How do I fill the gaps in my wood deck?

Asked By: Fina Abardia | Last Updated: 26th May, 2020
Category: hobbies and interests woodworking
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Braided rope is the simplest way to fill the cracks and you can find it easily at craft stores, or your local farmer's market.
  1. Move the furniture off the porch.
  2. Remove old filler material, dirt or debris from the gaps between the boards with a scraper.

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Similarly, it is asked, what is the spacing between deck boards?

The goal is to have about an 1/8-inch gap (the diameter of an 8d nail) between boards after the decking has dried to its equilibrium moisture content. If the decking is installed wet, as is often the case for pressure treated material, it is best to install the boards tight, letting gaps form as the wood dries.

Subsequently, question is, do deck boards expand? Regular pressure treated wood tends to be somewhat wet when it's new. That means, as it weathers in the sun and the heat, it will dry out some and shrink slightly. In this case, some space between the boards is a good idea because the wood can actually expand slightly over time.

Hereof, how do you remove debris from deck boards?

Maintenance of a wood deck takes more than just power washing, you'll also need to remove leaves and other debris from between the boards. To do this, screw an “L” hook to the end of a broom handle, then use it to remove debris.

How do I fix pool water on my deck?

Install a membrane over the joists to prevent water from dripping from the deck, if desired. A variety of plastic or vinyl membranes are available. Nail it to the tops of the joists and allow it to sag between them. Water will run off in the direction of the slope you have created.

33 Related Question Answers Found

How do you clean between deck boards?

The spaces allow water to drain quickly from the deck and provide thorough air circulation, which retards decay and mold growth. To clean between deck boards, use a putty knife or an old handsaw. If the spaces between boards are too narrow for either tool, consider widening them with a circular power saw.

Do you have to have a gap between decking boards?

Overall, conventional decking profiles should be installed such that when seasoned, will have gaps between 1/8 and 1/4 of an inch. Look at the ends of the boards and install the decking "barkside" up to prevent cupping. Install decking with 3" pressure-treated compatible deck screws instead of nails.

How do I calculate deck spacing?

Figure the lengths necessary to fit the joist spacing with minimum waste. Add an extra 15 percent for diagonal decking. For larger decks, you can calculate the total square footage of decking you need by multiplying the length of the deck surface times the width.

How far apart do decking joists need to be?

In general terms, joists spaced 16 inches on center can span 1.5 times in feet their depth in inches. A 2x8 up to 12 feet; 2x10 to 15 feet and 2x12 to 18 feet. The larger the deck, the larger the joists.

Should you pre drill deck boards?


Pre-Drilling Holes: The main benefit of pre-drilling holes for deck screws, or any screws, is simply preventing the wood from splitting. Often this is the only way to prevent splitting when driving screws (or nails) close to the end of a board.

Is it better to nail or screw deck boards?

Deck screws are the best, hands down. Nails will rise up and create a hazard and they tend to corrode more quickly. Screws are more expensive but hold better and won't corrode if you use the correct type.

Which side of deck board goes down?

A board that is correctly installed right side up (or bark side down) will form a crown and allow water to run off the edges. If the board is installed wrong side up (or bark side up) it will curve up on the edges when dry and water can gather and sit in the cup. That is a recipe for wood rot and problems.

What length deck boards should I use?

Length: When possible, buy decking that can run the full length of your deck. All lumberyards and home centers carry 16-ft. deck boards, but many also stock or can order 20- and 24-ft. boards, though they may cost more.

Is it better to paint or stain pressure treated wood?

Staining treated wood
Not only can you stain treated wood, staining and painting pressure treated wood is actually good for your new deck. Although the treated wood doesn't need to be protected against rot, staining it will help reduce surface cracking.

How do I keep my deck boards straight?


Deck Board Spacing with Chalk
Set the first board along a chalk line to start straight. Then sight down the boards occasionally to make sure they're staying straight. If they're not, vary the size of the gap between boards gradually over a few rows as needed to straighten them.

How do you seal a gap between concrete and House?

Water can get into the joints, freeze and then expand, making the cracks even larger. Gaps against a house can direct water against the foundation, leading to more problems. Once a year, go around your home and fill these gaps and joints with urethane caulk (or polyurethane caulk) to prevent problems.

How do you fill gaps in siding?

How to Close a Gap in Vinyl Siding
  1. Step 1: Step away from the caulk gun. If the hole is more than a 1/4 of an inch, caulk won't solve the problem.
  2. Step 2: Head to the hardware store. To slide two pieces back together, you'll need a zip tool.
  3. Step 3: Unlock the overlapping pieces.
  4. Step 4: Secure your siding.

How do I keep mosquitoes out of my screened porch?

10 Ways to keep mosquitoes off your porch or deck
  1. Empty Standing Water.
  2. Fix under deck drainage with Sand or a French Drain.
  3. Put Mosquito Dunks in any standing water.
  4. Clean out your gutters.
  5. Turn on or Bring out the Fan.
  6. Install potted Mosquito Repellent Plants.
  7. Trim the Grass and Bushes.
  8. Burn Mosquito Repellent Incense.

How do you seal wood between bricks?

For any gaps 1/2" or larger, you'll need something to physically fill in those large spaces. This can mean backer rod (shown below) or spray expansion foam to give volume there. For any gaps 1/2" or smaller, you can opt for using a silicone-based caulk to seal those areas.

Why is my wood deck cracking?


Constant exposure to moisture and heat causes wood deck boards to crack, and small or hairline cracks are an unavoidable consequence of your deck's aging process. The wood gets wet, soaks up the water, expands and then drys out, contracting and shrinking, causing cracks in the surface of the wood.

Should I sand my deck before staining?

Deck Stain Essential#1: Sand or pressure wash-and-sand before applying anything. Never apply a deck stain to unprepped wood. Use an 80-grit abrasive in a 6″ random orbit sander. Most deck stain products on the market simply don't last, even if you prep and apply them properly.

Will solid stain cover caulking?

Since you're using a solid stain it should cover all the caulk joints just fine. If you end up using a transparent stain then you'll be dealing with the same issue.