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Winter-Proofing Your Wooden Decking

20 December 2019


Decking | Harrow Fencing Supplies

Extreme winter weather, such as ice, heavy rain, snow and freezing temperatures, can all dramatically affect your wooden decking. It is important to be prepared before winter sets in, so carry out maintenance and preventative measures on your decking to ensure you won’t have to pay a hefty repair bill after winter.

Maintenance to complete before winter:


Clean the deck on a relatively nice day, so that wind and rain aren’t going to immediately ruin your hard work. Sweep it first to remove all the leaves and dirt, and then scrub the wood thoroughly with a bleach-free cleaner to get rid of any mildew, algae, moss and mould. Use a small brush to scrub between the boards to remove any extra bits of dirt. Then leave the deck for a few days to ensure it dries properly. A good idea is to check the weather before you start the project so you can choose a week that isn’t too wet.


Once you have washed the deck, and it is clean and dry, add a stain to protect the wood against harsh winter weather. Use a brush, roller or garden sprayer to apply the stain. It is a good idea to choose a clear, water-repellent stain so the wood stays protected in wet weather, but you can still see the natural wood beneath. Also pick a quick-drying product so that it won’t be as affected by the weather. 

Preventing damage during winter:

Cover the deck

If the weather is particularly bad, it is a good idea to protect your wooden deck with a tarpaulin, or a similar cover. Even if you have been prepared, and coated your deck in a water-proof finish, it can still suffer when covered in snow and ice for a long period of time. If you don’t cover it the wood may warp from the moisture, and the ice could worsen any existing cracks. 

Remove snow or leaves

Although you can cover the main part of the deck with a tarpaulin, most likely the railing, steps and other parts will still be exposed to the weather. So make sure you use a large broom or a shovel to remove any snow or ice that starts to accumulate. Also, in the autumn months don’t let leaves pile up on the deck as they will become wet and then could create rot or stain the wood.   

Don’t use salt or chemical products to remove the snow as it will discolour the wood finish. Also, when shovelling snow off the deck, shovel parallel to the boards so you don’t scratch the wood in the wrong direction. Always use a plastic bladed shovel or even a sturdy broom to remove the snow so that you don’t gauge holes in the wood. 

Harrow Fencing are a family-run business established in 1960. We cater to the Harrow, Hillingdon and London areas.

We have a variety of high-quality, attractive wooden & metal gate options for you to choose from. Our products/services also include: security fencing, fencing posts & gravel boards, garden sheds, concrete slab walls, gates, decking, & commercial fencing.

To learn more, contact our friendly team

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