When the backyard is given a spring cleaning, the wooden deck should not be ignored. Before the cover comes off the grill, the deck should be cleaned. This makes the area more attractive and lengthens the life of the wood. Once a year, deck owners should clean and reseal or treat their wood deck. They should sweep the deck regularly to prevent dirt and debris from accumulating.
You will need:
• Power washer (optional)
• Hose with sprayer
• Oxygen bleach cleaner
• Laundry detergent or a commercial deck cleaner
• Long-handled brush with stiff bristles
• Trash bags
• Plastic sheeting
• Plastic gloves
Step 1: Remove furniture, planters, and all other items from the deck and temporarily store these in a remote area. Use the plastic sheeting to cover any fragile plants nearby to prevent damage.
Step 2: Remove large debris from the deck with your hands and put this into trash bags. Sweep up remaining debris with the dustpan and broom, disposing of it in the bags.
Step 3: Starting at one end of the deck and working to the other, use the garden hose and sprayer to spray the wood surface. Use the most powerful setting on the sprayer and continue spraying until the deck appears clean. A power washer can be used instead but select the sprayer nozzle fan setting and keep the nozzle a few feet away from the deck so you do not gouge the wood.
Step 4: Use your garden hose to spray between the boards of the deck to remove other debris.
Step 5: Mix the water and laundry detergent in your bucket or follow the manufacturer instructions for mixing the commercial deck cleaner.
Step 6: Beginning at one end of the deck, apply the mixed cleaning solution and use the brush to scrub the boards. Work your way to the other end and then remove the solution by rinsing it off with your hose.
Step 7: If algae or mildew is present, mix four parts water and one part oxygen cleaner in a clean bucket. Put on the plastic gloves and be careful not to spill this cleaner on any plants. Pour the solution onto the area where algae or mildew is growing. If the growth appears new, allow the solution to sit for a minute or two. Otherwise, allow approximately 15 minutes sitting time. Use the brush to scrub the area, rinse with water from the hose, and allow the wood to dry. Repeat this process if any algae or mildew remains.
Step 8: Thoroughly rinse your deck with water from the garden hose or the power washer. Wait until the deck has completely dried before replacing the items you removed in Step 1.