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Renew Crew of Charlotte discusses why plastic deck coatings are not the answer

Within the realm of outdoor living space maintenance, such as decks, there are new products that come onto the market everyday that are full of false promises. One product may boast resurfacing benefits, while another may promise to keep your deck looking new for decades. In our line of business we have seen many deck owners place their hopes of restoring their aged or worn wooden deck into products that usually won’t deliver on their claims. Case in point are the new “paint on” plastic deck coatings you may have seen on TV or noticed in the “big box” home improvement stores. Some retailers have been stocking products in the paint section that appear to put a thick coating on decking boards, giving them the appearance of synthetic decking. These products claim to offer superior protection for the wood and to eliminate splinters, nail-holes and minor cracks with ease of application touting a homeowner can apply the product over the course of a weekend.

Too good to be true?

With any new product that comes onto the market, we are careful to research it thoroughly before forming an opinion, in the case of many of the plastic deck coatings on the market today however, the old saying “too good to be true” comes to mind. Here’s why:

  • Although each individual case is different, our experience with “fix all” products such as these is anything but positive. These products only serve as a short-term solution to a long-term problem. Many are made up of epoxy-style coverings that appear to be smooth, flawless and cool to the touch when exposed to the sun but in reality can come out rough and retain heat on structures that have a southern exposure. Does the scenario of your flip-flops melting into your deck on a balmy Saturday afternoon seem pleasant?
  • These products also require frequent and costly reapplication in most scenarios. With wooden decking, as with any of the effects of sun and water on horizontal surfaces application over rotten wood, damp wood will likely cause failures of the coatings.
  • Additional inconsistencies that must also be addressed are tight spacing of existing deck boards and reduced drainage capabilities. The circumference of these coatings will make tight spacing worse, and the area between your decking boards must be cleaned out regularly or face side rot — even down to the last tiny pine needle. Flashing issues at the ledger are also a concern as is lack of proper waterproofing over joist tops.

The possibility of success, if any, of using these “paint-on” products lies within the surface preparation itself. Wood needs to be cleaned and free of any debris, oils or grease (this includes barbecue sauce). Prerequisites also include replacement of any loose nails. Manufacturers of the product even recommend your existing deck be screwed down to avoid the chances of any nails working up through the new finish.

With all the shortfalls and preparation necessary why would a deck owner even consider plastic deck coatings as an alternative to regular deck maintenance?

Deck maintenance from Renew Crew of Charlotte is the trusted, tried and true answer to your decking woes. Our eco-friendly, 3-part exclusive clean and seal system will keep your deck looking new at a fraction of the cost of applying plastic deck coatings, and we stand behind our promise of delivering a deck that is clean and protected! No hype, no empty promises, just honest professional results every time!


Renew Crew of Charlotte Clean

Outdoor surface cleaning and renewal is all we do, all the time. Protect your outdoor structures by calling Renew Crew of Charlotte to keep your outdoor surfaces looking great year after year! Give us a call for a free consultation at 704-944-1350 today!