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Old 08-29-2007, 07:23 AM   #16
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reversing deck boards


Hi, This post is very informative, however I would like some specific information. If someone can help me then please send me a private message. Best Regards,

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Old 08-29-2007, 02:38 PM   #17
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We'd prefer to keep it in the public forums Muaz, so others can benefit
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Old 10-27-2010, 09:34 AM   #18
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How did the original posters deck turn out????
I too am reversing (flipping) the pressure treated boards (2x6) on a 15 year old deck. Just saving money and recycling. About one third of the boards have cracked and splintered beyond repair, but the bottom side is in excellent shape. I was going to simply replace them, but I originally used zinc coated screws and most rusted and only 10% would unscrew out, so they had to be removed with a reciprocating saw (sawsall). Tough work, but got it done with minimal scarring to the good side. I did have to knock down the cut screws with a hammer or pound them out. The flipped boards are cleaning up nicely with a pressure washer. I have some questions :
1.) Do you think I should use Sikkins/Cabot or another expensive stain on these older boards or something cheaper?
2.) What screws are recommended that will last a long time without rusting on older pressure treated wood with arsenic and the newer pressure treated wood? Are deckmate srews good enough?


Thanks, colcam
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Old 10-27-2010, 10:11 AM   #19
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I used hot-dipped galvanized deck nails (they have a twist in them) to repair my cedar deck. The oldest repairs were done last summer, so I can't speak for the long-term but they look good right now. The existing nails were a different variety of galvanized, and neither did they rust. I stained with Olympic Max in semi-transparent Cedar Naturaltone. I just did that this year, so again I can't speak for the long term. However, it looks great right now, even though some of the existing boards looked a bit colorless even after cleaning with sodium percarbonate. The existing boards are at least SIXTEEN years old. Opinions I've read from contractors indicate this and the Honey Gold are the best from Olympic.

Cleaning and staining a deck is about the most time-consuming and frustrating job I've taken on. I don't want to do it again for a while, so I tried to get the best stain available. The Lowes staff recommended the Olympic Max over the Cabot, FWIW.
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Old 10-27-2010, 04:47 PM   #20
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Operagost... thanks, I will look into the galv nails (though I am still considering screws) and Olympic Stain form Lowe's.... are they all about $30/gallon these days, more or less?
Also, would anyone recommend sealing the joists while exposed?
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Old 10-29-2010, 07:46 AM   #21
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I will give my 2 cents here, as an experienced homeowner, I always get the job of staining the decks, so I will throw in a few tips I have learned the hard way. It is much, much easier to stain the sides of the deck boards with a few coats of stain while you have them removed rather than trying to get to them after they are installed. If you stain the sides well while you have them off, then when you are finished installing them, all you have to do is go over the tops of the boards with a stain pad on an extension pole, which is very easy. If you wait till they are installed to do the sides then you have to go in between each board with a small brush and it is darn near impossible to get very much stain between the boards on the edges, if you do it first, and put several coats on, you won't have to do the edges again for a long, long, time and the maintenance of the deck will be a breeze, 'cause all you have to do is run over it with a stain pad for maintenance. good luck !
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:04 AM   #22
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Thanks Guest,
Good ideas. I will stain the sides, but still need to know if the JOISTS should be sealed while the deck is open.
I have just checked on Sikkens SRD sold at our Benjanin Moore paint store and seems to be one of the best available (per CR), though expensive at $40/gal.

What are the best screws for pressure treated pine?
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:25 AM   #23
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You could, if you are worried about making them last longer or you could re-treat them with copper-n, a wood preservative that is relatively inexpensive and sold at lowes and then seal them with stain. Just read the label on the preservative for how long to wait for it to penetrate well before staining. I would probably do this for longevity of the joists if I was going to go to all the work of reversing the deck boards. good luck!
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:36 PM   #24
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I am a general contractor / handyman and do a lot of decks including refinishing. I never use nails simply because I believe in screws and have seen all too many decks installed with nails that are full of loose boards after no time. I have never had to fix one of my own decks.
For pressure treated stainless steel screws are best. They are not cheap but neither is having to do a job again.

I would discourage against using a hardwood floor sander as it is too aggressive for refinishing a deck. A pressure washer is a big "no no" too as deck boards are relatively soft ... The surface of the boards will become somewhat "furry" and then you are on a downward spiral in terms of durability.

Use a chemical treatment to clean the boards and remove any old stain and weathered film. Basically follow the instructions on the container. The most pressure you should ever use would be your thumb partially over the end of a normal hose to create a bit more pressure.

Hope this helps.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:33 AM   #25
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Thanks for the info.
I had to replace a few boards and now I have a combination of the original 15 yr old boards CCA (arsenic), some ACQ and some of the newer NatureWood boards PCF (alkaline Copper Quaternary Type). I just couldn't find all the same matching boards. So my question is:

How long must I let the new boards dry out before sealing and staining them??? I understand its less time for the newer treatments.
Whats an efficient way to lightly sand a large deck without a large hardwood sander I can rent???
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Old 11-01-2010, 10:05 AM   #26
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First of all, the Sikkens SRD product is not an expensive stain ... I usually use Sico products which here in BC sell for around $62/gallon plus tax. The Sikkens SRD needs to be reapplied every year so questionable what you save in the long run. Having recently refinished a deck which was stained last year with the SRD and had turned grey in 6 months I personally will never use that product. You get what you pay for and there are no cheap short cuts especially if you want it to last. In other parts of the country with less rain than Vancouver perhaps you can get away with a cheaper product.

In terms of sanding ... This should be a last resort for decks after treating with a chemical cleaner which is specifically designed for that purpose. I see you opted to pressure wash the boards ... Not a good idea as this damages the wood.

If I have no option but to sand then I use my palm sander ... Yes it takes a long time but the damage is minimal as it only removes a very thin layer. Deck refinishing is very time consuming and that's just how it is.
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Last edited by Bonzai; 11-01-2010 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 11-01-2010, 10:07 AM   #27
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FYI pressure treated boards should be left 6 months before staining.

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