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Deck Cleaning Tips

It’s about time for that big summer shindig... but your deck isn’t looking so great. Here are 16 deck cleaning tips that will immediately improve your deck’s appearance.

Things You’ll Need:

  • Broom
  • Hammer and other tools for repairs
  • Deck cleaning solution
  • Degreaser
  • Algae treatment product
  • Bucket
  • Scrub brush
  • Long broom handle
  • Heat gun
  • Scraper
  • Hose
  • Bucket



  1. Carefully examine your deck for any flaws or cracks that should be repaired.
  2. Replace any warped boards.
  3. Repair cracks in your wood decking; otherwise, the boards will create splinters.
  4. Replace any nails that are popping up out of the wood—these hurt bare feet!
  5. Inspect stair treads and hand railings to ensure that they are in good condition.
  6. Remove any substances that are stuck on the deck, including chewing gum, pine gum, bits of food, clotted dirt, melted wax. A heat gun can assist with removal, but be careful not to let the wood get too hot. Alternatively, use a scraper.
  7. Sweep the deck thoroughly to remove all the dirt and dust. Otherwise, you’ll have a muddy mess!
  8. Look for algae, which will appear black or green and is common in parts of the country with high humidity. Algae is typically found on the underside of your deck. Treat it before cleaning the deck.
  9. Remove any grease spots from the deck, using a degreaser.
  10. Find a scrub brush with an attachment port to screw in a long handle. This will keep you off your knees.
  11. For best results, use a cleaner specifically formulated for washing wood decks.
  12. Test any chemicals or cleansers on a small, unobtrusive spot before using them on the whole deck—some products can discolor or stain the wood.
  13. Spray the deck thoroughly with water before applying cleanser to ensure that the product is applied evenly.
  14. Use warm water for best results.
  15. Make sure to rinse the deck thoroughly when you’re done scrubbing.
  16. Clean your deck regularly to keep it looking amazing.



Pressure Washing

Another method to thoroughly clean your wood deck is to pressure wash it. Rent a pressure washer, or hire a professional to assist you. When pressure washing, make sure that you:

  • Don’t use a setting that is too high; it will damage the wood.
  • Use a fan tip setting for best results
  • Spray with the grain; not against it.
  • Wear protective eyewear

Staining and Sealing Your Deck

Most wood decks will require staining and sealing every other year; in some climates, annual staining is recommended. Maintaining the stain and sealant on your deck will:

  • Keep the color looking great
  • Maintain the integrity of the wood boards
  • Keep splinters from forming, which are no fun to step on
  • Prevent boards from warping and cupping
  • Prevent mildew, mold and algae from forming

Deck Cleaning Tips GreatWhitePressureWashing