Updated/Fact-Chacked on August 20, 2020 by Mary
When your house is new, the decking looks bright, inviting, and encouraging to spend the day outside. Whether it’s the cold weather, UV rays, or overuse, wood tends to lose its lustre over time.
Since you’ve clicked this article, chances are your deck looks weathered, pale, splintery, worn, or cracked, but things don’t have to be this way. So, we’ll help you restore your decking to its former glory.
Items You’ll Need:
- Broom or leaf blower
- Stiff-bristled brush
- Sander (optional)
- A pressure washer or water bucket
- Garden hose
- Deck cleaner
- Rubber gloves
- Safety glasses
- Paint tray
How to Bring Your Deck Back to Life
Start by clearing the deck of any garden furniture. Then, sweep all the debris and fallen leaves off so that you can see everything that you need to do clearly.
Thoroughly inspect the whole deck for any wood rot. Focus on places that have deck-to-ground or deck-to-house connections, as this is where moisture tends to build up the most.
If you find any boards with extensive rotting, replace them. Contact a professional or a more experienced family member for help if this is your first time replacing boards.
Also, examine the deck for any loose boards and secure them.
This step depends on the current state of the deck. If it has been neglected for a long time and the surface is splintered and damaged, you can sand it. If you sand it, we recommend washing the deck first and waiting for it to dry for at least 24 hours.
However, if the wood just looks a bit grey, then you can go to the next step.
The decking needs to be properly washed before it’s restored.
First, get your commercial deck cleaner of choice that caters to your specific needs. Then, wear rubber gloves and safety glasses to protect yourself.
Next, hose down the deck surface because it needs to be wet before application. Now, use a pressure washer to apply the cleaner, or mix the cleaner in a water bucket per manufacturer’s instructions to scrub the surface with a stiff-bristled brush.
Leave the cleaner on the surface for a few minutes, but don’t let it dry. Keep rewetting the surface. Finally, rinse off the deck thoroughly and allow it to dry from one day to a few days.
Staining is the fifth step and is quite an exciting one. The age and condition of your deck affect the type of stain that you choose. New and sanded decks do well with oil-based stains, while older decks need semi-solid and solid stains.
Pour the stain into a paint tray, then apply the stain with a paintbrush. Start with far corners and railings to give yourself more freedom of movement. Let the stain dry then apply more layers if needed. Let the deck dry for a couple of days.
Now you’re ready to reap what you sowed by enjoying the newly rejuvenated decking.
Restoring your decking isn’t rocket science, but it can be hard work sometimes. That said, it’s all worth it in the end when you see the old and weathered decking transform into inviting outdoor bliss. Just follow the steps above, and enjoy the results.
Mary shares a passion for gardening with her husband John, though she is more focused on growing veg on their allotment at St. Margaret’s Allotments, Durham. Mary also works in the lawn care industry and manages the lawns for the Durham University campus.