A deck is one of the most fun and interesting installations you can add to your house. Year round, it offers a convenient space for family get-togethers, cookouts, parties, or even just a quiet afternoon by yourself in the outdoors. It also can add a sense of style and flow to your backyard that friends will praise and neighbors will envy. However, a deck is also a big investment, and it is important to protect it from the numerous threats that time and weather can bring about. Below are a few of the most important tips on keeping your deck clean, attractive, and safe from the moment you have it installed.
Putting a finish on your deck is one of the best ways to protect it from the elements. A solid finish keeps out water and humidity, provides a shielding layer from sun damage, rain, and snow, and also gives your deck an attractive sheen that natural wood would not otherwise have. Putting on a finish can take some time and money, but in the end it is a worthwhile investment as it keeps your deck not only structurally sound, but also attractive for significantly longer than it would be without finish.
2. Raise Plants
Leaving your plants directly on the ground is a good way to cause water damage. Lifting your deck at least a few inches off of the ground can protect it from pooling water that might gather beneath. With a raised deck, rainwater and floodwater will slip through the cracks, allowing your deck to dry quickly. Otherwise, who knows how long your deck would sit, soaking up water, losing its structural integrity, and all without you noticing.
3. Go Composite
Composite decks in San Antonio are a great investment because they last longer, and degrade more slowly than regular materials. The combination of plastic and wood used to make these types of decks is much more resistant to rotting. This means your deck will withstand better the wear and tear of time. Even if you are not planning to stay in your current house for very long, protecting and maintaining the deck can boost the resale price of your home tremendously.
Putting a cover–an umbrella, awning, etc.–over your deck can be a good idea for a number of reasons. In addition to the shelter it provides to you–away from the sun and rain–a cover provide shelter for your deck. Rain, hail, snow, and even sun can damage your deck over time. If you have a cover, you can protect your deck from the elements much in the same way that a finish would.
Regular sweeping and cleaning of your deck can keep it free from the dirt and grime that not only make it unattractive, but can lead to more serious problems like wood decay, mold, and even the complete destruction of the deck. This can be a bit tedious, but it is relatively easy so long as you do it with regularity and thoroughness. A few minutes a week could save you a lot of work and money in the future.
6. Protect from wear and scratches
Think of your deck as an extension of your house. You wouldn’t drag heavy furniture across your hardwood living room floor, and it makes just as little sense to do so on a deck. Simple precautions like this can keep your deck looking and feeling cleaner and sturdier for years to come. As was mentioned before, a finish can help wood surfaces stay stronger for longer.
7. Pressure clean
If your deck has deep-seated dirt and mold that a regular scrubbing just can’t seem to get rid of, you may need to opt for renting a power washer. A power washer is a machine the sprays an extremely pressurized stream of water to get rid of dirt and grime. Pressure washers are often used to clean decades of dirt and graffiti off of buildings and sidewalks. Of course, a lower level of pressure will be needed to clean your deck without damaging it.
8. Treat problems immediately
If you notice a problem with your deck, whether it be a scratch, dirt, mold, or a crack, fix it. There is no point in ignoring the problems. Putting off repairs will only lead to more damage. The longer you wait, the more irreversible the damage will become. Ignoring the issues your deck has will cost you more money in the long run than just taking care of things.
A deck is a great investment, and like any home improvement, it is worth your time and care. We at Diamond Decks build outdoor constructions made to stand the test of time, and with your help your deck will be set to last for years, if not decades. Visit our showroom for more information.