This time of year, it seems that every few days, different areas are getting hammered with snow storms. While some love to watch the snow fall and sip hot chocolate in their warm homes, others think about the snow accumulation and what that means when trying to remove it. When removing snow, wooden balconies and decks are a bit different from a concrete driveway. Nickerson Roofing is here to share some tips for snow and ice removal from your wooden balcony or deck without damaging it this winter.
Weight of Snow on Deck
The biggest concern when faced with snow removal on a balcony or deck is the risk of collapse. If you have properly maintained your deck and balcony, and the snow isn’t accumulating at an alarming rate, your balcony or deck should be able to support the weight. Decks and balconies are usually made from wood that resists moisture damage and should be able to withstand winter well. However, most people use their decks to get to the backyard, and as an exit from the home and in that case, the snow needs to be removed. The key is removing the snow safely so that you don’t damage the deck while doing it.
How to Safely Remove Snow from Your Balcony or Deck
It may seem like removing snow from your balcony or deck is pretty straight forward. In some ways it is, but you should still be aware of some of the dos and don’ts of snow removal from your deck or balcony.
1. Don’t Use a Metal Snow Shovel– If you find yourself in your home, with nothing but a metal snow shovel to remove the snow from your balcony or deck, do so with great caution. Metal snow shovels are very heavy and can damage your wooden balcony or deck. If you don’t have a plastic one you can use, leave a thin layer of snow beneath the shovel as you remove it to protect the wood from the sharp edges of the shovel.
2. Consider Using a Broom to Brush Away Light Snow– Sometimes you may only get a light dusting of snow. In this case, a broom is a safe way to remove it before it turns into an icy layer on your deck or balcony.
3. Shovel Snow Parallel to Deck Boards– When shoveling, shovel the snow parallel to the deck boards so your shovel doesn’t catch on the edges of the boards causing damage.
4. No Ice Picks on Your Deck– Sometimes it is tempting and somewhat gratifying to use an ice pick to break up and remove the ice from your deck. You want to avoid doing this because it could do more damage than good.
5. Use the Right Ice Melt– Always read the information on ice melt before using it on your deck to ensure it is safe for the materials your deck is made of. Avoid using any ice melt that has colorant since this can end up staining your wooden deck. You want to avoid using anything that may cause erosion and damage to the wood.