Maintaining your deck is vitally important to increase longevity, you may have heard some companies advertising decking that is maintenance free, but that simply isn’t true. All decking requires a certain level of care and attention, if you don’t take some time to maintain your deck, you’ll encounter problems. Most of these problems will occur during the winter when the weather is harsh and unforgiving.
Main Causes of Injury, Collapse & Accidents
Weak or Damaged Supports & Railings – A weak or spoiled support can cause your deck to collapse, especially if you have failed to properly maintain every component of the structure. If you let metal connectors rust, or you don’t bother checking to see whether your supports are in place, your deck could crumble underneath you. It only takes a few minutes to assess your deck, you should also check the concrete foundations to see if they’re showing signs of damage such as cracks or flaking.
The cold winter weather can have a severe impact on your deck, especially if it is exposed to freezing temperatures for an extended period. If you’ve installed modwood in Brisbane or any other type of material, you must take some time to maintain the structure. Examine each concrete foundation block to see if water can enter the material, if it gets inside and freezes, it will jeopardise the decks structural integrity. When water freezes it expands, causing concrete to crack and weaken in the process.
Fluctuations in weather conditions can damage your railings. If you have loose railings on your deck, they won’t be able to provide adequate support. If a railing is weak, it could buckle or break under the weight of a person causing them to fall and injure themselves.
Excess Weight on the Structure – If you fail to regularly maintain your deck, you won’t notice any issues regarding structural weakness. Although decking is highly robust, it can only hold a certain amount of weight. If it is constantly exposed to heavy loads, it will begin to buckle under extreme stress. Many homeowners forget to check how much weight their deck can hold, they also overlook the importance of frequently examining their decks to see if they need any maintenance. Here is a list of some of the many heavy objects that individuals tend to use to decorate their decks, without realising they may be weakening the structure.
- Bulky barbeque units
- Heavy steel furniture
- Large outdoor umbrella stands
- Sizeable pottery & other decorative items
- Outdoor heaters
All these units carry a substantial amount of weight and if your deck contains several of these heavy items, you could be putting it under additional stress.
It is important to properly maintain your deck to ensure it is in the best working order. There are many things that can affect its structural integrity. including excess weight, poor maintenance, and rotten components. Each of these increase the risk of collapse which can cause someone to get hurt. You should frequently examine your deck to evaluate the structure, especially during the winter period.