Protecting Your Timber Deck From Termites
Looking for ways to protect your decking from termite colonies? We’ve got you covered with our guide. Final Touch cover everything you need to know about termites and your timber deck.Read Full Story
A gorgeous and well-maintained timber deck can jazz up any outdoor space. The deck is the perfect hub for everything from lounging to parties!
However, you must properly maintain your deck to enhance its longevity and functionality. While this might seem easy, deck maintenance is complex, as timber is susceptible to warping and splintering.
Besides, with one wrong step, you might irreparably damage your deck. So, it is crucial to comprehensively understand how to clean and seal your deck and add to its lifespan. Out here, we will talk about all that and much more.
So, without further ado, let’s begin learning the next steps to timber deck maintenance!
Outdoor structures are vulnerable to weather action and damage. Therefore, a proper maintenance schedule is of utmost importance to enhance their longevity and provide sufficient investment returns; a timber deck is no exception.
A common misconception is that sturdy wooden decking, once installed, does not have any maintenance requirements. However, that’s far from the truth.
Even a hardwood deck and pressure-treated timber have specific requirements that prevent deterioration from dirt and exposure to mould formation, weather elements, and insect infestation. Besides, general wear and tear can hamper the natural look of your timber, and regular maintenance is mandatory to keep your deck looking as good as new.
Here, we have listed some essential steps for deck maintenance and restoration. You must follow these steps to restore your decking and improve its lifespan.
The first step is to clear out the area. Remove furniture, plants, and other decorative pieces that you have placed on the timber deck. Clearing your timber deck allows you to access the entire site and apply the cleaning product evenly.
Avoid dragging furniture across the new deck, as you might leave scuff marks on the boards. If the pieces are too heavy to be moved, a good idea would be to cover them with plastic wraps or a tarp.
With the help of a broom or soft-bristled brush, sweep the deck to remove any debris, mould, or loose dirt that might have accumulated over time.
The next step would be to use a cleaning solution formulated for timbers. Remember, cleaning solutions are of various types, and some are made for composite decks, while others cater to wood decks. So, read the product label and search for a suitable deck cleaner.
After application, use a scrubber to clean the timber surface and gently remove any grit or debris. Alternatively, you can use a pressure washer to clean the surface thoroughly. But, although power washing is a time-saving cleaning method, it can damage the wood and lead to structural deformities.
After scrubbing, rinse the deck with water to remove soap residue and suds. For this, make use of a garden hose. Build-up on the deck can lead to fading or uneven colouring, so pay particular attention to rinsing.
Before moving on to the next step, wait for the deck to dry.
Once finished cleaning the timber deck, it becomes easier to identify loose screws, nails, and other repair needs. If you notice protruding nails, grab a nail punch and hammer to fix them.
In addition, you should carefully inspect the decking wood for rotten, loose, or splintering boards. You must repair or replace these boards, which might lead to further damage and warping.
Besides, replacing rusting nails or screws should be a top priority for two reasons. One, they can lead to deck discolouration. But, more importantly, they swell and cause the splintering of wood. Damage like this is more serious; you must call professionals for repair.
Another important aspect of timber deck maintenance is sanding. Removing any irregularities after cleaning the deck and applying a stain is best. In addition, it gently removes any coating or existing stains that might still be there on the deck.
Sanding removes splinters that a power wash leaves behind and lends smoothness to your timber deck. If the surface isn’t sanded, it doesn’t absorb the oil uniformly, leading to uneven colouring.
Sealing is the final step in efficient timber deck maintenance. It is essential to protect the natural colour of the wood and prevent water damage. In addition, sealing prevents your deck from cracking or splintering. You can choose between stain or oil as per your preference and decking material.
Most composite decking does not require a sealer, but you can stain it to get a new colour and enhance its overall appearance. On the other hand, timber decking is susceptible to damage and requires a penetrative sealer.
Remember that high-quality decking oil or sealant will prevent your expensive deck from warping, mould formation, water damage, and rot. So, even if you have to shell out more money, it is worth the investment.
You’ll find multiple online posts about whether oiling or staining is better for your timber decking. We are here to tell you both have their advantages, and it’s your choice.
For instance, oil prevents your decking from UV damage, leading to cracking and shrinking. In addition, it enhances the natural colour of your deck. People with Merbau or Jarrah decking prefer oiling their boards since it nourishes the deck and accentuates its natural dark colour.
As some of you might know, decking oil is water- or oil-based. While water-based variants last longer, oil-based variants enhance the timber colour. You can use a brush to apply the oil evenly on the deck.
Staining your timber deck will give it a lustrous appearance and highlight its unique texture. Besides, it is an excellent idea if you want to change the appearance of your deck. The good news is a premium-quality stain will be water and UV-resistant, too. So, you can choose between either of the two methods to protect your deck.
When it comes to deck maintenance, there are certain things you should avoid. Avoid using strong chemicals or chlorine bleach to clean the deck. Strong cleaning products strip its natural oils’ timber and lead to discolouration.
In addition, avoid using a pressure washer, especially if you are a novice, as they are strong enough to damage the deck. Consider using a garden hose to clean the deck.
Lastly, remember that paint and sealant are not interchangeable. It would help if you always used a sealant to protect the decking.
Timber deck maintenance is not simple; not everyone has the necessary expertise or time. Even though going down the DIY route will save quite a few bucks, hiring a professional service will minimise the chances of damage.
If you are already drowning in office and household chores, hiring a professional team for timber deck maintenance might be the perfect solution to your problems.
You can start your search online. A reputed company will have experts on board with all the required expertise and tools for the job. They will provide various services — from repairing loose boards and nails to washing and sealing the timber.
So, pick up the phone and contact a top deck maintenance provider the next time you’re worried about neglecting your deck. Most companies offer a free inspection, so get them to keep your deck pristine.
Timber decks can last decades if you adhere to a proper maintenance schedule. Yes, that’s right! Pressure-treated timber can last between 40 and 50 years, whereas untreated wood can last for 10 to 20 years.
That said, timely maintenance is the key to ensuring the longevity of your deck. Usually, timber decks need to be refinished every 12 to 24 months, as they become prone to warping and splintering without regular cleaning and oiling.
So, please carefully consider its refinishing needs, and your timber deck will live up to its potential for many years to come! If you need any assistance with your timber deck maintenance in Sydney, please get in touch with the team at Final Touch.
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