Why Worry About Deck Maintenance in February?
You probably aren’t using your deck too much at this time of year, so it is the perfect time for performing deck maintenance so that you can enjoy it when the warmer weather rolls around. Your deck is more than a place to gather, relax, and enjoy the great outdoors from the comfort of your own home; it’s also a feature that adds monetary value to your house. Even if your deck is built out of treated wood, it will eventually show wear and tear by the pitter patter of feet, not to mention damage from moisture and the sun. This means that deck maintenance is important so that your deck’s life can be extended at the same time that you beautify your outdoor space.
Seal Joists and Posts
Water finds a way! Even treated deck joists are subject to moisture intrusion through the screw holes, which can cause them to rot. You should be able to find a product to treat your joists easily at any local hardware store, but peel and stick Grace Vycor Plus Flexible Flashing comes highly recommended. The bases of your deck’s posts are also prone to letting in water, so make sure that they don’t come into contact with the ground below. Adjustable post bases are an economical choice to keep the ends of posts from sucking up water from the ground like drinking straws. You’ll want to use a sealant on your post ends as well for extra protection.
To Bleach or Not to Bleach
You can help your deck appear years younger just by giving it a good cleaning. The first thing you’ll want to do is to sweep away leaves and any dirt and grime that can be removed by broom alone. Then it’s time to use a deck cleaner, which you can find in both bleach and bleach free formulas. Both will do the trick; just decide whether you want to lighten the color of your deck or not. As an added bonus, deck cleaners that don’t use bleach are more gentle and environmentally-friendly.
Inspect and Repair
Did your home inspector find anything wrong with your deck? If so, you know exactly what needs to be repaired and have probably been given recommendations for contractors if you don’t want to take repairs into your own hands. If it’s been a while, consider scheduling a General Maintenance Inspection or take a close look at your deck for red flags. Rotten wood needs to be repaired or removed. If the area in question is small, take a chisel to it and use a wood preservative to treat the area. Be sure to check out the space below your deck to examine the ledger – that’s the part of the frame that connects the deck to your house. Most deck collapses are a result of faulty or failing ledgers, so it’s critical your ledger is solid and properly attached to your home. Be sure to check all joists, posts, beams, boards and the railing as well; if anything is suspect, you’ll want to call in the pros!
After you have performed the required deck maintenance so that you can enjoy it throughout the Spring and Summer months, you can start the fun part of decorating it. For tips on how to liven up your deck aesthetically, check out this article.
Do you need a home inspector to perform a General Maintenance inspection on your home? Inspect One offers inspection services to Eastern North Carolina. Call or text (910) 620-5225 to schedule your appointment!