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Deck vulnerable to moisture damage

$300-$400 Est. time: 2 - 3hrs Low

Tasks and Notes

Deck posts in direct contact with soil.
Deck boards packed too close together.
Vegetation in contact with deck structure.


There are three main factors that make the backyard deck vulnerable to moisture damage. First the floorboards are installed too tightly together to allow rainwater to effectively drain between the boards onto the ground below.

Secondly, the deck posts are installed directly into the ground instead of on deck piers or footings. This makes the posts more likely to absorb moisture from the soil.

Thirdly, there is a fair amount of vegetation in direct contact with the wood. In a wet climate, vegetation that grows right against structural wood prevents it from adequately drying out and can accelerate wear and rot over time.

Short of rebuilding the deck, it will be difficult to address the first two concerns. Trimming back vegetation, however, is simple enough and we would recommend it.

Another good practice to extend the life of the deck would be to seal the surface frequently and to sweep off any water pooling on it during extended rainy periods.

If Not Addressed

The deck will wear and fade faster than it should, and also be more likely to splinter and develop rot. Overall, the expected lifespan of the deck will be shortened. A new deck will cost anywhere from $3,000-$6,000.

Estimated Costs

We estimate labor costs for this project will be about $250-$350 and material costs (sealant) about $50. These costs will fluctuate based on the actual conditions the contractor encounters. Request quotes from at least 3 professionals.

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