The new deck is your pride and joy. It’s such a great addition to your home, and you’re confident the value of the property just hiked a few notches. The strongest deck still needs to be protected from water damage. Excess moisture could lead to a number of issues that shorten the lifespan of an otherwise sturdy decking material.
So, what are your options for waterproof decking?
The real deal with sealants
A clean deck is ready for staining and a few layers of sealer. Sealers contain compounds that repel water molecules. A sealer penetrates the wood and offers protection from moisture. Sealers make the wood permeable such that it breathes out moisture and stays dry. If the moisture stays with the wood, it will cause problems in time. Moisture causes rotting and rotting leads to damage. Damage could mean costly repairs.
You may use a foam roller or a brush — whichever suits your preferences. While applying the sealer, ensure that every spot and corner receives a generous amount of the solution. You’ll see a number of products being marketed as waterproofing sealers. A product that combines two functions in one may not mean it’s excellent. Sealing and waterproofing are not the same. Experts recommend buying a sealer and using it for that purpose. Waterproofing is another matter altogether.
A proper layer of waterproof solution saves the day
If the water soaks into the deck, you need a layer of waterproofing solution over it. Sealers will not prevent water from seeping into the wood. To keep the decking dry all year round, there are membrane-based systems and liquid coating systems to choose from. These products serve as a layer of protection. When the water hits the surface, it will form into droplets and you can use a rug to remove the water or mop it off. Some decking experts are partial to membrane-based solutions, but you can ask a local contractor about products that suit the type of wood you have.
If you have a wooden deck, remember that it needs additional protection from ultraviolet radiation from the sun. The tinted coating may be beneficial in addition to the sealer and waterproofing solutions you will apply.
How about decking surfaces that are made from concrete? Do not assume that they do not need waterproofing. Moisture seeps into the concrete surface as well, which makes waterproofing necessary. As for cleaning materials that you’ll be using on a waterproof deck, check the bottle for bleach, lye, acids, and chlorine. These substances are not friendly to waterproofing solutions. They will eat their way through to the wood and expose it to the elements.
To maintain an attractive and protected deck, you need to use cleaning products that will not undo the functions of the sealant and waterproofing agents you’ve already applied. Avoid using substances that contain powerful chemicals, which could damage the wood with repeated use. Water damage could be costly. Your deck needs to be protected from moisture and prolonged exposure to the elements.