Proper deck maintenance is essential to protect not only the investment you’ve made in your home, but your family as well.
Washing your deck is probably one of the most critical things you can do. An unwashed deck is an invitation to mold and mildew, which can cause rot. To properly wash your deck:
- Remove debris from between deck boards using a putty knife. Pay special attention to the areas where deck boards cross the joists.
- Protect all shrubs and plantings. Wet them and cover them with plastic sheeting.
- Thoroughly sweep the deck.
- Choose an appropriate cleanser – For a wood deck use a standard deck cleaner and follow its directions. For a composite deck use a cleaner specifically formulated for composite material. Attack grease and oil stains with a commercial degreaser and detergents. For a vinyl (cellular PVC) deck you’ll only need to use warm water and a mild soap to remove mold, mildew, and dirt.
- Clean the deck. Choose a cloudy day when the decking is cool and the sun won’t evaporate the cleaner.
- Let the deck dry.
*Important: If you plan on sealing your deck, wait at least 2 days. You should expect to need to re-seal your deck annually.
To seal your deck first you need to choose a two-day period when you’ll have clear skies and moderate temperatures. You don’t want to be doing this in 90 degree heat (although, right about now, 90 degrees doesn’t sound too bad!)
- Lightly sand the deck. Use a pole sander equipped with 80-grit paper to remove any furriness caused by washing.
- Replace any missing or popped nails and screws. Replace protruding nails with deck screws slightly longer than the nail. If a nail only slightly protrudes, you may do more harm than good trying to pull it out.
- Apply the sealer or stain. Use a roller to apply the sealer to the decking, covering three or four boards at a time. Use brushes and small rollers for railings, planters, and benches. Don’t let the sealant dry or puddle.
Now while you can do this at home, we recommend having the professionals at Franklin Fence and Deck come out and do the work for you. Not only does it save you time, but it ensures that it will be done correctly. If you’re interested in getting your deck ready for spring, call us today at 615-790-8428. Be sure to visit us HERE to sign up for our specials and coupons! Don’t forget to LIKE us on Facebook!
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