It may be easier than you think to do a little fix-up work around the house, especially on that great get-away place—the deck. Decks need TLC too—particularly if those boards are exposed and regularly face wind, rain and heat. I have a few tips for homeowners who want to do their own deck maintenance correctly and safely using a single tool. Here’s a little how-to on replacing a ruined deck board followed by some tips on saving those stairs.
Replacing a Board:
Use a multi-tool with a wood-cutting blade to remove a section of the board between the joists.
Then switch to a metal-cutting blade and insert it between the remaining board and the joist to cut the fastener. I’ve had better success using this method than with pulling the nails with a pry bar.
Once you get the board out, measure the opening and cut a new piece of treated lumber.
Make sure that you attach the new lumber with a galvanized fastener and allow about an 1/8″ for expansion.
Fixing a cupped stair:
Here you have two options: Using the rasp accessory, work down the high spot at the front of the stair, followed by the sanding triangle to smooth the surface.
You can also use a segmented cutting blade flat on the stair and push it towards the high spot to cut away the excess, again followed by the sanding triangle to smooth the surface.