Why Clean A Deck?
What Is The Best Way To Clean A Wooden Deck?
Scrubbing and rinsing is the safest method to go with as power washing can do the job, but you are more likely to damage your deck doing so. You can purchase wood deck cleaners from a hardware store but you can always make a homemade solution too.
Whatever type of deck cleaner that you choose to use, a long-handled brush is something worth getting to scrub down your deck. Any hard bristle or deck brush will do to work over your deck’s dirt and grime, but long-handled brushes help prevent strain on your back or knees when scrubbing by hand.
How Do I Clean My Deck Without a Pressure Washer?
There are a lot of household products that can be made into a DIY deck cleaning solution and leave your deck looking fresh.
Oxygen bleaches, unlike Chlorine bleach, are an environmentally friendly cleaner (it’s safe for your plants) and won’t compromise the colour or integrity of your deck’s wood. Common oxygen bleach products are Oxiclean, Oxy-Boost, Ajaz, Borax, and Clorox Oxy Magic. To make a deck cleaner, mix the powder with the recommended amount of warm water (usually one cup to two gallons of water).
If you don’t have oxygen bleach products readily available you can use some laundry detergents. Make sure that it’s made with sodium percarbonate or sodium perborate, these are the active ingredients in oxygen bleach products and you can mix the laundry detergent in warm water just as you would the oxygen bleach.
Another cleaning alternative made of household products is white vinegar and baking soda mixture. Mixing one part of water with the same amount of white vinegar and baking soda makes a good deck cleaner. Vinegar will eliminate bacteria and fungus that have grown while the baking soda will deodorize and freshen up your wood decks.
You make a batch of dish soap (ammonia-free), rubbing alcohol, oxygen bleach and warm water as another alternative to clean your decking.
If you own a power washer, pressurized water can be a fast way to clean off dirt and grime from your wood deck. But be aware that the force of the spraying water can potentially damage your deck. Use 1500 lbs/psi or less, but still use with caution. Don,t aim the power washer as one spot for too long and work outward from your home and keep a good distance from the hose and the deck. Do not use homemade cleaners in power washers as undissolved granules can clog spray nozzles.
Steps To Clean A Wood Deck
Step 1: Clear & Sweep
Step 2: Pre-Rinse
Step 3: Mix & Apply Your Solution
Step 4: Scrub
Step 5: Rinse Thoroughly & Let Dry
After you finish all the scrubbing and waiting, rinse your deck off with a garden hose or power washer. Rinse or power wash from top to bottom, including railings and stairs to remove all cleaning products or your DIY deck cleaner.
Wait until your deck is completely dry before moving items and other things back onto it as damp wood is fragile and can easily be gouged. Putting outdoor rugs or furniture on wet wood can cause mould to develop.
It is good to apply a sealer once a year to make your deck last longer and retain the board’s shape from decaying. The best time to apply is right after cleaning your deck but after it is completely dry. Usually done the day after cleaning due to drying time.