Decking Repair: Sealing a Gap

Decking Repair: Sealing a Gap

a “How To” from an InstaTrim Customer

When you buy a home, you inherit all kinds of unique craftsmanship from the previous homeowners. Then, you add onto their house work with your own unique fixes. For one InstaTrim customer, removing a makeshift awning above a backyard deck posed more problems for the home than the awning posed in the first place. Learn how our customer, Hillary Glaser of Michigan, used InstaTrim for a simple decking repair project to fill the gap between her home and her deck.

Deck and Floor Problems

In March 2022, we had our kitchen and living room floors ripped up and replaced. When the laminate flooring was removed, we noticed water soaking through some of the floor boards. I envisioned another homeowner nightmare and asked the flooring contractors what I should do about the water. They said the best thing we could do to fix this problem, outside of installing a new awning, was install caulk outside between the deck and the outside wall of our home.

gap in decking repair

Problem: the gap was too wide for caulk in many spaces.

The previous homeowners built their own deck. Between the craftsmanship and the elements, the deck hasn’t aged well and major gaps appeared. When we removed the awning to try to solve a raccoon problem, we didn’t think water would be our next major concern.

My husband assured me that caulk would be the best solution but I knew it wouldn’t be any solution at all and even caulk strips wouldn’t seal the space. So, I found a better solution: InstaTrim trim strips.

Easy Decking Repair

I am not a contractor but I was raised by a plumber so I understand where I can and cannot use caulk. Knowing that I cannot use caulk in this area, I thought about InstaTrim as a unique solution to this problem. We already used InstaTrim to update and seal bathroom sinks in our guest bathroom, so I thought this would be something interesting to try out and it worked! Here’s what I did after re-reading the InstaTrim installation instructions:

Step 1: Clean the Area

Using nothing more than a vacuum, I got as many cobwebs, twigs, and leaves out of the gap as possible. I did my best to clean away dog hair and other debris, as well. I also took a damp cloth to wipe away as much dust as possible. The moisture dried very quickly since it was 95 degrees outside. 

cleaning decking repair area before applying instatrim

Step 2: Measure

The next step took about 30 seconds as I measured the flexible trim strip from the box against the gap. I very quickly realized there would be three spots where InstaTrim wouldn’t exactly fill the area but that’s OK. I laid the ½” gap, 10 foot long white trim strip on the line in the area I wanted to fill and snipped off the excess.

measure decking repair area with instatrim

Step 3: Press and Seal

Once the trim strips were in place, repairing the deck took about a minute. I slowly peeled back the adhesive liner and pressed the strip into place as I went. I had to pick up the strip a few times to reposition it into place but this took about a minute to complete. In hindsight, I should have gone over it again with the applicator tool but using my fingers to press the flexible strips into place worked just as well.

applyhing instatrim to decking repair area

Decking Repair Disaster Avoided

We’re grateful for InstaTrim because using caulk or a silicone filler would have been a messy disaster that I would not want to clean up. From start to finish, this project took me about 6 minutes and I can tell the gap is sealed very tightly. I am confident that our floorboards will not get soaked after every rain storm and I still have about 7 feet of InstaTrim left to use for my next project.