Most decks are made of wood, and wood is prone to fading, rot, and debris. Over time, if your deck is not maintained well, it will end up ruined. Thus, cleaning, refinishing, and repairing your deck is crucial to preserving its quality and good looks.
For DIY timber decks, sweep and vacuum the surface first. Then, wet the deck and apply an appropriate cleaning solution. Scrub the surface, then rinse with an ordinary garden hose.
For composite decks, cleaning is easier. First, scrub the surface with a soft brush. If there is rust or leaf stains, use an oxalic acid-based deck brightener.
For both cases, do not use a pressure washer. This can damage composite decks and wear out the finish on timber decks.
Last but not least, clean the railings from the bottom up. Doing this from the top down would splatter the cleaning solution and bleach the bottom railings.
If you find small areas of rotting (the size of your thumb), scrape them away with a chisel, then apply wood preservative. However, if rots are larger, you need to replace those segments. Westall Timber has a range of types of timber wood in Springvale, in case you need them.
For any loose fixings, you could tighten them. If you can’t, you may have to fill the holes so the fittings would bite better.
Then, check the timbers attached to the house (also known as the ledger). Make sure none of them are rotting or coming loose. If you find any, they may have to be replaced.
If you find rotting in joists, you can add splints and secure them to the joists with screws. Make sure that the screws are long enough to go into sound timber, as the rotting parts will not hold them tightly.
Finally, inspect the railings if they are all firm. If there are cracks around nails and screws, plug them with an exterior-grade adhesive. Then, drill new holes and fasten them with galvanised decking screws.
For timber decks, first do the cleaning and then the repairs, if necessary. Afterwards, sand the deck either by hand with 20-50-grit sandpaper or by an orbital sander. Next, vacuum the dust, then do another pass with finer sandpaper, and vacuum it again.
After sanding, you can then apply sealer with a brush. Follow the grain, and seal the ends too for protection against rot.
Composite decks, on the other hand, do not need sanding before refinishing. After cleaning, you can apply the refinishing product right away.
Maintaining a deck is not as hard as you may think. With the right equipment, you can get the job done easily on your own. Drop by Westall Timber and get the cleaning, sanding, and refinishing supplies you need to keep your deck looking brand new.
Looking for treated wood, boric acid, or other timber supplies in Melbourne to DIY your decks? Come to Westall Timber and find what you need. Browse through our website to see our selection of products.