Ex­tend sum­mer liv­ing by weath­er­proof­ing your out­door space

Global Morn­ing Show’s Chris Palmer on how to pre­pare your yard for the in­clement weather to come

Bayview Post - - Homes -

Noth­ing beats Toronto in the sum­mer­time, es­pe­cially if you have a back­yard to kick back in and soak up the sun. But be­fore you know it, sum­mer turns to fall, and with fall comes the wind, rain and even­tu­ally the snow.

For home­own­ers who have in­vested a lot of time and money in their gar­dens and out­door spa­ces, it is dis­heart­en­ing to watch the weather de­stroy them. With weather that changes rapidly in win­ter and sum­mer, proper weath­er­proof­ing can make a huge dif­fer­ence in the life­span of your projects.

I have some tips to help your out­door oa­sis last longer this sea­son and for years to come. WOOD From deck to dock, pres­sure treated lum­ber gets the most wear and tear. Wood is a nat­u­ral prod­uct and needs to be prop­erly pro­tected from the el­e­ments.

Many peo­ple make the mis­take of buy­ing a stained top coat to pro­tect the wood, but this stain sits on top of the wood and in­evitably flakes off. You need to use an oil­based wood sealer that re­ally sinks into the wood and keeps it look­ing fresh. I like to build with Mi­croPro Si­enna lum­ber be­cause it’s the most en­vi­ron­men­tally friendly treated wood op­tion and has a beau­ti­ful brown colour. I use a tung oil–based prod­uct a few dry days after I’m fin­ished con­struc­tion to pro­tect the wood and seal in the colour, and I’ll reap­ply the oil ev­ery three to five years (de­pend­ing on the di­rec­tions on the la­bel) to keep the wood look­ing great. CON­CRETE Con­crete is one of the most ex­pen­sive ma­te­ri­als to re­place, and once the wa­ter­proof seal goes away, it wears out quite quickly.

If you use salt to de-ice your drive­way or wash your ve­hi­cle in the drive­way, the seal on the con­crete will wear out faster. Your con­crete will tell you when it needs some love, usu­ally ev­ery two to five years. Also, don’t make the mis­take of us­ing a multi-sur­face wa­ter­proofer. Fo­cus on getting a re­ally good con­crete sealer. You can find it in your lo­cal hard­ware store. FAB­RIC If you want to leave your bar­be­cue cover and can­vas fur­ni­ture out­side year-round, find a fab­ric seal spray with a UV coat­ing.

This coat­ing will im­prove the colour and dura­bil­ity of your fab­ric.

Um­brel­las should be nat­u­rally wa­ter­proof, so check be­fore you spray them. If you have wa­ter bead­ing off the fab­ric, it’s al­ready wa­ter­proof. If the wa­ter starts go­ing through fab­ric, you need to treat it. STONE home­own­ers have cho­sen to make the most of their out­door space with an out­door kitchen, and that can of­ten in­clude a marble coun­ter­top. Flag­stone paving has also be­come a pop­u­lar de­sign fea­ture for those class­ing up their yards. Both of these fea­tures use nat­u­ral stone, and stone needs to be sealed, so make sure to hit it with a spe­cial­ized treat­ment.

Fi­nally, don’t for­get your win­dows. Those won­der­ful glass panes that let all that sun­light into your home can also be the gate­way for wa­ter seep­age. Check the caulk­ing around the glass ev­ery year, es­pe­cially on your base­ment win­dows.

Once you’ve given your yard a bit of TLC, it’s time to en­joy ev­ery last minute be­fore the snow forces you in­doors. Chris Palmer is a reg­u­lar guest ex­pert on the Global Morn­ing Show and is the owner of Hand­crafted by Chris Palmer.

Use an oil-based wood sealer to pro­tect your deck from the el­e­ments

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