How do I "re-face" a pier?


Just moved into a new old home and it has a pier that needs help..the top boards are starting to rot. I am not a carpenter but am capable, can anyone tell me how I can update it safely with limited finances?

  14 answers
  • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on Jun 05, 2020

    Hi Sandy as long as what's rotting isn't structural you should be able to remove those boards and use them as a template to cut new boards to the same size to replace them. Or, even better, if they're not in too bad a shape you could just cover them with new boards :)

  • Cindy Cindy on Jun 05, 2020

    Hi Sandy. Some of those boards could be unscrewed, flipped over, and then screwed back down. Sometimes the under side is still usable. Very cost effective. Good luck Sandy. Hope all is well with you.

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Jun 05, 2020

    We have decks and boat dock with pressure treated wood Which does degrade over many years. The old boards need to be pryed up or unscrewed and replaced in our case with new replacement pressure treated lumber.

  • Betsy Betsy on Jun 05, 2020

    Hi Sandy: You should be able to unscrew or take up the nails on the boards that are bad and replace them. Be sure to use some sort of waterproofing coating on them first, like Thompson's Waterseal. Just put a thin coat on, otherwise it gets sticky. Good luck

  • Ken Erickson Ken Erickson on Jun 06, 2020

    Removing and replacing as suggested seems best option. A TREX decking would be best, but it is expensive since you will probably have to do all of the deck. Also, it need more under support than a wood deck.

  • Deb K Deb K on Jun 06, 2020

    Hi Sandy, you can remove and replace just the damaged boards to save cash, and when you do that you can seal them before you even attach them. I attached a short video to proved some guidance for you, hope it helps!

  • Libbie B Libbie B on Jun 07, 2020

    We had a wood dock for years. We unscrewed the bad boards and replaced the with new sealed boards as necessary.

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Jun 08, 2020

    One at a time, remove the existing board and screw down a pressure treated board of the same size.

  • Chris Chris on Jun 09, 2020

    If you go to Lowe's, a lot of times outside they will have returned wood and they bundle some together in what they call cold packs... Basically what it this is, is lumber materials that were unused or maybe not straight enough for someone's project and returned to the store for a refund. You can pick it up really cheap. The last one I picked up was itemized at $268.00 and I bought it for 50 bucks! Anything can come in these packs... Decking, 2x4s, 4x4s, 2x2s, 2x12s, wooden fence boards (my fave craft wood) treated and raw and so much more! You would be amazed at the savings you can find! You just have to watch for what you need lumber wise.

    Start from the bottom of the pier and work up assuring you remove and replace all rotted material. Easy peasy! Good luck and have fun with it!

  • Linda Linda on Jun 12, 2020

    The boards should be pretty easy to replace. Measure to determine the size of the boards. For example are they a 2 x 6? Then measure the length. When you go to Home Depot or Lowes ask them to cut your boards to size. Then ask someone what nails they recommend. Once you are home pull up the rotten boards with a hammer and lay the new boards and nail them in. Last, pressure wash the deck or use some pool chlorine to wet it first. I pour the chlorine on the deck and brush it in with a broom. Give it time to dry then rinse it. This will clean up the deck where it looks great. Make sure to wear a mask, goggles and old clothes. I even use an old pair of rubber boots when I do this. The chlorine will mess up anything it touches so make sure you don't were your favorite clothes or rubber boots. Good luck!

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Jun 12, 2020

    Measure the boards with by thickness get pressure treated lumber then cut to size and screw them in to place don’t nail them the nail will slip out with water and temp changes

  • Em Em 6 days ago

    Pry off old boards one at a time and replace with new or reclaimed wood. Pallet wood can be found all over for free. This allows you the stability to work safely with only one board missing at a time. If the wood underneath is soft sadly it is more work than replacing just the walkway portion.