How to Tell When Teak Decking Needs Some Refinishing How to Tell When Teak Decking Needs Some Refinishing

Teak decking is made to last, and if installed correctly, will last for years without needing to be refinished. However, time and exposure to the elements will eventually damage the deck. Many people do not consider the fact that a deck may need refinished until it is falling apart, making the repair much more difficult and expensive. You can take a few simple steps to evaluate a teak deck and determine whether it can be refinished or needs to be replaced.


One of the first things to look at is the color. As time wears on, the stain or coating that was applied onto it will fade and begin to peel away. When this happens, it is a simple process to strip the wood and re-stain or re-seal it. Keep an eye on the color of your wood so you can treat any discoloration as soon as it happens. The longer that water can get into the pores of the wood, the more damage that will be done.

Warping or Breaking

An obvious problem that suggests that a teak deck may need refinishing is warping or breaking boards. This means that water has been allowed to destroy the internal pores within the wood, or that the wood has been abused in substantial ways. As soon as this problem is noticed, remove the damaged boards and replace them with new ones. Make sure to seal or stain the entire deck after the repairs are made to ensure that the teak deck is uniformly coated.


Another common sign that the teak deck will need to be refinished is bowing throughout the centers of the wood. This happens as moisture and humidity bond into the inside of the wood. As it expands and contracts the board begins to lose its shape and strength, causing bows within the centers. This can easily be seen by looking straight down at the teak wood. If the gap that is between the boards is no longer even, then there may be a problem. However, realize that when the deck was originally installed the wood may have not been perfect.

A teak deck requires a lot less refinishing routines than the majority of average decks do, as long as they are immediately repaired and maintained as soon as problems are noticed. Never put a repair or refinishing task off until later because by the time you get to it the problem, or problems, may be worse. If you notice an issue, fix it. The best rule of thumb to follow is that if the deck’s appearance or condition has changed within the last year or two, then it is time to restore it back to its original finish and condition.

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