Summertime is just around the corner and everyone is looking forward grilling out, hosting potlucks, sipping drinks by the pool, and spending quality time with the kids. To get the most out of your outdoor living spaces, make sure your deck is in good shape. Are the boards loose or warped? Do you see moss or signs of pests or mold? Especially when you have small children or pets, it’s important to make your deck safe and summer-ready.
Check Spacing to Make Your Deck Safe
The first safety check you should do is verify the deck railings are in good condition. Test them to make certain each piece is secure. Measure the distance between the slats. If your child would be able to fit their head or body through, then the slats are too far apart.
Next, check the height to determine if a toddler or dog would be able to climb or jump over the railing. If either of these is the case, then both issues can be solved by redoing the railings. If the space between the rails is the only issue, installing a Plexiglas shield (or some other similar material) is a simple solution.
Prevent Unsupervised Access
After assessing the railings, the next thing to examine is the door that leads to the deck. Always keep the door locked and make sure the lock is high enough that a child cannot open it. It’s always a good rule of thumb to make sure pets and children cannot access the area on their own.
Provide Shade to Make Your Deck Safe
Decking materials heat up in direct sunlight and children and pets can be harmed by a deck that is too hot. Provide a shady area on your deck so that family, friends, and pets can enjoy the space without the risk of overheating. Install an awning, add a patio umbrella, or use large potted plants to create shade and make the space more comfortable.