Springtime is fast approaching. Soon, you’ll be enjoying outdoor barbecues and relaxing on your backyard deck.
Winter takes its toll on wood decks, and yours may need a little TLC before it’s ready for some outdoor fun. Preparing your deck for spring will keep it looking great and extend its life for years to come.
Here are some simple tips for getting your deck in tip-top shape for the warmer weather.
Start With a Cleaning
Winter is your deck’s natural enemy. Wooden decks are prone to swelling and warping in cold temperatures.
Without proper care in the winter, the wood can rot, leaving you with a costly repair. Once the coldest days are behind you, give your deck a thorough cleaning.
Choose a cool, cloudy day to reduce the stress on the wood during the cleaning process. Choose a quality deck cleaner and a scrub brush to gently remove dirt, mildew, and grime from your deck.
Using a harsh cleaning product or a power washer at the highest setting can damage the wood. Ask an expert if you’re unsure about the best products to use.
The goal is to remove all the dirt and debris, so you’ll have a smooth surface ready for a stain or sealant.
Check the Connections
A deck has many connecting parts that keep it functioning as it should. These parts include the railings, nails, screws, and other metal components.
These connections can weaken over time, and it’s important to check them for safety reasons. Before you begin using your deck in the spring, you want to make sure it’s a safe place to gather.
Warning signs of damage include loose boards or rails or boards that pull away from the side of your house. These are sure signs of safety issues.
You’ll want to address any connection issues before you begin using the deck in the spring.
Look for Damage
During the winter months, moisture creeps in and can damage the wood. This can also happen during the humid months of the summer.
Look for signs of mold, soft spots, mildew, and discoloration. Don’t overlook these problems because they may indicate a safety issue.
Deck injuries are common and can occur if wood planks break or your foot goes through a soft spot in a damaged area. Painting over damage may hide the evidence but it won’t fix the underlying issue.
Be sure to fix any wood damaged areas before staining, sealing, or placing furniture on your deck.
Treat the Damage
Once you’ve located the damage, it’s time to treat it. Wood glue and sandpaper may be all you need to deal with minor splintered or feathered wood areas.
You can address small chips or holes with wood filler. Large cracks and rotting wood are more serious.
If you aren’t confident about making these repairs yourself, call an expert for help. Once your deck is clean and restored, you’re ready to add some stain or sealant to make it look new again.
Adding Stain or Sealant
The right stain will make your deck look beautiful and protect it from harsh UV rays. Moisture and UV rays can damage your deck, and a fresh coat of stain or sealant is its best protection from the elements.
There are so many stains and paint colors to choose from for your deck. Or choose a transparent stain if you want the look of natural wood.
Opaque or solid stains are good for older decks. And they can hide a multitude of imperfections. The darker the stain, the more UV protection it provides.
If your deck doesn’t need stain, consider adding a sealant instead. It will add to the durability and overall look of your deck for years to come.
SEAL-ONCE eco-friendly wood sealers ad stains are water based and non-toxic. These products will make your deck look beautiful and are safe for use around people, pets, livestock, and marine life.
Consider Your Furniture
Your deck furnishings have probably taken a beating during the winter months whether they remained on the deck or in a damp garage or shed. Before you put your furniture back in place, clean it thoroughly first.
Try a solution with 1/4 cup of laundry detergent mixed with one gallon of water. Spray down your furniture with a water hose and gently scrub away any mold, mildew, and grime.
If your cushions are torn or moldy, consider replacing them to freshen the look. Remember to clean your outdoor lighting, pots, grill, and anything you keep on your deck.
Freshen Your Landscape
Since you’re getting your deck in shape for the spring, you’ll want to add a bit of color as well. Adding a few colorful pots, plants, and flowers helps to create an inviting springtime look.
A freshly mowed lawn and trimmed hedges will do wonders for the look of your deck. Add a few planters with ferns or hanging baskets of flowers for a pop of color and the promise of spring.
When your deck is looking good again, it’s time to think about any upgrades you may want. Think about what was missing last spring as you imagine the possibilities.
Consider upgrading your deck lighting or using solar lighting for security purposes. Adding a large umbrella or pergola to your deck adds shade, color, and a bit of style.
Colorful furniture, cushions, and flowers enhance the look of your deck. Choose a soft color scheme for a more traditional look or go with stripes or bright colors to add some character.
Adding candles, vases, planters, or stone decor are all possibilities to add a little style to your outdoor living areas.
Preparing Your Deck for Spring
A little effort, some new stain, and a few upgrades add up to a beautiful, inviting outdoor deck. When your outdoor living space is in good shape, you’ll want to spend your mornings outside with a hot cup of coffee and your weekends enjoying the outdoors with friends or family.
If you’re planning on preparing your deck for spring, we have some excellent products to help you get the job done right. Visit our web-store now.