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on July 10, 2011
I thought carefully about writing this review. First of all let me say that I am writing for those who have an interest and dont have a lot of money to spend but still want good results. I am a female who grew up in a family that owned multiple vacation resorts. I followed my grandpa and uncles around and learned how to (among many things) build fences, build decks and docks, drywall..... I can do mostly everything.... I can even fix cars when I have too! LOL My grandfather believed not only in doing everything himself, but he also believed in the power of teaching others. He didnt want any of his granddaughters not knowing how to take care of themselves. He is also strongly believed in not being wasteful and saving money when possible. He was especially good at cutting corners and getting the most of your money. Here in lies my review for Deck Restore.
I bought an old house that needed a ton of TLC. A real do it your selfer, I loved the challenge and have restored much of my home by myself. I have three decks attached to my home. I wanted to fix them up a bit. None of them were in horrible condition but they looked old and weathered and there were some cracks and splitting in the wood. The first deck a small deck that hold mostly plants was the first to get restored. The first deck is a 10x6. We followed the deck restore directions to the T. Needless to say we quickly realized that that if we continued to restore all the decks as instructed by this company we would probably need double, if not triple the amount of product indicated by the company. We had carefully calculated the size of all three decks and bought the amount of product indicted on the box. The first small deck that was restored did turn out nice.... BUT it took a whole gallon of product and that was just for the first coat! Dont get me wrong it looks really nice but here in lies the problem. The amount of product given is not enough to thoroughly do the job indicted on the box. Secondly when the product was dry it is very hard to walk on barefoot. Its like walking on rocks! Being that we had two more decks to restore I was sure there was a better way. This product is designed to suck up your money. First thing we did is throw away the roller that comes with the kit. This uses way too much product and you will be reloading every few feet. Secondly we started adding generous amounts of water to our product. The product itself comes out very thick. I do mean very thick.... similar to cake frosting with sand in it. By adding water and using a conventional roller and paint brushes we finished TWO 20x17 decks with 8 cans. If we would not have added the water the number of cans used would have easily doubled of tripled. The decks turned out beautifully. The color is even and you can walk on it without pain! : ). 4 years later it still looks like the day we applied Deck Restore. Adding the water and mixing thoroughly does not affect the way it is applied but makes it go waaaaay further than using as instructed. I guess the choice is yours. Its a good product that delivers but it is defiantly designed to suck up your money needlessly. I will let you decide on how much you want to spend but in todays economy you can make this product stretch and still get good results.
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on July 29, 2010
We went to Home Depot to buy an opaque stain for our very aged and craggy deck, but then saw a store display with a "Special Buy!" price of $39.95 per box. It looked like exactly the kind of product that would be for us. Our deck is very weathered with lots of splinters, cracks, and a mix of woods.

I had done a fair amount of prep to the deck already: pressure-washed, sanded, and repaired the boards that were too rotted. We bought two boxes of this stuff and had it tinted Sandstone. I knew we would probably need a bit more, but I wanted to see how well it worked first.

Let me say this: it is a pain in the ass to work with. Because it is thick acrylic paint with sand in it, it is difficult to stir and hard to get all the paint out of the can. The coverage estimate on the box is overestimated, too -- at least it was for me. Our deck is about 10 feet by 25 feet with a 15 foot set of stairs. It took three and half boxes to do two coats. It takes a lot longer to dry than it says. If your deck is as cracked and craggy as mine was, expect to spend a lot of time using a paint brush to get paint into the cracks and then re-rolling to get the texture back. I estimate that it took me about 8 hours total to do both coats.

So, the verdict is still out. If this product keeps our deck looking nice for more than a year, it will have been worth it. However, if I am looking at re-painting next season, it might not be worth your time and considerable effort.

UPDATE (4/29/11): Almost a year in and the paint is still sticking to the deck. It looks OK, but I can see that I will need to pressure wash again this summer (or possibly scrub it with moss/algae remover) because the texture is really good at holding onto moisture. In the Pacific Northwest, that means moss/algae will grow before too long. Having said that, I'm pretty happy with it. Happy enough to boost it from 3 stars to 4.
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on August 3, 2011
I bought two of the two gallon kits last fall on clearance for $30.00 a piece. (Home Depot)

Last week I pressure washed the 5 year old - previously stained with a semi-transparent deck stain that did not last even a year and a half - 8 X 6 wood deck at the front of our house and the larger, 10 x 12 deck in the back yard.

Today I used the Deck Restorer with above average results. I did not like the included roller. I think it left the surface way to rough and used WAYYYYYYY more product than necessary. I used a 1/2 inch nap roller and that worked perfect for my application.

After getting every last drop of product out of the cans and mixing in a separate bucket I applied the product around the perimeter of the deck with a cheap brush and then aggressively rolled it on with the roller. We had a rare hot day here in NW MT and the paint dried fairly quickly. About 3 hours later I added about 1 quart of water to the remaining 1.5 gallons of paint and again applied it with the roller.

I am actually impressed with how it looks. It did soak into all of the small cracks and dried to a nice even tan. It is a little rough but I think I will buy another kit on clearance this fall and next spring I will add another watered down application with a 3/8" nap roller to soften and further protect the deck.

Now, with all of that said, I cannot imagine how many gallons of product I would have used if I would have followed the application method show on the Deck Restorer video. I was also not impressed with the rollers included with the product.

The in-store display from the company was very impressive - it's why I took the chance on the clearance priced paint but the actual sample that Home Depot did to compare the Deck Restorer with standard deck stain looked like crap!

I will post an update next spring to let everyone know how the deck restorer held up to a MT winter.

UPDATE MAY 12 2012

I continue to be blown away by this product. It wears like iron and still looks new. I am especially impressed with how well it did on the edges of the steps on our entryway - absolutely no wear. The South facing deck looks exactly like it did after applying it. No fading, no wear, no peeling.

I will post an update in another year or so...
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on September 17, 2011
My husband and I researched this product to death. We knew we would need between 8-10 boxes (16-20 gallons) of this product. We discussed adding water to the paint as another reviewer suggested....but we didn't want to take the chance of wasting all this money and it looking like crap. We decided to pretty much follow the directions. Plus this stuff looks like it would be a pain to remove if you mess up.

It's best to paint the railings and other pieces before you put this product on. You can buy RESTORE stain....or just get another stain brand with the color you plan to use. We used "saddle" color stain and "saddle" RESTORE color.

First off, as other have said, this stuff can be a pain to work with. It's thick. I was tempted at times to add water but we pretty much kept the drill with the paint and stirred a LOT. I rolled the paint on with the honeycomb roller. Then I came back over it with a paint brush. Then I lightly rolled the honeycomb roller on again to give it it's texture. One coat down. As it started to dry, you could def. see why it needed a second coat. So I started again. Rolled on with honeycomb roller, then smoothed out with paintbrush. Then came back lightly with honeycomb roller to give it that textured look. One thing I didn't do....I didn't use an extension roller. I sat on my deck and worked in small sections. When the paint can would be almost empty....I added a little water at this time. Maybe 1/4 cup of water, stirred like crazy, and used it in places that were not as between and under the railing and corner pieces. I had to use 3 coats on those areas to make them blend in with the other area.

Our deck looks very nice. My hubby said it's almost just like a bedliner that you put in trucks....except it's a bedliner for your deck. LOL He used some of the leftover paint to do a small concrete area...and it's looks very nice. He also did a garage work table and that also looks very good.

One thing that we did figure out. Don't buy expensive paint brushes. Any paintbrush you use is pretty much ruined with this paint. We bought cheap utility brushes and threw them away. Also, we used disposable tray liners. You should also know....if your deck is in pretty worn knotty boards, splinters, cracks, will use more paint.

My dogs use to slip and slide when it would rain on the deck. It rained a week after I got finished. No slipping for the dogs anymore. It also seems to get the mud off their feet when they are coming in.

I would recommend this product.

UPDATE: 12-17-11....I absolutely LOVE this product. It's now winter here and it is holding up very well. Still looks new. It really is worth it's money when it basically cleans my dog's feet off before they make it inside. So far, we had one small icing event around here....and it didn't stick to the restore deck. When the dog's take off for outside, they don't slip running down the steps. Oh, the rain usually cleans it off....but if it gets muddy from the dogs....I just get a water hose and rinse it off. Easy to clean so far.

UPDATE: 6-10-12...I did have this product at 4 stars but I am upgrading it to 5. This product is amazing! It is summer around here now...and my deck still looks fabulous. Our winter was pretty mild, and when summer came...our deck was a little muddy looking. My hubby just washed it off and it was as good as new again. There was 3 steps that I only put one coat of paint on. It was an accident. I meant to come back and put a second coat on, but...well, I just forgot. That paint has worn off on those steps. We plan on doing our other deck closer to I will redo those then.

Update: 6-17-13.....its been 2 years. The deck still looks nice. Here is a picture that I took this morning.
review image
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on October 2, 2010
This product worked as advertised for me. It is pretty thick as mentioned by another review and you will use a lot. I'm giving it five stars because I saw a sample/covered board at a store ahead of time and I went in knowing what to expect.

I would recommend a larger than normal roller tray and getting all the paint from one can into it so you can get the thicker stuff out/into the mix. I used an old wooden spoon to get out the thickest stuff left in the can.

You can use water to rinse out the roller and I would suggest taking a break half-way through a can and doing so. Otherwise, the weight of this product will make it hard for the included roller brush to work eventually.

Rinse/keep your roller brush until you have completed your job in case you get a faulty one in one of the boxes because I don't think you can buy that type of roller brush separately (I asked).

I used 5 cans for a 14' * 12' wooden deck. That included a couple steps and the side of the deck. I had a lot of cracks to cover and was generous with the application. I had one can left over (2 per box) so I "painted" my wooden, worn garden shed steps as well.

Compared to the cost of putting down new, composite decking this product is relatively inexpensive assuming it lasts several years.

I posted a belated response to a comment. Just wanted to note that the product has held up good over two MN summer and winters. I have one board to replace because I've got a persistent gutter drip that I've neglected to fix. Otherwise the product still looks the same as when I put it on the deck. Peter.
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on July 17, 2011
took the advice of the money trap reviewer and watered it down, i put 3 cups of water in a gallon and just finished up my 10x12 deck with the first coat 6 hours ago,i used a 3/8inch nap regular roller and it was just a little thicker than normal paint which allowed it to seep down into the weather cracks which my deck is over 20 years old and hasn't had much care,its now dry enough to walk on and seems great,the color is good and the texture is about what i wanted,i think with the other gallon watered down the same mix it will look even better,it was easy to work with thinned out and time will tell but it seems really sealed just with the first coat.thank you for the advice of the water.
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on June 2, 2011
We live in upstate NY..where the sun hardly ever shines, and it rains a lot. We have a saltbox style house with an open front porch (24 X 9) that was painted by the previous owners. Well, like I said, it rains a lot here, so obviously the paint was a bad idea and it has been flaking and peeling off for the last two years. I didn't want to paint again, so we were going to spend the bucks and buy new decking and do it ourselves when I saw deck restore at Home Depot. I figured why not, since it was going to save us about 300 dollars if it worked..and even if it only lasts 3, 4 years then I will be happy. We finally got a decent day that wasn't calling for rain for at least 24 hours and went for it. We did not (and really could not) get every remnant of paint off the deck. If I was going to sand it down to nothing, then I was going to use anyway, on went the deck restore. It is thick stuff and we combined two gallons at a time in a 5 gallon bucket to mix properly. I then used a kitchen rubber spatula to make sure we got all of the product out of both containers. My husband rolled it on slowly and I followed with a brush between the cracks (we have bigger than usual spaces between our boards). It took us about 2 hours to finish with the first coat. We really didn't think it was that hard of work..just a little time consuming..but everything is if you do it right. The color is not exactly what I wanted (Winchester) but if it were up to me I would make the stuff tintable to any color so homeowners can match their houses (we have texture 111). It did take a LONG time to dry..way longer than the 4-6 hours it said. More like 18-20 for us before we could walk on it. Right now it looks great and feels just fine to walk on. We are doing the second coat today..won't give a 5 star till at least next year to see how it weathers. Good luck all..I was scared because of some of the reviews..but we really didn't have the hard time like some people did.
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on October 12, 2011
First off, I am only giving 4 stars at this time as I have just completed installation. If, after a year the material is still looking great, I will bump that up to a solid 5 star review.

After doing my research and weeding out the negative reviews that were from people who obviously can't read directions, I went ahead and pulled the trigger and bought Deck Restore and the color matched stain for vertical surfaces for my 400 sf pool deck.

First off, coverage with the product was spot on what was stated on the packaging. Each gallon will cover 50sf with ONE coat. Therefore, for each 50sf of deck surface you have you'll need 2 gallons of product to apply the recommended 2 coats. For my 400sf of horizontal deck surface, I went through 4 of the 4 gallon bulk containers ($69.98 ea at Home Depot I do have about a gallon or gallon and a half left I'll be using for touch-ups during our next dry spell).

Here are some tips if you go to do this (some have already been covered).

I stripped the entire deck of all the old stain (horizontal and vertical surfaces) with Behr Stripper then cleaned all the surfaces with Behr cleaner. I made sure I had 2 days of warm, dry weather before I applied anything and made sure it was going to be nice for a couple days after.

Before I applied the Deck Restore, I stained all the openings and edges of all my deck boards (down in the crevices) with the matching Restore solid acrylic stain (does not have the sand in it). This made product waste much less and the rolling process much easier. I made sure it wasn't completely dry before I started to roll on the Deck Restore. I wanted the materials to bond well. Installation with the roller went pretty quickly. You need to make sure you keep the roller loaded with material otherwise, if you try to squeeze out too much and apply too much pressure, that is when the material starts to get slung around. Even with regular cleanings, I needed to replace the roller for the second coat as the plastic started to degrade. Not a big deal.

I backbrushed the FIRST coat and the SECOND coat to get the nice, smooth finish that is shown on the store samples. Make sure you don't get too far ahead of yourself because the material still needs to be "wet" to backbrush it properly. I used a 4" synthetic "good" quality brush to backbrush. Make sure you clean it occassionally or your surface texture will suffer. The second coat went on much faster for me.

Another thing I did to make the appearance better, after 12-18hrs or so, where the material was just dry enough to walk on (but you could still make a small indentation with a flat tip screwdriver), I ran the screwdriver down all the board openings to knock out all the material that was in-between the boards. It makes the deck look a whole bunch better and does give it that composite look. Now, it is definitely not "smooth" but it does not have the stippled appearance of the samples without backbrushing and feels pretty good with bare feet. The kids were walking on it and thought it felt really good and were glad they wouldn't be getting splinters anymore. My deck was in pretty bad shape and this has potentially saved me $3000 or more by overlaying the existing boards with composite decking. If I can get 5 or more years out of it without having to re-coat, I will be very happy. Clean-up of the material was easy with a garden hose. I used the extra large plastic paint pan as someone else mentioned.

Before I started, I turned the large 4 gallon buckets over for approx. 10 mins. (to allow the heavier material at the bottom to come to the top) then opened them up and mixed them thoroughly with the large stir sticks provided by HD. I mixed the material again ea. time I had to add material to the pan. I will try to post a picture one of these days.

I still need to apply a second coat of the solid stain to all the vertical surfaces and railings but the neighbors have already started complimenting the appearance.

PS - Wife picked out "Sandstone" as the color. I didn't care what it was as long as it was a lighter color so it didn't get too hot on the feet in the summer.

10/17/2011 - Update:
I wanted to give an update and a warning to those that may apply this and then have a rain event come upon you. I applied the second coat of the Restore on a Monday, mid-day and approximately 30 hrs later, on Tuesday night, we had heavy rains. I didn't think to cover it (well, I did, as I had an old pool cover I could have used, but it stated 24 hrs until you could place furniture on it) so I left it alone. Wed. afternoon, while it was still raining, I checked on it and the last 2 sections of 4 that I had applied the second coat 2 were starting to bubbling, some areas moderately. I though, oh crap.... I have since checked on it with a couple days of dryness, then more rain, and the bubbling all went down but the bond of those areas will be suspect. Those areas are definitely not as "cured" as the areas that did not bubble as I could still make a small indentation with a screwdriver tip. I am just hoping after the 3 week "full hardened cure time" these areas will be sufficiently bonded. In retrospect, I should have covered it up but the rain was not supposed to come until the following day. I'll update again next spring to let it be known if it bonded properly or not. If it didn't, I should be able to easily scrape the bad stuff and repair the areas when I get a good long week od expected "nice" days.
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on May 18, 2012
I just finished my deck with the deck restorer . My deck is 480sf . I read all of the previous reviews and found them extremely helpful . I used the cape cod gray color . A lot of these reviews had me nervous just opening the can !! First of all RELAX and feel very confident that you can do this easily . Second prep your area power wash if necessary . Check your weather forecast for future rain . Your deck MUST be dry for at least 2 days and 2 days after . I bought a seperate 5 gal bucket to do some mixing in between applications . I absolutely recommend a drill with a mixing paddle $15.99 1/2 chuck on drill and a painters screen ( hangs inside the bucket has diamond shapes it into it . As I said earlier I read all the reviews and mixed a few together . My mixture was bought and mixed at 6 am and just waited for the sun to come up and start warming the deck (not neccessary) . when I finally opened the 5 gal bucket I was surprised at how much thinner it was compared to other reviews ( a little thicker than paint with sand in it ) I used a painters pole extension because of the size of my deck and didn't want to break my back , a broom handle attached to the roller handle would do the trick . I put the painters screen in the bucket and rolled it in the screen a few times and went at it . At first it went on a little different than paint but once I got going it was a breeze . Looking back as I went along I noticed that it was actually soaking into the deck . Not to worry just reach back and touch up the spot . A couple of things I learned as I went along . Grab a paint brush 3"? Would be fine and "cut in " around your edges and posts BEFORE YOU GET STARTED ON THE BIG STUFF . It really went very well all in all . Pros v.Cons . Pros are EASY cleanup and seems to be exactly as advertised tough and durable finish , and looks very nice . Cons ?? I don't know why I hadn't done this a long time ago . I hope this helps . Good luck
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on December 28, 2013
I followed the exact directions, I have been a painter for over 25 years and have experience with coating and surfaces. Less than 5 months later my deck is horrible, the restore product is chipping away and I am totally annoyed at the results. I wrote to Rustoleum and they have not gotten back to me with a response. I purchased this product so I would not have to continue to resurface my deck. This was a total waste of time, money, and effort. You can be sure I continue to contact them and resolve this issue. DO NOT BUT THIS PRODUCT!!
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