Decks wear out over the course of time, but not every aspect of every deck wears out at the same rate. This means certain elements of your deck – most commonly the decking, railing, and stairs – may be in dire need of replacement while other portions – most notably the frame, the structural element that supports the deck – are fine.
When this happens, homeowners often ask if they have to replace the whole deck or if it’s possible to just repair the problems. As Wayland deck contractors, we can tell you the answer to that question is: it depends. There are a number of factors to consider when determining whether a deck can be remodeled or if it needs to be replaced.
The top criteria is the condition and durability of the frame. This aspect of your deck matters more than anything else – even the age of your deck. If you have a deck that’s less than five years old and the frame is rotten, damaged, or otherwise compromised, it’s going to need to be replaced, whereas a fifty-year old deck with a frame that’s in good condition can be a candidate for a deck remodel.
Another criteria to consider is how much you’d like to change your existing deck’s layout and structure. If you’re looking at restoring your current deck as is, that’s certainly an option – but don’t overlook the opportunities that exist to enhance your home’s curb appeal and value that a full deck remodel can offer.
What’s the Expected Useful Life of a Deck?
The expected useful life of a deck varies based on what materials the deck is built out of, as well as the usage conditions and how well the deck has been maintained. This means a deck built out of softwood, like white pine, that has been used heavily and minimally maintained, might wear out in as little as 5-10 years, where a well-cared for composite deck can easily last 30+ years.