Cleaning and finishing your deck doesn’t need to be an arduous task that takes the best part of a week. There are many tools you can use to help speed up the process – whilst also making the process easier.
So, we’re going to list out our top tools to speed up cleaning and finishing a deck, so you can make the most out of your garden.
Being able to stand upright and not need to be scrubbing away at your deck makes the task so much easier – and quite satisfying! If you have in your possession or are able to borrow or rent a pressure washer, it will make the job so much easier.
If you have never used a pressure washer before, we do highly recommend doing a bit of research on how to correctly use one before you begin. The main reason is that these are powerful machines that can easily dent, chip and damage your wood if used incorrectly.
Please note: If your deck is made of softwood such as beech, spruce or pine you may be better off cleaning the wood manually. This is because softwoods are less durable than hardwoods and as such are much easier to damage with a pressure washer.
Long handled scrubbing brush/broom
Power washers are great but even they can need help sometimes. We recommend having a long handled, stiff bristled scrubbing brush/broom in your garden deck cleaning kit.
Not only will this help with the cleaning process and help prevent damage caused by the overuse of a power washer, but it’s also handy to have year round to help keep your deck in tip top condition.
Hose with adaptor
If you can’t get your hands on a power washer, you can instead opt for a hose with an adaptor. These handy adaptors can still allow the water to come out with quite some force, so if your deck isn’t in that bad of a condition, a hose may be perfectly suitable.
High quality cleaning products
This is one of the top pieces of advice we can offer you. Purchasing high quality products that are purposefully made for cleaning and reviving wood is a must. We have a few in our range for specific purposes, such as:
- Net-Trol is our water-based wood cleaner and brightener for surface and ground in dirt.
- Prepdeck is our water-based 3-in-1 wood cleaner, stripper and mill glaze remover.
- Aquanett is our solvent free wood oil remover for new, oil and encrusted oils.
- Compo-Clean is our water-based cleaner and degreaser for composite wood.
- Renoclear is our bleaching agent for cleaning and brightening wood from staining due to Blue Stain Fungi.
In some cases, it may be necessary to sand the wood after cleaning. This can be down to having multiple finishes applied at once, stubborn staining etc. making it difficult to get a perfectly clean finish.
We recommend trying to remove as much of the dirt/finish etc. as possible with cleaning products first. Then you start by using a fine grit and slowly work your way up to a more coarse grit only if the stain is not removed.
Using a lambswool pad instead of a roller or brush makes the application of a deck stain much quicker and easier. There are a few reasons for this;
- Highly absorbent – you won’t need to keep dipping it into the stain.
- Faster application – because of the absorbency of the pad it is much quicker to complete the job.
- High reduction in stain running/dripping – again, because the pad is so absorbent, you will have a lot less issues with running and dripping.
If you are instead applying a paint finish, we recommend using either a roller or a paint spray machine.
Similar to the pressure washer, a spray machine will significantly help you finish the job quicker. There are a few different types of sprayers available such as a pump sprayer, airless sprayer etc. so be sure of what type you are purchasing if this is something you are considering as this can make them vary in price wildly. You may want to look into borrowing or renting one instead.
Brushes in various sizes
Having a few brushes in your kit is handy for helping to apply your finish to fiddly areas such as balustrades and spindles etc. but also for helping to brush out any drips or back brushing after using a spray machine.
They don’t need to be of the highest quality but having 2-3 varying sizes to help make the finish look more professional is well worth it in our opinion.
We recommend using a high quality finishing product. If you are looking for a more natural finish, look for a saturating product. This means the product will saturate the wood to protect it from within and because it works from the inside out, there is no film on the surface and therefore it will not peel or flake!
There are several in our wood care range that would be perfect for decking:
- Aquadecks is our water-based saturating wood finish suitable for use on soft or hardwoods.
- Textrol is our saturating wood finish specially developed for use on weathered wood.
- Deks Olje D1 is our highly saturating oil finish perfect for use on hard or softwood.
- D1 Pro is our hardwood high performance oil ideal for dense or greasy wood.
- Teak Olje is a blend of Owatrol Oil and Teak Oil suitable for teak and other exotic woods.
If instead, you are looking for a paint finish, we recommend Owatrol Decking Paint. It is our premium and long-lasting matt opaque finish available in 35 colours.
We hope you found this post on tools to speed up cleaning & finishing a deck interesting! If you have any other advice or top tips, please feel free to leave them in the comments below. We love hearing from you!