Building Blocks


The Marling Blog

Is it time for a new deck?
Is it time for a new deck?
Rotting deck support

Water has started to rot the frame of this deck

Is it time for a new deck?

There really is no bad time to think about a new deck. If the snow is flying – you can start getting a new deck designed and order for spring installation. If it’s the Fall, you can check to see if your old deck is showing signs of wear and start looking at options. Visit a Marling location and talk to a sales associate about all your decking material and design options. If your deck is looking a little worn around the edges and you can’t decide if its time or it can last another rainy spring and hot summer – here’s a couple of things to check for.

Rotted deck posts

New decks are built using concrete footings several inches above the ground with special brackets or sleeves to keep the post dry. If your deck is older, there’s a good chance the base of the post is just sitting on the footings or even the ground. This will cause the posts to soak up water and lead to rotting. If the posts are not made of pressure treated wood, there is a greater chance they are getting damaged by water. Posts lose strength as they rot and eventually even every day weight will cause them to buckle or crack.

Shaky railings

A shaky railing doesn’t mean your deck is going to collapse, but it is a safety issue especially for seniors or young children. If your railings are attached to the deck with nails, they will come loose. You can replace the nails, but that’s not going to solve your problem long term. New decks generally have the railings attached with carriage bolts with nuts and washers. This securely anchors the railing to the deck without damaging the wood.

Ledger boards aren’t secure

A little wood lesson – ledger boards are mounted to the vertical frame of the deck and used to attach the deck to the house or house and garage if you have it wrap that far around. They need to be securely fastened to a structure as a sort of brace and ballast for the deck. Deterioration of the ledger boards can cause the deck to start to ease away from the house and eventually break free from the house.

No ledger flashing or deteriorated ledger flashing

Ledger flashing is what keeps the water from getting between where it is attached to the house and your deck. Its very important that the space between the ledger boards and the structure the deck is attached to is as close to water tight as possible. Even a small water leak can lead to standing water between the deck and your house which will then lead to mold. It can also lead to rot in the rim joists (which are the lateral support frame of the deck) and rot will cause the ledger boards to fall off and then your deck will also fall off.

Wobbling deck boards

Do you have deck boards that wobble or “give” when you walk on them? That’s a sign the boards and your decks has seen better days. Over time the boards on the frame can pull apart from each other and twist which then weakens the entire structure.

Structural damage

If your deck sustains some severe damage, like a tree falls on it and takes a chunk out – that’s a sign you should think about a new deck rather than a remodel. Damage will invite water seepage and wood rot. Rotting wood is also more susceptible to insect infestation. Insects, like termites, feasting away on your deck will leave a lot of empty spaces that will get filled by – water. Are you getting the general drift here? Water, rot, compromised deck – deck collapse, none of that is a good idea and fixing and re-fixing damaged parts will likely cost more than a new deck in the long run.

Your deck is older than current code restrictions

Some jurisdictions have height-above-grade regulations pertaining to decks as well as deck railing rules. If your deck isn’t up to code – you should consider replacing it.

Options, options, options

There are lots of different materials to think about when you are getting a new deck. Sometimes price will drive your decision and sometimes aesthetics will. Marling locations have materials for you to look at, including your color options and they can help you with a deck design.
There are some great new deck accessories – matching furniture, storage bins that also double as seating, lighting, railings and even new staircase options. If your idea now of spending quality time with your deck involves washing and staining and not entertaining – its time to get a new deck.

Comments are closed.

Contact Us

Recent Posts

  • Check Your Deck - May is Deck Safety Month Posted 2 months ago
    Before you start spending a lot of time outside on the deck with family and friends, there are a number of things you should check to make sure everyone stays safe and has a good time. If you need new boards, new railings or new lighting, the sales associates at Marling can help you with your options. If you’ve ...
  • Cleaning Countertops and Cabinets Posted 3 months ago
    While we clean our kitchen countertops and bathroom vanity tops every day; and the cabinets occasionally, there are times when we need to be sure they are as clean and germ-free as we can get them. You may want to do this when you are moving into a new home or apartment — you may need to do it ...
  • Awesome Accessories: Sorting Through Cabinet Storage Options Posted 4 months ago
    There’s rollout trays, pullouts, pull-down storage, inserts for drawers, a myriad of pantry cabinet choices and dozens and dozens of specialized storage options for cabinets. It’s tempting to add something to every cabinet in the kitchen, bathroom and even the entertainment area — but remember, they can push the price up and they may not be as useful as ...
  • Exterior Color Trends and Design Posted 4 months ago
      Color trends come and go but it’s likely you will be remaining in your home for a while so if you are making a big change, take a little time to think about it. Remember, you can browse a Marling showroom and look at new colors and some of the “re-invented” tried and true colors for siding, doors, shutters, ...
  • Windows and Deciphering the Label Posted 6 months ago
      There are all sorts of styles and options around when you are buying windows, and then there’s the label with more numbers than an elementary school math test. The numbers are measurements of heat, sunlight blockage, light transmission and air leakage. They allow you to pick the most efficient window from the styles you can chose from. The sales ...
Read More »