Installing decking around your home is a great addition to any property and it will surely add value to the property as well. It’s a great way to create additional space to entertain guests and for the kids to play. In the warmer months, you can wheel out the barbeque and be the perfect host to family and close friends. However, the weather takes its toll on your decking and without regular maintenance and some tender loving care, your decking could rot and become a danger to you and your family. That is why it is good to create a routine that you dedicate to the upkeep, in order to keep it in good shape and prevent large repairs later.
Wash Your Decking.
If you don’t wash your deck, then you are leaving it open to a number of things like mold and mildew, and leaving these things unchecked can mean your decking will begin to rot. First, you need to remove all that gunk between the decking boards and pay particular attention to the areas around the joists. If you have any shrubs and plants growing around the decking, cover them over to protect them before you begin washing the deck. Depending on the type of decking you have, choose the most appropriate cleanser as there are different types of cleaners for wood, composite and PVC decking.
Seal The Deck.
Once properly cleaned and dried, it is time to put some kind of deck coating like a sealer or stain. You can choose clear sealer that allows you to see and appreciate the grain of the wood or you can use a toner to add a bit more colour to the decking. You can also apply a semi-transparent stain that adds a little colour, but still allows you to see the grain of the wood or use a solid stain, that completely covers the grain of the wood. You will need to apply sealers and coatings annually, if your decking is to last you a long time.
You may need to replace some nails that have been sticking up out of the decking as you and your kids are sure to catch their feet, if you continue to let the nails rise out further. It is best to maybe pull out the nails and replace them with screws that are a little longer than the original nail. That way you are sure that they will stay in for longer.
Always be looking for signs of wear and rot around the stairs of your decking and check each post around the outsides of the decking. If you suspect rot has occurred, push a screwdriver into the affected area. If the screwdriver can easily go in about a quarter of an inch, then you may have problems. Also check for cracks in the wood and if it looks like there may be structural damage, replace it.
If you take regular care of your decking, it will last you a long time. Regular checking and little fixes here and there means that you will be still sitting on your decking well into your twilight years.