Adequate decking care is absolutely essential to maintaining timber and keeping your new decking looking just as good as the day it was installed. A wooden deck can instantly transform your outside space, but it’s important to give some consideration to the longevity of this new addition to your landscaping.
If left untreated, one of the first things you’ll notice is that your deck will gradually fade in colour. A specialist timber decking stain will give it a deeper, richer hue. A basic stain will spruce up your deck but it won’t give you the performance of a specialist protector.
Even if you prefer the rustic look of natural unstained wood, there is decking care in the form of transparent products available to treat your deck without adding colour. Whatever your preference it’s important to remember that decking care goes far beyond the cosmetic.
A treatment is best applied to your wooden deck when the climate is moderate. In the UK, this usually means waiting for a mild Spring or Autumn day, when the forecast is dry but not excessively hot or humid.
Between treatments, regular cleaning is the bedrock of an effective decking care regime. Begin by brushing off any loose dirt or debris, and then apply a specialist cleaning solution to every inch of the wood’s surface. A soft bristle brush is ideal for removing algae and mould from heavily soiled areas.
Leave the cleaning solution to work its magic for the recommended length of time, and then you’re ready to wash it off. A simple garden hose will do the job, but for a thorough clean – particularly on larger areas – a pressure washer is going to be your tool of choice for speed and ease of use.
If you’re not ready to invest in a purchasing a pressure washer – or perhaps if decking care is your only use for it – a more affordable alternative is to hire one. After cleaning, it’s recommended to wait at least a week before using stain or a wood preservative, for maximum effectiveness.
Even with regular cleaning, timber can become dull over time. A specialist decking restorer can be used to lighten and brighten your wooden deck. If using directly after cleaning, be sure to wait until the timber is completely dry. The brightener can then be applied using a brush, pad or spray.
Alternatively, a two in one decking care product will clean away signs of weathering while also lightening and brightening the colour of your timber.