A deck can make a wonderful addition to any home, providing you with an excellent outdoor entertaining space and an opportunity to create lifelong memories. However, decks are routinely exposed to extreme weather conditions and can easily fall into disrepair if you’re not careful.
Whether it’s from heavy rainfall, harsh sunlight or just heavy usage, there’s a good chance that your deck may require some urgent repairs. It’s important that you regularly do a thorough inspection of your deck to spot any areas of concern and ensure the continued safety of you, your guests and your family.
When inspecting your deck, you must be on the lookout for the telltale signals you need to undergo deck restorations. Here are 5 of the most common signs that your deck needs repairing.
- Unstable railings
If your deck has loose or unstable railings, this should be an immediate safety concern that requires immediate attention. This is especially true if your deck is highly elevated, as someone leaning on your railing could seriously injure themselves if it were to break. If you have young children, a fall from even a small height could seriously hurt them. Unstable railings should be taken very seriously and fixed right away once spotted.
Your railing posts should all be tightly secured in your deck and remain sturdy when used for support. Depending on the condition of your deck, you may need to entirely replace your railings as opposed to simply repairing the ones you already have. Problems such as rot are often the cause of loose railings, as they can cause your timber to grow soft and even deteriorate over time.
- Sinking supports
If your deck seems to be sinking, chances are this is due to a problem with its foundation. Your deck needs to be able to support a considerable amount of weight, from both your furniture and anyone that uses it. If you have a weak foundation, your deck will struggle to hold enough weight and may be at risk of collapsing.
The concrete footings that your deck is supported by can easily become damaged and are at risk of cracking or dropping into the soil. If your deck appears to be sinking, check its footings and assess its stability and condition.
- Loose or damaged boards
No matter how well you weather-proof or stain your boards, the 24/7 exposure to outdoor weather conditions can take its toll over time. A few splinters here and there don’t pose an immediate risk and can be easily replaced if need be.But if you’re noticing this problem throughout the entire deck, you may need to rebuild it completely.
Wooden decks are said to last up to 25 years if they’re well maintained, so you shouldn’t have to worry about this very often as long as the proper care is given.
- Rusty, loose or missing screws and connectors
Damaged or missing screws and connectors may not seem like a huge problem at first glance, but it can pose a serious risk to the structural integrity of your deck. It’s the screws and connectors that hold everything together and keep it strong and stable, so if any of them are missing or compromised then the entire structure of your deck is at risk.
If you spot this or any signs of corrosion, this is a sign that your deck structure is weakening and urgent repairs are needed.
- Insect damage
Insect damage is something you want to spot in its early stages, otherwise, your deck could be facing irreversible damage. Pests such as termites, carpenter ants and carpenter bees can inflict serious harm to your deck by destroying the wood over time.
If you do spot any of these pests on or around you, make sure to call in the professionals to get rid of them quickly and efficiently.
The good part is that as long as you stay on top of things, any issues your deck has should be simple enough to repair and restore. Make sure you conduct inspections regularly and don’t hesitate to call in your local deck experts when necessary.