Is Your Deck Ready for Winter?

With all the things you’re doing to get ready for a long and snowy winter (assuming you live in a state like New Jersey, where winters tend to be harsh), the last thing you’re probably thinking about is your outdoor deck. Things like winterizing your vehicles, tuning up your furnace, and updating your winter wardrobe are far more important — right?

Well, yes and no. Obviously your deck is not the most pressing issue you face when it comes to getting ready for the cold season. However, it does represent a sizeable investment and an important aspect of your property. Many homeowners tend to forget about their outdoor decks and assume that very little maintenance or preventative maintenance is required. The result is that problems begin to develop sooner than they should. Repairs might become necessary. In extreme cases, it might be necessary to resurface or completely rebuild an outdoor deck due to negligence.

Don’t get us wrong — the average winter conditions aren’t going to wreak havoc on a new outdoor deck. But over time, extreme weather will definitely play a part in wearing down a deck, both in terms of structure and appearance.

The question is, should homeowners do anything to “winterize” their outdoor decks? What kind of maintenance should be considered during the cold winter months? Knowing the answer is important for homeowners who want to get the most out of their investments, and protect their decks as long as possible against the elements.

The answer to the first question is yes — homeowners should take some time to get their outdoor decks ready for winter. Fortunately, this doesn’t involve much at all, and can be accomplished in a short amount of time.

The first order of business is to conduct a thorough inspection of the deck. This includes surveying the entire structure for loose or damaged boards, loose attachments (screws, bolts, etc.), and other structural issues. In many cases, loose attachments can be dealt with safely using ordinary tools. In other cases, a professional should be called in to address repair issues that are discovered during the winterization process.

Once everything has been inspected, and the deck “checks out,” the next step is to carefully sweep and clean the deck. After a good and complete sweep, the deck should be washed with a gentle non-bleach cleaner or soap, along with water. This step depends on what type of decking you have (natural hardwood, composite, etc.) and you should always follow the instructions of the manufacturer and/or the contractor who installed the deck.

A third step is to protect your deck with a special sealant or water-resistant coating, so that the constant presence of moisture (snow in various stages of melting and freezing) does not affect your deck structurally. Again this depends on the type of decking you have.

Shoveling is another common maintenance activity during the winter, and it’s a great way to keep the deck protected, dry, and looking great. One piece of advice, however: when shoveling, keep the shovel going parallel with the direction of the boards, rather than perpendicular. This will prevent scratching and damage to the boards as you shovel.

Outdoor deck maintenance for the winter months is easy when you know what to do — and when spring comes, you’ll be glad you took the right steps!

Client Testimonials

J.Widener from Newton, NJ

“Outstanding team. Very impressed with the whole process and the most with my new beautiful deck!”

S.Long from Franklin Township, NJ

“The deck looks FANTASTIC. I still can’t believe that Deck Guardian was able to resurface my old, ugly deck. Our neighbors have stopped by to comment on how great the deck looks. The attention to detail, work ethic and professionalism set this company apart. I highly recommend Deck Guardian!”

M.Lewis from Fleminton, NJ

“We have received numerous compliments from Neighbor’s and friend’s who think that the finished project looks terrific. Not only do I appreciate the “quality job”, but I really appreciate the professional manner Skip handled all the details!”

L.Cohen from West Orange, NJ

“When I came home yesterday, I could not believe how amazing my newly resurfaced deck looked. Crew did an amazing job. It was also a pleasure to work with your salesperson, very professional and knowledgeable!”

S.Smith from Chester Township, NJ

“I’m completely impressed. I have dealt with my share of contractors as I have been updating my home for several years. Deck Guardian gets the gold medal. Deck Guardian restored my 10 year old deck & fence to a brand new condition. I am amazed!”

P.Tang from Westfield, NJ

“Deck Guardian Team did a good and pleasant job to give us a professional service and a beautiful new deck, without replacing it. We love the color and the way it feels like. Highly recommended!”

Kathryn Barchi from Piscataway, NJ

“My husband and I had recently moved into a new home and quite quickly we learned of so many things that both us and the home inspector missed prior to the purchase; the deck being one huge item. We quite desperately wanted to use our deck and know that it was safe for us, our kids, our pups, and our guests, which in the original state, was definitely not the case. Deck Guardian to the rescue! The Deck Guardian team, from the free estimate to the point of project close, were quite wonderful to work with entirely. They even pointed out additional things we had missed with regards to the safety of our deck. Of course, best of all, the Deck Guardian team was able to work within our budget, while giving us back our deck with a new lease on life. Deck Guardian far exceeded our expectations and for that, my husband and I can not thank them enough!!!”

Jessica Ravitz from Skillman, NJ

“Deck Guardian completed an amazing deck replacement project for us in less than 2 weeks after we signed our contract. Not only did they provide an extremely competitive price, we got a beautiful deck that so greatly exceeded our expectations! Everyone at Deck Guardian is wonderful – from the estimator, the crew and the administrative staff – very friendly, professional, meticulous and hard working. We are so pleased and give the highest recommendation!!! Thank you Deck Guardian!”

Paul Cichello from Bridgewater, NJ

“I contacted Deck Guardian and was given an estimate the very next day. The representative was very knowledgeable and fair. The workers were polite and professional. We are satisfied with our new deck and would recommend Deck Guardian to anyone who wants quality work.”