How to Fix Cracks in Outdoor Deck Posts?
As the deck where you and your family enjoy the outdoors, it is vital that it is safe. No matter what kind of material your deck is built with, after years of use. To a greater or lesser extent, they will all have different problems. If you have noticed cracks in your deck struts, then you need to address the problem as soon as possible to prevent further damage and potential safety hazards. If your deck strut has a relatively minor problem, less damage, or surface damage, you can repair it with a simple epoxy filler. If it has larger or more extensive cracks, then you may need to replace it. In this article, let’s learn how to repair cracks in your deck struts.
Table of Contents
Before you can start repairing cracks in your deck struts, you need to have the tools and materials you need ready.
- Putty knife or spatula
- Timber filler or epoxy glue
- Sanding block
- 60-grit sandpaper
- 180-grit sandpaper
- Clean cotton cloth
- Decking oil
- Primer and paint or stain
- A ladder if you have a tall deck
How to repair a broken post on a deck
Before fixing a deck strut, we need to do a thorough inspection of the deck to avoid any other problems that were not noticed. First, you need to make sure that the post is solid. If the core of the post is broken, then you cannot repair it, only replace it. If the pillar is strong enough, then cracks in the pillar can be repaired. Now, we will show you step-by-step how to fix a damaged deck post.
1. Check out the broken deck strut
Before you buy anything else for this job, inspect the cracked deck post. Which part is damaged? Do the cracks in the struts go all the way up or down? Do the struts look like they come apart when touched, or have moved a little? If your deck strut is moving too much or coming apart, it may be ruined, then you can’t fix it, only replace it.
If you have a high deck, then you will need a ladder to fully inspect the deck struts. When you use a ladder, be sure to follow safety guidelines to avoid accidents.
2. Choose the right adhesive
Cracks in deck posts can be filled with waterproof glue. Read the instructions on the package carefully to make sure the product will stick to the wood. If it does not, then you should not use this adhesive. You can find two main types of glue at your local hardware store:
Resin glue in powder form. This glue is good for wood because it does not change the color of the wood and it does not grow mold. You will need to mix the resin with the right amount of water until the mixture is as thick as mud.
Epoxy resin. Use epoxy glue when the cracks in the deck posts are large. This glue is stronger than resin glue and can even stop the damage from getting worse. Epoxy needs to be treated in a certain way, so read the instructions carefully. Most epoxy dispensers come with glue that can be injected into the cracks to completely seal them.
3. Fill any cracks in the deck posts with glue.
Use a putty knife to apply the glue to the broken and cracked deck posts. Apply the glue firmly to the outside of the deck posts. Once all cracks have been filled, use the putty knife to make the deck posts smooth. Some of the glue will fill in the natural patterns and cracks in the wood.
4. Consider using clips to secure large cracks
If the cracks or splits are very large, you will need at least one large clamp to hold the post in place. Tighten the clips on both sides of the post until some of the glue you put in earlier leaks out of the post. Keep the clamps tight until the glue is completely set, which usually takes 24 to 48 hours.
5. Sand off the excess glue
Once the glue has set, you will need to sand off any glue that has spilled on the surface of the deck post. Place 60-grit sandpaper on a small sanding block that you can hold in your hand. Gently rub back and forth until the glue and wood are at the same level. Use 180-degree sandpaper to smooth the edges. Wipe off any excess glue or sawdust with a clean, dry cotton cloth.
6. Apply Sealer
Place some floor polish on a 1-inch long paintbrush. Apply a coat of oil to the repair, let it dry completely as directed by the fabricator, and then apply a second coat of oil on top of the first coat. Let the second layer of oil dry all the way through. The deck oil will keep the water out and completely seal the repair.
7. Painting or Decorating the Repaired Deck Posts
Depending on how your deck looks now, you may want to cover the deck oil with paint or deck stain as a final touch-up. If it has already been painted, use primer and paint. If you haven’t painted your deck yet, you may decide to seal it instead.