types of wood, stone, or even metal for a textured and layered effect. This can also help add visual interest to your deck design and make it stand out from traditional designs.
Creating different zones on your deck can make it feel more functional and versatile. Consider incorporating separate areas for dining, lounging, and entertaining to make the most of your outdoor space. This can also help create a sense of flow and organization in your deck design.
Add Some Color
Finally, don't forget to add some color to your deck design! Whether you incorporate colorful cushions, a bold rug, or even a bright accent wall, adding some pops of color can help make your outdoor space feel lively and inviting. Don't be afraid to get creative and experiment with different color palettes and patterns.
So, there you have it - some creative ideas to help elevate your outdoor living space! Whether you're looking for a cozy reading nook or a place to entertain guests, there are plenty of ways to transform your deck into a beautiful and inviting outdoor oasis.
Building a new deck can be an exciting and rewarding project that adds value and enjoyment to your home. However, before you embark on this journey, you'll need to decide whether you should build the deck yourself or hire a professional to do it for you. Both options have their pros and cons, so it's important to weigh them carefully before making a decision.
DIY Deck Building
One of the main benefits of building a deck yourself is cost savings. By doing the work yourself, you can save on labor costs and potentially purchase materials at a lower price point. Additionally, building your own deck can be a satisfying and rewarding experience, allowing you to take pride in your handiwork and potentially learn new skills.
However, it's important to keep in mind that building a deck requires a significant amount of time, effort, and skill. If you're not experienced with carpentry, you may find that the process is more difficult than you anticipated. You'll also need to ensure that you have the necessary tools and safety equipment, which can add to the overall cost of the project.
Hiring a Professional
Hiring a professional to build your deck can be an appealing option if you don't have the time, skill, or desire to take on the project yourself. A professional deck builder can provide expertise and guidance throughout the process, ensuring that your deck is built to code and meets your specific needs and preferences.
Another benefit of hiring a professional is that they typically have access to a wider range of materials and can offer more design options. They can also provide guarantees or warranties on their work, giving you peace of mind that your deck will be built to last.
Of course, hiring a professional deck builder does come at a cost. You'll need to budget for labor and materials, which can be significantly higher than if you were to do the work yourself. You'll also need to do your due diligence when selecting a contractor, ensuring that they have the necessary licenses, insurance, and experience to complete the job to your satisfaction.
Making the Decision
When deciding whether to build your deck yourself or hire a professional, it's important to consider your own skill level, available time, and budget. If you're comfortable with carpentry and have the necessary tools and equipment, building your own deck may be a viable option. However, if you lack experience or are short on time, hiring a professional can ensure that your deck is built to the highest standards and meets all necessary requirements.
Ultimately, the decision comes down to personal preference and priorities. Whichever route you choose, remember that building a deck is a significant investment in your home, and it's important to do it right the first time to ensure that you get the most out of your new outdoor space.
Define the Space
Before you start furnishing your deck, consider how you want to use the space. Will it be an outdoor dining area, a cozy reading nook, or a place to gather with friends? Once you have a clear idea of how you want to use your deck, you can begin to define the space with furniture and décor.
Choose Durable Materials
Outdoor furniture and décor should be able to withstand the elements, so it's important to choose materials that are weather-resistant and durable. Look for items made from materials such as teak, aluminum, or synthetic wicker, which are all known for their durability and resistance to moisture, sun, and wind.
If you have a large deck, consider creating different zones for different activities. For example, you could have a dining area, a lounge area, and a bar area. Use furniture and decor to define each zone and create a cohesive look that ties everything together.
Add Color and Texture
Just like indoors, adding color and texture can help bring your outdoor space to life. Consider incorporating colorful throw pillows, outdoor rugs, and patterned cushions to add interest and warmth to your deck.
Outdoor lighting can create a warm and inviting ambiance, making your deck the perfect place to spend summer evenings. Consider adding string lights, lanterns, or even built-in lighting to highlight key features and create a cozy atmosphere.
Plants and greenery can add life and beauty to any outdoor space. Consider adding potted plants or hanging baskets to your deck to create a lush, tropical vibe. If you have a green thumb, you could even create a small herb garden or container garden to add fresh herbs and vegetables to your outdoor meals.
Don't Forget the Details
Finally, don't forget to add personal touches and details that reflect your style and personality. Whether it's a colorful outdoor rug, a unique piece of wall art, or a cozy outdoor throw blanket, these small touches can go a long way in creating a space that feels truly your own.
In conclusion, furnishing and decorating your deck can transform it into a beautiful and functional outdoor oasis that you'll love to spend time in. By following these tips and getting creative with your décor, you can create a space that reflects your style and meets your needs, making your deck the perfect place to relax and unwind.