Why Use Ice Melt and Plastic Shovels on Decking This Winter?

pic of a shovel sitting on a snowy deck

Colorado is well known for getting a healthy blanket of snow each winter. And while it might make for some great slopes and a well-deserved vacation to your favorite ski hill, it’s a huge paint for any homeowner who has a deck. Having to get out there and shovel off the deck with each fresh snowfall is a chore that most would rather skip.

Why Shovel Your Deck?

So, why not just skip the deck shoveling? It’s not like you’re going to be using your deck this winter, right? Well, while that might sound like the best idea you’ve had all week, it’s actually a bad one. As much as you might hate it, it’s important to shovel your deck.

Shoveling snow off your deck accomplishes a few important things. First, it alleviates a lot of stress on the decking itself. Snow is heavy! Leaving hundreds upon hundreds of pounds of wet, compact snow on your deck for the better part of the season may cause your decking to sag after just a few years. Considering the money you invest in deck building in Loveland, CO, stopping this from happening is paramount.

Removing snow is also important because it prevents the melt and freeze cycle. If snow melts off under the sun, it might seem like your shoveling chore has been done for you. Unfortunately, that melted snow is almost certain to re-freeze as ice on your deck, making it brittle. Worse yet, if your wood decking has absorbed any of that moisture and it freezes, it’s going to expand and warp.

Why Use Plastic Shovels and Ice Melt?

When you do finally get up the motivation to shovel off your deck, make sure you’re doing it the right way. That means laying down deicer and using a plastic shovel.

Ice melt serves the all-important purpose of getting rid of ice, which, if pried up with a shovel, can cause damage to your decking. This takes care of the problem, while also softening up the snow you have to deal with.

A plastic shovel is the best tool for snow removal, instead of metal shovels or those tipped with a metal edge. Metal will chip, gouge and scrape your deck as you diligently remove snow, leaving you with a battered façade come spring. There’s no reason to cause your decking damage—use a plastic shovel instead.

A Few More Tips

There are also a few more things you can do to make your life a little easier during the winter months:

  • Shovel when the hot sun is out, to loosen up the snow
  • Remove everything from your deck before the first snowfall
  • Plan ahead for snowfall and lay down a safe ice melt beforehand
  • Use two shovels—one big and one small—for navigating your deck
  • Use a brush for deck railings and other fixtures

The last thing you want is to have spent money on deck building in Loveland, CO, only to see your finished deck deteriorate after just a couple of winters due to unmanaged snow. This year, take the steps to keep it free of snow and ice!

Maintenance Tips for Wood Decks in Loveland, CO

pic of a partially stained deck

A deck can be an incredible addition to a home. Whether you like to enjoy breakfast al fresco in the morning or gather with friends and family during a weekend barbecue, having deck space gives you much more room for relaxation and entertaining. Even though wood decks in Loveland, CO can often remain in good condition for decades, even the most durable materials will fade or become damaged over time if they are not properly cared for and maintained. That’s why it’s so important to keep your deck in the best condition possible. By following a few simple maintenance steps, you can ensure that your deck continues to be a great setting for outdoor recreation for years to come:

  • Stain your deck: Not only does staining your deck make it look much better, it can also help protect your decking material. Treating lumber with a protective stain and sealant layer can prevent oxidation, rot and decay.
  • Fix damage: If one of your boards becomes damaged or splits, make sure to replace it promptly. Remove the damaged board and secure a replacement in your deck. At first, this new board might appear to be uneven in relation to the rest of your deck, but it should even out after a few weeks as it loses moisture and shrinks.
  • Secure loose boards and nails: Decks that get a lot of use out of them are likely to develop a few loose nails or boards every once in a while. If one of your nails becomes loose, you should remove it and replace it with a long screw to ensure that your boards remain secure.
  • Wash your deck: Using a pressurized washing system to clean your deck on a routine basis will keep it free of debris and looking its best. You can either rent pressure washing equipment yourself, or you can hire a professional to take care of the cleaning process for you.
  • Keep it covered: During the fall and winter, it is almost impossible to keep your deck completely protected from debris, fallen branches and stormy weather. Investing in a cover for your deck can do a lot to protect it from the elements. A deck cover can ensure that your decking material isn’t damaged by rain, snow or overexposure to the sun, and it can increase the longevity of your deck.

If your deck could use a little extra TLC before the winter weather hits, make sure to take care of regular preventative maintenance and then get professional help from the expert team at TNT Home Improvements. For years, we have been providing our customers with superior home improvement and renovation services, including deck and patio cover building. Taking good care of wood decks in Loveland, CO is essential, and we make it easy for you to keep your deck safe from the elements all year long. Browse our website to learn a little bit more about the services that we provide, and then give us a call for assistance with your next home project.

Click here to learn more about our deck building services.