Spring cleaning brings about many messy chores, but there’s one arduous task that is typically forgotten until the smell of a neighbor’s barbecue offers a reminder: it’s time to clean the deck. After wetter seasons with the most precipitation in decades, it’s a good chance that there is some trapped moisture, dirt or even mildew hiding under potted plants and deck furniture. As the season for family gatherings is quickly approaching, showing off a well maintained and attractive deck is a necessity for many people. But getting things primed for the season requires a few steps, in addition to regular cleaning and deck maintenance.
Get Things Ready
The first step is to assess the condition of the deck after the last season. The simple act of clearing the deck of furniture and potted plants, will offer a good idea of the task on hand. Perhaps it’s been a year or more since the last time everything was completely moved.
This is a great time to assess any potential safety hazards (such as splinters or nails) and determine the necessary measures to ensure a proper cleaning. It’s also helpful to sweep dirt and debris off of the deck for a quick head start to cleaning while uncovering the more troublesome areas of buildup.
Timing is Everything
It’s important to note that once the motivation for a quality deck cleaning sets in, there are times that are ideal to produce the best overall outcome that brings out the beauty. Ultimately, mornings and early evenings are the best time for a cleaning, mainly because prolonged sun exposure can cause some cleaners to dry way too quickly, or even burn into the deck.
The Cleaning Process
One of the safest methods of cleaning involves using a small amount of product and hot water before mopping each area. After this is done, a gentle rinse with a garden hose gets cleanses any remaining product and cleans any last bits of loose dirt. Finally, cleaning in between planks and boards permits airflow and draining to prevent standing water. This simple task limits the amount of moisture that can collect, preventing mildew and rot and amping up the livelihood of a deck.
Seal the Deal
Some homeowners may discover that certain areas of their deck have got away from them, requiring new staining or sealing. As a general rule, this is recommended every 2-3 years as needed. A new stain or seal job not only helps a deck to look its best, it’s also key to prevent oxidation, fading, splitting and rot. Retreatment may seem like a drudging job, but ultimately it will prevent discoloration and degradation that adds years to the wood and save money long term. And if it does seem like a chore, we happen to know a trustworthy painting company with years of experience.