Get Your Deck BBQ-Ready With Our Deck Repair Checklist

As the sunshine begins to claim more hours of the day, the sizzling sound of grilling and the aroma of barbecue become the backdrop of summer. Is your deck repair checklist ready?

With BBQ season fast approaching, it’s almost time to get to flipping burgers, roasting vegetables, and searing steaks. Before you can put on that show and host your family and friends, though, you should make sure your deck is in the right condition. 

At Johnson Lumber, with over a century of serving the central Maryland community, we understand the joy that a well-maintained deck can bring to your summer gatherings. 

This guide will walk you through preparing your deck from assessment to the finishing touches, ensuring your outdoor space is as welcoming and functional as it is beautiful.

  1. Assessing Your Deck’s Condition

Before diving into beautification, it’s essential to inspect your deck for signs of wear or damage. 

Do this first to see what you’re starting with:

  • Visual Inspection – Look for any signs of structural damage like cracked boards or unstable railings.
  • Safety Check – Ensure all railings and stairs are secure and up to code.
  • Check for Rot – Pay special attention to areas prone to moisture which can lead to rot and structural issues.
  1. Deck Cleaning: The Next Step to a Revived Outdoor Space

Before you figure out what deck repairs you’re going to make, you should see exactly what you’re working with. 

That’s where a good old-fashioned deck cleaning comes into play. Here’s how we ensure a thorough pre-inspection clean: 

  • Choose the Right Cleaner – Use a cleaner suitable for your deck’s material to avoid damage.
  • Pressure Washing – For deeper cleaning, consider using a pressure washer, but be careful not to damage the wood.
  • Focus on Stains – Tackle tough stains like mildew or grease with targeted treatments.
  1. Making Necessary Repairs

If you’ve found some questionable areas that need to be fixed, you’ll want to address them before you send out all the invites to the next barbecue. 

Here are some of the most pressing tasks to take on:

  • Replace Damaged Boards – Swap out damaged boards to maintain the deck’s integrity.
  • Secure Loose Fittings – Tighten any loose screws or nails and replace those that are corroded.
  • Reinforce Structure – Check support beams and joists for stability, and reinforce as needed.
  1. Sanding Your Deck for a Smooth Finish

After any sort of repairs or adjustments, it’s important to sand. This isn’t just for aesthetics, though. It’s also about preventing splinters and preparing the surface for sealing or staining. 

These are the steps we recommend following:

  • Getting the Right Grit – Start with a coarser grit for rough areas and finish with a finer grit for a smooth surface.
  • Even Sanding – Keep your sanding consistent to avoid uneven surfaces.
  • Dust Removal – Ensure all dust and debris are removed before applying any finish.
  1. Choosing the Right Deck Coating

Protect and beautify your deck with the right type of coatings. These products not only enhance the deck’s appearance but also protect it from the elements. 

Here’s how to choose:

  • Match the Material – Choose a coating that complements the material of your deck for best results.
  • Weather Considerations – Consider your local climate and select a product that will withstand your weather conditions.
  • Aesthetic Appeal – Select a finish that enhances the natural beauty of the wood or matches your home’s exterior.
  1. Final Touches for a Perfect BBQ Setting

Now that your deck is clean, repaired, and refreshed, it’s time to focus on the details that make it the perfect spot for entertaining. A few thoughtful enhancements can contribute to creating an inviting atmosphere for your guests. 

Here are our favorites:

  • Lighting – Add string lights or lanterns for ambiance and safety for those late-night barbecues.
  • Furniture and Accessories – Choose comfortable, durable outdoor furniture and stylish accessories.
  • Plants and Decor – Incorporate plants for a touch of nature and additional privacy.

Let Johnson Lumber Help With Your Deck Repairs

Our extensive selection of decking materials, coupled with our expert advice, ensures you have everything you need to prepare your deck for the season. 

Visit us in Millersville or Edgewater, and let our team help you choose the best products for your decking needs. For general questions, feel free to send us a message here to get in touch with the team.

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