Repairing a worn porch may be as simple as typing in “porch repair near me,” but fixing an old porch starts with recognizing the problem. In addition to being an eye sore, hidden rotting wood supports, wobbly railings, and loose boards can cause costly headaches. If your porch is at the front of your home, those problem boards cost you home value and money—especially if a visitor gets hurt because of a bad porch board.
The first step of fixing worn porch boards comes with a full examination of the deck. If you can, get down on your hands and knees and carefully check every part of the porch. Look carefully for warped or splintered boards and rotting wood. Specifically, look for problems that could cause injuries or could weaken the porch structure.
Porch supports are the foundation of a strong porch, both for supporting porch boards and the roof. Rotting porch columns are easy to spot; any decay on the supports under the porch are harder to see without going under the porch and steps. When checking porch supports, look for splintering and soft wood. If the supports are deteriorating, they need to be replaced so the porch does not lean or collapse.
Loose railings are a recipe for disaster. Only one visitor needs to lean against a loose railing before it lets go and causes harm. To check railings, lightly push against the railings to see if they lean under pressure. If the railing gives, call a contractor to have the railing secured or replaced. On some homes, deteriorating railings can also be replaced with a low-maintenance aluminum railing.
Loose or broken step boards are a real hazard for homeowners and visitors. You never know when the boards are going to snap under foot—and it can happen at the worst of times. In addition to replacing broken steps, you should also inspect the supports underneath to ensure that the porch stairs are strong and can handle the flow of visitors and deliveries.
Water Gutter Damage
Water gutters are an important part of a porch, even though they aren’t the first thought that comes to mind when thinking about porch repairs. Gutters should be structurally sound, clear of any debris, and run so that water is not running down columns or onto railings or boards. The latter problem can prematurely wear down columns and railings, costing you more for repairs in the long-term. If you notice any of these problems during your porch inspection, contact a contractor to reroute or replace the gutters.
If the problems are just a few boards or is very minor, repairing porch boards is an easy and inexpensive fix. Your contractor can just replace a few boards and secure the railings. If there is too much damage, contact a contractor to discuss a full porch remodel and ways to prevent any future problems. Your contractor may recommend using composite decking which does not rot or splinter.