Always Winterize Your Deck Before Cold Weather Comes
A great deck or patio is built to withstand a lot of abuse! With proper installation and deck staining services to maintain it, your deck should last for years. However, it does need protection from the elements – especially in the winter.
Winter is particularly hard on decks, so it’s critical to winterize your deck in the fall. This will protect it from our harsh Westchester winters and ensure it’s in good shape once you’re ready to use it again in the spring. A little proactive maintenance and protection can save you a lot of money in a few months by avoiding damage and repair costs.
How can you protect your deck from the winter? Here’s our advice.
Winterizing Your Outdoor Deck or Patio
- Strip the deck of any movable furniture and items.
There’s no reason to leave chairs, barbecues, or other furnishings around in the winter. Having them on the deck the whole time could even do damage to the deck, not to mention harming the furnishings themselves. Move them somewhere indoors, such as in your garage or into a shed.
Besides – do you really need all that stuff? This is a great time to get rid of anything cluttering up your deck that you don’t actually use.
- Does your deck need any repairs?
If your deck is showing signs of wear and tear such as cracks, loose/missing nails, or broken boards, now is the time to take care of that. Winter will make any existing problems much worse. It’ll be cheaper and easier to have them fixed in the fall, rather than waiting to see how bad the damage has become in the spring.
So do a thorough deck inspection and take care of any issues.
- Clean the deck thoroughly.
Any debris left on the deck during the winter could easily end up doing damage, such as leaves being compressed into the top layer, or dirt and grime scratching it. You should give your deck a thorough top-to-bottom cleaning. The more thorough, the better. If it’s been a few years since it got a good cleaning, it may be time to hire a pressure washing service to really scrub it down. You might be surprised at how much better it looks after a full cleaning!
Also, keep an eye out for any signs of mold or mildew, and hit those with a cleaner so they can’t spread during the winter.
Plus, this prepares for the next step:
- Seal / Stain your deck.
You want to make sure your deck is fully protected from snow and ice, which may end up building up on it over time. Late fall is the perfect time to seal and stain your deck, or just call in professional deck staining services to do the hard work for you. Whether you DIY it or call-in pros, this is one of the most important steps.
- Trim away any nearby greenery
Remember, winter is going to be hard on everything in your yard. Are there any large trees, shrubs, or other greenery which could have leaves or branches blown off and onto the deck? If so, you should trim them back to protect the deck.
On the topic, don’t forget to protect any outdoor planters as well. Smaller plants should probably be moved indoors. In particular, flowerpots should be emptied of dirt if they’re going to stay outside. Otherwise, it’s easy for the dirt to absorb moisture, then freeze, which will cause the pot to expand and crack.
- Protect any other wooden fixtures in the same way
Again, while you’re winterizing your deck, keep an eye out for anything else in your yard which is wooden and may need similar treatment. For example, if you have a wooden fence, it should get the same treatment as the deck: cleaned, sealed, and protected from debris.
- Try to keep the deck clear during the winter
Overall, it’s best to not allow snow and ice to pile up on the deck, even if it has been prepared and sealed. However, this isn’t always practical, depending on the severity of the weather and your own seasonal plans. So do what you can. Keeping it clear as much as possible will reduce the possibility of damage occurring.
C.E.T. Painting Can Help Maintain Your Deck or Patio
We are experts in helping you keep your home looking great, inside and out. We’re always available to assist with the winterization of decks and patios, including both power washing and deck staining services. Our long history serving the Westchester, NY, area demonstrates our commitment to customer service and excellent results every time.
For help winterizing your deck, or even your entire home’s exterior, just contact C.E.T. Painting to schedule an appointment!