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Tips for Protecting a Deck

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Spring has sprung although you wouldn’t know it from the still cool temperatures here in Durham. The good thing is, it is now palpable. It is coming and you can feel it. You can see it, almost smell it. It’s definitely time to start sprucing up the backyard, and if you have one, your deck.

When you learn more about elevated decks, you will find that the elevation posts can really help to protect the deck in a few different ways. For one thing, they can level it out so that people are not putting pressure on different areas as they walk on it, leading to cracking and breaking floorboards. On top of that, they can allow trapped water to escape so that it does not get stuck under the deck and cause a lot of rot and decay. However, this is not the only way to protect the deck, and you need to consider a few different tactics if you are going to be successful.

First, you have to finish the deck every few years. This refers to the process of putting on a protective finish, such as polyurethane, so that water does not get into the wood itself. It causes the water to bead up and run off, and it also protects against the sun’s harsh rays. You can apply the finish with either a brush or a spray system. Remember that it breaks down over time, so it may need to be reapplied every three to five years. Just keep an eye on the deck so that damage does not get out of hand.

In the winter, it is wise to shovel any accumulated snow off of the deck before it gets to be too heavy. Decks collapse every year under the weight of snow. This also happens if the snow partially melts and then freezes, creating a very heavy layer of ice that is almost impossible to remove. It can then snow on top of that ice, making it harder for the snow to melt. Shoveling every time you have a major snowfall makes taking care of the deck easier and reduces the strain on it.

Finally, you may just want to go around the deck and tighten all of the bolts in the spring. Make this part of your standard spring cleaning, when you would already be doing upkeep and maintenance on the house. The deck may have shifted slightly during the course of the winter. If the bolts have worked themselves loose, this shift can get more and more dramatic, and it could break the support posts, which were not meant to keep it aloft at an angle. It only takes a few minutes to tighten everything down properly.

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