How to Spot Problems Before They Get Out of Hand

The best way to keep deck repair costs down is to spot problems before they get out of hand. A professional can help you inspect your deck for damage and recommend the right action. For more information visit Deck Cleaning Summerville SC.

Examine wood for splinters and cracks that can cause rot. Tap on loose boards with a screwdriver to see how the wood feels and sounds. Any areas that feel soft or spongy should be removed and replaced.

The cracks that form in your deck’s boards aren’t only unsightly, but they can also create tripping hazards. The good news is that this problem can usually be repaired with a little time and effort. Cracks in wood are caused by a variety of environmental factors, including moisture and temperature fluctuations. This can lead to the expansion and contraction of the wood, which causes it to split.

The type of wood used is another factor, with some species more prone to cracking than others. Hardwoods like Ipe, Cumaru, and Tigerwood are less prone to this issue than softer woods like pine or pressure-treated lumber. In addition, the way the board is installed can contribute to cracking. For example, boards that aren’t spaced properly can cause stress that leads to cracking.

If the cracks are on the surface of the wood, you can usually fix them with a deck filler. You can find wood fillers at your local hardware store in both powdered and stick form. Look for a stainable filler that will take on the color of your wood and blend in with it. For deeper cracks, try using a wood putty or epoxy. However, if the crack is a structural concern, it’s a good idea to bring in a professional.

A professional can inspect the cracks and determine if they are simply cosmetic or a sign of a bigger issue. In addition to evaluating the length and width of the crack, they will check for any areas where the cracks are forming around metal fasteners or connections. Cracks that form around notches are especially concerning, as they can indicate a connection failure and may require the replacement of the entire board.

Taking the proper steps to prevent the appearance of cracks in your deck can save you money and extend the life of your wooden deck. The most important step is to ensure the boards are properly sealed and maintained, which will help protect them from absorbing excess moisture. You can also prevent cracking by purchasing higher-grade lumber that has a lower tendency to check and by installing the boards correctly.

A noticeable sag in a deck stair can result from structural problems or weather changes. Stairs comprise treads and risers, which slot into pockets in stair stringers (the inclined boards that carry the stairs). Treads and risers may also be fastened with nails, but the best way to repair a loose stair is to replace it. If a stair is still firm, add wood shims between it and the frame to prevent it from pulling away from the deck.

Treads and risers are usually held firm and squeak-free by wedges glued and nailed to both sides. Creaking is often caused by the movement of these wedges, which can be silenced by simply removing them and regluing them to both the tread and the riser. If the wedges are in good shape, you can coat them with modern resin glue and hammer them tightly.

The stair framing is a complicated piece of joinery, and if the stairs are loose, it’s essential to take them apart carefully to ensure that they’re reassembled properly. It’s also important to ensure that the stair is not sitting on the floor, which can cause it to buckle and warp over time.

Before attempting to work on a sagging stair, blow compressed air into any spaces beneath the stairs to clear them of dust and debris. You can then begin to pry the risers and treads free from the stringers, being careful not to damage them. A hammer and screwdriver should be enough to break any glue or nail holding the riser or tread in place.

Once the stair is completely disassembled, you can see where the problem lies. Most squeaks come from the front of a stair, so it’s a good idea to drill holes at opposing angles through the tread and into the riser. This will squish the wood together and silence any squeaks.

You can use a countersink tool to make the hole bigger, allowing you to use longer screws that are more likely to hold the wood in place. You can also shim the staircase by installing 2x material glued and screwed between the stringers to apply inward pressure to the stairs. This will keep the treads and risers from working outward, but it’s a complex job that should be left to professionals.

A loose or wobbly handrail can be a serious safety hazard, especially for older adults and people with mobility issues. This can cause falls that result in injury or even death. Fortunately, most loose deck rails can be repaired easily with some simple DIY steps.

Checking that the posts and beams that support the railing are firmly fastened is usually all it takes to fix a loose wood deck rail. Most problems stem from a bad connection between the post and the deck frame or joists. At the very least, lag screws or bolts should be used to connect the framing to the post, and those should be surrounded with blocking to keep them in place. Bolts and screws should be tightened, and lags checked periodically to ensure they’re still secure.

For metal railings, check the connections between each baluster and the newel post. Loose balusters are typically caused by the screw or nail used to hold the railing to the post, which has worked loose over time as it’s bowed from use. If the bolt or screw remains intact, it can be tapped with a hammer. Then the railing can be re-secured with a fresh screw or nail.

If the newel posts feel solid, but the fence still wiggles, check the metal hardware that holds it together. This hardware usually has holes (sometimes plugged) under the surface that permit tightening by turning a star-shaped nut on the end of a tool. If these bolts are loosened, it can cause the wooden handrail to move between the newel posts.

It’s important to install deck framing components according to the building code and manufacturer’s instructions. However, it’s rare for framing errors to be the sole cause of a loose deck railing. A loose or missing railing is more likely to occur because of an improper design or installation. If a visitor to your deck falls and is injured by a faulty or loose handrail, you could be liable under premises liability laws. For this reason, it’s best to inspect and repair your deck for loose or broken handrails to prevent injuries.

When mold and mildew grow on your deck, it’s more than an eyesore. The fungi can damage wood and, if left unchecked, will cause structural problems. Mildew and mold grow in the wettest parts of your deck and are often found on surfaces that trap moisture. While both can damage wood, mildew is not as invasive and generally doesn’t penetrate the wood grain as mold.

Luckily, if you catch these problems early, mold and mildew don’t cause much damage. If you spot it on your deck, take action right away. However, the method you use to remove the spores and roots will vary depending on the severity of the problem.

For mildew, you can scrub the affected area with a brush and a cleaning solution made from white distilled vinegar. The vinegar will remove the spores and prevent them from growing back.

If the mold is bad, you may need to pressure clean the deck. Use a low setting or hire a professional to avoid damaging the soft wood.

You can also use an oxygen bleach solution to remove mildew from your deck. Add 8 to 10 tablespoons of trisodium phosphate and one cup of household chlorine bleach to a gallon of water, then scrub the area with a nylon bristle brush. After cleaning, you can rinse off the area with a garden hose.

For more stubborn stains, you can use a power washer. Be careful not to overuse the nozzle, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the unit.

The best way to prevent these problems is to keep moisture off your deck. This can be done by improving drainage or moving potted plants around periodically. If you need to leave plants on your deck, ensure they have plenty of space and are supported by pot feet to improve air circulation. You can also install a drip system to divert moisture from the wood. This will stop the rot before it starts. This is important for any wooden deck, whether covered or not.

Considerations When Working On Roofing For Historical Buildings

The roof is an important aspect of any historic building. A deteriorating one will allow water penetration, which can cause damage to the rest of the building and any historical materials or furnishings housed within it.

Roofing experts should be familiar with historic buildings and the type of roof they had originally. Research should include document research, onsite investigation, and physical inspection. If you are considering hiring a professional service, Roofing Longview TX is the right choice.



Roofing on historical buildings is not the same as it is on newer homes and requires an extra level of care. Whether the roof needs repairs or replacement, it is important to know what type of materials will be used on the structure. This will ensure that the roofing crew is aware of any unique issues and damage and can make the appropriate repairs to restore the integrity of the building.

Historically, roofing was made from a variety of materials, including clay tiles, wood shingles, and metal. These materials were carefully crafted to complement the design and aesthetic of the building, so it is essential to maintain this style throughout the roofing process.

Many of these historical roofs have a long life expectancy, but they are susceptible to problems such as water intrusion and rot. It is important to keep in mind that these types of problems can lead to serious structural damage and may be irreversible, especially if left untreated. Depending on the original roofing material, a roofing company may suggest applying a protective coating or sealant to reduce damage and prolong the life of the roof.

If the roofing material is unable to be restored, it may be possible to replace the historic roof with a more modern one. This may lower the value of the home, but it is often worth it if it means preserving the history and character of the building. It is also essential to communicate with the neighbors and local officials before beginning work on a historic home or building. This will allow them to adjust their situations and schedules as needed and will prevent any potential liability issues down the road.

A properly constructed historical roof can withstand extreme weather conditions and insulate a building effectively. This can result in lower energy bills and more savings for the homeowner. If you are interested in restoring or maintaining your historical home, it is best to work with a skilled roofing team that has experience working on these types of projects. Taking the time to find the right materials and repair any problems will help your home or building retain its historic character for years to come.


Historic buildings and structures represent a significant part of a community’s cultural heritage, and it is vital to protect them from damage. Roofs, in particular, have a big impact on a building’s appearance and are responsible for protecting the interior from weather elements. However, the design of a historic home’s roof can be complicated and require special care.

In some cases, it may be difficult to find roofing materials that match the original material used in a historical building’s construction. This can make the restoration process more challenging and expensive, but it is important to use high-quality roofing materials to ensure that the structure’s integrity remains intact.

It is also important to preserve the shape, size, and pitch of a historic building’s roof, as well as its style features. This can be accomplished by ensuring that new roof elements, such as skylights, solar panels, and decks, are placed in areas where they will not interfere with the aesthetics of the structure. It is also important to preserve any architectural details, such as cornices and parapets, that were originally installed on a building’s roof.

One way to protect a historic building’s roof is to perform regular maintenance and inspections. This can help to identify potential problems before they become more serious and can prevent costly repairs or replacements. Inspections should be conducted by a qualified professional who can identify any issues and recommend the best course of action to take.

Many historic buildings were built with traditional wood shingles or shakes, but these can be costly and time-consuming to repair or replace. A metal roof can be an excellent alternative for historic buildings, as it offers a more modern look and is also fire-resistant. It is also lightweight, so it will not put unnecessary stress on the load-bearing walls of the building.

If you are looking to restore a historic building, it is important to work with a roofer who has experience working with these types of projects. It is also critical to choose a contractor that has the skills and expertise to work with unique roofing materials and construction techniques. By working with a reputable roofing company, you can rest assured that your historic building’s roof will be protected for generations to come.


When working on historic buildings, you may be required to obtain a permit for your work. This will ensure that your project complies with local and state building codes. These standards help to protect life, property, and public welfare. Many types of work require a permit.

For example, if you are planning to re-roof your historic home, you will need a roof permit. This will ensure that the new roof meets the requirements of your city’s code. It will also help to ensure that your roof is structurally sound.

You should also check with the historical preservation office of your area to find out what types of permits you might need for your project. They will be able to help you determine what materials and styles of roof would be appropriate for your house. They can also tell you what kinds of materials were used on houses in your area in the past.

In some cases, you will need to obtain a permit before working on a historic building. This is especially true if you live in a designated historic district. The main purpose of a historic district is to stop the piecemeal destruction of an outstanding area. This is accomplished by requiring that all exterior changes be approved before you can start construction.

The permit will usually approve minor modifications to a building’s façade, but you will have to submit a full plan for review and approval. This includes a statement of significance that clearly describes your project. This should be accompanied by a schedule that shows when each step of the process will be completed. In most cases, you will need to have a professional architect submit the plans.

If your project is going to involve a major modification to the structure of your home, you will need to submit a complete set of architectural and engineering plans. You will also need to have a licensed surveyor prepare a topographical map of your property and submit it with the permit application.


The roof of a historic home plays a critical role. It protects the building’s structural integrity, as well as all the items stored inside from water intrusion and damage. Roofing work on a historic preservation project must be done by someone with experience. This is because a poorly executed roofing project could devalue the property. A skilled and knowledgeable roofer can help ensure that a new roof will be built using the best materials and construction techniques.

Historically, many homes used natural roofing materials. These can include wood shingles, clay tile, or natural slate. Although these materials are durable, they can deteriorate over time. They also require careful maintenance and regular repairs. This type of roofing is also often more expensive than modern synthetic composite roofs. However, it is important to remember that a historical roof can last for decades, so a quality roofing material will pay for itself over the years.

Historic roofing systems are also usually more energy-efficient than modern roofs. The insulation in these structures helps to maintain a cooler temperature during the summer and warmer during the winter, saving homeowners money on their energy bills. However, it is important to understand that a historical roof should not be replaced with a modern roofing system. This can destroy the integrity of the structure, and can even lead to an insurance claim.

A qualified roofer will know how to restore a historic roof without ruining the architecture of the building. They will understand that the different materials used in old buildings require specialized installation methods. They will also have an understanding of the unforeseen challenges that may arise during the restoration process.

Choosing the right roofer for a historic restoration project can be difficult because not all roofing contractors have experience working on historic buildings. A good roofer will have a deep appreciation of the history and culture behind the historic building they are working on. They will also be able to understand the underlying issues that can cause problems with the roof, and they will be able to make adjustments accordingly.