How to protect your decking from warping in the sun

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When your wood becomes wet and dries out, it can shrink and warp leaving you with an uneven surface. This can look unappealing but could also cause lasting damage, which may result in you needing to completely replace your decking altogether. The good news though, is that fixing warped decking isn’t as complicated as it might sound. And for the sake of a few hours work, the finished result is well worth the effort.

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Reset damaged boards

If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to fix your warped boards by simply removing the screws, flipping the board and creating a new hole to screw into. Generally, six screws placed the length of your board will keep the board flat and secure. Use two screws at either end of the board and two more towards the outside of the board at every joist. This will keep the boards in place, giving them no room to move or warp.

The longer your screws, the more securely your boards will be placed.

Use moisture to make the boards pliable

Just like warping, bowing occurs when moisture leaves the boards causing the wood to shrink. By adding moisture back into the wood, you can correct the warping with a little bit of pressure.

Add water to the board until it starts to pool. Leave it sitting on the surface for roughly 15 minutes before wiping it away.

Once the wood has enough moisture in it, it will become pliable and can be slightly bent. Once you’ve reached this point, grab a clamp and something rigid like pipes to fix the wood in place and straighten it out. Leave it to dry in a well-ventilated area, out of direct sunlight and you should be left with a perfectly straight board.

Replace the boards completely

If you’ve only got one or two warped boards, you might find it easier to replace them altogether. This has its advantages in that it’s quick and easy to do, but it’s not as cost effective and you could end up with mismatched boards.

All you need to do is pull up the damaged board and replace it with a new one. If you’ve got some leftover wood, grab some screws and fix the board to the joist. If your boards have been nailed down, pry up the nails and replace with screws.

Prevent it happening again

If your decking is in a truly sorry state and is greying, cracked and in need of a facelift, our Decking Rescue Paint will have it looking good as new in no time at all. It also protects your decking from ALL elements, not just the sun, including frost, snow, and rain.

For decking that’s only a couple of years old, our protective stain will help prevent warping on sunny days and wear and tear when the weather is worse.

If you’ve just bought brand new decking, it still needs protecting. Oil is the best route and will ensure your decking stays as good as new.

Find out more about our decking treatment care products.


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