When you need to cool the air down there’s no better way to beat the heat than a misting system. A misting system consists of tubing with spray nozzles that are connected to a water supply. The system adds a fine mist of water to the air, which ultimately cools it down.
Misting systems are especially beneficial in hotter, dryer climates where being outdoors during the summer months may be more uncomfortable than enjoyable. As great as these systems are, if they aren’t installed properly than can cause more damage than they’re worth – especially to your wood.
Anytime wood and water are mixed there’s the potential for rot, mildew and more. Proper installation of the misting system should circumvent any problems, leaving you free to kick back and enjoy a more comfortable outdoor living space.
Proper Placement of the Mist Heads
The most important part of the process is properly placing the mist heads so that they don’t spray on wood surfaces. Heads should be placed 1 to 3 feet apart and point downward or outward away from where they are mounted. Keep in mind that the wind will affect where the mist blows.
Mount Tubing to Treated Wood
Never mount a misting system to painted or untreated wood. Instead mount the tubing to house siding or patio supports made of treated wood or non-wood material. Another good mounting location is the roof overhang. This will help the misting heads to point downward away from the house but still be high enough that it’s not spraying directly downward on the wood deck. Expert installers say tubing should be installed about 8’ above the deck or ground.
Make Sure the Sealant on Your Deck is Fresh
Even treated wood can succumb to water damage over time. The smallest opening or weak place in the wood can become a rot spot in no time if there’s a lot of moisture in the air. Cedar, Redwood and treated Pine all resist rot better than other types of wood, but laying down a layer of waterproofing sealer should be done every year or two to protect the wood. So, before installing a misting system it’s best to refresh the sealer.
Combat Mold and Mildew with Cleaning
In moist areas, especially where it’s shaded, mold and mildew can accumulate. If you’re using your mister on a regular basis your deck may need more frequent cleaning. Sweep the deck to keep debris from building up and becoming a mold maker. If mold does form on the deck top use a mild bleach solution or deck cleaner to scrub the deck surface clean.
In Austin decking takes a beating from the sun and high temperatures. Using the tips above you can make sure that moisture from a misting system isn’t another issue.