A deck is a great place to host guests and gather outdoors with family and friends. Instead of having friends over, you might prefer to just kick back and relax when the weather allows it. But each year, it’s important to prepare your deck for winter to protect it from damage.

Winter weather is harsh on decking materials. Keep it in good condition throughout the colder months of the year by taking steps to winterize the deck.

Store the Patio Furniture

If you have furniture on your deck, store it in a shed, garage, or basement for the winter. Wooden and wicker furniture are especially susceptible to damage in freezing conditions. Remove and store anything absorbent that might retain moisture, including chair cushions and rugs.

If you don’t have enough space to store deck furniture indoors, you can consolidate the furniture under a cover or awning ahead of severe weather. Purchase a tarp that is large enough to cover the furniture and keep ice and snow off. To reduce the chances of the tarp getting blown off, tuck it underneath the legs of the furniture to anchor it down.

Alternatively, you can purchase individual covers for each piece of patio furniture. Many home improvement stores carry covers for lounge chairs, outdoor tables, and the grill.

Clean the Deck Thoroughly

Get your deck ready for winter by cleaning it before the weather gets too cold. Leaves, mold, debris, and grease can stain your deck if left on it for too long. Mold and mildew can continue to cause damage, even in chilly weather.

Use a pressure washer to remove the grime before you inspect your deck. Alternatively, mild soap and water or a wood cleaning solvent will get the job done.

Repair and Seal the Deck to Prepare it for Winter

As you clean the deck, identify weak spots that need to be repaired. Check the entire area for loose, damaged, or rotting boards. Replace any boards that are in bad condition. Pay attention to areas where the decking materials absorb water instead of repelling it.

If you notice water seeping into the wood, it’s a clear sign the area needs a fresh coat of sealant before it snows.

This article covers basic tips to winterize your wooden deck properly. Follow these steps to keep the backyard deck in good condition through winter so it will be ready to use when the weather warms up.

Alpharetta Property Inspections offers home inspection services in North Fulton, Forsyth, Gwinnett, Cobb, Dekalb, and Cherokee counties. Contact us to request an appointment.