So Summer wasn't all that this year and now that its officially Autumn, its time to start thinking about cosying down for the colder months. If you are anything like me,
its also the time I like the garden tided up, garden furniture and the like stored away and the house checked for maintenance.
If you have decking, its also the perfect time to carryout maintenance. Many people wrongly believe that the Spring is when you should spruce up your decking, but this is not true, because the timber is likely to still be full of water after the rain and snow of the winter months. Its better to apply protective stains at the end of the Summer beginning of Autumn when the wood is mostly likely to be drier. A few tips for maintaining your decking and applying a protective stain :
- Always make sure your decking is clean before you apply a stain. Firstly, give it a good sweep.
- Clean it with a specialist decking cleaner which will help remove anything that may have grown on the decking during the summer months. You need to allow it to dry so watch the weather forecast and choose your time before applying. You will probably need a couple of days for it to dry and penetrate the decking properly.
- You may need to give the decking a light sand and if it has been stained in the past to remove any of the old coating.
- Apply the stain with a brush or roller whichever you prefer but ensure you do not overload otherwise you will have uneven and darkened areas on the decking when it dries. You can remove excess using clean, dry rags if necessary.
- It is recommended to leave the first coat to dry for about 24 hours before applying a second coating. So again choose a time when the forecast is promising, not always that straightforward in this country.
Image : Arbordeck
That's pretty much all you need to do to look after your decking for the Winter and you can sit back and enjoy it over the winter months. If you don't have decking and this has inspired you, why not pop over to Arbordeck and take a look at their extensive range of decking and decking products.
Image : Alamy
Living in Devon, I love the many streets of brightly painted houses that are to be found around the county, but like our house (which is 1930s Art Deco) they take maintenance to keep them looking great. Its also a prefect time if you are considering giving your home a bit of a makeover, Autumn is one of the the best time to paint the exterior of your house. Again preparation is key to ensuring the best results. Also before taking on a big job like painting the outside of your house its really important to check the weather forecast. It will probably take a couple of days.
Quick tips :
- When decorating exteriors its important to plan the project to ensure the best results
- Preparation of the surface area is vital.
- Its important to use the correct products on the exterior of your house to ensure protection and a longer lasting more aesthetic finish. Whether you are planning a project indoors or out, pop over to KentBlaxill who have a huge selection of quality paints and products to help you with your DIY projects.
- Consider access for ladders, towers and scaffolding
- Choose a suitable day - the weather (too hot or too cold ) will have its challenges. When my husband paints our house he always starts at the front of the house, at the top and works his way round to the back of the house so that he is not painting in direct sunlight. This is so that he can actually see what he is painting and doesn't get blinded by the sun. Painting a white house with white paint even on a cloudy day can be dazzling ! Also because painting in direct sunlight can cause the paint to blister as it dries.
- Strip and rub down before you start painting otherwise you will get flakes and dust on the wet walls.
- Always ensure you keep a wet edge when painting large areas so that you don't end up with stripes or blocks appearing on the wall where the paint has dried unevenly.
- Don't paint late in the day. If its too cold or damp this will affect the end result.
Good luck and enjoy your winter projects.