DIY Projects: Cleaning and Repairing a Wooden Deck Before Staining

Cleaning Patio Decking

Wooden decks can beautify your home’s exterior and enhance the functionality of your outdoor living space. Wooden decks require some maintenance, including staining and sealing at least once a year. But before you begin staining your deck, follow these five steps to ensure high-quality results.

  • Replace Rotten Wood

Rotting wood is not something you want to keep on your deck for long periods of time. In addition to being unattractive, rotting wood can actually be a safety risk, especially if it is part of your deck’s support structure. Replace the affected boards with new wood before staining to ensure your deck stays strong, beautiful, and resistant to termites.

  • Sweep Thoroughly

Next, sweep your deck to remove debris and dirt that may have built up. Staining over a dirty deck can cause your finish to peel or dry unevenly, which will inevitably shorten the life of the finish as well as the deck itself.

  • Remove the Old Stain

Removing the old stain is also advisable, particularly if you’re applying a new stain. Use a specialty deck stripper to remove the old stain and expose the bare wood. This ensures that your deck is better prepared to receive the new stain.

  • Treat Dirt Stains and Water Marks

Dirt stains in your wood will still be visible even after you apply a fresh coat of stain. To remove these and other undesirable marks from your deck, use a wood brightener or oxygen bleach. These treatments will help restore your wood’s original color and make your new deck stain look brighter and more even.

  • Scrub Away

For tough spots, water marks, and engrained dirt, your best option is to scrub the affected area with a stiff brush and oxygen bleach. Be careful not to damage the deck when scrubbing!

For more tips on deck maintenance and design, come to Southern Lumber in San Jose. Call (408) 297-9663 or visit our decking showroom for expert advice on decks and outdoor living.

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