Deck Cleaning

Harsh conditions over the colder months damage your deck, leaving the surface of the decking cracked and looking worn. Over the years, damage from the elements might make you want to replace your deck entirely. An alternative to ripping up your deck and starting over is taking the time to properly maintain your decking. After a long winter, cleaning your decking will help get you ready for the warmer weather. Deck maintenance is easy and an affordable alternative to replacing your decking. Repairing, cleaning and protecting your deck will give your beautiful results over the summer.

Sprucing up your deck after winter will typically take about two days or a couple of weekends. While using a professional to clean your deck frees up your time, it will cost you significantly more than doing the job yourself. The first step is inspecting the deck, especially posts and joists at ground level to see if there is any wear and structural damage. You should also look carefully at connections between the deck and your home. Look for signs of wood rot and rusted or loose screws and bolts. Once you have identified all the issues, start repair work. This might involve tightening fasteners, replacing missing screws or bolts, replacing rusted or damaged flashing, removing and replacing boards, securing loose railings or boards, and addressing any cosmetic issues.

Once you have repaired the deck, clean the surface. You should clean your decking at least once a year, and there is no better time than before the weather starts heating up and you start making plans for the summer. Most decks can be revived with an ordinary deck cleaner, although decking that is severely worn might need additional attention. Renting a pressure washer might be a good option for tackling tougher stains. Cleaning will help remove mildew, stains and debris. Sodium hypochlorite or bleach is effective at removing mildew. To remove dirt and stains, mix it with ammonia-free detergent. Sodium percarbonate mixed with water is great for mildew and dirt as well as removing sun-damaged and weathered wood fibres. Oxalic acid is best for darker stains, while sodium hydroxide or lye removes wood finishes. Renting a sander might also be an easy option for removing finishes, especially if you want to re-stain your decking.

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Once you have cleaned your deck, it is time to apply a new finish. A new stain will help protect your decking for another year. You can choose from a range of clear and transparent stains or semi-transparent stains that add a hint of color to your wood. Stains can enhance the look of the wood. It also does not peel or chip like paint. You should only apply the stain when your decking is completely dry. It might be a good idea to clean and repair your decking over one weekend and then stain it the following weekend. This will ensure that the wood has enough time to dry, assuming it does not rain in the meantime. You might need to apply more than one coat of stain, which should be done when the first coat is still wet. You should also give any patio furniture a wash before placing them back on your newly restored deck.

If not removed, things like moss and mildew can be slippery and dangerous. Rust and rot can also affect the structural integrity of your deck, leading to potential hazards and costly repairs or the need for a replacement deck. Moss and mildew are also unsightly, along with stains caused by general use and weathering. Giving your deck some love and attention will give you a stunning space to entertain family and friends as well as relax and unwind as the weather improves and the mercury rises. Repairing and cleaning your deck after the harsh winter months will keep your decking beautiful and safe.