Your home's deck is a part of the house that is subjected to extreme wear and tear from the elements. Unfortunately, new homeowners may not be familiar with the steps needed to take good care of their decks, which can lead to expensive repairs and other problems. If you are finding yourself in this situation, you may benefit from using the following tips when it comes to caring for your deck.
Properly Prepare The Deck For The Sealant
While you may understand the need to seal the deck to prevent the wood from rotting, there is a reasonable chance that you may underestimate the importance of properly preparing the deck before applying the sealant to it. However, if you fail to do this, the sealant may not provide the type of protection you are expecting because the dirt and debris may prevent it from bonding with the wood.
To avoid this problem, you should make it a point to either thoroughly wash or sand the deck before applying the sealant. If you choose to wash the deck, make sure to give it ample amount of time to dry before applying the sealant. Typically, this will be about a full day because the water that seeped into the wood will take longer to evaporate.
Patch Cracks And Splits Before They Spread
One day, you might notice that a board in your deck has developed a crack or split. This may seem like only a minor problem, but this form of damage can rapidly spread. Moisture can enter the wood through this crack where it will expand and contract due to temperature changes, and possibly cause the crack to spread.
Fortunately, you can avoid this type of problem by using wood filler to patch the crack. This is a thick paste that can be worked into the crack, and it will bond with the wood when it dries. To help match this patch to the rest of your wood, you can use a stain to even the color out.
Keeping your deck looking beautiful does not have to be a mysterious or confusing project to go through. If you are reasonably informed about the various maintenance tasks that can keep your deck looking beautiful, you will be better able to protect it. Making it a point to properly prepare the deck before applying a sealant to it and patching cracks or splits soon after they form can help prevent mistakes from resulting in the need for major damages on your deck.