Deck Restore and Repair Cost Guide
Updating your home's deck can be a simple or challenging project based on your goals and current conditions. The replacement of a few worn boards can be limited in cost. A complete overhaul or deck repair can be very expensive. Additionally, your decision to do your own work or to hire help can factor into your total deck restore budget. Just like any other home remodeling project, it's important to begin with careful planning.
National Repair a Deck Costs
Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by ImproveNet members.
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Average reported costbased on 4713 cost profiles
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Table of Contents
- Deck Repair Cost
- Deck Repair Cost Factors
- Why Repair Your Deck?
- DIY or Professional Help?
- Deck Restore Projects
- Deck Materials
- How to Save on Your Deck Restore Project
- Find A Pro
Deck Repair Cost
While your deck is a rather large portion of your home, many deck restore projects can be done as DIY projects. Nonetheless, it’s always safer to trust those who have been in the business for years.
If you’re willing to spend more for professional deck repair, the overall average per project is roughly $1,200. Labor costs alone can range from $10 to $30 per hour based on the experience of the company. While those prices may sound scary, just know that in a major renovation or repair job, their expertise could save you a lot of trouble in terms of wasted materials and inadequate fixes.
Deck Repair Cost Factors
While the price above is the average, there are always ways to decrease your overall deck restore investment. The total cost will depend on:
- Deck Size
- Condition of Deck
- Age of Deck
To no surprise, the most influential cost factor for any deck project is the size of your deck. After all, it will always be more expensive to replace 20sf of deck opposed to 10sf of deck. More material requires more money. Furthermore, those who own a two-tiered deck will also see higher prices due to the coverage area.
There is a wide array of deck materials to choose from and you can see all prices on our deck and porches cost estimator or in the materials cost section below. But, when it comes to deck renovation, you can’t veer off your current material. After all, you can’t add one plank of pine hardwood to a deck full of plastic.
For reference, deck materials range from $3.50/sf to $35/sf. As you can see, the overall deck renovation cost will largely depend on your current deck material.
Condition of Deck
The current condition of your deck will of course play a key role in the overall deck repair cost. Needless to say, the condition will largely depend on your maintenance schedule. If you haven’t had a maintenance schedule for your deck and are now seeing the side effects, chances are, your deck restore project will not be cheap.
As such, it’s important to maintain and care for your deck even after it’s installed. For a few pointers, please see 5 Maintenance Items Deck Owners Must Know.
Age of Deck
The older the deck, the more expensive your repairs will be. With proper care every year, and depending on your material, most decks can last up to 10 years. Nonetheless, almost everything in your house will have to be replaced sooner or later and your deck is no different.
Therefore, if your deck is more than 10 years old and you find yourself paying for deck repairs every few years, it may be time for a new deck.
Most businesses have slow and busy seasons and the deck industry is no different. As you can imagine, most homeowners think about installing or repairing their decks late winter or spring. This is typically when deck companies get busy and thus, can raise their prices.
If you were to look ahead and hire a deck pro late fall or early winter, they may offer a discount. As you can see, with both maintenance and hiring a pro, planning ahead can really pay off.
Why Repair Your Deck?
We all live with a few imperfections around the house. While that carpet may have looked great 15 years ago, it’s probably dating the living room. While you could pay to remove it, there is no danger in leaving it (other than lowering your home value). Sadly, the same can not be said of your deck.
If have a loose board, visible nail or your deck is starting to warp, you need to fix it ASAP. It not only looks bad, but also presents a serious danger to anyone utilizing your deck. Furthermore, if you are looking to sell your home in the near future, that risk needs to be eliminated.
Additionally, the natural color of your deck may dull over the years. If you want your deck looking its best, you must refinish and repair it.
Overall, if you have a wood deck, don’t put off repairs like you would an old carpet.
DIY or Professional Help?
To no surprise, repairing your own deck will be cheaper than hiring a pro. Working with a landscape architect or carpenter who is experienced in building, repairing and renovating decks will require time to plan the project. Good planning makes it possible for the job to be completed neatly and efficiently. Basic repairs may only require a few hours of time, but a complete overhaul of your deck can take several days.
Note that the average price above includes hiring a pro. If you go at it by yourself, the overall price should be less.
Deck Restore Projects
There are plenty of different techniques to repair your deck. The chosen tactic will largely depend on your material and project at hand, but all deck repair projects will involve one of the following techniques.
Inspecting A Deck
We’ll start off with a few simple deck repair/maintenance projects and move our way up. No matter what type of deck you own, you should inspect it as much as you can.
Regularly check for loose boards and nails. If a board is loose or you can see it go down as you step on it, repair it. As long as you have extra wood or can find the same type as the original, many DIYers can replace the board themselves. With loose nails, all you need is a hammer to stick it back into place or new nails.
When it comes to inspection, exercise common sense. If a repair is not made and danger is created, you may want to fix it as soon as you can.
Remember, don’t forget to inspect around or under your deck. The exterior may look fine, but if puddles form below your deck, you’re in serious need of repair.
Cleaning A Deck
Just like your kitchen floors, your deck should be cleaned once in awhile. Fortunately, all you need is a hose and a deck cleaning solution. Hose your entire deck and then mix in your cleaning solution with water and apply to the deck. Scrub your deck as your cleaning partner continues to spray with water. The dirt and algae should come right off.
While cleaning your deck, you may find patches of mold. Sadly, mold can form anywhere there is moisture and since it occasionally rains, you need to clean your deck to prevent deck mold. If you do have mold, see how to Remove Your Deck Mold In 3 Simple Steps.
Regardless of mold or not, you should clean your deck before each season and more often when in use.
Sealing A Deck
Sealing provides a wide array of benefits to all decks (except redwood and cedar, which don’t need to be sealed). Sealing decks extend their lives and improve the overall look and feel. Sealers with UV protection can improve the wood’s natural look, rather than turning dark or gray. Having the sealer also prevents it from wetting and drying during the different seasons, which keeps precipitation from going in and expanding or contracting the wood as well. In the long term, this means the wood will not degrade as much.
There are two major sealants to choose from; oil-based sealants and water-based sealants. Water-based options last slightly less time overall, but they’re better for the environment. You can also choose to have professionals apply clear sealants to change the color completely. If you do go the professional route, the average price is $743.
If you are interested in the above benefits, consider sealing your deck at least once a year.
Repair A Deck
The overall deck repair price, as you have read about already, will largely depend on the project at hand. Removing and replacing one nail is much cheaper than getting rid of deck mold. Nonetheless, after analyzing over 3,000 deck repair projects, the average cost accumulated is roughly $1,217.
Replacing A Deck
One of the most common repair needs on decks is the replacement of rotted materials. Working with a professional may be beneficial due to your contractor's ability to closely match the existing materials during basic repairs. Whereas you may pay $6 or more per board for materials, your decking contractor may have access to bulk pricing and a greater variety.
Your contractor may recommend special treatments to limit future damage from moisture and other environmental factors. Composite deck materials provide excellent value because of their resistance to the elements. Vinyl coatings protect the materials, and some products are assembled with limited hardware. Pricing on a project involving composite materials may be more expensive because of the specially-treated materials.
Painting A Deck
Finally, the last deck restoration project revolves around deck tinting (much like sealing). The coatings are made from a long-lasting acrylic base material with added solids that add texture. Essentially, if you are tired of the classic brown wood look, just know you can tint or paint over it.
Just like painting a wall, preparation is key. See all the steps at The Family Handyman.
If you’re replacing or repairing your deck on your own, you may want to know the average material costs for all decking materials.
- Ipe Hardwood Decking: $3.50 to $5/sf
- Pine Decking: $5 to $11/sf
- Synthetic Wood Decking: $1,715 to $1,975 for a full deck
- Mahogany Decking: $8.03 to $10.55/sf
- Plastic Decking: $6.25 to $9.40/sf
- Pressure Treated Decking: $5.30 and $7.10/board
- PVC Vinyl Decking: $4 to $8/sf
- Redwood Decking: $5 to $35/sf
- Teak Decking: $7 and $41/sf
- Tigerwood Decking: $6.87/sf
- Timbertech Decking: $6 to $9/sf
- Trex Decking: $7 to $9.50/sf
- Composite Decking: $5/sf
- Cedar Decking: $4.63 to $7.70/lf
- Aluminum Decking: $10.01 to $11.20/sf
How to Save on Your Deck Restore Project
If you decide to hire a pro, there are simple ways to decrease the total deck repair cost.
- Timing: Try to schedule your deck repair projects for late fall or early winter. This is the slow season for decking pros.
- Estimates: Always get multiple estimates for your decking projects. Different pros may charge different prices.
- Pricing: Make sure all estimates include the same deliverables including materials, preparation, labor, delivery and cleanup. If one estimate does not, you are no longer comparing apples to apples.
- Specialists: Many handymen can repair decks and are most likely, less expensive than deck specialists.
Find A Pro
As we have iterated, deck repair can turn into a DIY project. After all, if you constantly inspect, clean and maintain your deck, you shouldn’t see any major repairs for five to eight years.
Nonetheless, if you’re unsure how to fix or repair your serious deck issue, be safe and contact a decking pro in your area for FREE!
Last updated on Apr 27, 2016
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