So the time has come to sell your property and you’re making all sorts of improvements to make it look better and hopefully fetch a higher price from potential buyers. However, far too many home or commercial property owners ignore something that plays a huge role in their property’s appeal and value: their deck!
Whether you have a pool deck, outdoor patio deck, or balcony, ignoring your deck can make it a real eyesore, and something that will send many buyers running at the mere sight of it. An unattended deck not only brings down the overall aesthetic appeal of your property, but will quickly bring up questions of how durable the deck is, whether or not it has water damage, and whether or not you’ve even bothered to take care of it.
Here are four valuable and helpful tips that can help you make your deck look good and more appealing to buyers, and may even help you fetch a better price for your property!
What’s one thing you can do that will significantly improve the look of your deck and make it more appealing to buyers? Simple: wash it! Get the pressure washer out and give it a thorough blasting to remove dust dirt, and even some stains that have sat on your deck for months or even years. You’ll be surprised at just how good your deck can look again after a good cleaning. If you don’t own a pressure washer, you can rent one from your local home improvement warehouse. You can use your garden hose with a spray nozzle attached, but this isn’t usually as effective at removing the tougher spots.
If your deck seems to be fading and losing some of its vibrant, eye-catching appeal, a new coat of paint may be the solution you’ve been looking for. Fresh paint can do wonders for rejuvenating an old deck, so long as the structure is still in good condition. And the best part: paint is pretty inexpensive, making this one of the most cost-effective ways of restoring your deck and making appealing to buyers again.
Buyers will be able to tell when your deck isn’t water-tight or has sustained some pretty serious damage as a result of water over the years. Not only does this look bad, but more often than not it’ll send them running away quickly. Re-sealing your deck with a high-quality waterproofing solution can stop the damage from forming and protect your deck for at least the next few years, giving your buyers peace of mind of knowing they’ll have considerable time before having to worry about the first major service.
Replace Cracked Boards or Pavers
Finally, nobody likes seeing huge cracks in a deck. Land-shifting, sun damage, and plenty of other things can cause the surface of your deck to develop unsightly cracks and gashes that quickly diminish much of the appeal your deck might have otherwise. Fixing these cracks by replacing the boards, pavers, or other materials that have them can get rid of this worry! However, for concrete, stone, or other types of decks, this may not be the most ideal option. Instead you may wish to consider sealing the crack itself, which a Los Angeles deck waterproofing company can help you with.
Let Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing help you prep your deck to sell with your property. Contact us by dialing (310) 912-7737 to request an estimate.
As a deck owner, the last thing you want to have to deal with is water damage. Water can cause wood to rot, mold to grow, and your entire deck structure to grow weak and brittle, eventually becoming dangerous and possibly falling apart completely. That means it’s in your best interests to regularly re-seal your deck. But how do you know it’s the right time? Re-seal too early and you’re just wasting time and money. Re-seal too late and your deck might sustain some serious damage before you do.
Here are a few of the signs that it’s time to get it re-sealed.
This is arguably the most obvious sign that your deck needs to be re-sealed, especially here in California. Whether you have a wooden or composite deck at your home or a commercial deck build from pro-grade materials, the color will eventually start to fade over time. It should come as no surprise that the sun is not your deck’s friend, and the UV radiation and other harsh light exposure can dry out materials and cause color to become bleached, causing it to fade. When you notice that your deck’s color has seriously faded from what it once was, it’s probably time to re-seal it and bring some of that color back.
If your deck surface is painted, the paint starting to flake off is a sure sign that the seal has faded away and need to be replaced. Once the protective seal has worn away, the sun tends to destroy paint fairly quickly, particularly thin coats. If you notice that the paint is starting to wear away or the natural color of your deck’s material is starting to show through underneath, now’s a good time to give our Los Angeles deck waterproofing team a call and schedule a re-sealing service.
Cracking & Splintering
The color may still seem vibrant and your paint may still seem to be in great shape, but neither of those things stand a chance of protecting your deck if the surface has cracked. Cracks allow moisture to seep down into the interior of your deck and start impacting it from the inside, speeding up the damage process and possibly causing your deck to experience a major problem sooner. If you notice cracking and splintering in your deck’s surface, it’s important to have it inspected as soon as possible to see if it’s sustained any serious damage and then have it re-sealed if you’re still in good condition.
Have you noticed a particular spot on your deck water where water seems to pool up and create puddles each and every day? This tendency is known as “ponding” and is indicative of low-points in your deck’s surface. It’s also usually indicative of a point where the seal on your deck’s surface has likely been compromised or worn down from constant water exposure. These areas tend to wear out the fastest and become some of the largest sources of damage for your deck, so it’s in your best interests to get them fixed quickly. If you notice ponding on your deck, call a professional and have them resolve the problem for you and then provide you with a high-quality sealing service to reinforce the area and avoid the damage for good.
Do you need your deck surface re-sealed? Trust the professionals from Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing! Call us at (310) 912-7737 to request a quote today!
The ocean is one of the most attractive features about California. The blue waters, warm weather, and smell of ocean air draws millions of visitors and makes our shoreline property some of the most valuable and desirable in the entire country. Many of these beachfront properties, both commercial and residential, are outfitted with decks that overlook the sea, offering spectacular views and enjoyable space.
However, these decks face a significant problem: constant, unrelenting exposure to ocean air. Ocean air is extremely humid, and sometimes is full of fog or marine layer, which imbues deck materials with moisture that can cause extra expansion, expedite wood rot, and even wear away at the structural integrity. If you have an ocean-view deck, you’ll want to choose a material that’s both resistant to the immense heat California beaches can experience and the almost-constant barrage of moisture.
Here are a few deck materials that are particularly good for decks in areas located in close proximity to beaches.
Wooden plank-style decks are a pretty common design choice near beaches due to their laid-back, coastal feel. However, traditional wood is a pretty awful material to actually use since it tends to rot so quickly. Synthetic boards, however, are rapidly becoming a pretty popular choice since they’re made of a mixture of recycled plastics, wood fibers, and other materials that are less influenced by heat, less prone to water intrusion and rot, and can withstand a heavy barrage of moisture both from humid air and marine layer.
Concrete pavers are quickly becoming a popular low-cost choice in beachfront decks, particularly for patios, pool decks, and rooftop installations. Pavers are inexpensive, have a classic look to them, and can be easily maintained and replaced. They’re extremely durable to heat and moisture as well, two of the toughest elements for a deck to survive. However, they are heavy and require a pretty sturdy deck space, which makes them generally only advisable for well-supported deck structures and patios built on ground level.
Poured concrete is a great material for those who have the extra money and time to invest in a truly durable and long-lasting deck. Concrete can be formed into nearly any shape, is extraordinarily strong, and water and heat have very little effect on it as long as the deck surface is regularly inspected for cracks and given a waterproof seal. However, this is a pretty expensive option as well, and may not be suitable for all applications.
Vinyl is an extremely popular material that’s used to make almost everything. It’s extremely flexible, being made in a wide variety of different styles and colors to match any look you’re going for (even wooden-style decks), easy to install, and fairly inexpensive. It also never needs painting, resists staining, and even has significant heat rejection properties, making it a popular choice for California summers! However, over time it can start to sag, particularly in heavy use conditions, so you may want to think twice before installing this material as it may need replacement sooner than others.
Learn more about the great deck material options available to you by calling Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing at (310) 912-7737 today!
A deck is far more than just something that brings up your property value and makes your home more beautiful, it’s also a highly-versatile space that you can do all sorts of things with. Whether you simply have a small deck overlooking your property or a large, rooftop space to build to your heart’s content, decks can be turned into nearly anything your wildest imagination can dream up.
Here are five crazy things people have done with their outdoor deck spaces to make the most of them.
Rooftop Pool & Spa
Can you imagine having a swimming pool located hundreds of feet in the air with panoramic views of the sprawling metropolis below? Rooftop pool decks make it entirely possible! You do need to have a roof that’s capable of supporting the immense weight from the thousands of gallons of water fed into the pool and/or spa, but you do occasionally see rooftop or elevated deck installations at hotels, apartment complexes, and other large buildings across the state.
One of the most satisfying feelings as a golfer is watching the ball you’ve smashed off the driver sail out into the distance for sometimes as much as 300 yards or more. And what better way to get more distance out of a shot than to raise the starting elevation? Some driving ranges around the country have started to build double and even triple-deck driving ranges. Not only can these structures accommodate more golfers, but they can also add to the enjoyment of the experience. Some people who live on larger plots of property have even built small driving range pads into their existing home deck or balcony so they can get some extra practice in at home!
Ever wanted to have a basketball or tennis court on your deck? Thanks a wide variety of waterproof outdoor materials, you can! Athletic court decks are particularly common in hotels and high-rise apartment buildings where space is at a premium, which means you can probably find more than a few out here in the Los Angeles area. They’re particularly enjoyable for residents or guests, who can enjoy getting some exercise and fresh air with a unique view, just so long as the ball doesn’t go plummeting to the ground below from several stories up!
A rooftop garden is a great place to not only raise a wide abundance of plant life, but to make your deck space more aesthetically pleasing and even shady. People have built structures for all kinds of plant life on rooftops, including vines, ivy, rose gardens, rare and exotic flowers, and even certain types of trees. A rooftop deck makes a popular spot for events like weddings, corporate mixers, or just a little bit of rest and relaxation surrounded by nature, even if you’re in the middle of a giant city.
Rooftop bars are exploding as one of the latest trends in high-rise buildings. Not only do these provide an excellent way to bring in extra revenue, but they’re popular social gathering spots that are frequently packed with people during weekends. Bars need to be outfitted with all sorts of added equipment, plus they need to be sealed with non-slip waterproof surfaces to ensure guest safety. However, if your roof is already built to handle foot traffic with a regular deck, adding a bar to it takes very little in the way of retrofitting or additional construction.
Have a crazy idea you want to see about adding to your roof? Call the Los Angeles deck waterproofing experts at Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing at (310) 912-7737 to discuss them and let us help you make that dream come to life!
Deck owners face a number of environmental threats, such as long hours of sunlight exposure, harsh rains, high winds, wear and tear from repeated use, and much more. However, many people forget about the ever-present threat of mold and mildew. These fungus organisms tend to form in places that are dark and constantly damp: conditions which are frequently found in the structure of your deck. On this blog, we’ll explore why mold and mildew can be so damaging and what you can do to prevent them from harming your deck.
The Effects of Mold & Mildew
Mold and mildew in your deck should be treated with the same level of seriousness and urgency that you would show when you find these fungi in your own home: they can have the same damaging effects. For starters, both of these organisms require organic material to act as a food source in order to take root and spread, which includes wood. This makes mold and mildew extremely difficult to remove once it has taken root and also means it’s a contributor to wood rot, an issue which could result in your deck structure weakening significantly.
Mold and mildew both have other effects as well. For starts, they have a distinct, musty smell that’s difficult to mask or get rid of without getting rid of the substances completely. Likewise, while most of these fungi are harmless, black mold is toxic, and too much exposure could lead to serious health problems. You definitely wouldn’t want that around your home, family, children, patrons, or anyone who comes in contact with your deck.
Defending Against Mold & Mildew
So what can you do to get rid of these problems or prevent them from forming in the first place? Prevention is the most effective way of getting rid of mold, so the best thing you can do is thoroughly waterproof your deck . Sealing your deck and protecting it from water intrusion means you’ll deny mold spores one of the key components they need to take root and thrive: a water source. Thus, your deck will stay protected.
The next most important thing you should do is carefully inspect your deck for any cracks or areas where water may be able to penetrate down into your deck structure. Even a small crack can be enough for water to intrude and start causing mold to grow, so you should speak with a Los Angeles deck waterproofing and construction expert to inquire about resurfacing your deck and getting rid of a mold problem that may have emerged.
Finally, make sure your deck is properly sloped and that water flows in the direction you want it to. All decks should have some sort of a drainage system, so make sure no water can get stuck on your deck and accumulate into puddles (known as “ ponding ”), and be sure to get these spots repaired as soon as possible if you notice them.
Got a problem with your deck? Call Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing at (310) 912-7737 to request an estimate for your repair, waterproofing, and sealing services.
Southern California is the land of swimming pools, and that means pool decks are just as common. Whether you have a pool of your own or you’re considering making this addition to your property and want to know more about the responsibility it entails, there are some things you need to know about pool decks and the care they require. Pool decks may not be as much work as the pools they surround, but ignoring their condition could have severely detrimental consequences for your pool and your property as well as the deck itself.
To help you better understand pool decks, here are the answers to some of the most commonly-asked questions about them.
Do I Have to Seal My Pool Deck?
The benefits of doing this truly cannot be understated. Sealing your deck will not only help it last longer and stand up to more wear and tear, but it will also help you repel stains and even keep colors brighter and longer-lasting without constant care and maintenance. This goes for all materials, including concrete, brick, stone, wood, and much more.
What Materials Last the Longest?
An important characteristic of a good pool deck is durability, even under heavy use and major stress from the environment, such as blistering summer heat. Concrete or other solid materials tend to be the best-suited for Southern California, but they can be more expensive than a cheaper material like wood or composite. Bear in mind that the investment now may pay off later when you don’t have to spend as much time and money maintaining a concrete, stone, or other solid-material deck than you would with another type.
What’s the Best Way to Clean My Deck?
Over time, stains happen. Whether it’s furniture left in one spot for months (or even years) at a time, leaves or dirt accumulating, or an oily substance being spilled, cleaning your deck can be a hassle. Pressure washing is a good way to really get at these tough stains, but be careful about this when you have a softer deck material. Algae or mildew can also accumulate in shady and often-damp areas—take care of this with a bleaching agent, or even baking soda if you’d prefer a more natural remedy.
Should I Use Pavers?
Pavers are a budget-friendly way of being able to get a harder, more durable deck surface without paying the cost they usually entail. Pavers are pieces of clay (like brick) or stone that are cut into uniform sizes and can be laid down in a pattern that composes your patio. While these can give you a good look, they’re prone to water intrusion and all sorts of issues beneath. While they’re generally easy to maintain, they can develop problems like mold or ants beneath them so carefully consider the maintenance needs before choosing them.
How Can I Keep My Deck Beautiful?
There are a few things you can do that prevent your deck from becoming worn and dirty. First, keep metal furniture like chairs and tables off your pool deck, or insulate the bottoms with rubber or plastic feet to prevent staining. Second, regularly clean your deck with a hose or pressure washer and a leaf blower to keep stains, dirt, and dust away. Finally, consider covering the frequently-traveled areas of your deck, such as near doorways or pool stairs with rubber mats to prevent wear and tear. Each of these steps can help keep stains at bay, minimize your maintenance responsibilities, and keep your deck looking beautiful for many years to come.
Do you need your pool deck stained or sealed? Trust the Los Angeles deck waterproofing experts from Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing! Call us at (310) 912-7737 to receive a free quote .
The deck around your pool has an extremely difficult but important job to do. Not only does it have to withstand the brutal harshness of being exposed to chlorinated water during pool usage, but it also has to bear the brunt of hours of sunlight, wildly-changing temperatures, and even the occasional rainfall. As such, a pool deck needs to be extremely durable and have numerous other qualities.
That means the material you choose to construct your pool deck from is an important choice that you shouldn’t take lightly. What material you choose should not only be able to stand up to the task of serving as a pool deck, but be able to last for a considerable amount of time (considering the investment it takes to install one of these decks) and much more. On this blog, we’ll discuss pool deck materials and talk briefly about some of the best pool deck choices for Southern California residents.
Qualities of a Good Deck Material
What makes an ideal pool deck material in Southern California? While a lot of deck materials are out there, few have the qualities needed to be an ideal choice. Here are five things to consider:
- Slip-resistant: A pool deck will get wet during pool use, and a wet, smooth surface is going to be slippery. Generally, a good pool deck material will naturally be slip-resistant, such as having a rougher texture that can still provide grip even when soaked with water.
- Non-abrasive: While a non-slip material is great, it also needs to be slip-resistant without being difficult or painful to walk on while barefoot. Some non-slip materials are exceptional at maintaining grip, but can be extremely painful for a barefoot person to walk on, and that doesn’t really work around a swimming pool.
- Water-resistant: Obviously a pool deck is going to get wet, so a pool deck material needs to be able to withstand a good water soaking without getting damaged. Porous or absorbent materials aren’t the best choice in this regard.
- Low-cost: Does this super-material sound like it would cost a fortune? It doesn’t have to, and that’s a good thing considering not everyone has tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend on building a pool deck.
- Low-maintenance: A swimming pool is a pretty high-maintenance property feature to begin with. Even with automatic filtering, the latest in cleaning technology, and computer systems designed to encourage clear water, you’re going to need to spend time keeping it. Don’t make the deck around it also become a burden in this regard.
So now that we know what a good material should be capable of doing, let’s take a look at a few of the best materials we’ve found for building pool decks.
Concrete is arguably the most common pool deck material because it’s inexpensive, easy to install, extremely durable, requires very little maintenance, extremely waterproof, and can be textured to be slip resistant without destroying your feet. You can choose to either have concrete poured, which may require a little bit of added maintenance, or install concrete pavers, which looks a little more dated and adds a bit of complexity to the installation. In either case, this is the most common and usually the ideal pool deck material for most customers.
Wood is the “classic” deck material, and while most people think wood is easily damaged by water, there are waterproofing treatments that can help it last for decades under heavy use and exposure to moisture. A wooden pool deck both looks great and is easy on the feet, but requires more maintenance than other materials, notably an annual or bi-annual waterproofing and sealing treatment.
Stone, clay, or other durable tile materials are becoming extremely popular because they can come in all sorts of different shapes, colors, and patterns, giving you a truly unique and appealing look to your pool area. However, not all tiles are particularly water-resistant (such as sandstone) and over time they can wear smooth and lose their grip tendencies. Not to mention some tile options can get expensive and most require a maintenance regimen to ensure longevity.
Composite materials are a popular choice because they can be made to imitate many other materials, just with more flexibility in terms of coloration, and are often more durable and water-resistant than many others. Composite is also great as a lower-budget option, but doesn’t have the same hazards as natural wood, including lower expansion and growth rates on hot days and less likelihood of splintering. However, some people simply don’t like the look they offer.
Do you need your pool deck waterproofed or remodeled? Trust the Los Angeles deck waterproofing experts from Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing! Call us today at (310) 912-7737 to request an estimate .
Most people don’t think twice before climbing up or down a set of stairs, but the truth is a lot of thought and careful consideration needs to go into how a set is designed in order to ensure they are safe. Stairs that are too steep or don’t give you enough space to place your feet (a surface known as “tread”) could potentially lead to slips or trips and falls, which often mean injury. The risk is even greater for outdoor stairs where water from rain could make stairs slippery and even more risky. On this blog, we’ll go over what need to be taken into consideration in order for a set of stairs to be safe so you can make good decisions when remodeling or resurfacing your stairs .
Anatomy of a Set of Stairs
A simple set of stairs isn’t too complicated. Think of stairs as the hypotenuse of a right triangle, with the horizontal length of the set of stairs being one side and how far up they climb being the other. Of course there are rounded or spiral stairs, but many of the principles are essentially the same.
Each step over the distance between the top and the bottom has two dimensions: rise (how far up each step climbs) and run (how far forward each step carries you). These measurements on each step are extremely important because going too large or too small on either one of them could lead to serious issues, both with construction and with injury risk.
If the rise between steps is too steep, climbing the stairs will not only be extra tiring, but the risk for serious injury also increases in the event of a trip and fall. Not to mention, those who already have trouble climbing an average set of stairs may not even be able to successfully get up a set of stairs with too steep of a rise. However, too small of a rise and you’ll have to stretch the staircase out horizontally to have enough stairs to get to the correct height, which adds a ton to your construction costs and may not even be possible.
If the run between steps is too small, those climbing the stairs won’t have enough space to get a proper foothold, and that means a significantly greater risk of tripping or slipping and falling, especially when going down that set of stairs (though up is also certainly dangerous). Too wide of a run presents a similar problem to having too low of a rise: your stairs will have to increase in number, which means the staircase will increase in horizontal length to the point where it’s more expensive and may not even be possible to construct given your location.
Building a Safe Set of Stairs
So you need to build a set of stairs, and you want to make sure it’s done properly. What should you do? The first step is to learn more about local building codes to learn what the minimums and maximums are for stair rise and run in order for your building to adhere to safety requirements. In California, the rise between stairs cannot be less than four inches and cannot be more than seven and a half inches. The run of each stair cannot be less than ten inches. As a result, California prefers that all staircases have an incline that measures between 30 and 37 degrees.
In addition, consistency between rises and is extremely important, as one step being significantly different from another is a huge trip-hazard for those going either up or down a set of stairs. California code says that the greatest rise cannot exceed the lowest rise and the largest run cannot exceed the shortest run by more than 3/8 of an inch.
The handrail that lines each set of stairs needs to be durable and capable of supporting a good amount of weight without buckling. The rail must be between 34 and 38 inches above the stair surface, measured from the furthest-forward point of each run, including any nosings. It’s strongly advised each rail have a minimum of four to six inches
Finally, there’s another parameter you need to consider, particularly on outdoor stairs: step surface. The surface of each step on a set of stairs should be constructed of a material that encourages grip, and when outdoors that means something that also needs to be durable and minimizes the impact that water can have on the surface. Many contractors will mix fine sand with the paint they coat the tops of these steps with and then use a durable sealant over this surface in order to prevent it from smoothing out or losing grip for as long as possible. Some people will even take things a step further and place a piece of high-visibility grip tape to make edges clearly visible.
Waterproofing a set of outdoor stairs also goes a long way to preserving them and preventing them from losing their structural integrity. Waterproofed stairs will last longer and be less prone to damage from the sun, rain, dew, and other elemental factors that are traditionally hard on anything left outside for long periods of time.
If you need your set of stairs waterproofed, call Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing today at (310) 912-7737 to request a service estimate!
There are many benefits to waterproofing your deck , and we’ve discussed many of them in previous posts here on our blog. However, one benefit that many people don’t think of or consider is the benefit of adding strength to your deck. It’s true: a waterproof and sealed deck actually stands stronger and more durable for a longer period of time compared to a deck that’s left exposed and untreated. On this blog, we’ll explain more about this added benefit and explain why you should take advantage of it.
Depending on your deck’s surface, a waterproof coating is an extra layer of armor against the wear and tear associated with everything from elemental exposure to foot traffic from use. While a waterproof seal is generally a thin coating, it’s an extremely hard one that’s designed to successfully withstand pelting from rainfalls, washing, and even just general usage. While it may not be able to protect against a major impact, such a heavy object being dropped, it can add just a little bit of extra protection to the raw materials your deck is constructed from, allowing them to be just a little more resistant to breaking and needing replacement.
Prevent Exposure to Materials
In addition to preventing the materials from breaking, a proper waterproofing service will also help prevent water damage to the materials your deck is built from. For example, if you have a wooden deck, water is certainly not your friend, as it can cause warping, splintering, and rot in the wood itself. This is particularly unsightly and frustrating in surface boards, but it’s even more dangerous in the deck’s wooden structure, where rot can soften the wood and cause it to become weak, incapable of sustaining the weight of the structure and whatever is on it. By waterproofing your deck, you’re preserving the surface itself as well as the structure underneath, minimizing its exposure to water that can eventually soften it and cause it to fail.
The same principle applies to decks constructed from concrete, tile, granite, marble, or even synthetic materials. While these surfaces may be naturally more water-resistant than wood, continuing to have them resurfaced and waterproofed can prevent any water from seeping in and causing the materials to erode away and eventually become damaged and unsuitable for use. A deck that has not been properly waterproofed will likely see cosmetic damage such as fading or dulling of colors, but will also likely see structural damage such as cracks through the surface, deformation, ponding, and even weak points where the deck seems to bend or give way just a little too much. A proper waterproofing procedure can help prevent this issue from emerging, giving you the ability to use your deck confidently and continually, knowing that the structure it’s built upon is in good working condition and has been properly preserved.
This is particularly important for rooftop decks or decks that have anything beneath them. A deck of this nature that hasn’t been waterproofed will likely lead to leaks in the roof of whatever is below, which when outside may not be the end of the world, but inside can be a major issue. A rooftop deck that isn’t waterproofed can leak into the roof, wearing out the structure and leaking water into the space below, which, if let get out of hand, could cause a collapse.
This is just one more reason why it’s a good idea to reach out to a Los Angeles deck waterproofing company about having your deck properly sealed. A sealed deck will be able to provide you with loads of additional usage and durability, as well as last for many additional years before major repairs or renovations will be needed.
To schedule your waterproofing service or to learn more about the options available to you, contact Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing today by dialing (310) 912-7737 !
While most people think of rain as the biggest threat to decks, those in sunny Southern California know that perhaps nothing is harder on their deck every year than the long and brutal hours of exposure to the scorching sun. While the sun may provide our planet with life-sustaining warmth, it can be extremely harsh on anything that receives excessive amounts of exposure day after day. Combine that with our often triple-digit summer temperatures, and you have a recipe for deck damage that’s almost impossible to avoid.
If you’re sick of having to constantly resurface and re-treat your deck every year or two, then it’s important to learn why the sun is so harsh on your structure in order to understand what you can do to fight back against it. We’ll discuss these things on this blog.
How Sun Damage Occurs
There are many reasons why the sun is such a brutal force against your deck. For starters, the sun puts off more than just the visible light that illuminates our world: it also puts off extremely harsh radiation, including ultraviolet light, x-rays, and even gamma rays. These types of light are invisible to the human eye, but deal tremendous damage to whatever they pass through. Fortunately, our atmosphere filters most of this dangerous radiation out and reflects it back into space, but some of these rays still slip through and cause damage to nearly anything left in the sun, including your deck.
Second, the heat the sun provides is also a massive factor in terms of destroying your deck. When the temperature cranks up in the late spring, summer, and fall seasons here in Southern California, it dries out everything, causing all forms of moisture and oils to evaporate or crystalize. When things dry out, they become brittle, which causes them to become prone to cracking and breaking. This is important because the sun also causes materials to expand and contract each day. As objects and materials heat up, they expand and physically become bigger. When they cool off, they contract and shrink. When you combine a brittle, dry material with a constant grow-and-shrink pattern that occurs each day, it’s easy to see how cracks and other more severe damage can form over the warmest and driest part of the year.
Preventing Sun Damage to Your Deck
So, now that we know why the sun damages your deck so badly, what can we do about it in order to slow the process and prevent you from having to constantly re-treat and reseal your deck every year or two? While you’ll never be able to fully prevent sun damage to your deck, there are some things you can do to effectively combat the damage and slow the process to give you extra years of durability.
Choose Quality Materials
There are certain deck materials that are naturally more resistant to sun damage than others. Concrete decks, for example, tend to last much longer than a wooden deck, and that alone can make them a much better investment. Generally, you’ll only need to treat a concrete deck every five to ten years, versus every one to two for a wooden surface.
Paint Your Deck
Much like sunscreen protects your skin from sun damage, paint is a sort-of “sunscreen” for your deck. Specifically outdoor formulated paint is designed with ingredients and additives that are designed to reflect harmful radiation away from your deck, thus strengthening it and keeping it in good condition. However, never rely on paint alone to seal your deck: use it in tandem with a quality seal treatment in order to obtain the maximum protection.
Inspect Your Deck Regularly
One of the keys to preventing major sun damage is to regularly check your deck and look for weak spots that are starting to show signs of wear and tear and have these spots repaired quickly. Most major deck damage starts with just a small flaw that later grows and compromises your entire deck, so fixing these danger spots quickly can prevent you from having to completely re-seal or even rebuild your whole deck after just a few short years.
For information on high-quality deck sealing options, speak with the Los Angeles deck sealing experts from Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing! Call us today at (310) 912-7737 to request a service quote.