Here's the deal on decks

More Savvy Tips

Yearly deck maintenance is required on all deck types to maintain their value, according to an Executive Vice President of a Diamond Certified construction company. On wood plank decks, cleaning the leaf matter and animal hairs that accumulate on top of the wood joists between deck boards is essential. If not removed, they hold water and foster decay. If your deck boards are heavily weathered and need a "face lift", you can power wash them or sand them if they are in really bad shape.

Remember to set the nails below the deck surface you are about to sand off, or the nails will rust and stain your newly sanded deck. Finally, apply a sealer to your deck boards. Clear ones typically last about one year, while stains last longer. He recommends against painting wood decks because they will eventually chip and peel, leading to continual high maintenance costs.