Decked Out: Rustoleum Deck Restore Part 1

Rustoleum Deck RestoreOver the past few weeks I’ve been working on refinishing this deck with Rustoleum Restore 4x and 10x with the hopes of bring it back to life so that it will be somewhere people would want to gather for BBQ parties, or just lounging in a patio chair while soaking in the sun.  Curious to see how it turns out? Read about the process of getting this deck from a cracked, peeling mess to one that looks brand new.

The Deck Before

Brace yourself, this deck was painted two years ago by someone else using some other outdoor deck paint and just ended up looking horrible.

Rustoleum Deck Restore 4x

As you can see the entire deck was filled with long deep cracks, nail holes, and peeling paint all over.

Rustoleum Deck Restore

Here is a close up of some of the viewable nails.

Rustoleum Deck Restore

Some of the boards even went slightly bumpy, and there were rust marks on the wood from previous patio furniture, as you can see from this section of the deck beside the stairs.

refinish deck

To make matters worse, the railings had huge knots and were the furthest thing from a smooth surface that you would want to place your hands on.


Here you can see the other side of the railing, where the posts were plagued with large deep cracks all over.

How To Refinish A Deck

To start I prepped the deck surface which mean tightening raised screws with a screwdriver, and painting over the rusted screws or rusted spots on the wood with a rust primer that was painted on using a paint brush. Next used Restore Crack Filler in a caulking gun and filled all the cracks that were more than 1/4″ deep. For the entire deck as it was plagued with tons of long deep cracks I ended up using 6 containers of Restore Crack Filler.
Rustoleum Deck Restore

When filling the holes for deeper holes you may need to apply 2-3 coats of the Crack Filler to fill the deep spaces. Here you can see me putting coat 2 of the crack filler on one the railing posts with a large crack. To ensure a smoother finish when applying the crack filler have a damp cloth on hand and after filling the hole wipe the wood with a damp cloth to remove any of the excess crack filler.


After the crack filler has dried the next step is sanding. To help the process go quicker as I had a large area to cover, I used my orbital sander with 60 grit sandpaper. For some of the smaller areas of the deck, such as small corners of the railing I would switch to sheets of 60 grit sandpaper to get into tight places my orbital sander couldn’t get into.


Finally after the entire deck had all the deep cracks filled and is nice and smooth I cleaned the deck to remove all the built on dirt and organic growth. Before continuing, you need to do a splash test to make sure the deck is ready for paint. To test splash water onto the deck, if the water is absorbed into the deck it is ready to clean and paint, if the water beads or puddles that means there is still too much water repellent, stain, paint or sealer on the deck so you will need to sand the deck further until you can do the water test and have the water be absorbed into the deck.

Once your deck is ready to be painted the next step is to properly clean the deck. To do this, I mixed Rustoleum Restore Cleaner as instructed on the bottle into a bucket and painted the soapy mixture onto the entire deck using a large paint brush. After 10 minutes, I then used my hose and washed all the soap off the deck. The process of removing all the soap took a bit of time, but I found it easier to use a hose than a pressure washer on low setting as it would remove the crack filler at times.

To read the rest of the guide and review about painting your deck along with the before and after photos check out part 2.


Rustoleum graciously gave me all the products to refinish the deck, but all content and opinions are that of my own! Thank you for supporting the sponsors that keep this site going! Read more about my editorial policies.



  1. Keith
    July 22, 2015 / 6:45 pm

    Can’t wait to see the results of all your hard work.

  2. July 22, 2015 / 6:46 pm

    Thanks Keith, I’m excited to share the results too as the deck looks amazing.

  3. Randa
    July 23, 2015 / 4:09 pm

    I’ve been looking at this! I’ll come back to read part 2!

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