The Homeowner’s Guide To Deck Sealing
If you want to know more about deck sealing, this article is for you. This homeowner’s guide will teach you why deck sealing is useful, what decks need sealing, different sealing methods, and more. Once you’ve finished reading, you’ll have everything you need to know before you call your local deck sealing contractor.
What Is Deck Sealing?
Deck sealing keeps pressure-treated wood looking new, bringing out its natural colors, and preventing moisture, ultraviolet rays, and other harmful elements from prematurely aging the deck. Based on the type of sealer you choose, these protective coatings will prevent fungal growth and wood rot from eating away at the deck and stop moisture and heat from warping the wood. Overall, deck sealing increases the wood’s lifespan and boosts its natural appearance.
Note: Complete Concrete Coatings no longer offers deck sealing. We do however offer waterproof deck coatings, which protects surfaces better than typical sealers.
Why Is Deck Sealing Useful?
Most outdoor decks are built with pressure-treated wood. These chemically injected wooden boards deter pests like termites from burrowing into the wood and offer minor protection from moisture and rot. While pressure-treated wood is less susceptible to moisture damage, it’s unable to resist UV rays and dark-staining liquids like cooking oil. Here’s a quick breakdown of everything deck sealing offers.
- Protection – A professionally installed deck sealer can prevent rainwater or melting snow from seeping into the wood and damaging it. A good sealer can also prevent fading, cracking, and warping caused by UV rays.
- Lifespan – Once your deck is protected from moisture and heat, you won’t need to worry about replacing the wooden boards soon. Most experts estimate that unsealed wooden decks only last 10 to 15 years before you notice gradual deterioration. A well-maintained and sealed pressure-treated deck can last well beyond 50 years.
- Maintenance – Sealers prevent moisture from seeping into the wooden boards that form your deck. This layer of protection will keep moisture and other liquids above your deck, making it easy to brush or wipe them off. If you’re using a grill on your deck, this can come in handy to prevent cooking oils, fats, and other staining liquids from ruining your wood. If you know how hard it is to remove a stain from a wooden piece of furniture, you can imagine how helpful deck sealing is.
What Decks Need Sealing
Wooden, bamboo, composite decking, and other decks made with organic materials usually need a sealer in order to prevent deterioration and aging. Concrete, vinyl, PVC, and other inorganic deck materials can be protected with sealers formulated for those materials, but most professionals recommend a rubberized membrane system.
Deck Sealing Methods
Here are the most popular deck sealing methods.
- Topical sealers/finishes – These sealers can be compared to topical coatings since they only protect the wood deck’s surface. These sealers do not penetrate the wood or seep into its crevices. If you want to change the surface texture, color, or add a glossy finish to your deck, a topical sealer is the best choice. But, since topical sealers don’t protect the inside of the wood boards, once the surface layer deteriorates, the rest of the material is exposed to moisture and heat.
- Penetrating sealers – These sealers penetrate the deck beyond the surface of the wood, seeping into all the crevices, and protecting the wood from the inside out. Penetrating sealers protect decks much longer than topical sealers, making them a better choice. Most penetrating sealers don’t change the appearance or surface texture of wooden decks, maintaining their natural look.
Deck Sealing Vs. Staining
The main difference between deck sealing and stainings is how much it protects your wood and whether or not it contains pigments. Sealers can be made with or without pigments, meaning you don’t need to change your deck’s color when you decide to protect it. Stains always contain pigment since their primary purpose is to “stain” the deck.
Sealers offer more protection from moisture and UV rays than stains since stains only change the deck’s appearance. Most professionals view stains as a cosmetic upgrade rather than a protective barrier.
Deck Sealing Vs. Waterproof Deck Coatings
While deck sealing does sound effective, there’s actually a better solution: waterproof deck coatings. These coatings are made from a rubberized membrane system consisting of multiple layers. A waterproof coating protects your wood or concrete deck from moisture, resists UV rays, increases its lifespan, prevents slips, and makes it easy to clean/maintain the surface.
Read more: Waterproof Deck Coatings: Why They’re Useful
Who Can Help
If you live in or around Salt Lake City, Utah, and need to protect your deck from the elements, call Complete Concrete Coatings. Since 2005, we’ve protected thousands of decks made of different materials with waterproof coatings. Our team of experts will inspect your deck, determine what issues affect it the most, and choose a solutions that works best. Call today for your free inspection and estimate.