Keeping Your Deck Looking Good

Keeping your deck maintained is important since your deck is an extension of your home. Your deck is likely a favorite place for spending time with friends, relaxing on the weekends, and enjoying family barbecues. Even though you mostly use it in the summer, your deck remains exposed year-round to the elements. This is why it’s so important to establish a routine to keep your deck in good shape that will help you keep your deck protected and prevent needing future repairs. The maintenance tips below will help you keep your deck looking new for longer.

Clean it Regularly

Debris on your deck, such as dirt and leaves, can lead to rot by causing mildew and mold. You can use a power washer to easily remove any debris from your deck. Most local hardware stores rent power washers if you don’t own one yourself. It is important to keep the power washer nozzle moving, though, to avoid gouging the wood on the deck. After washing the deck, allow it to dry overnight. Cleaning your deck should be a regular chore. I always schedule my deck cleaning on the same day I go to Pivotal Motion Physiotherapy since cleaning it can be a chore that wears on my body.

Regular Repairs

If you have boards that are loose or broken, replace them immediately. Pay close attention to any area where the boards are over joists, especially in areas under the deck. Also, be sure to fix any loose screws and nails. This is a simple but necessary component of keeping your deck maintained.

Keep it Stained and Sealed

Protect any shrubs or plants around your deck with plastic sheeting. Use an 80 grit paper to lightly sand your deck, then apply the stain. Always wear gloves and protective eye wear, and give yourself two days with moderate temperatures and clear skies. Give your deck 48 hours to dry, then add the sealant as your final step.

Conclusion

Following the simple steps above will keep your deck looking nice for many years to come.

Staining Your Deck

If your home has a deck, you likely understand the importance of protecting it from the elements. It is necessary to re-stain and seal the wood every few years. Doing so will prolong the life of your deck by preventing damage that could otherwise cause the wood damage prematurely.

If you are staining your own deck, you need to find a day that has the ideal temperature for staining. Your project can be greatly affected by weather conditions like heat and humidity. Follow the tips below to get the right weather situation you need for staining.

Not too Hot

One of the biggest concerns when staining your deck is high temperatures. The stain could dry too quickly when it’s hot, potentially causing uneven penetration and lap marks. If the weather is above 90°F, avoid staining your deck. If necessary, stain your deck in the morning before the weather gets too hot, or simply wait until a cooler day. Once the stain is applied and is drying, higher temperatures will no longer affect it.

Not too Cold

Staining your deck in low temperatures can also be detrimental. Doing so can make the drying time longer. If you stain your deck in the fall or spring, try to wait for a day that has temperatures above 50°F. Also, make sure the forecast for that night is above freezing. If the stain has not completely dried before freezing weather, the curing process will be hindered. It can also compromise the adhesion of the stain, or the stain may not penetrate correctly.

No Direct Sunlight

Regardless of the temperature outside, you should never apply stain while in direct sunlight. Direct sunlight can cause the stain to dry too quickly, preventing it from properly penetrating the wood, thus shortening its longevity. It can also give your stain a blotchy appearance as it dries unevenly. It is best to wait for a cloudy day to stain your deck.

Rain & Humidity

Obviously, you should never stain your deck in the rain. In fact, it’s best to wait to stain your deck on a day when rain is not in the forecast for at least a full 24 hours so the stain as it washed away. Also, the higher the humidity, the longer drying time your deck will need.

Wind

It is best to choose the day that is not windy. Otherwise, you may be left with unsightly imprints in the stain from debris such as twigs and leaves blowing across your wet deck.

Deck staining is a job that many do-it-yourselfers enjoy. It is imperative to find a day with the ideal weather situation, though. If you will be staining your deck soon, save this page is a reference to come back to.