Repairs and maintenance are essential to keeping your porch or deck safe and beautiful. A number of problems can create hazards on outdoor structures, but your contractor can evaluate any issues with your deck or porch and plan for repairs that will restore its structure and condition. Most pros charge for repair work on a “time and materials” basis, so the actual materials and labor needed for the job will determine the cost of the project. Labor rates for handymen and carpenters typically range from $25 to $60 per hour, so a minor deck or porch repair could cost less than $100, while a bigger fix that spans a few days could cost over $1,000, depending on the scope of the job.
Loose or damaged railings increase the risk of injury and must be repaired or replaced to ensure safety. Railing repairs may vary from replacing broken balusters to securing post with bolts or replacing a worn top rail. Rates for railing repairs typically range from $200 to $500 and may vary with the condition and materials of your railing.
Problems with Staircases
Stairs leading to decks and porches are constructed in the same manner as interior stairs to provide comfortable and safe access to elevated areas. Repairing problems with outdoor staircases may cost from $200 to $800, since the nature and scope of the job can vary considerably. Replacing damaged treads or risers is generally an uncomplicated project, while repairing and replacing support structure or making adjustments to level stairs that have shifted may require more time and manpower.
Problems with Main Floor Boards
Deteriorated decking boards can splinter and rot, posing a number of dangers to the deck’s occupants. Repairs may involve sanding and refinishing the floor of your porch or deck, or replacing damaged boards. Prices to repair floor boards typically fall between $100 and $1,200, depending on the nature of damage, the size of the repair area, and the overall scope of the repair.
Structural Support Problems
Problems with the structure, or framing, of a porch or deck can lead to collapse. In order to prevent serious injury or property damage, it is essential to make complete and correct repairs to supporting structures. Repairing deck and porch framing may cost from $400 to $2,000, with a wide variety of issues and repair requirements contributing to project costs. Your contractor may need to improve the structure’s foundation, reinforce existing framing, or replace damaged lumber in order to make sure your deck or porch is sound and secure.
The difficulty and expense of repairing a porch roof or patio cover will depend on its style and construction type, as well as the nature of the repair. Patching or replacing roof shingles on a porch is handled in the same way as a typical roof repair and could cost less than $500, but correcting problems with support posts or other structural parts can be a complex job that requires a larger crew and considerable skill—and could cost over $1,000.
Size of Repair Area
The cost of any porch or deck repair will be affected by the size of the problem area. Whether trouble is with railings, steps, deck boards, the roof, or framing, the materials and time needed to make repairs increase accordingly with the size of the repair site. Often though, costs per square foot for repairs go down as the size of the job goes up, since a pro’s basic overhead and set up costs are similar for every job. It’s common for a carpenter, handyman or other contractor to charge a minimum fee that’s equal to at least two hours of labor charges, so it can seem relatively expensive to hire a pro for small-scale repair jobs.
Material for Repairs
The materials used for the construction of your deck or porch are an important factor in the expense of repairs. Redwood is a high-quality material with excellent durability, but typically carries the highest costs of common deck materials. Cedar provides similar resistance to deterioration and rot, but is less expensive in most areas of the U.S. Pressure treated pine and fir are the most economical of common wood decking materials, and are readily available nationwide. Repairing vinyl and composite deck components is typically more expensive than working with these common wood materials, depending on the nature of the repair and the parts required.
|$80 - $220||$400 - $1,500||$900 - $3,000|
Every repair project is unique, so it can be hard to estimate the cost of fixing a deck or porch without a firsthand look. A pro will need to check your job out in order to provide an accurate price, but our examples illustrate a few common repair scenarios.
Minor Maintenance: $80 - $220
- • Nature of Repairs: Shoring up a wobbly handrail is usually a straightforward. If the railing is in good condition overall, the job should be quick and economical.
- • Materials: In most cases, some basic hardware is all that’s needed to tighten up a shaky railing, so the bulk of repair costs is for labor. If a few new balusters or posts are required, $40 to $100 could be added to the tab, though.
- • Manpower: Most minor railing repairs can be completed by a single carpenter or handyman, which keeps labor costs down.
Getting Back in Shape: $400 - $1,500
- • Nature of Repairs: When exposure takes its toll, it’s sometimes necessary to replace a few decking boards and sections of railing.
- • Materials: Replacement boards, rails, posts, and balusters are needed here, along with appropriate fasteners. If your pro needs to paint or stain all or part of the deck after repairs are done, those products will add to the bottom line as well.
- • Manpower: These repairs can usually be completed by a single pro. If two or more workers are on the job, hourly costs may go up but the work will get done faster.
Keeping Things Under Cover: $900 - $3,000
- • Nature of Repairs: A worn, sagging porch roof is a hazard as well as an eyesore. Re-roofing and reinforcing the structure is a big job, but necessary to keep the porch safe and useful. If support issues originate at the ground, it may be necessary to jack up the structure and improve its foundation.
- • Materials: New support posts will likely be needed, both above and below the porch floor. New roof sheathing and shingles are also in order. On a job like this, materials could make up 50 percent of the budget.
- • Manpower: This is definitely a job for a crew of at least two pros, and the work could span a few days, depending on the size of the porch and the significance of structural issues.
Find a Deck or Porch Repair Contractor
A variety of repairs can correct problems with your deck or porch, restoring function, beauty and safety to outdoor living areas. The materials of your deck or porch, the nature of problems, and the extent of damage or wear contribute to the time, skill, and supplies needed to have it restored to top condition. Discuss the overall condition of the deck structure with a qualified deck repair contractor. Proper maintenance helps ensure your family and guests can enjoy your porch or deck comfortably and safely.