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Old 08-24-2009, 01:43 PM   #1
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T&G porch repair

I have a rotted section of my covered front porch floor that needs to be replaced. My current porch was made with untreated tongue and groove wood (many years ago). I only want to replace the 6 rotted boards instead of the whole entire porch which would require jacking up the roof to support the pillars. Under the porch is my crawl space, an area enclosed by concrete foundation. Should I replace the wood with T&G or can I use treated deckboards? Will I have problems with water in my crawl space with the spacing of the deckboards? I intend to paint the entire porch and want a uniform look. If deckboards are use, is it advised to caulk between the boards to minimize water in between boards? Thanks for any suggestions.


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Old 08-24-2009, 03:04 PM   #2
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i personally would replace it all with treated decking for the simple fact that its outside so no matter what you do eventually moisture will get to it. But since you dont wanna do that i would replace with T&G since you want a uniform look to it, but i wouldnt recommend anyone use untreated decking on a porch unless it was completely enclosed such as a screened in porch or something to that effect.

As far as spacing between decking, it needs to be there so the wood can expand and contract as the temperature changes, so it seems to me closing the gap wouldnt be the best of ideas.

I have no idea what your porch looks like but another idea that comes to mind is just replace the decking itself assuming the framing and everything is not rotted. If you just replace the decking itself i see no reason why anything would have be jacked up but then again i have no idea what the porch looks like so i could be way off on this.

Hope this helps some, im no expert but this may get you on the right track and if im wrong on any of this some of the pros on the site will be more than willing to correct me. Good luck


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Old 08-24-2009, 03:59 PM   #3
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And I'm one of those old timers who would rather have the T&G boards than the newer decking. As you mentioned, there are only six (6) boards currently needing to be replaced which is not much of a job to do. Does the crawl space have ventilation? If not, this may be a good time to add ventilation to this area. The T&G boards can be removed easily. Rip one of the rotted boards lengthwise, then pry it out, the others can be taken out from there. Replace the boards with the same sized T&G, and on the last one to be replaced, depending on how they run, you can cut the tongue off or cut the bottom of the grooved part off to make it fall into place. A few finish nails then a good coat of quality porch paint and your done. Good Luck, David
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Old 08-24-2009, 07:16 PM   #4
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porcher....stay with the t&g. Its probably vert grain doug fir and with a good coat of primer and top coat will last for years. As mentioned, make sure you have adequate ventilation. T&g porch floors expand and contract as a unit, not individually, with changes in humidity. The more moisture under the deck the worse for the floor. As long as none of the boards run under a post, replacement should be straight forward. If they do then you may need to take some of the weight off. It was common to have the built up posts standing directly on the flooring. A couple of 2x's or a 4x4 and a jack will help a lot. I jack from the ground with a couple boards under the jack not from the floor, and just enough to get the floor boards out. Thurman has the right idea, split one floor board and the rest come out pretty easy.
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Old 08-25-2009, 12:13 PM   #5
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Thanks for responding! I like the idea of using treated wood for the repair in order to minimize rot and future problems. But, I like the T&G for continuity and having less spacing between boards; however, it is not treated wood. I don't want to do the entire porch since I have pillars and am trying to avoid jacking up the entire roofline. My main concern with using the treated deckwood is the space between boards and the subsequent water that would get between the boards and into the crawl space. As mentioned, my crawl space is enclosed in my concrete foundation. I live in the pacific northwest, home of the sideways rain at times. So even though it is covered, water does get up on the porch. Is the spacing so minuscule that the water getting between the boards and into the crawl space is not a concern? Any thoughts?
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