Fiberglass decks, if properly built, can last you up to 15 to 30 years. But after years of use and due to the lack of regular maintenance, you’ll find your fiberglass deck is in need of repairs. While it is a doable home project for you to take up, hiring a deck repair contractor can ensure that the repairs are perfectly executed and the material used is of the best quality and rightly priced. But if you are still keen on taking care of the repairs yourself, here are the steps to follow.
Grind Out Damaged Areas
You need to start with grinding out the fiberglass over damaged areas. An angle-grinder can help you with this. If there are any cracks in your fiberglass decking, they’ll compromise the water proofing capabilities of the deck. If the deck is built over important areas of the house, you could start experience mold and rot in the interior walls. So start by grinding the fiberglass down to the substrate, an inch or 2 around the crack or damage and ready the area for further repair.
Replace Damaged Substrate
If the substrate under your decking is damaged too, you can cut out the damaged portions in squares and simply replace them. Wood fillers can be used to fill in any nail holes or gaps. If you notice severe water damage in the substrate that has spread to the support of the deck, it’s time to drop your tools and give a professional deck contractor a call. Damage that severe should only be handled by a certified and licensed expert.
Lay Down New Fiberglass And Resin
If basic substrate repairs were all your deck needed, you can move on to laying a new coat of resin down. For the fiberglass to effectively stick, you’ll have to start by cleaning and drying the surface thoroughly first. Then mix your resin with its hardener, and pour a coat that is half an inch taller than your original coating and leave the resin to dry until tacky. Then start by cutting out mattings of fiberglass to fit the repaired area. Fray the edges of the mat by pulling strands out from around the edges. This will reduce the thickness of the edges around the matting and create a smoother surface that will seamlessly blend into the existing decking. After this lay down another layer of resin, sand the repaired areas and move on the gelcoat.
Finally, The Gel Coat
Lastly, you’ll have to get a gel coating for the deck to avoid unsightly patches and create a waterproof finish. Sanding will help you get rid of any sharp edges that may hurt your feet.
Fiberglass is waterproof, strong, light and low-maintenance, which makes it a wonderful material to choose for any deck building project. And it’s easy to repair at home too. But if you want your deck done right and last you for a long time, give Hynes Roofing & Siding a call on (610)-890-5620 or fill out our contact form. Our experts will guide you through the deck installation or repair process and give you a free estimate for the job.
(President, Hynes Roofing and Siding)
With over 35 years experience in the roofing and siding industry, Michelle Hynes has built a business from 2 people into over 45 people and 19 trucks!