It’s time, now that the winter rains have subsided, to think about refinishing our front steps. They are made of pressure-treated 5/4 by 6 deck boards, and last year we used the Behr Waterproof coating recommended to us at Home Depot. It didn’t work.
I used this same product on our fence, and had the same result on the horizontal top plate. However, the vertical fence panels look as good today as when I applied the coating. The stairs, as you can see, did not fare so well. The water getting in under the coating, combined with the friction of many footsteps, served to rub most of this coating off of each exposed step. To address this, I’ve decided to try a new product: Behr DeckOver, which is a heavy, acrylic, slip-resistant coating.
Step one was to remove the old coating. Rather than pressure wash, which can force water into the wood and delay the dry-time, I chose to sand using my belt sander and my orbital sander. Before I could do that, though, I had to make sure all the nail heads were tapped into the wood.
Once the nails were below the wood, I was ready to sand.
After sanding, I cleaned the stairs with Behr #63 Wood cleaner. Then I taped along the edges so that the DeckOver would not get onto the fascia boards along the sides.
And then I was ready to paint it on. I used a roller for the most part, which helps with giving it a little more texture, and just used a brush for the edges and corners. This product requires two coats, so after the first coat dried, I applied the second.
One thing to note: as the coating dries, it cures, and in the process a powdery white substance appears on the surface.
But don’t worry. This substance is water soluble, and comes off easily with a hose or a wet sponge. In fact, we just waited for the rain, and that took care of it.
We’re very happy with the look and feel of the refinished steps. Check back with TheBuild.ca in a year, and we’ll let you know how well it lasts over the winter!