Spring is here, which means the rainy season has begun. We’ve also started experiencing warmer temperatures, so it’s hard to avoid getting excited about spending more time outdoors. Unfortunately, these two elements can lead to the realization that your deck might not be in the best condition. Take a look at the ways weatherproofing can improve your wood deck, and how to enable it to better withstand the elements this season:
Why Do Wood Decks Need Weatherproofing?
Although there are new decking materials used today that are made from recycled products and have weatherproofing capabilities ‘built in’, many homeowners love the natural beauty and classic look of a wood deck. The downside to wood is that it doesn’t as effectively stand up to the elements. Untreated wood is susceptible to warping, rotting, and cracking, especially when exposed to moisture. Fortunately, there are ways to protect your wood deck and make it less vulnerable to unfavorable weather conditions.
How Do I Weatherproof my Deck?
One of the most significant elements that negatively affects wood decks is water. Whether snow and ice melts on top of it during the winter, it’s exposed to heavy rain in the spring and summer, or it simply exists in a humid climate, untreated wood can be easily damaged due to moisture. Depending on the condition and age of your wood deck, even elements like hail and ice can cause the surface to dent and crack.
Here are some weatherproofing tips for keeping your deck protected:
- Apply sealant to your wood deck at least every 2-3 years.
- Avoid applying solid stains or paint to your deck.
- Remove snow shortly after it has fallen.
- Clean your deck regularly with appropriate deck cleaning solution.
- Never seal your deck with varnish.
- Ensure the deck finish you choose does all of the following:
- Repels water
- Preserves wood from mildew
- Screens out UV rays
- Only apply oil-based deck finishes when the wood is completely dry.
- If a specific area of your deck gets a lot of direct sunlight, consider adding an awning or pergola.
- If your deck is in rough shape due to years of damage or old age, consider upgrading to a weatherproof decking material like composite or PVC.
Who Can Benefit from Deck Weatherproofing?
If part of your deck doubles as the roof for a porch or patio underneath, or you utilize the space under your deck for storage, weatherproofing is essential. Keeping your outdoor living spaces clean and dry makes them easier to use and enjoy, and protecting what’s under your deck can be easily done by using any of the helpful tips above.
Even if neither apply to your deck, weatherproofing the wood can still provide plenty of advantages by keeping your deck protected in any weather conditions and preventing fading, shrinking, rotting, cracking, warping, and premature deck replacement.
How Can Johnson Lumber Help?
At The J.F. Johnson Lumber Company, we have the largest selection of decking materials in the area. Whether you’re looking to replace your wood deck with composite material or are looking for the right stain to use for weatherproofing, our lumber yard and hardware store have everything you need to succeed. Contact us today to learn more.