The Steps to Restoring a Deck
deck restoration

The Steps to Restoring a Deck

October 18, 2018

If you have a deck that’s gone years without being refinished or re-stained, it’s a good time to start thinking about getting that job done. Of course, there’s more that goes into restoring a deck than adding some fresh stain.

With this in mind, here’s an overview of the steps associated with restoring a deck, beyond just deck staining in Cape Cod, MA.


Before you begin working on the wood of the deck, it’s important to check and see if you need to make any repairs. First, check any parts of the deck that make contact with the ground, including posts and joists. Check for structural damage by poking the wood with a screwdriver. If you have rot, you’ll need to replace the boards. Check all connections, including screws and nails, sinking them as necessary and adding new screws or nails wherever needed. Check for signs of cosmetic damage as well, which you may need to pay special attention to as you go through the restoration process.

Clean the wood

Every deck should be cleaned each year—most of the time you’ll be able to get away with using just a deck cleaner or brightener. Some of these products get mixed into a bucket and applied to a deck, while others come with applicators that you hook up to a garden hose. Use a stiff-bristle brush and rub the mixture into the wood. Be sure to wear gloves and eye protection, and cover any nearby plants.

If there are any really tough stains to remove, you may need to use a pressure washer. This is generally going to be a necessary step if your deck hasn’t had any attention in several years, but even if you keep up with your cleanings, it can be a helpful means of not just cleaning the deck, but also removing some of the old finish.


Once the deck is clean enough for your liking, you can apply the new stain. Make sure the deck is dry before you do this, unless you’ve chosen a stain that specifically says you can apply while the deck is still damp.

You’ll find there are several different types of stains you can choose from. For new wood, you can get away with using a clear or transparent stain. The older the deck, though, the more you’re going to want to start moving into semi-transparent, semi-opaque or opaque stains. In addition, you’ll have a hard time going back from a semi-opaque or opaque stain to a more transparent stain, so make sure you’ve thoroughly thought through the decision.

You can either use brushes and pads, or combinations of brushes and sprayers. Spraying is faster, but perhaps not quite as detailed.
We recommend doing all vertical elements of the deck, including railings and walls, before you do the floor boards. Be sure to get in between the boards!

Deck Restoration

For more information about deck staining in Cape Cod, MA, contact the team at Justino’s Painting today. We’re equipped to handle your deck staining job and look forward to working with you soon!

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