If you have a new deck, a new home with a deck, or having one built you need to make sure to know how to take care of it to enjoy for years to come. This guide is for the two most popular types of decks: wood and composite decking. Wood pressure treated lumber is the most common and most affordable type of deck. This type of deck also requires the most maintenance so be sure you have a plan in place to clean, restore, and protect it on a regular basis. Composite decking requires the little maintenance but be sure to clean it on a regular basis.
Wood Deck Cleaning
Before you ever start to put a seal or stain on your deck make sure you have it cleaned very well. You will want to use a deck cleaner that is for the type of wood your deck is made out of so be sure to know this information. Typically, a deck is made from pressure treated lumber or a non-chemical treated redwood or cedar wood. Follow the direction of your deck cleaner. You also can pressure wash your deck. If your deck is older before you clean it to make sure you do not have or get rid of any type of algae, moss, or pests. If you do believe this is a problem, you can prewash it with a fungicide and or insecticide before the deck cleaner.
Composite Deck Cleaning
If you’re looking for a more maintenance free home, then a composite deck should defiantly be on your lists. It will cost more upfront but makes up for it over time with no need to do any restoring or staining. The Trex Composite Deck that we install at Wize Home Direct comes with a 25-year warranty. While you do need to clean them you can skip all the time and money it takes to restore, protect and eventually replace your wood deck in that same 25-year time period.
No matter how maintenance free exterior home materials are they all require cleaning so here are some helpful tips to clean your composite decks. We recommend at least cleaning your deck at least twice a year in the spring and fall with soap and water. You will either need a hose, soap and soft bristle brush or gentility pressure wash the entire deck and railings.
Do note that if you spill oil, food or grease on your Trex composite deck be sure to clean it off within 7 days with a hose, warm soapy water, and soft bristle brush to ensure no staining accrues. Pollen and dirt should also be cleaned off, in the same way, to keep mold and mildew from growing. If you do use a pressure washer to clean the decks instead be careful not to use to high pressure, no more than 3100 psi that has a fan tip and keep it no closer than 8 inches from the surface.
For any deck make sure you fix any loose nails and replace broken or split boards. Clean off any residue as soon as you find it. If your deck is beyond just sealing or staining it might be time to use something more of a restorer like decking oil. After you have carefully cleaned your deck apply this according to the brand instructions and then give it time to sink in. Wait a couple days to make sure your deck is completely dry before applying any type of protection.
This is the most important part of maintaining your deck to keep it beautiful and long-lasting. At the very least you want to make sure you apply a good water seal on your deck to protect it from all the rain and is critical to protecting your deck. You want to make sure your deck is dry before applying any type of stain or seal and should not do this the same day you clean your deck. It is worth picking a quality stain to both protect and beautify your wood deck. You can pick a clear sealant, a transparent stain or a full color stain depending on your preference and wood. You will need paint roller and long roller and apply it just like paint. It is always best to test the stain first in a small spot to ensure you like the look before you start the entire project.
At Wize Home Direct we offer both wood and Trex Composite decking and always offer free estimates if you would like to compare pricing.