Thursday, July 03, 2014

Rustoleum Deck Restore Project and Review

*Update* The original post is from 2013 when we completed this project. Since then many people (too many people for me to ignore posting this update) have had negative experiences so I urge you to read some reviews and make an educated decision for yourself.

We did it! We successfully restored our badly weathered excuse of a deck. If you're just stopping by to get the cliff notes version of this blog post, I present you with the highlights....

But if you're looking for details and helpful hints, keep reading!

First things first. Here is our sun-worshiping deck. Looks a liiiittle weathered no? With that we were faced with a few options:
1. Leave it (um, no thanks)
2. Knock it down and start over ($$$, sorry we didn't win the lottery this summer)
3. Replace the bad boards and repaint (including scraping old paint)
4. Replace the badly damaged boards and paint with Rustoleum Deck Restore (we have a winner).

Here you can see what we were working with:

And without further ado.....

I'd say that's a significant improvement!

The bottom line was this, our deck needed to be replaced or repainted. Traditional paint wasn't going to address the splintering boards and was going to require a fair amount of labor intensive scraping. Last summer we came across Rustoleum Deck Restore during one of our many trips to Home Depot and/or Lowe's and it piqued our interest. As soon as we knew we needed to do something to address the deck we seriously considered it.

And now for the details:

Material list
  1. One 4-gallon bucket of Restore in Cape Cod Gray - $78
  2. One 2-gallon kit of Restore in Cape Cod Gray  - $39
  3. One Restore 9 in Roller - $4.97
  4. Restore Deck Cleaner - $11.99

So how was the experience? Here's a recap.

Step 1: Prep and Clean
Wash the deck with Restore Deck Cleaner -

This part was pretty easy and like Matt said, it doesn't need to be sparkling clean. Use a de-greaser (I'm sure you can find one cheaper than the Restore product) liquid cleaner and spray on using a large garden sprayer (we used the same one we use to kill weeds, just cleaned and rinsed well). Once you spray the liquid on, let sit for about 5 minutes. Then you can either spray off or give it a little scrub with a brush for tricky stains. For anything that's really gross, you can pour the cleaner directly onto the stain, let set and then scrub and spray off.
Let dry completely. We did this step on a different day and then brushed off when we were ready to paint.

Step 2: Collect your materials - It's painting day and here's what you'll need:

  1. Restore Paint and Paint Stick Stirring Tool
  2. Restore Textured Paint Roller & Tray
  3. Large Paintbrush
  4. Gallon Jug of Water
  5. Painter's Tape
  6. Painting Shoes (see why below)

Step 3: Apply first coat of Restore
You've stirred your bucket of paint and you're ready to roll! If you pour the paint directly into the tray and go in for your first roll you'll notice right away that this isn't going to be as easy as it looks right? No fear.. consult my notes below and you'll be rolling smoothly in no time.
A Note About Texture:
My initial reaction to the paint was this: Mmm kind of looks like a Wendy's Frosty. After an hour of painting, I was still craving a Frosty, badly. The paint is thick with sand added. The sand is the key to adding enough thickness to cover and fill all of those nasty cracks you're trying to cover.

Just like our adventures in mortar [see here], you'll learn quickly how to achieve the correct consistency if you're not afraid to add some water. Now, the instruction say not to add water, but I'm not being paid by Rustoleum here so add some water. 
Another helpful hint... add the water to the paint tray, not the actual bucket of paint. We kept a gallon jug of water handy to gradually add our water.

We worked our way across the deck at the rate of about 2-3 boards per pass. 

Step 4: Apply second coat of Restore
You've let your first coat dry and now we're on to the second coat (aka where the magic happens). This coat is a bit more technical and I was glad to have some help. With the first coat, I was able to paint the entire deck by myself on a Friday afternoon. For coat #2 Matt rolled while I was in charge of back-brushing to smooth out the surface.
A Note About Back-brushing:
If your goal is to achieve a more foot-friendly surface you'll definitely want to back-brush each plank. Make sure you apply long strokes and try to reduce the brush marks as best you can. This paint is not so forgiving in this area. You'll probably see the brush marks on our deck but in the end, still worth using this technique because the deck isn't so rough that I wouldn't walk on it barefoot, like some review I've read.

Once your second coat is applied sit back and wait a few days before moving your furniture back on to the deck.

I will save the saga of our railings for another post, but keep an eye out because we did briefly use the Deck Restore Acrylic paint for railings if you are interested! 

As always, please don't hesitate to ask any questions. I'm happy to discuss this further! :)

Like this post? Please share with your friends! 

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Tuesday, May 20, 2014


Oh right... my other blog! I've been so busy building Grace and Josie that I've sadly neglected you.


Well, it's spring now and the DIY projects (or at least the talk of them) is heating up in my house right now!

Here are some things we're hoping to get started:

  • Ladder Bookcase (like this one from This Old House)
  • Storage Ottoman to replace the coffee table in our living room (like this one)
  • Replace our not powerful enough bathroom exhaust fan with a humidity sensing model (like this one)
  • Organize Matt's Workshop 
  • Oh and build out the 2nd floor of our house

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Day 1: Three Things at SXSW

I just arrived in Austin for the annual intersection of Music, Film and Interactive -South by Southwest (SXSW) last night, directly after my trip to Miami. 

I will spare you the full recap, but her are three things about SXSW Day 1.

The taxi line. 
As Austin is inundated with badge holders arriving from faraway lands, the cities resources are obviously going to be a little drained. This is probably the longest taxi line I've ever seen. 

Art is everywhere. 
One of the things I love most about Austin is the creativity. It's literally everywhere and always unexpected to a straight-laced New Englander like me. This photo was taken outside of Chuy's restaurant. 

A Mantra

Forget the ABC's of SXSW and you'll be sorry. Luckily you can usually find a free plug, just don't forget your charger!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Keeping Busy in January

And just like that, January is almost over. (YAY!) Each year I absolutely dread the month of January. I'm only slightly  more ok with February because of Valentine's Day and now Gracie's birthday. It gives me something to plan, something to look forward to.

January on the other hand? What choice do I have but to keep busy. I've been pretty busy for the past few weekends and SUPER busy at work.

Two weeks ago I had a much need Girls' Night Out at StyleWeek, followed by an amazing dinner at Nick's on Broadway.

Sporting our Red Lip thanks to the Sephora Red Lip Bar!

This past weekend Grace, my Mom, and I piled into the car for a trip to visit Auntie Jess and Michael at their place in Jackson, NH. Matt was awarded with a solitary Man's Weekend at Home. Lucky guy.

Anyway, it's amazing to be able to bring my daughter up in the skiing world just as I was. I can't take most of the credit though. My Mom was the one driven enough to get Grace on skis before the age of 2. She sourced the pink helmet, snowsuit and even tiny little skis. She's a professional after all. Actually, a real Professional Ski Instructor of America (PSIA) for realz. She actually has what (I believe) equates to a PhD in Skiing.

Meanwhile, the après ski fireplace was doing its job. And I think it's incredible that I still remember the Alt+0232 code for è 9 years after getting my French degree. I hope it's not the only thing I've maintained from that degree...

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Happy New Year!

Wishing you a wonderful 2014! I'm still recovering from a whirlwind end to 2013 with selling the house, moving back to my childhood home, and then buying and moving in to our new home in December. Lots of updates to share soon!
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