Posted 3/1/2023 by The ProWood Team
Routine Deck Maintenance 101
Your deck is exposed to the elements 24/7, 365 days a year, so it is critical to be intentional with routine maintenance care. This simple upkeep ensures your deck’s quality will last for several years. Here is a step-by-step guide to deck maintenance.
Step One: Remove Debris
Make it a habit to sweep your deck regularly to prevent buildup and mold. At least twice a year, use a power washer or deck cleaner and a wire brush to remove any debris that your broom could not get.
Note: if you use a power washer, it’s best to go with the wood grain to avoid peeling and chipping.
Step Two: Check for Decay and Loose Components
Once all the debris is gone, analyze your deck components to check for wood rot, cracks, and insecure or missing hardware. Take your time on this step so the foundation will keep up with weather changes.
Cut out rotted or heavily cracked boards and install new
Replace any missing or loose hardware or railings
Sand away any rough edges and chips to prevent injuries
- Check for protruding nails or screws: Hammer in any nails that are sticking out and tighten any loose screws.
- Trim vegetation: Trim any plants or trees that are encroaching on the deck to prevent moisture buildup and damage.
Step Three: Protect Your Deck
When your deck is completely dry, apply a protective coat of stain or sealer. Do not paint your wooden deck because it will peel and chip quickly. Instead, stain/sealer will last longer and slowly fade, which will not ruin the quality of your deck.
Stain vs. Sealer
Depending on your preferences, stain and sealer can be used together or separately. Sealer is transparent and shows the wood’s natural color and grain. Most sealers protect against rot and mold from water. Stains are similar with protective features, but it contains a pigment (your choice of color) that blocks UV rays from drying and fading the wood.
These three basic steps will ensure the longevity of your wooden deck for a lifetime. Decks add value, entertainment space, and security to your home, so make sure to invest in routine maintenance care.
Want more? Check out this deck maintenance video!