The patio is the heart of the family garden but rain can spell trouble, especially in the cold. In this article we’ll show you how to protect your patio this winter.
Winter’s about as friendly to your patio as it is your garden plants. That is, you’ll want to go to the same lengths to protect your patio as you would your prized flora. It’s not a big job, but it’s an important one to keep your patio in the best condition possible.
Here we run through our four top tips for protecting your patio against rain and frost.
How to protect your patio this winter
At the root of almost every patio-related problem is rainfall.
- Water makes it easier for mosses and algae to grow and spread.
- Slick paving stones are more dangerous to walk across.
- In cold weather, water will quickly freeze, making the paving even more slippery.
- Frozen water expands, leading to cracked and damaged patios.
One of the best ways you can protect your patio against damage and increase its lifespan is therefore to cover it.
1. Stop them getting wet with all-weather patio awnings
An awning is a protective sheet of fabric that you can extend and retract to cover the area beneath as necessary.
When extended, the awning provides cover from rainfall. In the summer, you can even use it to provide shade.
Awnings range from very simple, cost-effective designs that you extend and retract manually to top-of-the-range electric models with remote operation. Prices vary accordingly, from £74.99 to in excess of £1,700 for high-range models.
Search online to find local or bespoke suppliers as required.
2. Reduce frost damage with sealers
We offer two different types of sealants. ‘EasySeal – SSP (stone sealer & protector)’ claims to be virtually invisible and will not change the colour or appearance of the paving, while ‘EasySeal – Contract’ creates a low-sheen finish to your patio.
Both protect paving against staining from most liquids including oil, petrol, and water. They prevent damage from water penetration and erosion and also provide an excellent release coat for chewing gum, so it’s much easier to remove.
Prices start from £30, meaning you can protect your patio for very little cost. We’ll be happy to advise you on how to apply them, too.
3. Fill existing cracks to prevent them getting worse
This is another area we can help with. Easy joint is ideal for restoring the joints on existing paving. It’s ready mixed and can simply be brushed into joints (with lots of water) with minimal effort.
It’s cement free and doesn’t leave unsightly cement stains. It’s resistant to freeze-thaw cycles and forms a solid joint that resists weed and plant growth.
It can be used on all types of paving, flags, slabs, cobbles and stone sets providing there is a minimum joint width of 5mm and a minimum depth of 25mm.
Again, prices start at only £33, making it a worthwhile investment.
Show me more about Easy Joint.
How to stop a patio door from freezing shut
Some our customers notice their patio doors freezing when the colder weather hits, too. If you’ve found this, it’s important that you don’t try to force the frozen door open as you could damage the tracks. Instead, follow the following steps.
- Wipe the tracks with warm water and soap before the weather drops, taking care to remove any dirt, grit, stones, or other obstructions while you’re there.
- That can of WD-40 you’ve had in the shed all year? Apply it to the tracks to help prevent them freezing.
- Keep curtains (or blinds) open as much as possible throughout the day. This makes it easier for warm air inside the house to heat the glass, further reducing the likelihood of freezing.
As usual, prevention is the best cure. Looking after your patio in advance of the cold will mean it’s best protected when winter arrives.