Tips to Help You Maintain Wood Decks in Fort Collins, CO

pic of a deck and deck cover built in Ft. Collins, CO

Wooden decks can take a whole lot of abuse over their lives. They are constantly exposed to sunlight and rain, they generally get a lot of foot traffic and they are generally more vulnerable to the elements than any other type of wooden structure. This means it’s important to take certain steps to keep your decks looking great for years to come.

Here are a few tips to help you maintain your wood decks in Fort Collins, CO:

  • Keep it clear: In general, you want to make sure your deck is kept clear of anything that could catch moisture or mar the surface. If you have flower planters on your deck, for example, you should make sure to put them on cement blocks or somehow raise them off the ground so those planters do not trap dirt or moisture on top of the deck. Make sure you sweep your deck on a regular basis to prevent buildup of leaves and dirt, which can also trap moisture or stain the surface. Finally, during the winter, make sure to shovel the snow off your deck, just so you can be sure its moisture does not seep into the deck when it finally starts to melt.
  • Regularly clean and seal your deck: Every two or three years, you should have a professional come and clean or seal your deck to ensure it’s protected against the sun and rain. If you decide to do the job yourself, you will most likely need to do this once a year, as you do not have the same sort of expertise and equipment as a professional, so it makes the most sense to just hire a professional to do it. Sealing your deck protects it against moisture, which can cause the wood to swell, as well as from the sun, which can cause the wood to shrink. Repeated swelling and singing can cause the wood to bend, warp, crack and age quickly.
  • Do not paint or apply solid stain: You should never paint or stain your deck with a solid type of stain. Eventually these types of finishes will peel, which means they require significantly more maintenance to keep looking good. Your best bet is to use an oil-based stain, because they have the dual benefits of protecting your deck while aging naturally and gradually.
  • Make repairs as soon as you can: If you see boards beginning to rot, you should make these repairs as quickly as possible so you can avoid having to replace the entire deck. You should also engage in regular maintenance, even when significant repairs are not necessary. This could include tightening loose boards and checking the integrity of your railings.
  • Protect the deck from grease: If you grill on your deck, make sure you have a grease catcher or a cement slab on which you place your grill. Grease stains are extremely difficult to remove from a deck and can become very unsightly very quickly.

 

For more information about maintaining and repairing wood decks in Fort Collins, CO, contact our team today at TNT Home Improvements.

Five Types of Deck Design in Fort Collins, CO That Might Work for Your Home

pic of a Composite deck built in fort collins, co

Adding a deck to your home can greatly enhance your outdoor living space. While deck design in Fort Collins, CO is dependent on the space you have available in your backyard, you do have several choices of styles and creations to choose from that offer a variety of functionality and convenience for you and your family. Whether you are looking for a peaceful retreat or a spot to entertain, there is a deck model designed to give you what you are looking for. Think about these deck styles when you are looking to add to the outdoor living space of your home:

pic of a deck and pergola built in Fort Collins, CO

  • Attached:

    This popular deck design in Fort Collins, CO makes for easy access from your home, as it is attached to the house in the rear. It provides an entryway from the inside of your home and is the perfect choice to add some outdoor living space to your house. It is usually raised up and acts as a patio area that is made of wood or wood composite. It works well in an L- or U-shaped home.

  • Detached:

    This type of deck design in Fort Collins, CO is separate from the home and works well to add space to entertain or relax in a backyard. It is often referred to as an island deck, as it literally seems to be floating in your yard. It can carve out a special area in your property or designate a space for you to place patio furniture.

  • Wraparound:

    As the name suggests, this style of deck wraps around your home. You may have several access points to it from inside your home. A wraparound deck truly expands your living space and offers multiple ways in which to enjoy the outdoors. This allows you to enjoy the sun, no matter if it is setting or rising, and may give separate rooms in your home access to the outdoors from different vantage points.

  • Multi-level:

    If you have a lot of land, a multi-level deck design in Fort Collins, CO may be just right for you. This deck configuration has different elevations that are typically adjoined by stairs or pathways. This is an ideal deck type for elevations that have hills, slopes or rocky terrain. A multi-level deck can get you from one point of your yard to the other with ease and can provide sitting areas throughout.

  • Entryway:

    Make a grand statement with an entryway deck design in Fort Collins, CO that will welcome your This deck style can be simple or elaborate and is designed to complement the architecture of your home. Wood deck platforms can be used to outline the entrance to your home and can incorporate benches and planters along the way.

With so many deck designs to choose from, it may be hard to pick just one. A deck builder will be able to advise on what type of deck design in Fort Collins, CO will work best for your yard and can custom design features that offer you everything you are looking for. To have a deck installed at your home, contact TNT Home Improvements. We are a home improvement company that specializes in deck building and much more. Call today for a quote!

Looking for local deck builders for your next project? Give TNT Home Improvements a call at 970-663-2868 or fill out the contact form at https://tnthomeimprovements.com

Questions to Ask When Deciding on a Deck Design in Fort Collins, CO

3D CAD deck

3d deck previewA deck is one of the best additions you can put on your house. They’re perfect for relaxing outside on a summer night, hosting neighborhood barbecues and a myriad of other great outdoor activities. They also add tremendous value to your home and can have a relatively low installation cost. A home really isn’t complete without a deck.

Once you’ve determined you need a deck, you have to decide on a deck design in Fort Collins, CO. The possibilities are really only limited by your imagination, but it’s also important to consider the activities you’ll be enjoying on the deck, as well as the layout of your backyard and, of course, your budget.

What will you be doing on your deck?

Since you’ll hopefully be spending quite a bit of time outside on your deck, you should try to narrow down what activities you’ll usually be doing while you’re out there. If you’re planning on hosting BBQs and other parties out back, you’ll want to ensure your deck is large enough to accommodate all of your guests. Going along with that, if there’s a grill on the deck, you need to make sure in can be situated far enough away from your house so that there’s no risk of a fire. If, however, you just want to relax on your deck and maybe get a nice suntan, you don’t need a huge deck, and you can save some money by going smaller.

What’s your backyard like?

The size and shape of your deck will depend a lot on what your back yard is like. For example, if you have a small backyard, it’d probably look pretty weird if you built a huge deck. If you don’t have a lot of tall trees in your yard, you might consider adding a retractable awning or even a pergola to block the sun and keep you cool on hot days.

What’s your house like?

Along with considering what type of yard you have, you need to decide how you’d like your deck to look on the back of your home. If you have a multi-story home, it might be cool to have a two-level deck, but of course that will be more expensive. A deck that spans the length of your house could be really fun, but again, that’s more expensive.

What’s your budget?

Deciding how much you can or want to spend on a new deck is one of the most important factors when choosing a deck design in Fort Collins, CO. The size of your deck will be a huge factor in how much your deck will cost, but so is the material you choose to use. A standard wooden deck is always popular, but wood can be expensive, and wood decks also require quite a bit of upkeep. This is why decks made out of composite materials are all the rage these days. Composite decks made of plastic and wood give you all of the beauty and enjoyment of a wooden deck, but without the high cost and hassle of upkeep.

Once you’ve decided upon a deck design in Fort Collins, CO give TNT Home Improvements a call to make your dream deck a reality!

The Numerous Benefits of Wood Decks in Fort Collins, CO

pic of a multitiered deck w/under-decking built in Fort Collins, CO

There are many quality decking options available in the marketplace today, but one certainly stands out above the rest. If you have been on the fence about adding a wood deck in Fort Collins, CO, consider a few of these hidden benefits that might help make your decision easier:

  • Cost efficiency: The price of natural wood is substantially lower than most decking alternatives, with composite materials sometimes costing twice as much. Although there will be variations in the price of wood due to the wide variety of options, it is still the most cost-effective material currently available. Not only does the material cost less, but wood decks are also cheaper to install than some of the composite alternatives. Oftentimes, with less durable material, hundreds of dollars of reinforcements are needed to strengthen a deck. Because wood is naturally more sturdy, these expensive additions aren’t necessary. In addition, composite decks are made up of several different materials, which drives up manufacturing costs. With minimal manufacturing needed, the production costs of wood are much lower, which allows customers to procure it at a better price. One of the most affordable options in decking material is pressure treated wood, which has a natural resistance to the effects of both weather and wood-eating insects, thus extending the lifespan of a deck. With a deck that could potentially last much longer, you will be able to get the most out of your investment.
  • Stay cooler during the summer: During the summer months, natural wood does not soak up the heat from the sun, which means that the time you spend on your deck will be comfortable and enjoyable. Some of the other decking options absorb so much heat that the deck becomes unbearable to stand on, which might force you back inside on an otherwise beautiful and sunny day. In fact, some of these decks retain so much heat that it is eventually radiated onto your windows and deck doors, which could potentially heat the walls in your house and nullify the effects of your air conditioning. With natural wood decking, your family will be able to enjoy a cooler deck that doesn’t project heat onto your house, no matter how hot it may be.
  • Quality material: Although some of the composite decking materials might come close to achieving the same look as natural wood, there is no substitute for the warmth and comfort that real wood provides. And while the aesthetic can be mimicked, there is no denying the look of authentic wood. No other material can evoke the same feelings that the smell and feel of natural wood do, and this serenity encourages you to spend more time on your deck enjoying nature. Your natural wood deck will be a part of your home for years to come, and the wood can be used for many other things after its time as a deck is complete. Twenty years from now, when you are upgrading your deck, you can repurpose the used wood for fires or small projects around the house.

With so many benefits, it is easy to see why wood decks in Fort Collins, CO are the preferred option for so many consumers. If you are interested in adding wood decking of your own, call the best in the business at TNT Home Improvements to get a free estimate for your project.

How to Hire a Quality Deck Builder in Fort Collins, CO

cutting a decking board

With the weather warming up, you’re probably dreaming of summer afternoons spent relaxing on a backyard deck. A well designed and constructed deck can turn any backyard into a summer retreat.

But before you begin creating your dream backyard, you’ll have to find a quality contractor to get the job done. This professional should have the knowledge and experience to create a beautiful deck with both strong footings and sufficient supports.

It can be difficult to find a skilled and reliable professional with so many different options on the market. To help make the process easier, here are a few tips on how to find a quality deck builder in Fort Collins, CO:

Plan your ideal deck

Try to have a vision of your ideal deck before you even start looking for a contractor. Consider what you would like it to look like and any materials you want to use. This way you’ll have a foundation to work with when you start working with contractors. Take this time to establish a rough budget. A professional will then be able to provide additional recommendations to help make your idea a reality.

Check reviews

Did your desire for a new deck start after a friend or neighbor recently had one built? If so, gauge their impression and sense of satisfaction regarding their choice in contractor and whether they would recommend that person. Online reviews are another great way to get an unbiased opinion of contractors that have been vetted by others who were previously in your position. Try to reach out to the reviewer for a better sense of how the work has held up under the elements.

Meet with deck builders

Your list should hopefully be done to just a few local contractors after reading through reviews. The next step is to meet with each builder individually to better determine which company is best suited for the job. You’ll want to ask the following questions before making your decision:

  • When was your company established?
  • Are you licensed and insured?
  • Do you offer a warranty?
  • How long do you think the project will take?

The responses should give you a better insight into how reliable the company is and whether they are going to be slow and unresponsive because they have too many other projects on their plate.

Written estimate

After the interview, ask each contractor to provide you with a hard copy of an estimate for any costs associated with your project. This should include a detailed breakdown of any materials, in addition to the cost of labor.

A quality contractor will also provide prices for any landscaping that might be necessary and the cost of clean up, such as hauling away debris. It may seem obvious, but be realistic with your budget. Don’t opt for a contractor that is estimating that the project will cost two times your allotted budget.

Make your decision

Now that you’ve done your research, interviewed and have an estimate it’s time to make your final selection and draw up a contract. Hopefully, you’ll be on your way to a beautiful backyard retreat in just a few weeks’ time.

Reasons You May Want to Choose Composite Material Over Wood for Deck Building in Fort Collins, CO

pic of a deck and pergola built in Fort Collins, CO

Installing a deck for your home can be a beautiful, functional and perfect home addition, whether it’s a new construction or a rebuild of an older deck that’s beyond repair. When it comes to decking material, the first thing that likely comes to mind is wood, although composite has become popular in residential home deck building projects across the country.

Truth be told, using wood for your home’s deck is a good choice when you prefer the natural beauty and feel of real wood, but what about composite decking material? What are the advantages to using composite over wood? Here are some reasons you may want to choose composite materials for deck building in Fort Collins, CO.

Cost

Although wood decking materials and installation may cost less initially, the maintenance costs over the lumber’s lifetime is much higher when compared to composite. Doing the refinishing work and repairs on a wood deck yourself can save you money compared to paying for hired services, but you must be willing to do it. And while composite building materials may cost more at the start, future maintenance work and cleaning supplies will cost very little.

Maintenance

Wood decks, as pretty as they are, will require sanding and staining or painting every couple of years to keep them from splitting, peeling, fading and warping. As a result, many homeowners never install a deck because they know they won’t have the time to maintain it. But choose composite decking—which is similar to refinished indoor flooring—and you will enjoy a low maintenance, easy-to-clean deck material option that will never need refinishing. Just clean it occasionally with soap and water, and you should be good to go.

Appearance

If using a composite material for your deck sounds good, but you really want the look of wood, then you’re in luck. A high quality composite material made of wood and plastic can indeed look like real lumber, complete with grain-like designs and color. In addition, because composite decking materials are manufactured to avoid changes like warping and fading, your beautiful-looking composite deck will retain its same lovely appearance for years. The appearance of wood, on the other hand, can alter over time due to sun damage, wood decay, mold and attacks by animals and insects, if not properly cared for.

Safety

When it comes to your deck, safety does not involve only its structural integrity and building quality. Like a patio, you may want to walk around on your deck barefoot to soak in a warm day, or because it is more convenient to do so, or your kids and pets will want to play on it. However, the natural life cycle of wood may cause wood decks to rot, splinter, crack and split, creating an unsafe hangout area in between refinishing jobs. With a composite deck, none of this will happen, which makes it a safe area for everyone’s bare feet.

If you have decided that it’s time to move forward on that long-awaited deck project, give the team at TNT Home Improvements a call today. From materials to all the information you will need, we are here to help you plan for deck building in Fort Collins, CO.

Six Year-Round Benefits of Installing a Quality Patio Cover in Fort Collins, CO

pic of a deck and pergola built in Fort Collins, CO

Homeownership means so much more than just paying the bills and doing home maintenance on the weekends. It also means getting the chance to make the space your own, to make the changes you want so you can better enjoy it for many years. When it comes to home improvements, one of the most affordable and useful projects you can take on is adding a cover over your patio. Need a little more incentive? Take a read through these six year-round benefits of installing a quality patio cover in Fort Collins, CO:

  • Create an outdoor living space: Not only does having a covered patio extend your home’s living space out into nature, but it also makes way for opportunity to create a spot for outdoor living. Your cover acts as a shelter against the weather so you can chill in the evening with a book, spend quality time with your family on the weekends and entertain dinner guests by the light of the moon.
  • Protect your outdoor furniture: If you love hanging out or hosting parties outside on the patio, then you likely own outdoor furniture. Since a lot of patio furniture can cost just as much as living room furniture, go the extra step to install a patio cover in Fort Collins, CO to protect your investments, and to keep pieces looking good all year long without the worry of sun or rain damage.
  • Get protection from the elements: With a plain old uncovered patio, your plans are likely to get cut short when it gets too hot or rainy. On the other hand, with a quality patio cover, you are offered protection from the elements no matter what season. Depending on the type of material used, a cover can lower the temperature of a patio area by 10 to 20 degrees while shading you from harmful ultraviolet rays, and it keeps you comfortable and dry during rainy days or sudden downpours.
  • Great for stay-cations: Many of us lead busy lives—so much so that we forget to take a vacation every now and again. Save travel expenses, time and money by putting together a lovely outdoor space, complete with a covered patio area, right in your own backyard for year-round relaxation and enjoyment.
  • Keep your house cool: An often overlooked benefit of patio covers is that they work as a big shade to block the sun from blaring through your windows and glass doors. In turn, a good portion of the sun’s heat is kept from entering the interior of your home on hot, sunny spring and summer days.
  • Numerous material and style options: You can have a simple cover or an intricate one. Choose a pergola with a lattice style to allow a little sun through or for growing vines, or select a more solid material like aluminum or wood for full coverage. Or, to blend it in with your home’s roof, consider matching shingles. The key is to know your needs and budget before getting started.

Contact the team at TNT Home Improvements today for assistance with the planning stages of your patio cover in Fort Collins, CO.

Click here to learn more about our patio cover services.