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How to Clean Your Timber Decking: A Step-by-Step Guide

A well-maintained timber deck is a beautiful and functional addition to any outdoor living space. However, over time, dirt, grime, algae, and mildew can accumulate on the surface, leading to a dull and unattractive appearance. Regular cleaning is essential to keep your timber decking looking its best and prolong its lifespan. In this step-by-step guide, we'll explain how to properly clean your timber decking, ensuring a fresh, clean, and inviting outdoor space for you to enjoy.

STEP 01:

Clear Your Deck

Before starting the cleaning process, remove all furniture, plants, and accessories from your deck. This will give you unobstructed access to the entire surface, making it easier to clean and inspect for any signs of damage or wear.

STEP 02:

Sweep the Surface

Using a stiff-bristled broom, sweep your deck thoroughly to remove loose dirt, debris, and leaves. Pay particular attention to the spaces between the deck boards, as these areas can trap dirt and moisture, leading to deterioration over time.

STEP 03:

Inspect Your Deck

Take a moment to inspect your deck for any signs of damage, such as loose or protruding screws, cracked wood, or trapped areas of possible decay. Addressing these issues promptly will help prevent further deterioration and ensure the safety and longevity of your deck.

STEP 04:

Choose the Right Cleaning Solution

There are several cleaning solutions available for timber decking, including commercially available deck cleaners, oxygen bleach, or a homemade mixture of water and mild dish soap. When choosing a cleaning solution, consider the type of wood, the level of dirt and grime, and any environmental concerns you may have. For example, products like Prepdeck, Netrol, Aquanet, are all products that are effective at removing dirt, mildew and old finishes.

STEP 05:

Apply the Cleaning Solution

Using a garden sprayer, pump sprayer, or large paintbrush, apply your chosen cleaning solution to the deck surface. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions if you're using a commercial cleaner, as some products may require water dilution or specific application methods. Apply in manageable sections to avoid the cleaner drying on the surface. Ideally don't do this on a hot day. Best on a cloudy but dry day.

STEP 06:

Stubborn dirt

Areas that are particularly dirty may require a stiff brush to agitate the surface so that the cleaner can do its job more effectively.

STEP 07:

Rinse the Deck

Usually the cleaner will lift the dirt after around 10 minutes. You can then either hose off thoroughly with a hose or you can jet wash off, being careful not to hold the jet nozzle too close in case it furs up the grain on the board.

Make sure you have rinsed the deck thoroughly, ensuring that all traces of the cleaning solution are removed because if not, it may react with any oil or finish you choose to apply..

STEP 08:

Allow the Deck to Dry

After rinsing your deck, allow it to air dry completely before replacing your furniture and accessories. This may take anywhere from a few hours to a full day, depending on the weather conditions and the type of wood. Allowing the deck to dry thoroughly will help prevent the growth of mould and mildew, as well as ensure proper adhesion if you plan to apply a sealant or stain.

STEP 09:

Consider Oiling or Staining Your Deck

Once your deck is clean and dry, it's a good time to consider oiling to protect the wood from the elements and maintain its appearance. Applying a high-quality UV resistant Oil will help prevent moisture penetration, UV damage, and fading, ensuring your deck stays beautiful and functional for years to come. Staining the deck can sometimes lead to further maintenance if it gets scratched by dragging chairs or furniture. Not to mention excitable dogs and children.

STEP 10:


Cleaning your timber decking is an essential part of regular maintenance that will help prolong its lifespan and keep it looking its best. By following this step-by-step guide, you can effectively clean your deck and address any minor issues before they become more significant problems. With proper care and attention, your timber decking can provide you and your family with a beautiful, inviting, and durable outdoor space to enjoy for many years to come. Remember to clean your deck regularly and consider oiling it to protect the wood from the elements and maintain its appearance.

Don't forget most people have their car cleaned or they clean it every other week or in some cases every Sunday morning to keep it looking smart. Whereas a significant investment in a deck only needs cleaning a couple of times a year at most.

Happy cleaning, and enjoy your revitalized outdoor oasis!

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