Your deck is an extension of your house that gets a lot of use during the warmer months. However, you may not think about the deck’s wear and tear and the dangers it can pose to your children and pets. Below are simple deck safety tips to keep kids and pets safe.

Gates for Deck Safety

One of the easiest things you can do to improve your deck safety is to install a gate. This is especially important if you have small children who like to wander or pets who hang out on the deck often. There are a variety of gate options available, including baby gates especially made for decks and the outdoors.

Deck Shade

If your kids or pets are spending a lot of time outside on the deck, make some shady spots to keep them out of the hot sun. Decks reflect a lot of light and the surface can get very hot, so a large umbrella or shade sail will offer nice areas of shade where your pets and kids can cool off. Shade also keeps bare feet and paws from getting burned on hot deck surfaces.

Deck Safety for Wood Surfaces

Because decks are usually made out of wooden planks and railings, it’s important to inspect the wood quality. If decks aren’t properly sealed or have aged, they may be splintered and rough with protruding nails. Replace any older wood surfaces that are beyond repair and then sand and re-seal your deck to make it safer.

Deck Railings

Kids love climbing up on deck railings to peer over the edge. That’s why it’s important to secure any railings that are loose or shaky and check them for any fasteners or nails that may be sticking out. Make sure that the spindles below the railings are no more than 4 inches apart on center.

Dangerous Deck Accessories

Another thing to consider for deck safety is the accessories you have on your deck. A lot of people use their decks for grilling, but grills can be dangerous and should never be left unattended while in use. Keep the grill out of high-traffic areas, so the kids and pets are less likely to wander near them. If you have a lot of plants on your deck, make sure they are non-toxic, as pets and kids might get into them.

Esham Inspections provides home inspection services to the Eastern Shore of Maryland and Southern Delaware. Contact us to schedule an appointment.