A deck is a fantastic investment for any home. Not only will a deck provide hours of entertainment for you and your family and friends during the year, it is also a fantastic way to raise the property value of a home. But, a deck needs to be taken care of from time to time in order to ensure it will keep looking good and and will last a long time.
Making sure your deck is ready for the winter is one of the best things you can do to extend the life of your deck. Take a weekend afternoon to get your deck winterized by following a few of these steps.
Clean the Deck
The first thing you want to do is get the deck cleaned. This means putting away things like furniture, toys, and plants. Anything that is a little too big to move easily, like a grill, should just be pushed off to one corner of the deck.
Next, you want to give the deck a good washing. The best rule of thumb here is to hand wash your deck, while power washing may seem a lot faster, it actually can damage the wood on your deck. So, instead get a deck cleaning solution or make your own by mixing 1 part oxygen bleach with 3 parts water.
Inspect the Deck
Once your deck is air dried, take a good look at it. Make a note if there is any section that has wood damage, if so, that is something that should be replaced come spring time. If your wood is in good shape, then check the paint or stain.
The paint and stain is something that helps protect the wood on the deck from water. If the paint is peeling or chipping and the stain in really faded, it’s a good idea to repaint or re-stain the deck while it’s clear of clutter and clean.
Finish the Deck
Once you have decided if you need to re-paint or stain the deck, you can head towards the final step. Even if your deck doesn’t need any new coats of paint or stain, you should consider applying a coat of water repellant.
The repellant will play a vital role in ensuring that water is not seeping into your deck. Water damage is one of the worst things that can happen to a deck, causing the wood to be damaged, and needing to be replaced far sooner than you’d like.
If you do each of these steps, you are going to be able to really extend the life of your deck over the long run. And, since so many people use their deck all year round, a little bit of preventative maintenance can go a long way.
Do you prepare your deck for the winter each year? What are some of your favorite tips or tricks for getting it done? Let us know in the comments!
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