Prepare Your Deck for the Winter

5 Steps to Prepare Your Deck for the Winter

Aesthetically pleasing can be the winter, but cleaning and maintenance of a home during the winter can be a handful if not handled correctly. Especially for owners of decks alongside the house, maintaining it during the winter can be tedious and essential in ensuring nothing happens to it. But if you are a first-timer, you may need to learn how to prepare your deck for the winter. 

The five steps to prepare your deck for the winter are to observe your deck situation, clean your deck, apply water repellent, store your items, and have upkeep if it snows in your area. Ensuring that your deck is winterized can be cost-effective, but is it truly necessary to have it winterized? 

As we continue to read throughout this article, the question will be answered as to whether a deck needs to be winterized, how to prepare your deck to be winterized and the five steps to prepare your deck for the winter. 

Does a Deck Need to be Winterized?

So, does a deck need to be winterized? Yes, it does. Every aspect of a home is typically winterized during the winter months. The concept of winterization comes from preparing a home during the cold months. An example of winterization within a home is ensuring that your pipes do not freeze if, one day, the weather becomes icy cold, i.e., the temperature is under 20 degrees Fahrenheit. The importance of maintaining unfreezing pipes is the same as maintaining a winterized deck. 

There are various benefits to winterizing your deck. A few of these benefits are commonly known if you have winterized decks or have had conversations with those who have never winterized their decks before. The three reasons why winterizing a deck can be beneficial include the following: 

  • Avoidance of slipping: Not winterizing your deck or any surface platform, i.e., stairs, can cause a safety issue, with the main one slipping. Collected debris can include many things ranging from dirt to even something as mundane as leaves, and when your deck becomes wet, you can slip from the water, or it can, even worse, turn into ice if not taken care of. 
  • Prevention of Dry Rot: If collected water accumulates on the wood of your deck, it will absorb and cause the wood to become more flexible and flimsier. Another consequence of absorbed water will be dry rotting which will, in short, cause the wood to become less likely to hold together and make it easier to fall through due to the wood being eaten away. 
  • You’ll Save Money: The obvious benefit is that you will be saving money. Winterizing your deck is a worthy investment in keeping costs down the road, especially if you spent the money to build the deck. If you opt not to winterize your deck, then, over time, there will be a time that you will have to look into repairing your deck, which can cost much money. 

So now that you know that a deck needs to be winterized, it is essential to understand how to prepare it for the winter. Let’s continue to read to learn more about how you prepare your deck for the winter. 

How Do I Prepare My Deck For the Winter?

To prepare for your deck, timing is the first and most important thing to do before anything else. The best time to winterize your deck would be in the fall. During the fall, the weather is chilly and cool, but not cold, and will never be near 20-30 degrees Fahrenheit. 

During the fall, while preparing your deck for the winter, you should first decide whether staining your deck is the appropriate action before winterizing. If it seems like your deck needs to be stained, then do so before winterizing and ensure that you choose the suitable stain (oil, water, or gel-based). The various stains provide various benefits depending on what you are looking for. If you’ve stained your deck, then once you do so, you would next take the following steps to winterize your deck. 

Let’s continue to read to learn more about the five steps to prepare your deck for the winter. 

5 Steps to Prepare Your Deck For the Winter?

In preparing your deck for the winter months, you need to winterize your deck. Fortunately, a more significant benefit to winterizing, whether you are a first-timer or not, is that it does not take long to prepare your deck for the cold months. It can take a single day, morning or afternoon, during the fall to complete this. 

Preparing your deck for the winter can be applied and done within five simple steps. Let’s continue to read further to learn about the five steps to prepare your deck for the winter.

1. Observe Your Deck Situation

Observe your deck situation. What does your deck look like? Notice how much debris is on your deck and the stains. While taking note of potential debris, see if any of the wood on your deck is damaged or on the verge of becoming damaged. Doing this will give you an idea of how to winterize your deck effectively. 

2. Effectively Clean Your Deck

After observing your deck situation, effectively clean your deck. If you find some debris, sweep it as best as possible. Once sweeping your deck, it is helpful to further clean it by scrubbing with a bleach-free cleaner, or if your deck is not as old, you can power wash it, which helps remove stains that may have accumulated over time. 

3. Apply for Protection

Apply a light amount of water repellent onto your deck. Water repellent will help prevent your deck from becoming damaged. You will need to apply the water repellent onto your deck after your deck has been cleaned, cleared, and dry. 

4. Consider Finding Storage

If you can, find storage for your belongings. Items you usually place on your deck that you deem necessary should be kept in a safe storage space during winter. A suitable storage area for your deck items can range from an actual storage area to your garage, barn, basement, or any place that will keep your things from getting damaged. 

5. If It Snows, Be Careful!

If it snows, then be careful and make sure that you keep up with shoveling your deck as much as possible. Allowing the snow to accumulate over time will cause your deck to become damaged and discolored. A damaged deck will become costly to you and would defeat the entire purpose of winterizing your deck in the first place. 


Now that you are aware of the steps to help you prepare your deck for the winter, you will be able to emulate the steps for your deck, as well, in preparation for the icy cold wintertime. Aside from this, you have also learned whether a person’s deck needs to be winterized and how to prepare your deck for the winter. Along with this a few benefits of keeping your deck winterized.

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