What to Do If You Have a Loose Board on Your Deck

A loose board on the outdoor deck isn’t an issue that you should ignore. Not only does it look unappealing, it creates an uneven, unsteady walking surface that could lead to a nasty accident. In many cases, the issue is caused by the alternating expansion and contraction of wood boards as the weather changes; this makes the nails and/or screws gradually come free. So what can you do when you see a board that isn’t properly secured? Keep reading.

If you have a loose board, you may see what is known as a “nail pop”—that’s when the head of a nail protrudes from the surface instead of sitting flush. You could try simply hammering the nail down, but a better solution is to replace it with a screw, as these little devices are more resistant to popping and therefore more secure. If you’re going to insist on using nails, it’s best to opt for 16-penny galvanized steel box nails, which resist corrosion and minimize splitting of the wood.

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Be sure to take this occasion to inspect the entire deck. It’s certainly possible that there are other boards that are beginning to develop problems. You can gently test an individual board by carefully placing the weight of your foot on it at the joist and then shifting off it. The board may noticeably come loose.

Not everyone is comfortable making quick repairs to the deck, and that’s perfectly understandable. So why not leave it to us? Since 1945, Deck Wizard has been in the deck refurbishing business in the Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, & Washington, D.C. areas. For expert deck services, feel free to call us at 877-466-1009. Ask us for a free consultation!

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