There’s not much that beats enjoying the spring sunshine on your very own deck.
Deck’s are extremely useful on sunny, warm days. You get to enjoy the weather, you can bring out the deck chairs and spend some time sunbathing. You can also invite the family round and organize a BBQ for a nice meal in the sun.
So yes, in the spring, summer and autumn a deck is amazing. But what happens in the darker months?
When it gets, rainy, cold and even snowy? We sometimes forget about our deck. And that’s when all the debris, mold and dirt start to accumulate.
The key to making sure your deck is well used, beautiful and comfortable in those sunny days is to have it regularly cleaned.
Why You Should Have Your Deck Cleaned
Spring cleaning isn’t just for the inside, it’s also for the outside. All those winter months the dirt, mildew and mold can build up on the surface of your deck. Weather conditions such as rain, snow and even UV rays from the sun can cause harm to your deck.
Cleaning allows your deck to extend its life and give it a long lasting beauty. So it’s recommended to create some sort of annual cleaning regiment a couple of times a year. Whether you have natural wood such as cedar or redwood, or pressure treated wood or a composite deck, you need to keep your deck clean.
The most demanding are natural woods decks, since they not only require annual cleaning but also a new finish. Composite material decks don’t require refinishing but because of the materials used they are more prone to mold and mildew, and do need to be cleaned every few years. Another option is a power washer, but as we’ll see in this article, this can also be harmful to your deck.
1. Mildew Stains
Mold is part of the ecosystem. Fungi need moisture to grow, and decks during the winter months that don’t get much sunlight provide plenty of it. So in order to control the mold and mildew, you do need to clean your deck several times.
Mildew stains not only look an ugly greenish-black, but it also make the deck slippery and pretty unsafe. The spores they release can also cause respiratory illness and allergic reactions. The black mold is also accompanied by wood-eating fungi, which can then cause rot and deteriorate your deck.
Mildew grows on dirt and soil in dampness, meaning the mold spores can spread and will grow everywhere.
When it comes to mildew, sweeping your deck now and then is a good remedy. To remove the stains, it’s important not to use chlorine bleach. Chlorine bleach might solve the problem short term, but over the long term it breaks down the organic polymers which hold the wood together, which can cause excessive damage.
So it’s important to know which kind of products to use – undiluted hydrogen peroxide is a great solution, if not plain water with detergent also works.
Springtime means flowers, birds, and beautiful colors… but it also means a lot of pollen.
Not great if you’re planning on having a nap on your deck. As pollen floats in the area, it slowly comes to rest on surfaces such as your precious deck. The remedy is pretty simple; take a broom and every so often sweep the pollen off the porch.
You can also use a garden hose and spray the entire deck to get rid of the pollen.
It’s even harder to get rid of pollen stuck in cushions, so make sure to take those into the house.
3. Dirt & Grime
The third main problem which causes dirty decks is dirt and grime from the surrounding area. Wood, being a porous substance, expands and contracts depending on the temperature.
This expansion means that dirt and grime can easily work its way through the wood. This also develops permanent stains and can cause cracked and splintered wood, and over time mold and mildew, as we mentioned above.
They’re also susceptible to dry rot.
An simple remedy is to use white distilled vinegar and water to create a natural cleaning solution. Combine 1 cup of vinegar with 1 gallon of water, and then pour into a bucket and clean your deck with a brush.
Should you clean it yourself?
The three stages of cleaning your deck are the following:
- Inspect and sweep
- Treat stains
- Optional power wash
Sweeping is an easy and effective way of taking care of your deck, preferably to be done weekly. A thorough surface scrubbing is also recommended once every season.
If you’re doing this by hand, this requires getting on your knees and scrubbing by hand with the right products mentioned above. Scrub, leave the product to do its magic for 20 minutes and then wash away with a hose.
Another option is to use pressure washers to wash your deck. Although those machines are perfect for surfaces made of tarmac, they aren’t always great for wood. If the jet is too close or too powerful, you can literally obliterate the wood fibers and leave an ugly welt in your decking.
For this reason it’s important to experiment with your pressure washer beforehand – and not in the middle of your deck! If something goes wrong, it won’t be so easy to hide.
Let Bright Exterior Cleaning Help
Whether you have a Trex, vinyl or wood deck, a simple cleaning of your deck surface can make it look brand new again. In just a few hours, you can get a sparkling clean surface and healthy deck… just in time for the sun.
Here at Bright Exterior Cleaning, we use a variety of techniques to clean your deck and get rid of the ugly mold, moss, dirt, and grime, all in time for your BBQs and sunbathing.
We will make sure to take care of your deck and leave it in sparkling condition, leaving you wondering whether we sneakily changed it up for a new one!
Deck cleaning “Near Me” is always close to us, so make sure you reach out below!
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