Decks provide a great addition to any yard. They’re the perfect place to enjoy the outdoors, relax, and entertain. Like any investment in your house you want to make sure you protect it, keep it in good repair and enjoy the space to the fullest. Decks can be built out of different materials, with the two most popular being wood and composite. Natural wood is a great choice because it can be refinished and it is environmentally friendly. However, if you go with this choice you’ll have a few extra steps to protect your deck from weather damage.
Before You Build
If you haven’t yet started building your deck, the best way to protect it from damage is to build it correctly for the environment and to use materials that will hold up in all four seasons. The weather fluctuations through the year will douse your deck with driving rain, bake it in the sun, then encase it in ice and snow.
If your yard gets a lot of rain, your deck will be more susceptible to water damage. You’ll want to make sure that your deck is built on stilts or elevated off the ground to protect the bottom of your deck from rotting. You should also make sure that your deck has proper drainage by slope the deck away from your house. If your yard has a lot of direct sunlight, consider adding an awning or pergola right away to prevent fading.
Use Sealant on the Deck
One of the best ways to protect your deck from weather damage is by regularly sealing it. This helps to protect it from water damage, which can cause the wood to rot. Best practices are to seal your deck at least once a year, and more often if you live in an area with a lot of rain or snow. If you leave the deck to bear the elements on its own, it will be vulnerable to sun, rain, and warping in temperature fluctuations
If you are looking at changing the color of the deck, consider adding a stain. Many deck stains work well as sealers, and the darker pigmentation can also help to protect it from the sun. If you choose to stain your deck, you can still seal it every year.
In addition to sealing or staining your deck, you can also protect it from the sun by adding shade in the form of an awning or umbrella. This is especially important in the summer months when the sun can be very damaging to wood. If your deck gets too much sun, you will first notice that the color may start to fade. Over time, too much sun can lead to warping or cracking in the wood. It can also cause cracks along the grain, and nails may start to pop out.
Keep it Clean Year Round
Another good tip to protect your deck from damage is to keep it clear from the elements no matter the season. When snow falls, you will want to make sure you shovel off any accumulation to protect the deck from moisture damage. Cleaning regularly throughout the warmer seasons will help remove dirt, pollen, and other debris that can build up and cause damage to the wood.
What to Avoid that Could Damage Your Deck
There are a few things you should avoid doing to protect your deck from damage. One is to try not to use a power washer on the wood. The high pressure of the water can cause splintering and other types of damage. If you do have to power wash the deck, try not to do it ofen. You also want to make sure you don’t place anything hot directly on the wood, such as a grill or fire pit. The heat can cause the wood to warp or crack.
Turn to W.E. Davies When You are Ready to Build a Deck
By following these simple tips, you can protect your deck from damage and enjoy it for many years to come. Remember to seal it, protect it from the sun, and keep it clean so you can enjoy your outdoor space for seasons to come. If you have any questions about your current deck or are ready to plan your future deck, turn to the deck experts W.E. Davies & Sons Remodeling.