As fall rounds the corner into winter, safeguarding your decking from the elements helps you avoid costly repairs, extend its life, and keep it in tip-top shape so it’s ready for spring and summer next year.
Harsh St. Louis winters can wreak havoc on your deck if precautions aren’t taken. Unprotected wood can warp, split, and crack if it’s not properly sealed before frigid temperatures arrive. With the right preparation, your deck can be protected from rain, snow, sleet, and ice storms.
Here are some ways to prepare for the months ahead and preserve your beautiful deck.
Get Ready for Winter! Deck Preparation to Safeguard Your Investment
The gathering place you designed in your backyard served you well during summer months. To keep your deck and outdoor furniture in great shape for next year, it’s time to give it some love—in the form of preventative maintenance.
1. Give Your Deck a Detailed Inspection and Cleaning
- Examine your deck for any needed repairs or replacement parts.
- Fix small problems now to prevent them from becoming larger and more costly later.
- Look for any signs of pest damage from ants, termites, or mice. Repair them and fortify the area from any future pest infiltrations.
- Look for any loose boards, and tighten wobbly screws as needed so they can stand up against chilly winter wind.
- Clear away any debris, and dislodge any build-up between deck boards. This will help keep it dry throughout the upcoming chilly months.
- Give your whole deck surface a thorough sweep.
- Clean the whole area by removing any stains or mildew. Bleach-free wood cleaner works well if you scrub gently to preserve the boards.
- Clean deck railings of any unhealthy mold or mildew so it doesn’t spread.
2. Winterize Your Decking to Avoid Moisture Damage
- If your deck needs to be refinished, although many people do this in the spring, it pays off to tackle this task before cold, moist weather arrives. If you fortify your wood by stripping off its current finish and restaining it, you’ll give it a solid layer of protection against winter weather.
- Select from a wide variety of exterior wood finishes that give you outstanding protection from the elements along with your desired look.
- Water repellent will protect your deck from moisture intrusion.
- By attending to your deck’s finish, its luster will be revitalized, and the life of your deck will be extended.
3. Don’t Forget the Importance of Protecting Outdoor Furniture
Wash your outdoor furniture and find a cozy spot for it inside during the winter. By safeguarding your furniture from harsh winter moisture, you’ll help it last longer and look fabulous throughout its lifetime.
4. Move Plants Indoors Where They Can Thrive
If planters are left outside, moisture can get trapped between them and your deck, creating mildew, decay, and discoloration. Bring planters, pots, and deck storage indoors for the winter.
5. Prolong the Life of Your Deck by Clearing Snow Off
To avoid the hassles of moisture penetration, water shouldn’t sit on your deck for any length of time. Minimize damage from snow by using a blower to remove it from your deck. If you need to use a shovel, be sure to use a plastic one and work gently, pushing the snow in the same direction your planks face to avoid scraping your deck boards. Preventing slippery places on decking makes it easier to avoid the possibility of falling.
Looking for a Low-Maintenance Decking Material?
If you’re tired of all the high-maintenance wood requires, composite decking may be just what you’re looking for.
Barrette Outdoor Living Composite Decking
High-performance Barrette Outdoor Living decking stands up to the harshest weather conditions with unmatched strength and durability. Its Poly-Pro Advantage™ outperforms other composites and PVC decking, and delivers the low maintenance you desire.
Expand Your Entertainment Options for Next Spring with New Decking
At Lakeside Renovation & Design, as a full-service exterior and interior remodeling company, we offer premium products and precise installations so you get the long-term performance you deserve out of new decking, siding, windows, doors, and more.
Get a beautifully designed and sturdily constructed deck for your home and enjoy more living space, savor outdoor cooking, and relish your yard and surroundings. We partner with Barrette Outdoor Living building products to offer you the highest performing materials. Your new low-maintenance deck will resist fading, and minimize harmful contracting and expanding as temperatures fluctuate.
Make plans now to enhance your outdoor living next spring with a long-lasting, attractive new deck.