Make sure you have every detail covered when planning to add a deck to your home. By thinking carefully through the essentials, you can prevent delays and surprise added expenses. Here, The Deck Store, your premier Mandan, ND remodeling contractor, shares four essential points to consider before investing in a deck. [Read more…]
Whether you are investing in a brand new patio installation in Steele, ND, or are making repairs to your existing one, your choice in contractor matters. The right one will not only take the time to listen to you needs and budget, but also provide quality workmanship that lasts for years to come. Here are four signs you are working with a reliable patio contractor.
1. Take the Time to Understand Your Goals
Before beginning any work to your property, a quality patio company in Bismarck, ND, will take the time to listen to your vision for the results. Your contractor should ask about budget limits and strictly adhere to them throughout the project. He or she should also spend ample time getting a sense of your expectations and how you want the final results to look.
2. Talks to You About Different Design Options
A great contractor doesn’t work with just one brand or specific material. He or she should have a wide variety of options and price points from which to choose. Beyond the materials involved, a skilled contractor should also have an excellent sense of design and talk to you about different styling options.
3. Works Efficiently and Cleanly
When it comes down to the actual work, a reputable contractor will get the job done efficiently and neatly. He or she will leave your property in the same or better condition than when they first arrived. If you are undergoing patio repair in Wilton, ND, your contractor should not cause any additional damage.
4. Has an Excellent Reputation
Last but not least, one of the surefire signs of a great patio company is reputation. You can confirm your contractor’s character by perusing reviews online and reading testimonials from previous customers.
When your contractor demonstrates these essential qualities, you can be sure you have found a good one.
Winter in North Dakota brings brutal conditions. Unfortunately, heavy snow and ice can sometimes lead to major problems on outdoor living components like decks and patios. If you hear your deck come crunching down under the weight of the latest round of ice, there are a few precautions you should take to mitigate damage and protect your personal safety. Here are the first steps to take after sustaining major damage to your deck installation in Mandan, ND.
Do Not Stand on a Compromised Deck
Although it may be tempting to go survey the scene after a major accident, you should never stand or walk around on a compromised deck. Areas that may still look intact can quickly come down under new weight. Always put your safety first and alert anyone else in your home to avoid going on the deck until further notice.
Call Your Contractor
Instead of scoping out the scene yourself, give your deck company in New Salem, ND, a call and let the professionals handle it for you. Generally, the sooner you can call your contractor, the better. He or she will be the best authority on assessing the damage and will also know the safest ways to do so without causing further destruction.
Assess the Severity
Once your contractor is on the scene, he or she will evaluate the extent of damage and go over the report with you. If only one or two boards buckled under the weight of snow, you may be able to get by with minor deck repair in Bismarck, ND. If you are dealing with severe rot or extensive breaks, however, you may be better off partially or totally replacing your deck.
These are just some of the most important actions to take immediately following major deck damage. When in doubt, always let a professional deck contractor handle the cleanup for you.
Were you too busy to schedule that patio installation in Bismarck, ND, this summer? Now that October is here, you may be wondering if you missed your window of opportunity altogether. Although fall in North Dakota is known to bring a few bouts of gnarly weather, this month is generally still a good time to add that new patio. While you may not be getting a ton of use out of it in the near future, your investment will be ready and waiting for you next spring. Alternatively, you can always add a heated enclosure to your patio to get the best of both worlds this winter and beyond.
Working With the Weather
Bad weather, particularly ice, can impact the timeline of exterior projects. Delays are common when conditions are poor. The month of October usually brings the first front of snow, which can make patio construction in New Salem, ND, a gamble. Generally, however, the ground is still warm enough for much of the month to accommodate new construction. By understanding that your new patio may take slightly longer than expected if bad weather strikes, you will be prepared to be patient.
Setting Realistic Expectations
The reality is that, unless you are adding a heating component, you probably will not be spending much time on your patio until next spring. Setting realistic expectations about your new addition can go a long way. Do not call your patio company in Mandan, ND, to schedule an October installation and expect to be able to use it every day. Instead, know that you are beating the rush by installing in fall and consider your patio an investment for next spring.
Getting a Great Deal
By undertaking new patio construction in October, you are also avoiding the summer price surge. Your patio contractors are at their busiest in the warmer months, which means workforces are spread thin and traffic is high. By booking outside of the summer rush, you will be able to seize a great deal.
It’s not too late to install that patio!
Now that it is October in North Dakota, it’s time to think ahead to long-term deck health. We spend ample time enjoying our deck and outdoor living spaces during the summer, but it is officially time to put away the grill until next season. Unfortunately, it’s not quite as easy to put the entire deck away for the winter. By making critical repairs, however, you can ensure your outdoor space is in its best condition to survive the snowy season. Here are three of the most important.
1. Replace Damaged Boards
Your deck installation in Wilton, ND, can take a beating during the summer. Although outdoor living spaces are engineered to withstand years of sunshine and inclement weather, even the best of them can sustain damage. Key things to look for include:
Any of these conditions can indicate problems. You will want to tear out the affected boards and replace them with new ones, or you risk compromising other areas of your deck to deterioration, especially in the winter.
2. Nix Loose Nails
Nails can work their way out of planks throughout the summer thanks to a combination of warm air and frequent precipitation. Although this problem alone typically does not necessitate deck repair in Steele, ND, it can lead to more extensive issues if left unresolved. Holes left from nails allow water and ice to sink in, creating water damage deep in your deck. Instead of hammering them back in, go around and replace loose nails with screws.
3. Eliminate Grime and Bacteria
One of the best things you can do to extend the life of your deck, no matter the season, is to clean regularly. Dirt and bacteria leftover from the summer can turn into rot over the winter, especially when combined with snowmelt. If you think you need a power wash to get the job done, let your deck company in Bismarck, ND, handle the task for you. Improper power washing can cause permanent scarring on boards.
Now that September is officially here, the first snow could be fair game in a matter of weeks. Even though you may have mixed feelings about the rapidly approaching dip in temperature, it is still time to say goodbye to outdoor summer living. Your deck is about to go into hibernation, but that doesn’t mean it should be left neglected. Here are some of the best ways to maintain deck health throughout fall and beyond.
Cleanliness is key when it comes to your deck installation in Mandan, ND. A dirty deck not only looks unattractive, but also puts the supporting structure at risk of growing mold and bacteria. These problems tend to worsen in with the precipitation fall brings, so be sure to rinse your deck frequently with soap and water. If using a bleach product, test a hard-to-see area first before applying all over.
Address Problems Quickly
If you do find yourself in need of deck repair in New Salem, ND, this fall, it is always better to act fast. Your contractor is always happy to provide timely assistance, so don’t hesitate to pick up the phone. Fixing problems early could mean the difference between a healthy deck and dilapidated one next spring.
Watch Out for Rot
Of all the problems to watch for this fall, rot can be the most sinister. This is partially because it can be so hard to catch. What looks like harmless water damage may in fact be hiding structural damage. If you suspect you have rot, avoid contact with the area to protect your safety and give your deck company in Steele, ND, a call instead.
Cover With Tarp
Whenever possible, it can be beneficial to cover your tarp for long periods of inactivity. A tarp or similar will protect your deck from any incoming precipitation and prevent snowmelt from seeping into boards.
With these tactics, you can keep your deck healthy even after temperatures drop.
When it comes to your new patio installation in Bismarck, ND, you want the results to be beautiful, long lasting, and unique to your aesthetic. That’s why it is important to vet you potential contractors and designers before you decide to take on the job. If you want to guarantee you’re working with a true professional, be sure to ask your installation company these three key questions.
- Do You Do Custom Work?
Unless you are looking for a cookie-cutter patio, cookie-cutter patio companies in Mandan, ND, need not apply. No two personal styles are exactly alike, just as no two outdoor spaces are exactly the same. Both of these factors make it important to find someone who offers custom work. This enables you to curate the patio of your dreams as well as one that speaks to your unique aesthetic. Your contractor should also be able to provide a wide array of materials and design options.
- How Long Have You Served the Bismarck Area?
This question is important because it lets you know the depth of experience your patio or deck company in New Salem, ND, offers. North Dakota is known for being home to some of the most gnarly winter weather in the country. If your patio isn’t built to properly withstand these brutal conditions, you may find yourself needing repairs or a new one altogether by the time spring finally rolls around. Additionally, the answer to this question can reassure you that your contractor has a long-standing and positive reputation.
- Do Your Patios Have Weight Restrictions?
If you plan on using your patio for entertainment options such as hot tubs or large grills, be sure to inquire about any weight restrictions for the materials you are using. A subpar company may, for example, only work with low-quality materials that crack under pressure. Avoid this frustrating and expensive scenario by double-checking weight limits first.
By asking these questions, you can feel confident in your patio installer.
August in North Dakota means one thing: A big change in temperature is coming fast. With the start of football season and the holidays rapidly approaching, now is the perfect time to assess the condition of your deck installation. Any damage sustained during the storm is best repaired now, as the first cold spell can quickly make problems worse. Here are a few ways to prepare your deck for fall.
Brush Away Large Debris
Any organic material left to fester on your deck this winter can put you on the fast track to deck repair next spring. This is because large debris like leaves and twigs can retain moisture and create the perfect environment for mold growth. Unless you want to pass this overgrowth onto the rest of your deck, take the time to brush it away now.
Clean and Rinse
After all rocks, leaves, and other detritus have been removed, give your deck a clean and rinse. Use a gentle cleaning solution and only use bleach if you know your deck can handle it. Leave the power washing to your deck company, as too strong a stream can cause damage. Be sure to pay extra attention to the grooves between planks, as dirt loves to accumulate there.
Replace Loose Nails
A loose nail may be no big deal in the summer, but just wait until colder weather strikes. A drop in temperature causes any existing cracks or nail holes to expand and become worse. When removing loose nails, be sure to replace them with a screw instead of a new nail. Not only will this provide better grip, but also better defense against winter conditions.
Cover for Winter
If you have a tarp or deck cover, get ready to use it. Although most patios and decks are built to withstand just about any weather condition, you can give yours extra protection by covering it for the winter.
With these precautions, you can set your deck up for fall and beyond.
Although your deck or patio installation is designed to handle just about anything thrown on it, some can still fall victim to damage from weather and standing water. When it comes to decks, it is always better to address water damage immediately than wait for a more convenient time to make repairs. Any existing water damage will only grow worse and more costly the longer it is left to linger. While your trusted deck or patio company is always available to perform a professional inspection, there are also a few forms of water damage you can catch on your own. Here are three of the easiest dangers to spot.
- Splitting and Cracking
Splitting planks are not necessarily the result of water damage, but they are a great home for moisture. Deck boards can crack over time for a variety of reasons, whether due to normal wear and tear or as a result of hail damage. The problem with these splits is that they rarely stay the same size. Water damage and fluctuating temperatures can make cracks much worse and more expensive to fix the longer they are left unrepaired.
- Missing Nails
Nails can also work their way out of decks over time. Again, this can be the result of natural aging or due to storm damage. When nails become loose, however, they can allow water to penetrate into decking. Problems can compound if the nail is completely missing, as water can sink deep into wood and put you at risk of developing rot.
- Mold and Mildew
One surefire sign of water damage on decking is mold. When you notice mold on your outdoor living space, it lets you know that water has been festering in that spot for a while. It is especially important to check areas that do not get much sunlight for mold, as it loves to collect in dark and damp places.
If you notice any of these signs, call your contractor for deck repair.
When it comes to maintaining a healthy deck, regular cleaning goes a long way. Keeping dirt and debris at bay not only extends the life of your deck, but also keeps things looking good. Not all soap and water is created equal however, so follow these tips for deck cleaning success. Remember that you can always contact your trusted Steele deck company for professional and friendly assistance.
Start With Sweeping
The big debris needs to go first, as rocks and twigs that are left behind can cause scratches once you start scrubbing. Grab your broom and sweep away leaves, dirt, and other large detritus. Take care not to push organic matter into cracks, as it can sit there and start to rot.
Remove Dirt From Cracks
After a thorough sweeping, it’s time to clear grime out of cracks. You can use a putty knife or similar object to remove leave and dirt from cracks. It is essential to go board by board, ensuring you have removed all lingering gunk. Anything left to fester will eventually start to rot and compromise the safety of your deck. In fact, leftover dirt and leaves are some of the biggest bringers of deck repair in Bismarck.
Use the Right Cleaner
Once you are sure all debris and grime is cleared, it’s time to get scrubbing. If you know it’s OK to use bleach on your deck, feel free to use half parts warm water and half parts bleach to clean. If you don’t know, do a test on a small area that’s out of sight. When there is no change in color after 15 minutes, you can proceed on the rest of the deck. Use a brush and gently scrub away mildew and algae.
Seal It Up
After your deck is clean and dry, protect your investment with a stain or weatherproof sealant. Don’t hesitate to contact your local deck or patio company in Wilton for further assistance.