Water, wind and extreme sun can age your outdoor living areas. Water rots wood, causes iron to rust and erodes even the hardest stone. Unlike a watertight home, the porch must be designed for all the elements of an Idaho year: snow, wind, rain and sun.
Take advantage of the protection offered by well maintained gutters and downspouts. The rain that does shed off the roof does not blow onto the porch, gutters channel the flow through the downspouts to the ground.
If the porch is screened, some water will blow in– but keep it flowing out. Watch out for pooling and puddling. Make sure the area below is sloped so the water drains away from the foundation of the house.
At about $25 per square foot to build new, even a small 10×10 deck of pressure-treated wood, hardwood, or composite is more than $2500. So preventing excessive wear, and repairing damaged areas, is a good investment.
Roll a marble on the deck, be sure the slope encourages the water to exit away from the house. When rainwater pools and sits in a low spot it causes the wood to rot. Instead, you need the water to flow over the wood quickly, so that it can dry.
Do not design multiple flat horizontal ledges: sills, handrails, built in benches. Bevel the outside edges to keep water from sitting for an extended time.
Lastly, use appropriate materials: pressure-treated lumber, cypress, PVC synthetic decking, concrete. The newest colors of synthetic decking, like AZEK decking, look just like wood but last longer.
To keep blowing rain off your porch and deck, look at adding an awning, putting up screens all the way around, or installing rain curtains. Solid fabric window shades roll down to cover an opening. Window blinds, or slats, can be a semi permanent way to block most of the rain. Consider which direction is the biggest problem and develop a rain and sun blocking strategy that enhances your outdoor living space.
Sometimes water damage does not come from poor design, but from poor maintenance. You should reapply wood sealer at least every three years. With a high amount of foot traffic or direct sun exposure, you might need to do it every year.
If you see greenish, grayish stains, you might have a mold or mildew build up. Focus on removing built up leaves and dirt. Even leaving a large planter without a saucer (a shallow dish to catch drips) will allow wood rot.
Not only is water damage bad for the porch or deck, it can be inviting more water damage into the structure. If you find evidence of a problem, make sure that it gets cleaned up and repaired to protect the doors and floors of your house.
When you discover water damage within your Idaho Falls home (or outside), call Restore Rite right away. A crew is available 24 hours a day to clean up minor or major disasters. Whether your water damage came in through the windows, a broken pipe, or with a storm, you will need professional, certified and experienced help. Call or visit our site for help preventing or cleaning up winter water damage in Pocatello, Idaho.