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 .