How Much Does It Cost To Repair a Deck?

Typical Range:

$790 - $3,012

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 11,495 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

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  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Updated February 4, 2021

Reviewed by Robert Tschudi, Expert Home Building and Remodeling Contributor.

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Deck Repair Costs

Deck repair costs an average of $1,868 with most homeowners spending between $790 and $3,012. The total cost depends on the building material damaged, extent of the damage and your location. Although it requires an investment of time and money, repairs cost significantly less than a full replacement that can range anywhere between $4,000 and $11,000.

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National Average $1,868
Typical Range $790 - $3,012
Low End - High End $250 - $6,400

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 11,495 HomeAdvisor members.

the average cost to repair a deck is $1,700 or between $250 and $5,600.

Deck repair is a common home improvement project that adds value to your home and enjoyment to your outdoor living space. There are many reasons that decks may need repair, from structural to cosmetic. Many people try to repair their own decks, which can be an economical option if you have carpentry experience. If, however, you have little to no experience with carpentry, you will save money and time by hiring a deck contractor to ensure everything is done correctly, and your deck meets important safety guidelines and requirements so you can enjoy it for years to come.

Deck Repair Cost Factors

Where your total cost fall in the $790 and $3,012 range for your deck repair depends on labor costs in your area, decking materials, the type of damage, the condition of your railing and whether mold, rot or mildew exists.

Labor Costs

Expect to pay anywhere between $100 and $500 for labor, depending on your location and the issue they’re addressing. While sealing or replacing a broken board, other issues may become apparent based on the age of your deck and your geographical area. The possibility of unforeseen repairs is all the more reason to get several quotes from contractors before you begin your project, as contractors charge different rates for labor.

Wood vs. Composite Decks

Your deck material type will play a big role in determining what repairs are necessary, what it will cost and on what timeline. Composite decks cost more than wood, but they require less maintenance and are not susceptible to rot. Wood decks last for several decades when properly maintained and cost less to install. They also increase the value of your home more and will typically recoup an average of 85% of its cost when the house is sold. Composite will only recoup an average 78% of its total cost.

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Deck Railing Repairs

Depending on the complexity of the job and local rates and materials, expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $4,000 for railing repairs. The cost for this project will vary depending on whether you have a simple or ornate railing, and whether the rail alone needs to be replaced, or if a replacement trim rail, post end cap or baluster is also required.

Popped Nails and Screws

Your contractor may also replace or fix any missing or popped nails or screws that they notice. This is necessary to ensure safety, and will add minimal cost to your overall project. A deck generally needs eight screws per square foot. A pound of screws costs about $8 to $12, and there are about 150 screws in a pound. The cost for screws per square foot is about $0.30.

Anchoring Deck Stairs

If your deck stairs are loose, but structurally sound and made of healthy wood, a professional can simply anchor any loose steps for a cost between $100 and $300, depending on the number of stairs. Your contractor will adding screws to the beams or install metal brackets to make your deck safer.

Mold and Rot

If the rot covers a large and/or weight-bearing area, call a professional. On average, the cost to repair rotting wood ranges from $200 to $500 including parts and labor. In addition to removing and repairing areas with dry rot, your professional will investigate the root cause of the problem, including drainage and plumbing issues. This could drive up the total repair price for the project.

If the area damaged by dry rot is not weight-bearing, you can repair it yourself by trimming away the damaged wood and filling it in with a putty-like, two-part epoxy compound that hardens in place and can be sanded smooth. These epoxy compounds sell for about $35 to $70 a quart or $100 to $200 a gallon. Major brand names include LiquidWood and Boatlife GIT-Rot.

Mildew Issues

Mold and mildew can build up in decks that haven’t been properly maintained and can generally be removed with powerwashing. The average cost of a professional power washing ranges from $0.25 to $1.50 per square foot, or $80 to $480 for a 16-by-20-foot deck. Your contractor might also charge a cleaning fee of $100 to $200.

If you're experienced, you may be able to do this yourself. Expect to pay $40 to $75 per day to rent a power washer, plus $10 to $30 for cleaning supplies. Before you commit to the DIY option, be aware that incorrect power washing can ruin your deck’s appearance and potentially cause further damage.

Pest Control

Be prepared to find other problems while your deck is repaired. If insects like termites are found, you may need to hire a pest control specialist to check the deck and surrounding areas before proceeding with your repair project. On average, it costs between $65 and $100 for a pest control company to perform an inspection and write a report.

Common Deck Board Issues

Deck boards will sometimes have problems that you need to address before the whole deck is compromised and in need of more expensive repairs. In the worst case scenario, you might need to have most of the deck boards replaced. Some common issues you will see include:

  • Instability: If the boards are unstable, one or more might need to be replaced. Replacing a few will generally cost between $500 and $4,000. Some companies charge a minimum of $1,000 for carpentry repairs, so be sure to get quotes.

  • Rotten wood: If the wood is rotten to the point that it needs to be replaced, expect to pay between $500 and $1,000, depending on the type of wood and the contractor’s rate for labor.

  • : This is an issue with wood decking. Boards tend to cup or curl in the direction of the rings. These cups can hold water and lead to early deterioration. Most professional contractors will install with "cupping" facing down, to minimize water damage. High-end deck installers will even add "stress reduction cuts" to help them lay flat to prevent this issue.

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Average Cost of Replacement Deck Boards

MaterialPrice Per Square Foot
Treated Lumber$8-$20
Ipe Hardwood$10-$20

If you are replacing one or more broken boards, the size and type will affect your cost. Boards around the offending board may also need to be replaced, and if it's expensive or hard-to-find, this may increase your expense. For this reason, it is advisable to consider potential replacement costs. Also take into account the longevity of different types of material. For example, a cheaper wood now might not be the best investment choice 10 years down the road.

Cedar Deck

Cedar decks are often considered more visually appealing to homeowners in the short term, but without diligent cleaning and resealing, most cedar decks lose their rich color after a few years. The average material cost for cedar is $3 to $7 per square foot. These decks generally last from 15 to 20 years, but they can deteriorate faster, particularly on the ground-floor and in shaded areas that take longer to dry out.

Cedar decking is a great choice for people located in extreme climates because the wood continues to produce its own oils years after being processed into lumber, which keeps it in good shape. In addition, the oils help maintain that appealing cedar smell.

Treated Lumber

The cost for treated lumber ranges from $8 to $20 per square foot, for an estimated total replacement cost of $2,560 to $16,000 for a 16-by-20-foot deck. This is an excellent option for homeowners who don’t want to spend a lot of time on maintenance. While it doesn’t have the same aesthetic appeal as cedar, treated decking is a premium choice for locations with consistent weather. One downside is that treated lumber doesn’t come in a wide range of color choices, but this can make the decision-making process easier.

Be aware that not all treated lumber is created equal. The low cost of some treated lumber can come at the expense of its visual appearance. Inexpensive treated wood often retains moisture, causing it to shrink unevenly and twist when it dries. More expensive options are kiln-dried before and after pressure treatment, making them less likely to warp. When properly maintained, this type of deck should last for decades.

Redwood Boards

The cost of redwood boards ranges from $5 to 30 per square foot,. Redwood has a distinct, broad grain patterns that add visual appeal and ensure that every redwood deck is unique. Redwood is fairly easy to maintain and can last 15 to 30 years with proper maintenance.

Ipe Hardwood Deck

This is the most durable option, with an estimated longevity of 30 to 50 years. It is also more expensive, coming in at a total estimated cost of $10 to $20 or more per square foot.


Mahogany is a beautiful and durable material. Replacement boards cost an average between $8 and $11 per square foot.

Composite Wood

Composite wood can be made out of many types of materials. Some are wood mixed with plastic. However some manufacturers will sell composites made entirely of plastic or plastic wrapped around wood. Individual deck boards cost $12 to $22 per square foot. Composite decks may cost less initially, but they have a lot of maintenance over the lifetime of the deck, especially if you install pressure-treated lumber. This includes cleaning and staining on a regular basis, along with any damage the deck might sustain.

Taking Care of Your Deck

Staining and Sealing

Most contractors will stain and seal your deck about a month after they finish the project, to give the wood time to settle and adjust to the weather. Deck staining costs $1 to $5 per square foot. Add an additional deck sealing cost of $0.50 to $7 per square foot to your budget, depending on local rates and the products being used. When you sign your contract, make sure to include this final step in the overall estimate so you aren’t surprised by the additional $640 to $1,120 cost for a 16-by-20-foot deck.

Taking the time to stain and seal is an important step for the overall health of your deck. Staining and sealing protects the wood by repelling damaging water while allowing the wood to breathe and transfer moisture.

  • Clear sealants are mainly water repellents and don't carry UV light protection. They have no pigments in their formula to filter out damaging sunlight.

  • Colored stains carry all the benefits of deck protection, provide visual/aesthetic consistency and deliver UV light protection.

A general rule of thumb is the more color, the more pigment, the more UV protection. Without UV protection, your deck may turn gray, costing you more money in the long run and leaving you with an unattractive deck.

Cleaning and Proper Maintenance

To ensure that you don’t need to go through the whole process of repairing or replacing your deck again for the next few decades, make sure to properly clean and maintain it. It’s a good idea to set up a cleaning schedule to make sure your deck is getting the care it needs year-round.

  • Set aside time in the spring to give it a thorough wash, sweep and cleaning. Your contractor can recommend the best cleaner for your specific deck, which generally costs $10 to $30. Use the cleaner according to its specifications. For best results, choose a cloudy (but not rainy) day, so the sun won’t evaporate the cleaner.

  • Seal the deck in late spring, allowing two days for the task. During this step, replace any missing or popped nails and screws, and lightly sand the deck.

  • During summer, examine your deck for rot or mildew. Pay extra attention to the ledger, joists, posts and beams.

  • In the fall, set your deck up with a preventative maintenance plan. Sweep away debris and take care of any cleaning or sealing that you didn’t get around to in the spring.

With this year-round plan, your deck will stay in great shape for years to come.

Deck Demolition Costs

Replacement is the only way to remedy severely damaged or deteriorated decking. Most homeowners pay between $5 and $15 per square foot for deck removal. If you have a multi-story deck or heavy components like metal railing, removal pricing can be more. Partial deck demolition costs about $30 per square foot>, a fraction of the cost for a replacement. Be sure to check with your pro about the cost to haul away waste. Some services will charge extra to remove your old decking.

## Ways to Minimize Overall Cost

Working with a professional contractor is a good way to make sure your project is done correctly, so you can avoid making additional repairs or replacements in the near future. However, hiring somebody comes at a much higher initial cost than doing the project yourself. Here are some ways you can minimize the overall cost of your project and still have it done by a professional.

### Buy the Materials Yourself

Ask your contractor for a list of all the materials you will need, so you can purchase them yourself from your local hardware store. You can also go with the contractor to the lumberyard or hardware store and pay for the materials yourself. A third option is to have the lumber yard start an account for your contractor that you will pay at the end of the project.

Some contractors might not like this idea, since they tend to add a 10% to 15% premium to the cost of materials as a handling fee, but taking the initiative and asking to buy the materials yourself can save you money in the long run.

### Work With a Handyman

This might not be your best bet if you are doing a complete overhaul of your deck, but if you only need a few relatively minor repairs, a handyman will generally charge less for labor and materials than a carpenter or deck company. Be sure to get quotes from at least three companies or contractors to ensure a well-informed decision.

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