This deck had seen better days, but was still structurally sound. A few simple repairs brought it back to life.
Timber structures like decks, pergolas and balconies have a lot of enemies. Termites feed on timber, while corrosive elements, such as salt-laden coastal air, deteriorate nails, bolts, screws and fixing plates.
Do an annual inspection of timber structures, looking for early warning signs such as corrosion, excessive weathering or movement.
PROTECT the base of posts against rot, and the timber against weathering, by painting, staining or using water-repellent preservatives.
SEAL joints that have opened up.
REPLACE corroded bolts, popped or rusted nails or screws, using stainless steel fixings for longevity.
TIGHTEN loose balustrades.
CONSULT a structural engineer if you have any doubts.
Step 1. Remove old boards
Use a pry bar to lift and remove the section of old boards. Remove any nailgun-driven steel nails that have pulled through the deteriorated decking and remained in the joists using a claw hammer.
Step 2. Clean up the joists
Fill splits and nail holes in the top of the joists with a two-part filler. Once the filler has hardened, paint or seal the top of the joists to protect against water penetration and increase the longevity of the timber.
Step 3. Lay out boards
Loosely lay out the new decking boards in a staggered pattern and make sure there are no butt joints side by side on adjacent boards. Mark the position of the cuts using a pencil and try square.