Having a deck or installing a new one can increase the value of your home and will give you about a 77% return on your investment when it comes time to sell. So it’s important that you take the time necessary to properly care for your deck all year around.
Here is a deck maintenance schedule you should adhere to in order to protect your investment.
If you have a wood deck, you should clean and seal it once every year. If you have a vinyl deck, you should clean it once every year. Make sure you cover your plants, bushes or any foliage you have with plastic sheets before you begin.
• Wash your deck to remove any mold and debris that has gotten into the wood. You will need to scrape out the debris between the boards as well. For a wood deck you can use any general deck cleaner or if you prefer, you can use a half bleach and half water solution . If you have a vinyl deck, you will need to purchase a deck cleaner that is specifically designed to clean composite materials. Then use a soft brush to gently scrub it clean; however, you should never powerwash a vinyl deck as you may damage the material and void the warranty.
• Seal your wood deck if it needs it. You can test your deck using water to see if it needs to be resealed or not. Hose your deck down with water and if the water beads up you don’t need to seal it. If the water soaks into the wood, it’s time to reseal.
• Inspect your deck visually to check for potential hazards. Check for loose boards and if you can access the underbelly of your deck, check the posts, joists and beams for rot or structural damage. Additionally, you should check for any potential pest problems and address them if needed.
• Look for any nails that have started to come up. If the nail is only slightly raised, just hammer it back down. However, if it has raised substantially, you should pull out the nail and then re-install a screw that is longer than the nail you just removed.
• Trim any bushes or foliage away from your deck to help prevent rotting. You should also move around any pots, chairs and tables you have on your deck to help prevent discoloration.
You should sweep your deck periodically to remove any debris that has piled up around the area.
I hope you have found this information helpful. If you are thinking about buying or selling a home, call your realtor, he would be more than happy to help you with the entire buying and selling process from start to finish.