Decks That Hold Up To Snow

Snow is something that is prevalent for many Canadians during the winter season. Many Canadian cities even pick up well over 100 centimeters of snow each year. In a year with greater than average snowfall or after a particularly strong snow storm, many homeowners are concerned about how the snow will affect their homes. While roofs are usually the biggest concern, other areas such as decks are also important. Building decks that can stand up to the snow is important in areas that receive their fair share of this type of weather.

Snow Load

When constructing a deck, one of the first things that should be considered is how much snow the area gets on average. Properly constructed decks are usually rated for 50 pounds per square foot of snow load. Plenty of decks can handle more than that. However, for older or less sturdy decks it many be necessary to remove excess snow from the deck during the winter months. Each year homeowners should check their deck's construction to make sure that it is solid and intact. If the deck feels unstable, it may be time to add new support or even construct a new deck.


Choosing materials that hold up well to large amounts of snow is a good idea for homeowners who want a deck that will last a long time in this type of climate. The good news about snow and most deck materials is that the snow itself is rarely damaging. Wood, vinyl, and other decking materials usually are not damaged by sitting snow. The cold temperatures even keeps mold and mildew from growing on the wood. Much of the damage actually comes from shoveling the snow, especially for wooden decking. Shoveling is only recommended to create pathways to the outside or if the deck needs to be used. Overall construction is more important. Materials should be chosen for their ability to stay strong with the heavy weight of snow on them.

Aluminum Railing

The railing on decks can be constructed of a variety of materials including wood, vinyl, and steel. However, aluminum railing is a particularly good choice for decks that see a lot of snow. The main benefit of aluminum is that it is lighter than steel and wood. This means that the deck isn't having to support as much weight as it would with heavier railings. Aluminum is also very durable and easily resists snow, rain, ice, and other elements. This type of railing is also very low maintenance. 

Snow can produce a lot of stress on any home design. Decks are one area of the home that can be damaged by a lot of snow. There are a few ways to ensure that a deck can handle a large amount of snow. Making sure that it is build to handle a heavy snow load is the most important. Choosing sturdy materials and aluminum railing are also ways to ensure that a deck is ready for a lot of snow. For more information, contact a company like Perma Deck & Rails