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    Clean, inspect, repair: 3 ways to extend your timber deck’s lifespan

    Urbanline Architectural

    Timber decking is a classy and sophisticated addition to any outdoor space. The natural beauty of wood combined with simple installation makes it a very popular choice for homes. However, over time, timber decking can show signs of wear from continuous exposure to harsh weather conditions, spillages, and build-up of dirt and grime, impacting its appearance. To ensure that your timber deck continues to look elegant, basic maintenance is required, which will also extend its lifespan.

    Regular deck maintenance will reduce the chance of discolouration, help retain the natural look and prevent any unsafe issues such as loose or cracked boards.

    Urbanline Architectural lists out three main areas of care, which will ensure your timber deck serves its purpose for years to come.

    Clean it regularly

    Regular deck cleaning will reduce signs of wear and keep the surface looking good. Cleaning isn’t a difficult task when it’s done at frequent intervals. Combine regular maintenance with specific seasonal care to get a deck that will be envied by your guests. Remember to monitor your deck’s condition throughout the year, and take necessary measures as required.

    Washing and sealing your deck is encouraged during spring, or during months with moderate temperatures. When cleaning your timber deck, choose the right cleaning products for the job. Determine what type of cleaning agents will suit your deck: Bleach-based cleaners are great for removing mildew, and acid-based products work best to eliminate stains and discolouration. Some finishes can only tolerate soap and water, so make sure you know your deck well.

    When using a pressure washer, spray the decking boards from a distance to avoid surface damage to the timber and finish. Remove any dirt or debris from your deck before cleaning, and allow the deck two days to dry if you plan on sealing it.

    Some more helpful cleaning tips:

    • Sweep your deck at least twice a week to remove any sand or dirt;
    • Clean in-between the boards at least twice yearly;
    • Maintain the area surrounding your deck during autumn including trimming trees and bushes, and clearing gutters and downpipes of moss.

    Conduct a safety inspection of your timber deck

    Monitor the condition of your deck throughout the year, especially from a safety perspective. Do a comprehensive inspection during summer and ensure all necessary repairs are completed before the start of wet or cold weather.

    Some key points to remember when inspecting your deck:

    • Check for signs of rot by probing steps and posts with a flathead screwdriver;
    • Check all joints, posts, and beams;
    • Look for weather-worn areas;
    • Inspect the hardware underneath the decking;
    • Shake the railing with force to ensure it isn’t loose or damaged.

    Make necessary repairs

    Once the deck inspection is done, get started on the repairs. Replace any cracked or damaged boards, add galvanised lag screws to any loose connections, replace loose nails, and seal cracks with an adhesive. Consult with a professional based on the size of the job.

    Follow these three suggestions and your hardwood decking will remain strong, durable and elegant for years to come. When it’s time to replace your decking, get in touch with Urbanline Architectural and receive professional advice for purchasing cleaning and sealing products, or building an outdoor deck.

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