Do your pets and children use your deck unsupervised? You may not be outside with them every time they’re on the deck. Let’s look at the ways that you can improve the safety of your deck for children and pets. Whether it’s unstable rails, poorly lit areas, or rough surfaces, a deck presents real concerns. We’ll discuss the basics of proper deck safety that will help you identify risks and create an action plan to make your deck safer.
Proper Lighting Helps Improve the Safety of Your Deck
How many lights do you currently have illuminating your deck? If you’re like a lot of homeowners, you may only have a single porch light above the area. With minimal lighting, small hazards are exacerbated. When a deck area isn’t well-lit, children could trip and fall. Upgrade the lighting for your deck. Make sure it’s illuminated from every angle.
Remove Items That Pose a Threat
As a parent, you have thoroughly childproofed the inside of the home. However, it’s common to overlook the deck. When improving deck safety, remove toxic things like lawn chemicals and poisonous plants. Eliminate tripping hazards, garden tools, and grilling implements that are lying around. These items pose a threat to pets and children.
To Improve the Safety of Your Deck, Keep the Decking Maintained
Make sure the decking boards are level and smooth. If damage or obvious hazards are present, make repairs. Wood that is splintering, boards that buckle, rotting lumber, and nails that protrude from the wood are all hazards that should be fixed. Keep the wood of your deck stained and properly sealed. This helps prevent wear and tear from the elements and insects. Apply a fresh coat of sealant every year to help maintain the wood’s condition.
Make Sure All Rails are Secure
The condition of your railings is an important safety consideration. When a baluster becomes loose or weak, it affects the structural integrity of the entire railing. Check the railing every couple of months. Apply pressure to different areas. Even minor movement is a reason for concern. If you find weak spots or signs of obvious damage, make repairs immediately to help prevent injuries.
Deck owners should identify risks and remedy safety concerns. Inspect your deck for hazards and take steps to make the area safe.