Most homeowners take cleaning the deck for granted. But because it is exposed to the different kinds of weather and elements, it can become dirty, unsightly, and unsanitary. For this reason, you need to take the time to clean your deck. However, you need to know the pros and cons of this home maintenance task.

To clean this outdoor area, you will need to use a pressure washer. This is a good thing because you can easily get rid of grime and other unsavory substances from the deck. Unfortunately, if you don't know how to properly handle the pressure washer, you might do some damage to your deck. For instance, using the wrong nozzle or getting the tip too close to the surface can damage or destroy your deck. If you want to avoid this problem, you can consider employing the services of a professional cleaning service. But if you want to try doing it on your own, here are a few tips.

Choose The Right Nozzle And Tip

While getting ready for this maintenance task, you should choose the right nozzle and tip. It is recommended to use a 40" spray pattern to get the best results. This will help you cover the larger surfaces. If your pressure washer is less than 2,000 PSI, you should keep the nozzle at least a foot away from the deck to avoid damaging the surface. If the PSI is between 2,000 and 3,000, keep the nozzle two to three feet away.

When using the pressure washer, once you press the trigger, don't aim it at the window or other items. This will result in property damage or destruction. More importantly do not point it to another individual as it may cause injuries. Lastly, before you start washing the deck, you should try it out on a small area of the deck first.

Pressure Washing Technique

You should start pressure washing at the 600 PSI level then increase the pressure gradually. You should also point the nozzle a few feet from the surface then lower the wand until you can point it on the dirtiest spots. Sweep your arms back and forth. Be very consistent with your sweeping motion because you might end up with uneven strokes which won't look good afterwards. It is best to start at your home's foundation then gradually move away.

Choose The Right Cleaning Solution

It is also very important to use the right cleaning solution to obtain excellent results. Here are a few things you should remember:

  • Do not use bleach because it will discolor your deck. It might also damage the pressure washer
  • You can use a biodegradable pressure washer chemical because it will be safer for your deck, the pressure washer, as well as the lawn or the flowerbed around the deck. Lastly, this type of cleaner is very gentle on the wood.
  • Do not let the cleaning solution stay on the wood for more than 15 minutes because it will damage the wood.
  • Rinse the solution with fresh, clean water.