Is it truly winter until you begin to see that fluffy white snow begin to accumulate on your deck? Snow can be beautiful, but it becomes awfully inconvenient when it begins to cover your porch, walkways, and driveway.
When you clean off your deck, the last thing you want to do is cause damage to the wood. Here are some great tips for removing snow and ice from your deck.
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Use a Broom
Brooms are gentle and perfect for that soft powdery snow. Use a broom to simply brush the snow off your deck like you were sweeping a floor. This is probably the best way to clear your deck because the broom’s bristles won’t scratch the wood or damage any hardware like screws and nails. But a broom will get the job done.
If you are expecting a lot of snow, go out and periodically sweep it off while it’s still snowing. It may take you a few trips, but overall it may be easier than trying to sweep four or five inches of it off at a time.
Clear an Exit Path From Your Home
To avoid unnecessarily clearing your entire deck, just make an exit path from your home. This will save you a bit of time and frustration, and you will still be able to easily come and go. It is a great idea to have an exit path in case of an emergency, so you are not struggling to get out.
Shovel Only When Excessive Snowfall Happens
Ideally, you want to avoid shoveling your deck if it’s possible to avoid damaging it. In case of heavy snowfall, you might find that a broom just isn’t working. And then you have to break out the shovel to even just clear a path.
If you do have to use a shovel, try finding a plastic one rather than metal. It will be less likely to scratch or crack the wood because when you are digging out your deck surface you can’t even see, you have a good chance of hitting it with the shovel.
Use Snowmelt Designed for Decks
It can be tempting to toss some of your salt-based ice melts on the deck to melt the snow, but these types of melts can damage your deck. The salt causes your deck hardware, like nails, screws, and bolts, to rust.
There are snow melts that use chemicals safe to use on wooden decks. These are better alternatives and are less likely to cause any damage.
Bring Out the Snowblower
A snow blower is a very efficient way to clear a snow-covered quickly. Snow blowers are safe to use on your deck because the auger doesn’t touch your deck surface, and can save quite a bit of time compared to shoveling. The only downside if that snowblowers are fairly expensive, so it might be a good investment if you live in an area that expects heavy snowfall.
Consider Hot Water During the Warmest Part of the Day
When trying to remove ice, you can try hot water. Wait for the warmest part of the day, and it is even better if the sun is out. Carefully pour hot or boiling water on small patches of the ice, wait for them to loosen, and then use a shovel to break them up and move them away. This must be done quickly before the ice has a chance to refreeze, which is why we recommend doing small areas at a time.
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Sealing your deck with Seal Smart
Professionally sealing your deck with Seal Smart is a great way to protect it in the winter from ice and snow damage.