There is nothing like gathering with friends under your pergola to enjoy an iced tea on a warm summer afternoon. Or you may love sitting under your pergola in the springtime admiring the flowers in your garden. As the leaves start to change color and fall off of the trees, you know it's time to prepare your pergola for the winter months. Naturally, you want your structure to stay in great condition so you can enjoy it when the warm weather season rolls around again. Take a look at a few simple things you can do to keep your pergola in fine shape throughout the winter.
Sweeping the Area
The first thing to do to prepare your pergola for the winter months is to sweep the leaves, dirt, and other debris off the floor. Make sure that you knock down any cobwebs that are tucked away in the corners of your structure. As you sweep the floor, take a close look at the posts of the pergola as well as its struts and beams. If the pergola is made of wood, you're looking for spots of mold and mildew. This information will prove helpful for the next step of the winter preparation process.
Cleaning Your Pergola
Use a garden hose to spray down your structure. This removes accumulated dirt and dust from either a wooden or vinyl pergola. If you have mildew on your wooden pergola, use a mild detergent or mildew remover to clean it. I strongly suggest that you use a soft-bristled brush to avoid scratching the surface of the structure. Next, rinse off any excess detergent once the mildew is gone. Whether you live in an area of the country that receives lots of rain or several feet of snow in the wintertime, the moisture can lead to mildew growth. That's why it's a good idea to look for mildew and clean it off before the winter months arrive.
Staining Your Pergola
You may have a wooden pergola that is pre-stained. If not, staining your pergola protects the wood from the rain and snowfall of the winter months. When moisture seeps into wood, it makes it expand and contract, causing permanent damage. If you want to stain your pergola, I recommend you do it before the cold weather arrives. In addition to protecting your structure, a coat of stain can make your wooden pergola look even more appealing to visitors!
Things to Do Throughout Winter
Once winter arrives, there are a few more things you can do to maintain the condition of your pergola. For instance, if you see the snow starting to pile up on the rafters of your pergola, use a broom to knock it off. This lessens the weight on your structure and doesn't allow the snow to freeze to your rafters. Also, when the snow starts to accumulate near the posts of your pergola, sweep or shovel it away. In short, take advantage of any opportunity to move snow away from your structure.
I hope these tips help you to keep your pergola in great shape over the winter! Thanks for reading! - Alan