Blog

How to Pressure Wash your Deck

December 5, 2017

Over time, grime can build up on your wooden deck making it look…bad. It’s ugly, and it doesn’t compliment the time and effort you put into creating your perfect deck. There are deck brighteners and cleaners you can use to strip away this grime, but it presents a terrible risk. A better solution would be pressure washing your deck.

Pressure washing is a great solution to this problem when performed properly. However, before jumping into it, there are a few things you should know. Pressure washing can be incredibly dangerous, to both your deck and yourself. Read on to see how to pressure wash your deck, safely!

DSC04000

Important Elements of Pressure Washing

There are three main elements of pressure washing which are vital to your success: pressure level, tip choice, and your technique.

The level of pressure is crucial. Too strong of a pressure level can etch into the wood, causing gauges and marks that are irreparable. Too weak of a pressure level won’t get the job done, and you’ll have wasted your time. You definitely don’t want to walk away with a deck looking no better than before. Experiment with pressures, starting on the very low end, at around 500 psi. Increase pressure very slowly until you see proper results. Test this on a piece of scrap wood first, and then an off to the side part of your deck.

As for the pressure washer’s tip. Start the water at least two feet from the deck, and slowly get closer until your tip is 1-1.5’ away from the wood. You should never get too close to the deck with your tip. Generally, a fanned tip will take care of most of the work and should be your first choice and only choice unless you know your equipment very well.

Technique

You’re going to want to keep your arm from pivoting as you work. You should be keeping the same distance from the wood throughout the process. This will keep the pressure even, and will protect your wood from any increased pressure.

Also, work with the grain of the wood, and outwards from the house. This will keep your form in check, and will prevent your deck from having any sharp, clean lines of grime. Overlapping each pass is going to ensure you don’t miss any spots.

Is it Worth it?

Pressure washing is a lot of work, and can be expensive if you don’t already own a pressure washer. For this reason, many will wonder whether or not it’s worth it to wash your deck at all. Keeping your deck free of grime and mold is what will protect its structure. To prevent the need for pressure washing, ensure that you’re doing minimum daily maintenance, such as sweeping and applying sealant when necessary.

There are times, however, when a deck is simply unsalvageable. If you think your deck has seen its end, it may be time to contact your local Maryland deck builder. Custom Deck Builders is here to help you decide on a new deck, working with you to ensure you’re getting the best results. Don’t continue to waste your efforts pressure washing your deck—invest in a brand new one, and update your home today.