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How to Weather Proof a Deck

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 0

Oftentimes, when a home buyer takes ownership of their new home, or when a current home owner decides to build a deck, they forget one vital aspect of deck care and upkeep: to effectively water proof their deck. With the natural vulnerability of wood to a variety of seasonal impacts, the importance of water proofing your deck can't be emphasized enough. Even in the winter months, snow can melt under the harsh beat of the sun, and therefore, deck waterproofing, as clear and present benefits and advantages regardless of when it is conducted.

The following Info Barrel article will teach you how you can best weather proof your deck now. Not only will weather proofing your deck help serve to reinforce the overall value of your deck, but it will also save you upwards of thousands of dollars that it would ultimately cost you to repair (if damaged) or purchase replacement parts.


Things You Will Need

Weather Proofing Sealant
a Short Paintbrush
a Power Washer
Friends, Family, or Neighbors


Step 1

With a cluttered deck, you will have an extremely difficult time effectively exposing the surface of your deck in order to accept a much needed weather proofing treatment. In this step, you will have to not only declutter your deck, but you will have to actually completely remove everything from it. From your favorite grill, to chairs and tables that you use for holiday celebrations, you should take the time now to begin completely removing everything from your deck. During this step in this process, it may be helpful to enlist the services of your family members to help you, especially if you have items, that need to be moved off your deck, that are quite heavy in nature. Be sure to follow proper lifting procedures, such as bending from the knees, if you are lifting heavy objects.

Step 2

Once you have removed any and all items from your deck's surface, in this next step, you will want to complete clean your deck. In order to do this, you should either use diluted bleach or a some form of deck cleaner. With people tredding all over your deck, all year around, the chances are probably highly likely that your deck could use a good clean anyway. Dependent on how large, and how dirty, your deck is, will determine just how long you need to spend cleaning it. In this step, it will pay off for you to be as thorough and meticulous as possible in your deck cleaning endeavors.

Once again, with such a large project, you may want to consider enlisting the help of fellow family members, friends, or neighbors to specifically help with this task. In order to ensure that your cleaning is isolated to one specific location, in this step, you will want to pick one section or area to begin cleaning, and then branch off from there, rather than doing several different areas sporadically. This will help you best keep track of what areas have been cleaned already and what areas have yet to be clean. When you are managing a group of helpers, rather than let everyone go off on their own, in this case, you should have them all begin cleaning in the same general vicinity as one another.

Once you have cleaned your deck boards with diluted bleach or deck cleaner, you will have to wash it off. Because most people have a garden hose nearby, you can easily use it to wash off these deck boards. You may even want to consider renting or purchasing a power cleaner for more effective washing.

Step 3

With months or years of wear and tear, you would be surprised to see just how rigid your deck boards have become, along with a significant amount of paint that could have possibly been chipping off. Now that you cleaned your deck, you will want to ensure that your wood board surfaces are smooth. While this may already be the case for some, others may have to actually sand down any areas that may need it. Providing a stack of sandpaper, to the family members, friends or neighbors, that you enlist to help you, can really help expedite how long it takes to complete this task.

Step 4

While sanding down your deck boards to make them more smooth, you will be left with sawdust that will have to be picked up. In this step, using a sweeper or vacuum to remove this sawdust and try to be as thorough as possible.

Step 5

Dryness is key, and after you have cleaned your deck, you will have to left your deck dry, at least overnight. A wet deck will have a negative impact on your ability to effectively weather proof your deck the right way. While some may jump directly to weather proofing, it is absolutely imperative that you allow your deck to drive first, after cleaning it.

Step 6

At Home Depot or Lowe's, you can easily find some form of weather proofing deck sealant. Upon purchase and use, be sure to following the directions on the back. Pay particular attention to the amount and number of coats that the product you purchased requires you to use for maximum benefit, as well as, how long to let those coats dry. Your sealant can typically be applied with a short paintbrush.

Step 7

As with the cleaning and sanding steps of this Info Barrel article, it is also important that you maintain thoroughness and consistency when it comes to painting on your weather proofing deck sealant. Make sure that your sealant is evenly applied, even in areas that may be difficult to reach, or may easily be neglected, such as the end of the boards.

Step 8

Upon completion, I recommend that you stay proactive when it comes to weather proofing your deck. Re-apply this sealant whenever it is recommended that you reapply next. This information should be available on the back label of the product you purchased.

Weather proofing a deck is something that most people don't do until they absolutely have to do it. Unfortunately, by the time the do it, they will find that they incur more expense than had they just weather proofed their deck in the first place. While this will require a little extra energy, effort, and possible assistance from friends and family members, the proactive steps you take today can really pay off dividends in the long run.


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