We witness all four seasons in our fantastic section of Ohio. With September almost over, we’re probably due to see snow flurries and colder weather start to move in. On average, Uniontown can get about 40 to 42 inches of snow a year. Inevitably it will get all over the deck, railings, and porches. It’s essential to protect these surfaces during the winter months, whether it’s merely removing items from the porch, removing the snow as you clear the walkway, etc. By being proactive with snow removal on these surfaces, you’re actually giving your deck longevity without having to replace pieces as often. Here’s what you can do to protect your deck and porch! 

What To Do Prior To the Winter Season

● Remove Everything: Find a place to safely store the chairs, tables, plants, and anything else you might have on the porch or deck. The furniture can be stored in a shed, garage, or down in a basement for the winter season. The grill could go in the shed or garage, if you’re able to move it, but at the very least, you should put a cover over it to protect it from the snow and ice.

Protect Your Deck & Porch From The Inevitable Snow 1

● Remove Dirt & Debris: Sweep off any dirt, debris, and leaves accumulated on the surface. If they become wet, it might cause a mold issue or other decay when spring comes around. Pay attention to the areas between the boards too. Dirt and debris love getting caught there.

● Clean the Surface and the Railings: Wash off the surface of any mold, bird droppings, etc. You can use some warm water with some non-bleaching dish soap gently scrub away any of these stubborn spots. Do one final rinse with the water to make sure there’s no lingering soap.

What To Do When It Starts To Snow (And Even Right Before!)

Protect Your Deck & Porch From The Inevitable Snow 2

● Use a De-Icer: There’s a misconception that de-icer should be used after you shovel. Truth be told, you should spread rock salt or ice melt prior and during the storm because it can help combat any ice before the freeze. Be careful what de-icer you use on the wood, however. Do your research prior to purchase.

● Remove the Snow: Even if you’re not using your porch or deck throughout the season, remove the snow anyway. Light snow can be swept off, but a plastic shovel will work too. Never use a metal shovel or a sharp-edged tool. The wood is vulnerable at this point, and these objects will leave marks in the wood. Run the plastic shovel parallel to the boards to avoid damage. Be careful of butt joints that can stick out a little bit.

What To Do When Spring Approaches

● Remove the Salt: Once spring rolls around, give your deck or porch a good cleaning. This is usually done with a power washer or a stronger hose stream. The salt that’s built up from the de-icer needs to be removed to avoid any damage to the wood.