Use a Pressure Washer to Strip and Clean Your Deck Before Staining It
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Has your deck seen better days? Do you wish you could tear it down and replace it with a beautiful new specimen? The good news is that this is not necessary to get a deck you love. In many cases, simply stripping it down and staining it will give you the brand-new look you want for much less.
However, many people are weary of this option. They feel that it takes as much time and expense as it would to simply build a new deck. The truth is that pressure washing makes it much easier to strip your deck than you may imagine. Keep reading to learn how pressure washing can be the best way to rid your deck of old paint, wood stain, ground-in dirt, and even mold and mildew.
How to strip your deck using a pressure washer
First of all, you need the right pressure washer. We recommend around 2400 PSI for the average deck. This makes the job easy without damaging most woods. Start by using the standard spray tip to get rid of any loose dirt, leaves, and other easy debris. Then swap to a chemical tip spray and clean the deck and any surrounding fence with your preference cleaning solution. End with a completed coat and let it settle into the wood of the deck for a few minutes.
If your deck is very dirty then you may need to deep cleaning with a more narrow spray. Then move your wand in a stroking-type motion. This will help to loosen any grime, dirt, or paint. However, do not do direct spray. The zero-degree angle can end up shaving lines into the wood, which is why we recommend using a stroking-type motion. Then rinse the deck with a round of straight water.
How to stain your deck after pressure washing it
Once you have cleaned it as described above, you are going to let your deck dry for at least 48 hours. Before you start staining, get your protective clothing on. Ensure that your arms and legs are entirely covered to protect you from the stain. We also recommend wearing protective goggles for maximum safety.
When choosing the stain, we recommend one that doubles as a sealer. This saves you a step and gives you the great look of a sealed deck. Test the stain in a small area and allow it to dry completely. This will show you what the rest of the deck will look like when completed. Do not skip this step as you could end up staining your entire deck in a stain you do not like.
Once you have confirmed the stain you want to use, fully saturate the deck with it. You may need to coat exposed ends several times to ensure the pores are entirely saturated.