How To Keep Your Deck Protected From Sun Damage
Having an outdoor space to relax and entertain is a luxury many homeowners work towards. However, patios require a certain level of care to keep them looking fresh and new. This maintenance can look a little different as the seasons change and temperatures continue to rise.
We all know that sun exposure increases as we move closer to summer. Many people find it surprising that their patios need sufficient protection from harsh rays and heat. Sun destruction takes many forms, so having a plan is essential to extend the life of your backyard additions. Here’s how to keep your deck protected from sun damage this season.
Build a Pergola
Pergolas are unique garden additions that act as shaded coverings for your outdoor area. These structures are excellent because they can protect you from the sun and provide a nice aesthetic touch. Pergolas are also highly customizable, so you can control how much sun exposure your deck gets.
Some pergolas have open roofs that allow sunlight to shine through. However, if you want more security, you can design these structures with closed gaps or incorporate fabric to cover your space. These structures also support various plant life, so you can add climbing vines to your sun protection to bring the entire look together.
Install an Awning
Installing an awning is another great option to protect your deck from sun damage. Manufacturers build these structures with UV-resistant materials, so you’ll always have a strong barrier between the elements and your space. This durable patio feature comes in various colors and styles, so you won’t need to worry about it blending into your exterior design style.
Like pergolas, awnings are incredibly versatile. They are easily retractable so that you can customize your deck’s shading depending on the weather and your activities. While some homeowners opt for manual awnings, some come in automatic models that will do all of the hard work for you.
Of course, if pergolas and awnings aren’t realistic for your situation, you can’t go wrong with some classic deck umbrellas. While umbrellas might not be able to cover your entire patio, they can provide adequate shading for vulnerable areas. Not only do umbrellas protect your decking materials from the sun, but they also give a cool, centralized space to relax with your loved ones.
It’s easy to find patio umbrellas to fit your deck’s style. You can also find cantilever umbrellas with off-centered poles that won’t block your view and disrupt conversation. They’re also portable, so you can remove and store them in preparation for bad weather and move them around to give shade to any area of your deck.
Plant Greenery Strategically
If you’re looking for more organic shading options, consider adding some greenery to protect your patio from the sun. Like umbrellas, tall plants can add coverage to certain areas of your deck that might not get protection otherwise. Plants and shrubs are an easy way to mitigate sun damage while sprucing up your space in time for the season.
If you’re in the process of building your deck, consider installing it near a tall tree with plenty of canopy coverage. Opting for sustainable shading options is an eco-friendly way to defend against sun damage while promoting your local ecosystems. This is the perfect option for homeowners with green thumbs looking for another garden project.
Consider Light Colors
Have you ever walked barefoot on a deck and burnt the bottoms of your feet? It’s likely that this is due to the color of the patio. Dark colors absorb heat and sunlight, raising surface temperatures and increasing sun damage. When your decking materials attract UV-rays, they often lose structural integrity and are more likely to break under pressure.
Consider choosing materials with lighter shades that will reflect sunlight. Doing so will keep temperatures low and reduce the amount of sun destruction that your deck sustains. While darker stains and supplies might look nice, opting for more subdued colors will increase your patio’s longevity.
Choose Composite Decking
Wood decks are nice, but they require a ton of maintenance and are more vulnerable to the elements, especially sunlight. Some species of lumber aren’t as strong as others, so you could install a weak patio if you don’t perform enough research. If you’re worried about your backyard structures accruing damage from the sun, consider composite decking as your material of choice.
Manufacturers make composite decking out of a mixture of wood particles and plastic. These materials create a super-strong surface that is resilient against sun bleaching and other forms of sunlight wear and tear. Composite patios are low maintenance and have a longer life span by nature, so you can rest easy knowing that you have the most durable deck available.
Apply Sealing Products
Sealing products add a barrier between decking materials and UV-rays to uphold the condition of your patio. These substances provide a deeper layer of protection that traditional shading options can’t provide. If you’re unable to invest in pergolas or awnings, applying a protective sealant will fortify your patio in areas that don’t have adequate shade.
Sealants are essential for both wooden and composite decks. No matter what kind of materials you use, you should plan on re-sealing your patio every few years to guarantee protection. Sealants also defend against rain, snow, and other harsh elements, so you’ll always have coverage regardless of the weather.
Protect Against Humidity
When you think of sun damage, you probably picture melting materials and discoloration. These are all very real examples, but something you might not consider is humidity. Moisture in the air and within your materials can promote mold and mildew growth, creating a health hazard for you and your loved ones. As the area gets warmer and the sun stays out longer, humidity levels will continue to rise and put your patio at risk.
High humidity from sun exposure can weaken your decking materials, leading to warping and other unsightly blemishes that can destroy your patio. In addition, sun exposure with high humidity will make your furniture, pillows, and other upholstered accessories a breeding ground for bacteria that could put people at risk. Clean your decking area frequently and control moisture levels to combat these problems.
If your patio has sustained any form of sun damage, contact reliable contractors to address your problems ASAP. Kona Contractors offers Denver deck repair services that can handle the toughest jobs. Let us know what problems you’re having, and let us help you correct them today!