Deck Maintenance: How Power Washing and Care Extends a Deck’s Lifespan

Do you have a deck on your home, or are you thinking about having one built? This can really enhance your outdoor living space and add value to your home.

Having a deck professionally installed will run you about $31 a square foot. It’s an excellent investment, but you’ll want to make sure that you take good care of it so that it lasts for years. 

Proper deck maintenance is one of the best ways to enhance your wood deck’s lifespan. Keep reading to learn more about the importance of power washing a deck and other important deck maintenance tips.

Pressure Wash Your Deck at Least Once a Year

It’s vital to clean your deck at least once a year thoroughly. Power washing the wood acts as a natural exfoliant and helps the protective sealers seep even deeper into the wood, which protects the deck.

There are many benefits to power washing your deck. First, it helps to control microbes that allow mold and mildew to grow on your deck’s wood. Doing this in the spring also rinses off any dirt and salt that has accumulated over the winter months.

It’s essential to be careful with a pressure washer as a well-meaning, but inexperienced homeowner can accidentally gouge the wood with the intense water spray. If you’re not 100 percent confident that you can do it yourself, consider hiring a professional.

The service is inexpensive, and it’s worth the peace of mind in knowing that your deck is cleaned right and will last for years.

Sand Your Deck Before Sealing

Pressure washing is the best way to prepare your deck for sealing. 

After you’ve pressure washed your deck, you’ll need to wait for it to completely dry. Sometimes, this can take as long as 48-hours. Once it’s dry, you’ll want to sand your deck lightly.

This is necessary to remove any splinters or fuzzy patches that pressure washing can cause.

The easiest way to do this is to use 80-grit sandpaper attached to a pole sander. Don’t make the mistake of using a power sander, as this is overkill.

Choose the Right Sealant

Once the wood is prepared, you need to seal it. This will keep the wood from warping, cupping, or cracking.

A clear sealant is usually your best bet as this will last longer. You may choose a tinted sealant or stain, but if your deck gets a lot of foot traffic, then it will likely fade.

One mistake to avoid is using paint, lacquer, or varnish instead of sealer. The problem is that each of these just leaves a film on the wood rather than penetrating it. These finishes will look great when you first put them on, but as they wear, the peeling and cracking will look terrible.

It’s also a good idea to opt for a synthetic sealant as oil-based products may attract algae and mildew. If you want your wood to look its best, choose a semi-transparent finish as this will add a bit of color and protect your deck from the sun’s damaging UV rays.

Clean Your Deck Regularly

Your deck is constantly exposed to the elements, so it’s important to regularly clean up leaves, branches, and debris that accumulates. Otherwise, they could rot and stain the wood.

Prevent water damage by using a large push broom to sweep off any water puddles after it rains and accumulated snow. If you get a lot of snow, gently clear it off with a plastic shovel.

Inspect the Deck Every Year

To make sure your deck lasts and looks great for as long as possible, you’ll also want to inspect it at least once a year.

Many homeowners do a thorough inspection before they start their springtime deep cleaning and again in the autumn. This will help you stay on top of things and proactively take care of small issues before they become a bigger problem.

Check the entire area for loose nails, soft spots, or planks that are rotten or split. You’ll also want to check the railings and other deck attachments to make sure they’re secure.

If you notice anything that could cause a hazard, it’s critical to fix it right away. Not only is there a good chance that the problem will only continue to get worse, but, some issues could also increase the chances that someone could get hurt.

Choose Your Deck Accessories Carefully

Adding some area rugs to your deck can give it a more comfortable and cozy feel and protect it from scrapes caused by chairs and table legs. However, natural materials like bamboo or jute can absorb moisture and encourage mildew growth.

Protect your deck by choosing area rugs made of recycled plastics. They don’t absorb water and will also last longer.

Keep Up with Your Deck Maintenance

Now that you know how to take care of a deck, all you need to do is repeat the steps above as part of your regular home maintenance routine. This is important even if your deck is made of pressure-treated wood.

While the treatment will keep it from rotting or getting infested with insects, it’s still vulnerable to sun and water damage. The only thing you’ll need to do differently is to make sure you use cleaning and sealing products designed for pressure-treated wood.

Let Us Pressure Wash Your Deck for You!

Are you behind on your deck maintenance? We can take care of it for you!

We’re fully licensed and insured and will pressure wash your deck to remove mold, mildew, and dirt. It’s easy to schedule, just give us a call at 800-941-2790 or use our convenient form to book online.

7 Important Benefits of House Pressure Washing (And the Ugly Consequences If You Don’t)

A mold-covered, mildewy home is far less likely to sell than a pristine, freshly-painted one. Yet, climbing onto a ladder to scrub hard-to-reach places is no homeowner’s idea of a relaxing weekend. Fortunately, the extended reach and spray of a pressure washer can blast away dirt and grime. This leaves you with a squeaky-clean home that’s bound to impress potential buyers.

House pressure washing isn’t a complicated process. And, it’s one of the most environmentally-conscious ways of cleaning a home’s exterior. Residents can enjoy improved health after pressure washing their homes. They can also enjoy increased property values. Keep reading to discover some of the most astounding benefits of an outside house cleaning.

Benefits of House Pressure Washing

There are several reasons why homeowners should consider pressure washing their home. A lack of experience or confidence with pressure washing is no excuse to not try it. A professional pressure washing service can offer expert advice. They can also offer help to get the job done.

1. Aesthetic Appeal

Aesthetic appeal, also known as curb appeal, refers to the first impression a property makes on potential buyers. A modern, well-maintained home can struggle to compete in the market if it does not look appealing from the outside. Most potential buyers have a well-formed judgment of a property before even touring the place.

So, looks do matter when it comes to real estate. A home covered in moss, dirt, mold, and vegetation isn’t going to appeal to the majority of buyers. Yet, it can be difficult for homeowners to spruce up their property without professional help. This is especially true of elderly residents and those who live in multi-story dwellings.

That’s why a professional pressure washing service may be the key to charming new potential tenants. It can remove all traces of gunk from sidings, brickwork, gutters, and rooftops.

2. Increased Property Value

A gorgeous, well-maintained property is bound to enjoy a sizeable valuation. Prospective sellers should familiarize themselves with things appraisers look for. The very first thing an appraiser will take note of when visiting a property is the curb appeal.

While there are several other factors to consider, curb appeal does tend to hold a massive amount of sway when attracting buyers. And the more in-demand a property is, the higher its market value. A thorough pressure washing could help a home to sell immediately. It is amazing how much a quick exterior cleaning can increase a home’s value.

3. Preventative Maintenance

The cost of pressure washing a house is far less than the costs associated with not pressure washing. Poor exterior maintenance can lead to significant structural issues. It can also lead to dangerous health complications and pricey home repairs. 

The average cost for house pressure washing is about $200 to $400. Compare this to the $12,000 some homeowners spend to repair foundational damage caused by years of neglect. Preventative maintenance starts with regular professional pressure washing. And it ends with a beautiful, safe, and high-valued home.

4. A Real Time-Saver

Climbing up and down a ladder is not only dangerous, but it can also be exhausting. When attempting to tackle the entire exterior of your home, a bucket of soapy suds and a sponge isn’t going to be the quickest method. A pressure washer, on the other hand, can make short work of stubborn grime, dirt, and stains.

Time is a precious commodity, and hardly any homeowner enjoys spending their free time scrubbing the siding of their house. Fortunately, an experienced pressure washer service can clean most homes a matter of a few short hours.

5. Improved Household Health

Mold and mildew are unsightly nuisances, but they can also pose significant health risks. Black mold, in particular, is known to cause respiratory illness and distress, asthma, lethargy, depression, and confusion. Residents with pre-existing conditions are most prone to developing severe side-effects after prolonged exposure to household mold.

By pressure washing the outside of your home, you can provide a healthier, safer place for you and your family. A clean, well-maintained yard and exterior is a fantastic way of reducing household allergens and persistent sinus issues.

6. An Eco-Friendly Option

Rather than resorting to strong chemicals and powerful poisons, pressure washing only involves water. There’s no harmful run-off created by pressure washing a home’s siding, roof, or entryway, making it one of the most eco-friendly cleaning options available.

Beautiful, lush lawns and landscapes easily fall prey to pesticides and cleaning chemicals, so taking the opportunity to exclude them can make all the difference in your property’s curb appeal.

7. Perfect for Painting

If your home needs a new coat of paint, it’s a good idea to start things off with a substantial, professional pressure washing. A clean, dirt-free exterior is perfectly primed for painting! You may even be able to save a little money on paint, as you’ll likely need fewer coats to get the job done.

Find the Right House Wash Solution for You

You can pressure wash sidings, walkways, and rooftops in a jiffy with a little know-how and help. The rewards that homeowners can reap from a freshly pressure washed house are numerous. Fewer costly longterm repairs, higher property values, improved resident health, and less time spent cleaning are only a handful of the benefits of house pressure washing.

Pressure washing alone can be dangerous and can potentially result in damage to your home. We’re ready to help. If you’re interested in hiring a reliable, professional power washing service, please contact us right away!

8 Must-Read Tips for Pressure Washing Vinyl Siding and Gutters

1. Perform an Eye Test

Before anything else, take a few circles around the house and make sure all siding is still in place.

Obviously, with pressure washing, any loose siding will fly off and any cracks will give water access to undesirable places.

Close all of the windows on the house, make sure there aren’t any places where the water can get through. Once everything looks intact, your eye test has commenced!

2. Move All Objects

Before you fire up the pressure washer, you’re going to want to give yourself around a 10-foot radius of open space.

As such, make sure that all objects are that far away from the walls you’re going to be cleaning. One false move and you can send a garden decoration flying into the outside wall of your home, leaving a mark.

Depending on the cleaning solution you use, you may also want to cover your plants up with a tarp to prevent them from being damaged

3. Water the Plants Along Your Home’s Siding

As was just mentioned, the cleaning solution you use may have chemicals that are harmful to your plants along the side of your house.

If you don’t have a tarp to use, then there’s another trick that you have up your sleeve.

Watering the soil and the plants before starting your pressure washing will weaken the chemicals if they hit the soil.

4. Keep the Pressure Washer at Eye Level

While in use, make sure that you keep the pressure washing stream at or below eye level. This will give you the best angle on what spots you‘re hitting and when you can move on from it.

This is also the position in which you’ll have the most control over the stream.

If you aim too high then the pressure washer won’t be able to provide a thorough clean.

5. Point the Stream Straight Ahead

A lot of people have the misconception that you‘re supposed to pressure wash at an angle to “brush” the dirt away.

However, there are two main reasons you want to point the stream straight on.

One, it’s the best way to provide a thorough scrubbing of all the dirt on the side of your house. Secondly, it prevents any water from creeping in underneath the siding where mildew can form.

Sound too overwhelming to find the sweet spot? Afraid you won’t be able to do it appropriately? Perhaps a house pressure washing service is a better option for you!

6. Hand Dry the Corners

One of the biggest concerns you should have when pressure washing is getting water in unwanted areas.

There are certain areas that are especially susceptible to gathering the water and building mildew and mold if not attended to.

To avoid that from happening, take a dry towel and hand dry all of the corners of the siding where you believe water might gather. Give it a good scrub to remove anything that was previously built up.

You don’t have to do this to every single piece of siding on your house. Just use your best judgment and hand dry any areas you think could use a little extra attention.

7. Be Thorough When Selecting Cleaning Products

If you take nothing else from this article, heed this piece of advice: not all cleaning products are made for vinyl siding.

Some are specific to wood or aluminum and should never be used for vinyl.

To avoid making that mistake, be sure to read all product labels before taking them to the register.

You may even want to consider performing the eye test prior to going to the store for cleaning supplies. If there’s any mildew, then you’ll want something that contains oxidized bleach to rid your siding off it.

8. Be Mindful of the PSI’s

Contrary to popular belief, there is such a thing as too much power on a pressure washer.

Too much power may damage the siding of your house, while too little power won’t provide an efficient pressure cleaning.

Try to keep your pressure somewhere between 1,000 to 1,400 Pounds per square inch (PSI).

If you’re not sure which one to start with then start low and work your way up. If you notice that the markings or stains on your siding aren’t going away after pressure has been applied, then up the PSI a bit.

Call an Expert for Your Pressure Washing Vinyl Siding Needs

Why take on the task of pressure washing vinyl siding all by yourself when you can have the touch of an expert service?

Hiring a pressure washing service will give you the most bang for your buck and save you hours of preparation and cleaning.

Be sure to read this article on the best time to pressure wash your home for more information on how the season affects your efforts.

For more inquiries, please reach out via our contact us page and we’ll be happy to assist you further.

Power Washing Tips

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Why power wash your home’s surfaces? Overtime your home’s siding, sidewalks, deck and other surfaces accumulates dirt, mildew, mold and stains. This not only impacts your abode’s appearance; it can also impact indoor air quality. Power washing can remove allergen in and around your home Moreover, left unaddressed exterior grime buildup can lead to significant stains and damage. Finally, power washing is the best way to prepare surfaces for paint, stain, sealing or refinishing.

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