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Deck Coating 101

Some of the most common questions we get from homeowners is, "What is the deck coating process?" or "How do I get started?". If these questions resonate with you, you're in luck! We have compiled a quick down and dirty list on deck coating to get you started.



Deck coating can be intimidating for the inexperienced. But hopefully with a little guidance (from your Dependable, waterproofing experts) you will be able to conquer the task.


To keep this as simple and straightforward as possible, I have broken down the process by days, because no matter how much we want to get it all done in one fell swoop, things have to dry. Lets get to it!



Day #1 - Flashing and Base Coat


Before you get started, triple check to make sure your deck surface is dry! Once you're ready to begin you want to install the flashing. You do this by applying a small bead of caulk along the edge of the deck and laying the flashing over the top of the caulk. Be sure to nail the flashing down every 2-3 inches. Once flashing is secured, prime the metal with a metal primer, such as MasterSeal P-173.


Next, you will want to apply a thin bead of caulk over the plywood transitions and at any wood/metal transitions. Smooth out the caulk using a putty knife or trowel. Then cover all the transitions (the ones you just put caulk on) with Bamilex (seam tape).


Using the trowel or putty knife, you want to then smooth out the Bamilex into the caulking. Give yourself a little break while the material sets for a few hours, you deserve it.

Dependable's General Manager, Ray, applying caulking on a deck in Edmonds.


Now that you're rested and hydrated, squeegee or roll your base coat onto the entire deck surface at 60 sf/gallon.


Pat yourself on the back, your first layer of deck coating is done!


Day #2 - Second Coat


Prep the deck by sweeping off any debris. Once the deck is debris free, apply the second coat of base coat. This is going to be applied at 100 sf/gallon.


Immediately following the second base coat application, start spreading sand, or whatever material you are using for texture, onto your deck. You will want to put enough material on the deck so that it appears dry, think Sahara Desert.


Congratulations, you are done for the day!


Day #3 - Topcoat


Start by sweeping, vacuuming, or blowing off the excess sand or texture. Once this is complete you can apply the topcoat at 80 sf/gallon.


After the topcoat is completely dry it's time to have that barbeque and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Great work!


A Few Things to Keep in Mind


  • The plywood used for your deck should be a minimum of 3/4" plugged and sanded on one side (no OSB!).

  • There are accelerators for deck coatings but, if it is cold, they can only do so much.

  • If you are recoating a deck, you will absolutely need an interlaminary primer.

  • If you are coating over concrete or treated plywood, you will need a 2-part epoxy primer.


That's a Wrap


Hopefully this short and sweet tutorial has increased your confidence in the deck coating process and has you ready to tackle that next home improvement project. Ready to get started? Great! We have all the materials you need. And as always, we are happy to answer any waterproofing questions you might have. Call or e-mail us anytime!


Leave us a comment below and let us know what other waterproofing topics you would like to see covered in future posts!

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