It’s time to get ready for barbecue season! In anticipation of the summer cookouts, pool parties, and gatherings you’ll soon be hosting, here’s how you can get your deck entertainment-ready. From cleaning to resealing to potential upgrades, there are many considerations to think about.

Check for Damage

Winter’s harsh weather and cold temperatures can really do a number on your exteriors, especially your deck. Before you start prepping your deck for sunny days, inspect the area for damage. Run your hands along the boards. Check for popped nails and loose planks. Tug the railings to make sure they’re secure and be on the lookout for split wood that can cause painful splinters. Now is the time to make any necessary repairs.

Deep Clean the Deck

Winter leaves behind a lot of dirt and debris, so do a deep clean to start with a clean slate. Remove all patio furniture and grills from the deck, then give it a good scrub with warm water, soap and a brush, or a power wash on low pressure. Just be careful to follow directions on the pressure washer so you don’t cause damage.

Sand and Refinish

Once your deck is dry from the cleaning, remove old stains, blemishes and paints using a sander. Apply a protective coating or stain, which will safeguard your deck from the sun’s UV rays while slowing down the deterioration process. Paint or stain every two to three years.

Do Some Landscaping

Plants, bushes and trees certainly provide shade and add a pretty backdrop to the outdoors, but they can cause a big mess. Trim any tree branches that are overhanging your deck or that tend to drop flowers, leaves and pollen. Add pops of color around your deck with flowers in planters, but be aware those planters can leave stains on your deck when placed directly on the material. Instead, consider hanging planters.

Add Lighting

With the days getting longer, you can enjoy your deck after dinner without having to worry about darkness. But when you want to entertain after the sun goes down, you’ll need to add some lighting for safety and ambience. From solar lights to string lights, you have many options to choose from.

Add Shade

You may want to consider adding shading options to your deck to shield you and your guests from the sun on hot days. Consider adding a retractable awning, pergola, umbrellas, sunshades or outdoor curtains, many of which are non-permanent and can be removed next winter.

Clean Furniture and Accessories

Once your deck has been cleaned and painted or stained, give your patio furniture and grill a good cleaning before adding them back to the decking area. Make a plan to store cushions and pillows in a safe place when it rains, as this will help to extend their lifespan.

Contact Hi-Tech Windows and Siding for Deck Design and Construction

Our decking contractors can help you get your home ready for barbecue season in no time. Don’t have a deck? No worries — we can build one for you with 100 percent recyclable PVC compounds for a durable, low-maintenance alternative to traditional wood decking. To schedule an appointment, contact us today at 800-851-0900.