The flexural behavior of rectangular hollow section (RHS) steel beams with initial crack strengthened externally with carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) plates was studied. Eight specimens were tested under three-point loading to failure. The experimental program included three beams as control specimens and five beams strengthened with CFRP plates with or without prestressing. The load deflection curves were graphed and failure patterns were observed. The yield loads and ultimate loads with or without repairing were compared together with the strain distributions of the CFRP plate. It was concluded that yield loads of cracked beams could be enhanced with repairing. Meanwhile, the ultimate loads were increased to some extent. The effect of repair became significant with the increase of the initial crack depth. The failure patterns of the repaired specimens were similar to those of the control ones. Mechanical clamping at the CFRP plate ends was necessary to avoid premature peeling between the CFRP plate and the steel beam. The stress levels in CFRP plates were relatively low during the tests. The use of prestressing could improve the utilization efficiency of CFRP plates. It could be concluded that the patching repair could be used to restore the load bearing capacity of the deficient steel beams.