Protect Your Deck In The Winter Season!

The winter season is great for fun activities in the snow or the beautiful snowy scenery! Although we love building a snowman or drinking hot cocoa by the fire. The winter season is not always great for your deck! There are many ways to protect and maintain your deck during the harsh winter season. Cold weather preparation is important in prolonging your deck’s lifespan and will save you money in the long run!

Preparation is Key

Before you can think about snow, it is important to prepare for the first snowfall! Sweeping away any dirt and debris including pine needles, leaves, or any other leftover materials is a very important first step. Snow and ice allow debris to build up and lock in moisture for your deck. The moisture will cause wood rot and other structural damage. Inspecting your deck and railing system before the winter months is also a highly recommended step to ensure no cracks or weak spots. Hidden moisture can create rotted wood that you will want to remove before proceeding to the next steps. You should also check for any loose railings or footings and tighten up any hardware that could compromise the structural integrity over the winter months!

Snow & Ice Removal

It is always important to know how to properly remove snow and ice from your deck during the winter. When dealing with a light dusting of snow, using a broom is all you need to do the trick! Always be careful when using a shovel to avoid scratches or scuffs on your deck. Brooms are a gentle way of removing the snow to avoid scratching your deck or accidentally removing nails and screws. However, a shovel will be required when you are dealing with heavy snowfall. Always shovel along the length of the deck boards. If you run the shovel across the width of the boards, you risk scratching the deck or ruining the paint. Remember, plastic is better when it comes to shoveling your deck! Metal shovels can be harder on your deck and can result in dings or dents.

Ice and decks can be a dangerous combination! We are used to salting our driveways and sidewalks during the winter season. Although, when it comes to your deck, rock salt can depend on the material you have. Rock salt can melt snow and ice from the surface of most composite decks. If you have an older composite deck, the rock salt should be rinsed off as soon as possible. You may want to ditch the rock salt when it comes to wood decks to avoid harming deck finishes. Do you want to ditch the rock salt entirely? You can purchase an approved deicer or ice-melting agent and use it to remove ice from your deck boards. You should always use caution with this alternative as some chemicals including lye and chlorine, can damage or dye the boards. Pick a chemical solution that is safe for your deck board materials and only uses enough to melt the ice!

There are many factors to consider when preparing and cleaning your deck during the winter. Research and checking with a professional can help you determine what is best for your deck. If you are worried about any damage or structural issues. Contact a local builder and they will inspect the damage and quote you on the repair. Enjoy the great outdoors with peace of mind no matter what season you are dealing with!

Atlantis Rail Systems: The Leader in Cable Railing Systems

To learn more about beautiful and practical cable railing systems for your deck, stairs, and balconies, browse the Atlantis Rail Systems website. This Plymouth, MA-based company offers many unique, easy-to-install configurations complete with all necessary hardware to ensure a safe and code-compliant railing system.

For more information on planning cable railings for decks, contact the railing experts at Atlantis Rail Systems at 1-800-541-6829 or by completing the Contact Us Form.