Deck Coating: Step-by-Step
Given that all decks are in flat form that retains any quantity of moisture; given that most decks are situated outside the facility; and given that they all receive weighted traffic and friction force—be it mechanical or foot—at this point, decks of all kinds are indeed facing major vulnerabilities such as:
- Exposure to the elements (like dirt and moisture)
- Water damage
- Impact damage
For lifelong span, decks need long-term protection from these vulnerabilities and if any form of damage has already occurred, of course, you need to fix it as soon as possible to avoid further intensification of damage. This is done through the help of deck coatings that could act as a protective barrier, giving maximum protection to the deck when applied properly.
It is required to involve general and technical coating requirements, as well as the application and post-application methodologies for successful deck coating.
General Project Requirements for Deck Coating
Addressing all general project details or issues must be ensured by the facility managers. Below herewith are the general project requirements for deck coating.
- Compliance to existing building codes in the area, mostly weather-exposed areas that requires utmost protection with weather-protective materials or equipments, such as epoxy coatings systems.
- The overall scale, scope or blueprint of the project, the type or purpose of the structure of the deck, deck occupancy level and lastly, the amount of daily traffic—be it mechanical or foot—because these factors will determine the range application of deck coatings on building occupants as well as the level of disruption to house or building operations, if there is any.
- The building life expectancy, building condition, and the deck requirement because these factors aid in the clarification of actual project that are needed to the painting contractor.
- Applicability of deck coatings, specifically epoxy deck coatings, in giving the expected deck protection. Epoxy coating application or rather epoxy coatings system should be able to give its expected function neither as a weather-resistant, water-proofing nor as a damage-protection system.
- Fund availabilities to hold projects for deck coatings; and maintenance costs.
Requirements for Epoxy Deck Coatings
After the compliance of the initial requirements, facility managers should proceed to the technical project requirements, particularly that of deck coating to use for the project. Here are the guidelines:
- Specify the needed requirements for epoxy coating applications. For instance, if there are any cracks along your concrete deck, sealers should be your specification. If your deck is an exterior landing which is exposed to weather and moisture every time, then a waterproofing system should be your specification.
- State the deck function that could affect the coating product selection. When choosing the epoxy coatings product, any special conditions that surround the deck structure must be taken into consideration. For instance, if heavy vehicular traffic or force passes through the deck, a tougher coating system must be applied.
- Make sure to verify product performance through the use of data sheets, as well as the records of test and actual performance. Given that there are many choices in the market to choose from, this is an effective way to choose the most appropriate epoxy coatings system for the deck project.
Requirements for the Deck Coatings Application
This is the last step for consideration in deck coatings project. Facility managers should discuss with the painting contractor and accomplish the following:
- Countercheck the procedures of the surface preparation to be conducted because the quality and durability of the installed epoxy coatings system may depend on the surface preparation. Every deck surface must be free from dirt and contaminants that could affect this quality.
- State all the detailed information for procedures, including all the actual sequential tasks to be done.
- Before the selection process, know all the actual products to use, the reason for the choice, as well as the warranty of the product or the maintenance restrictions.
- Know not only the tools, equipments, and materials to be used, but also the manpower that is needed to accomplish all application tasks starting from preparation, application, dry or cure time, and lastly the post-application setups and clean-ups.
Before initiating the deck coating application make sure to prepare the required tools and materials for this project.
Tools and Material Needed for the Project
- Pain tray
- Safety glasses
- Pressure washer
- Special application rollers
- Stiff scrub brush
- Roller extension pole
- Deck restoration coating
- Plastic sheeting
- Latex caulk
- Paint stir sticks
- Manufacturer’s recommended deck cleaner
- 80-grit sandpaper
Keeping a wood deck in good shape surely requires a lot of effort. From old deck, switching it over to composite decking is one tough choice, since you consider your fund availability. But fortunately, there is another convenient solution: Restoration of your deck by applying a deck restoration product.
Deck coatings are enough to fill all cracks, knotholes and splinters. They provide a new textured surface that can last many years without getting troubled for additional applications and you do not have to put a lot of effort on it daily for maintenance.
Note: To avoid splattering, protect your house and rails with plastic sheets. Spread the plastic sheets under the deck to catch the product that dripping from the deck.
Steps in Deck Restoration
- Begin by removing any large splinters.
- Remove any protruding nail heads on the deck.
- If you have applied a clear sealer and covered the areas with planters or furniture, those sun-shielded areas must be sanded. Use 80-grit sandpaper to remove the gloss and to rough up the areas.
- Apply your deck cleaning product.
- Let it soak in for the recommended time.
- Scrub the whole deck using a stiff scrub brush and extension handle.
- Before applying the restoration product, let the wood apply for a week.
- Fill the cracks, knotholes, and splinters with restoration product or latex caulk. Let it set until it gets stiff.
- Using the special roller, roll on the deck coating.
- Reload the roller every few feet for proper coating thickness. Do not run it back and forth.
- Coat several deck boards at a time.
- If there are any missed spots that cannot be coated with a special roller, use brush.
- For three to six hours, let the first coat dry.
- Using the same method, do another coating to provide smooth texture.
- Before walking on it, let it dry for two days.