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As the days grow shorter and the air turns crisp, homeowners across the country embark on the annual ritual of preparing their homes for the challenges of winter. Amidst the checklist that includes insulating pipes and sealing windows, there’s one essential item that shouldn’t be overlooked: winterizing the deck. As a homeowner, you might not think of it as an important task, but recognizing the importance of preparing your outdoor haven for the harsh winter months is essential to having a well kept deck. In this article, we will explore the necessary steps to prepare your deck for winter, why it’s crucial, and how neglecting this task can lead to costly damage.

What Should Homeowners Do Before Preparing Their Deck for Winter:

Inspect the Deck Thoroughly: 

Before you start any winterizing tasks, conduct a comprehensive inspection of your deck. Look for signs of wear, rot, loose boards, and rusted or damaged hardware.

Clean the Deck:

Remove leaves, debris, and any items that might have accumulated on the deck during the fall. Use a broom, leaf blower, or hose to clear the surface.

Trim Overhanging Branches:

Trim back any tree branches or shrubs that hang over your deck. This prevents heavy snow or ice from causing damage when it accumulates on the foliage.

Address Repairs:

If you identified any issues during your inspection, such as loose boards or damaged railings, address these repairs promptly to prevent further damage during winter.

Protect Furniture and Accessories:

Clean and store outdoor furniture and accessories in a dry, protected area. If storage is not an option, use high-quality covers to shield them from winter elements.

How to Prepare Your Deck for Winter:

Apply a Protective Sealant:

Depending on the type of decking material you have, apply a protective sealant or stain to safeguard against moisture penetration and harsh winter conditions. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for application.

Clear and Clean the Gutters:

Ensure that your deck’s drainage system is clear of debris and functioning correctly. Clogged gutters can lead to water buildup and damage to your deck.

Consider a Snow Removal Plan:

If you live in an area with heavy snowfall, have a snow removal plan in place. Avoid using metal shovels or harsh chemicals on your deck, as they can cause damage. Instead, use a plastic shovel or a broom to gently remove snow.

Use Ice Melt with Caution:

If you need to use ice melt on your deck, choose a product that is safe for your decking material and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Avoid products that contain calcium chloride, as it can be corrosive.


Proper ventilation is crucial to prevent moisture buildup beneath your deck. Ensure that there is sufficient airflow to minimize the risk of mold or mildew growth.

Keep the Deck Clear:

Throughout the winter, periodically remove snow and ice accumulation to prevent excessive weight on the deck. Use a broom to sweep off light snow and a plastic shovel for deeper accumulations.

Why You Should Prepare Your Deck for Winter:

Protection Against Moisture:

Winter brings snow, ice, and rain, all of which can lead to moisture damage on your deck. Proper winterization with sealants and drainage maintenance helps prevent moisture penetration.

Prevention of Structural Damage:

Neglecting deck maintenance during winter can result in structural damage, such as rotting wood or loose boards. Repairs can be costly and may necessitate a full deck replacement in severe cases.

Safety Concerns:

An unmaintained deck can become hazardous during winter, with the potential for slips and falls due to ice or snow accumulation. Proper winterization ensures a safer outdoor space.

Preservation of Aesthetics:

A well-maintained deck maintains its appearance, increasing the overall curb appeal of your home. Neglect can lead to unsightly damage that is costly to repair.

Longer Lifespan:

Regular winter maintenance extends the lifespan of your deck, protecting your investment and avoiding the need for premature replacement.

Why Contact 1918 Preservation for Deck Maintenance

At 1918 Preservation LLC, we understand the importance of maintaining and preserving your outdoor living spaces, including your deck. With over 25 years of experience serving clients in Perry, OH, and throughout Lake County, we have a proven track record of creating dream outdoor spaces.

Our services encompass both deck installation and repair, catering to various preferences and needs. Whether you have composite decking or wood decking, we have the expertise to ensure your deck is comfortable, functional, and perfectly suited to your requirements.

If you’re in Perry, OH, and seek professional deck maintenance or repair, look no further than 1918 Preservation LLC. Schedule a consultation or request a quote today by calling 216-240-5053. Let us help you maintain the beauty and functionality of your deck throughout the winter and beyond.

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