How to Repair a Deck Board
If you have a deck, you may notice a portion of a deck board may be rotting or damaged while the rest of it is fine. Replacing part of a board instead of the whole thing is an easy repair that saves you the trouble of replacing the entire board. Here’s what you’ll need for this quick, inexpensive DIY project:
- Nail Puller
- Tape Measure
- Pry Bar
- Power Drill/Driver
- Quick Square
- Oscillating Tool
- Circular Saw
- Galvanized 8D Nails – 2 ½” or
- Deck Screws – Ceramic Coated, 2 ½” for 5/4” Decking, 3” for 2” Decking
When taking on this DIY task, be sure to equip yourself with the proper safety gear. We’ll let you know throughout the video when you should and should not use the safety gear.
Remove fasteners. If the deck board you’re working on is screwed to the joist, back screws out with a drill driver. If the board is nailed down, use a nail puller, which typically has a slot on one or both ends, to pry out the nails. With the slot under the nail head, strike the tool with a hammer to drive the curved head under the wood surface. Then, pry each nail up.
Cut out damaged area. Using a quick square, mark a cut line in the center of each nail hole on both sides of the damaged area. You’ll now remove the damaged section so the ends of the new piece fall in the center of the joist. Use an oscillating tool to score along the top of the board at your marks. Then, cut through the board completely. Repeat on the other side. Then, remove the damaged piece with a pry bar.
Measure for new piece. The new piece should fit snugly against adjoining pieces. Measure the space between your existing boards, and mark a cut line on your new board with a quick square.
Cut new piece. Position the new board on saw horses with one side on the cut overhanging so it will drop off. Be sure to position the board like this. Making your cut between the horses could pinch the blade and cause dangerous kickback. After your board is properly positioned, make your cut with a circular saw.
Attach new piece. If your deck was installed with nails, we recommend making your repair with galvanized nails for consistency. If it was installed with screws, use ceramic coated deck screws for your repair. Secure existing boards in place with two nails or screws for each joist. Nail or screw at an angle. Then, place the new piece into the open space using a hammer to secure in place, if needed. Use two nails or screws for each joist, installing them in the opposite direction of the nails or screws already in the existing board.
Your repair is complete. Step back and admire your newly repaired deck board.