Most homeowners understand protecting their investment in their home. They purchase homeowner’s insurance to protect against fire, storm damage, theft, and a number of other risks. They install burglar alarm and fire alarm systems to notify the authorities in the event of a problem. They put a fence around their yard to protect themselves against the problems associated with having unknown visitors in the swimming pool. Painting every 5 – 6 years insures that water doesn’t damage the house, and keeps the house looking nice.
But very few homeowners take the time to think about what a little investment today will do to protect their deck for years to come. Even fewer realize that they need wood deck protection, or what they need protection against.
There are three areas of protection that every homeowner should address when it comes to their wood deck. The most commonly known area is water damage. When it comes to protecting your deck, water is the #1 culprit that will damage your investment. Water damage includes:
Once these begin, the damage begins to escalate very quickly until substantial repairs are required.
The second area of protection for every wood deck is protection against insect damage. The majority of decks have been constructed with pressure treated pine, often referred to as PT wood. Pressure treated pine has been placed in a pressurized chamber with a toxic solution that forces the solution deep into the wood. This toxic solution was referred to as CCA for many years, and included an arsenic compound that was related to a number concerns as a health risk due to its carcinogenic nature. Recently the CCA solution was replaced with a solution known as ACQ, which relies on a form of copper. This solution continues to be a health concern as copper, in this form, is known as a heavy metal and is also associated with carcinogens.
All forms of pressure treated pine rely on the toxicity of the pressure treating solution to act as a pesticide against insects that attack the deck. While these solutions provide a high initial degree of protection, their effectiveness degrades over time as water begins to leach these solutions out of the wood. As a result, decks are virtually unprotected against insect damage after 5 – 7 years of outdoor exposure. You should note that PT wood is specifically formulated to protect against insects…not water!
The final area of protection for wood decks is fire protection. Although fire protection is not an apparent concern, most decks are the location of outdoor grilling which results in an increased fire hazard. All wood decks are a risk for fire , and some deck materials, such as cedar, are noted for being more flammable than others. Pressure treated lumber is a particular concern as burning releases carcinogens into the atmosphere. Fire resistant deck material is not commercially available, with the exception of some metal decking products such as steel. While these materials provide a greater level of fire resistance, they are often seen as being less attractive than wood materials.
Seal Rx is uniquely formulated to address all three areas of risk. Seal Rx is the only permanent deck sealant which prevents water damage, inhibits insect damage, and reduces flammability. For more information give us a call at (913) 390-0600.
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