No matter where you live, there is always a rainy season, usually in the winter or spring, which can lead to significant damage to your deck. If you’re wondering whether or not you should waterproof your deck, read on to learn more about all the ways that rain can negatively affect your deck.
First thing to consider is that it depends on the material of your deck. For example, rain will negatively affect wood faster and differently than it would another material such as tile. Wood of course, is the most susceptible to water and an unprotected wood deck can lead to all sorts of water damage including making wood soft and eventually even leading to rot and structural damage.
Given the susceptibility of wood to water damage, you may want to consider another material. Tile and stone, for example, are popular outdoor deck options. However, it’s important to know that even though these materials are solid, they are still porous and therefore can absorb water. When water gets into cracks it can expand, further opening up cracks and in colder temperatures, it can even freeze, again causing additional damage to the surface and structure of your deck.
Part of protecting a deck includes staining it, which helps add another layer of protection against the elements. Rain, however, can be the enemy of a newly stained deck. When staining, make sure there is no rain in the forecast. This is because if rain falls on a newly stained deck, the stain won’t have enough time to absorb into the wood fully and it will flake and peel off. If it rains within 48 hours of applying a stain, the rain will partially absorb into the wood resulting in a splotchy and unfinished look. In order to ensure staining is applied correctly, you should try and ensure that rain is out of the forecast for 72 hours.
Even surfaces such as stone and tile need to be protected as well. For example, there are various types of seals and sealants that can be added to different types of materials to protect them from the elements. In the end, in order to best protect your deck from rain and water, it needs to be waterproofed.