Teak Deck renewal - Exploratory visit to see what I am facing

We have a few leaks down below and I have noticed a lot of spots where the sealant between teak boards is dry and cracked and in some places has come out.  Additionally there are boards that are loose or not adhered to the deck.

Today I decided I would remove a small section o the teak deck, just behind the mast where the teak was most rotted looking.  I presumed this was due to the fact that water had gotten in below the planks and was not able to get out.

I started by drilling out the bungs, at least the ones that were still there.  About 50% of the screws had exploded heads already.
I drilled out the wooden bungs, then found that there were quite a few that had been filled with epoxy.  This was not a welcome sight since it made the screw slots non existent.
I spent the new couple of hours using a small scraper to cut grooves in the epoxy covered screw heads.  I then tried to remove any I could with a screw driver.  For the ones that did not work with, I used an electric impact screwdriver to help break them loose.  This worked but in almost all cases the "entire" screw didn't come out, which makes me think that they were in rough shape to have broken off so easy.

Once the screws that could be removed had been, I used a utility knife to cut the sealant on both sides of each board.  This was a slow process because the knife wanted to keep cutting into the grain of the wood and I didn't want to take any of that needed surface down.

It appears that this may have been done on this boat before at this point as I noticed that the sealant was not against straight sides of the wood.  It almost appeared as if there had been a router used to smooth the sides, but the cut didn't go all the way to the bottom of the wood.

The strange things it that when I removed the boards, there appeared to be epoxy below them making me think someone has already done this at least once on this boat.  I am posting some picture out to CruisersForum to see if anyone can tell if that is what this looks like for sure.  Also curious now how to tap test the deck for rotted spots since it all sounds really solid with this resin hardened on deck.
I kind of figured when I pulled this up there would be some really obvious next step, but the reality is that I am not 110% sure now what to do next.  I was thinking I need to scrape up this epoxy mess or grind it smooth.  Then re-apply the boards with epoxy.  The issue is these boards are in pretty rough shape.  The large center piece will need to be replaced for sure, the others likely should be.  So if that is going to be the case with everywhere else on the boat, does it make sense to replace the deck with one of those cork or artificial teak surfaces.

I am not so sure what to do next so may need to ensure this is sealed and think about it for a few weeks.

This section is cleaned up and you can see the few screws that had so much epoxy in their heads I was not able to remove them.

I took a nice break and just laid down on the deck and stared at the sky for a bit.  I always love that view up the mast and seeing the clouds go by.  After just enjoying the view, I sat up and took a picture from mid deck back.  It is a reminder that whatever I decide to do here with the deck, I am going to have a lot of it to do :)


  1. Thank you.
    I'm glad you found it useful. I'm actually just starting a multipart video series about removing the teak deck, correcting any core issues where they exist, patching holes and fiberglassing over the deck. I will be sure and post videos as well as blog posts. Check out our YouTube channel for updates at Http://www.youtube.com/c/svdreamchaser