As we are drying out from our stormy spring, it’s time to begin those outdoor projects in earnest. One of the most important (if not your favorite) is maintaining your formerly beautiful wood deck. But deck care need not be complicated. Wolman Wood Care Products has developed a 2-step process that can help you get your deck done in one day. Here’s how.
Important Tip: Start out early in the morning when it is cool, dry with little wind. Ideally, the temperature should be between 50 – 90 degrees with 24 hours of precipitation-free weather. All you will need is a garden hose, a deck brush (or pressure washer if you prefer), a roller or stain pad, and some protective equipment.
Step 1: Restore
Prepping the surface is the most important part of the process because the quality of the work you do here ultimately determines what the end result will look like. You have to completely remove any existing finish so that the new stain you apply will absorb into the top layers of wood to ensure maximum adhesion and uniform color. Remember to wear protective clothing, gloves and goggles as these products can be caustic to skin and eyes; and always follow product instructions!
So, how do you know if you still have existing stain on your deck? Pour some water in an unused spot on your deck to see if it beads. If it does, there is an existing stain or finish on your deck that needs to be removed. We recommend applying Wolman’s DeckStrip Stain & Finish Remover and letting it sit on the surface for 15 minutes. Then either scrub or pressure wash and rinse thoroughly with water.
Also, if your deck has turned gray, has mildew, bird droppings or anything that stripping did not remove, we recommend using Wolman’s DeckBrite Wood Cleaner. DeckBrite is formulated to clean gently without dissolving the wood structure or bleaching the surface white. Simply mix DeckBrite with water per package instructions, apply with brush and leave on for 10 minutes. Again, brush or pressure wash and rinse thoroughly with water. Allow deck to dry until wood is dry to touch.
Step 2: Protect and Beautify
Without protection, wood that is exposed to outdoor weather will eventually warp, split, rot and decay from water absorption and gray from UV exposure. To prevent this deterioration, apply a protective coating that is water-repellent and UV-resistant. Once coated, your wood will better withstand the elements and look beautiful.
Once the deck is clean and dry, apply a clear or tinted water repellent sealer, pigmented stain or wood preservative coating depending on the look you want to achieve. We like Wolman Raincoat wood stain because it provides beautiful sheer matte color that is semi-transparent allowing you to see the wood grain. It is economical, can be applied in one day and lasts up to 4 years. Whichever product you choose, be sure to test the stain in an inconspicuous spot on your deck to make sure you like the color. Apply stain evenly with a nylon brush, roller or stain pad. If possible, avoid applying stain in direct sunlight as it will dry too quickly. If you’re using Wolman Raincoat, one coat is all that is needed. Allow stain to dry 24 hours before replacing furniture or walking on the deck.
That’s it! In one day your deck will look like new and you can get on with enjoying your summer!