Wooden deck is and always will be a super-stylish element for a home of virtually any design. However, you have to know how to take care of it in the right way and follow all the recommendations to prolong its lifespan and gorgeous look. Below are the best tips that will help you do that perfectly well.
1. Stain or Seal The Wood
By applying a stain for pressure-treated wood, cedar, redwood, composite wood, or tropical hardwood, you can protect it from moisture and pests. Both can bring terrible damage to the decking. Besides, regular staining will keep the wood look new and maintain a lush color. It doesn’t change the color as much as paint does, but lets you achieve elegant hues.
If you don’t want the pigment to change the wood’s natural color, you can use a sealer instead of a stain. It offers totally the same protective characteristics but covers wood with a very clear or transparent layer.
2. Paint Decking Over The Seal Layer
By applying paint over the sealing layer, you can achieve a double protective layer and be sure that nothing goes wrong with the wood. To paint the surface successfully, you have to sand all the glossy spots slightly and wipe them with a rag dampened with some de-glosser. Start painting when the surface dries.
3. Use Oil or Acrylic Paints for Decking
Oil and acrylic paints are a good choice for decking as they are both resistant to cracking from changing temperatures, which also makes them effective against moisture and all the consequences of its penetration. Most decking paints are acrylic and more convenient to apply than oil paints as they don’t smell that much. Oil paints offer the same protective characteristics and a great choice of colors, but the smell caused by volatile organic compounds (VOCs) can lead to sore throat and/or watery eyes.
4. Hire a Painting Contractor
If you’re not sure about your outdoor painting or wood staining skills and knowledge, you should consider hiring a licensed painting contractor. Don’t forget to ask the right questions and check out the reviews carefully to ensure that you hire a real professional who won’t do a shoddy job. The best solution is to interview several contractors to select the best candidate.
5. Avoid Using the Pressure Washer
Cleaning the decking before and after painting or staining shouldn’t be done with a pressure washer. The harsh jet of water may get through the protective layer or even dig out chunks of wood. Brushing with a decking cleaner and hosing it off with a jet hose nozzle is more than enough.
6. Use Water-Resistant Decking Wood
Just in case, you have to use only pressure-treated wood, cedar, redwood, composite wood, or tropical hardwood for decking. These materials are the best when it comes to weather resistance and service life if treated right.
A Deck for Decades
Now you know how to make your deck look great for many years! What would you do next? Maybe it’s time for exterior painting or picking up the new decor for the yard? Stay tuned to this blog and you’ll find all the answers.
The composite deck is produced with hundred per cent recycled plastic and wood fibers. It is the most environmentally friendly option for deck building. It is durable, resistant to splinter, and does not require frequent and high maintenance. This is advantageous for homeowners who do not want to invest time, money, and resources on upkeep. Additionally, composite decking is available in various styles, textures, finishing, and colours and can be designed to be similar to wood decking in appearance.
Composite decking has a low-maintenance feature, which means it requires little work to maintain its beautiful look. But still, you must take care of your deck. This will retain the excellent condition of the composite material for as long as possible. Considering this, the tips below will help you properly care for and maintain your composite deck.
Tips for Composite Decking Maintenance and Care
Avoid Puddle and Standing Water
Composite decking can withstand water, rot, and moisture, unlike wood decking. However, you must do everything possible to avoid puddles and standing water on it. Mold and mildew grow in a variety of environments and will require air, moisture, and warm climatic conditions to thrive. So, to protect your deck, it is important to keep these things to the barest minimum.
Frequently Keep Your Deck Clean
The simplest and most effective method of maintaining the appearance of your deck and ensuring its durability is by cleaning it regularly. Fortunately, deck cleaning is neither hard nor time-consuming.
You can clean your deck in the following ways:
- Gently brush it with a nylon broom weekly
- Washing it with soapy water solution or liquid dishwasher gel
These cleaning steps will help to maintain your deck’s appearance for as long as possible.
Use a Specially Formulated Composite Deck Cleaner
Composite decking, just like other types of exterior wood, is susceptible to fading and discolouration gradually. The wood will succumb to the effects of intense sunshine, water, and varying temperatures.
Dirt will also penetrate the groove and gaps, making them hard to remove without specialized care. If this happens, then you will need an effective and specially designed composite deck cleaner.
Get a composite deck cleaner that can thoroughly clean the wood by penetrating the wood and reaching both the outer and inner parts of the deck. We recommend any water-based, eco-friendly gel formula.
Also, follow the guide on the cleaner bottle while using it to clean your deck. This typically involves brushing the cleaning formula onto the decking, allowing it to dry, and then using clean water to rinse it away.
Gaps in Deck Boards Need to Be Unclogged
Debris such as leaves and grass may get clogged or caught in the composite board gaps or grooves. Worst still, wet debris may encourage biotic decay on your deck. As soon as you find specks of dirt accumulating, please use a blade turner, spatula, or pocket knife to remove them. After that, use a garden hose to clean off whatever you may have earlier missed.
Use Woven Rugs
Trapped moisture can negatively impact your deck. This is why we advise you use woven rugs rather than mats with rubber back.
The secret to keeping your deck clean and neat is regular cleaning. This will reduce the likelihood of a thorough, more serious type of cleaning work. Cleaning composite deck is easy as gentle scrubbing with a broom can remove litter and scattered dirt. You can do this weekly.
For stains and grimes that do not require professional treatment or dedicated composite cleaner, you can use soapy water and light scrubbing from a stiff brush to clean them out.
The use of composite decking has witnessed a surge in popularity. This is because it is aesthetically pleasing, long-lasting, and easy to maintain. With a composite deck, you will get to spend less on elongating its lifespan and general maintenance and spend more time basking in its beauty and pleasantness. While it is a fact that composite decking is the most low-maintenance decking option, you will have to clean it from time to time. This article will show you ways to care for your composite deck board, such as scrubbing and wiping dirt away with soapy water. You’ll also learn how to get rid of debris and remains like oil stains, decay, scratches, and rot.
How Composite Decking Encourage Easy Cleaning and Low Maintenance
You do not need to paint or stain a composite deck, unlike wood decking. Another advantage of the composite deck is that you won’t find any undergrowth of weed peeking through gaps like paving slabs. This is because the composite joist, which serves as the structural base, elevates, supports the deck, and creates a space between the ground beneath and your deck board.
Unlike timber decking, composite decking doesn’t require any painting or staining like timber decking. Thanks to the height created by the composite joists that form the underlying foundation, you won’t find weeds emerging through the cracks as you would with paving slabs. In addition to that, it is exceedingly easy to clean composite deck boards.
Composite deck boards are produced to have similar patterns, texture, design, and appearance as the timber decking. Also, it is durable and is a sustainable solution compared to the high-maintenance problems of timbre wood.
Furthermore, composite decks have stain and mildew-resistant coating. This means removing dirt and stain is simple because just soapy water is needed to keep them looking good as new. This differs from timbre wood decking, which is known for absorbing stubborn stains, making it difficult to clean off.
How Best Do I Clean My Composite Deck?
Fortunately, cleaning your composite deck does not require the use of any sophisticated equipment. You most likely have the tools required to clean it properly.
- A dishwashing liquid or soapy water
- A broom
- A bucket filled with warm water
- A plastic broom
If you have gathered all of these things, you can clean your deck by following these easy steps below:
- Take away all outdoor decorative items, as well as accessories and furniture. Doing this will reduce the likelihood of damages or interference while cleaning your deck.
- Clear any dirt and pieces of rubbish from the floor by sweeping it with a plastic broom. Ensure that there are no specks of dirt on the deck before the application of water.
- To create a soapy water solution, add some drops of the dishwashing liquid to the bucket filled with warm water. Concentration should be the same as the quantity you would use to wash dishes in a sink.
- Fill the bucket halfway with water and insert the broom head in it. Use the soap/water solution to scrub the entire surface. Using gentle or light pressure, clean the grooves and remove stubborn stains and filth.
- As soon as you are done gently scrubbing your deck, remove any remaining soap suds and grime by rinsing with water.
This method will keep your deck tidy and free of dirt! Replace the outdoor accessories and furniture as soon as the floor dries.
Can I Clean My Composite Decking With Bleach?
No! The corrosiveness of bleach is especially high. This can cause damage to composite decks. It is also a bad idea to use bleach for mold removal. The reason is that bleach works well on surfaces that are non-porous (despite this, it will remove the protective covering on a capped composite or PVC decking), but it is ineffective on surfaces that are porous (especially uncapped composite deck boards).
Using a composite decking cleaner is a more effective solution. This type of product is designed to safely and remove dirt from your decking without causing damage to it. You can find various brands of composite decking cleaner in various e-commerce stores and DIY stores in the UK. They are affordable and cost less than £50. Nonetheless, a word of caution: Do not use bleach in your composite decking cleaning formula for whatever reason. The consequences could be disastrous.