HARDWOOD DECK MAINTENANCE
Frequent wetting of decks should be avoided (sweep or clean, don’t hose). Adequate ventilation should be provided to allow rapid drying after rain or watering. Pot plants should be on trays and prevented from overflowing. Shrubs which permanently shade the deck and creepers on rails etc. should be avoided.
Reapplication of finishes will be required at regular intervals, depending on finish type and degree of exposure. Before recoating all decks shall be thoroughly cleaned and debris removed from between boards. For some finishes, decks may also require sanding. Recoating shall be carried out in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Hardwood timber decking boards will maintain their appearance and form for a longer period of time if they’re covered by a roof. Whilst this isn’t always possible, a timber deck that is covered can deliver enormous benefits to the homeowner, namely:
- The decking boards will not have to be re-oiled as often if the deck is protected from the full exposure of the weather.
- As the boards won’t be exposed to the full weather extremes they won’t expand/contract as much, thereby reducing the likelihood of timber splitting, warping, cupping etc.
- The deck will require less cleaning – less leaves and dust will collect on the deck if the area is covered.
- A covered timber deck can be used all year round which adds to the liveability of the home
If the Decking area cannot be covered it is worth considering using narrower decking boards as they shed water more readily and will therefore be less prone to warping.
All decks shall have a finish applied as protection against the weathering effects of sun and rain.
Note: Unprotected timber exposed to the weather will fade to a silver-grey colour and could distort and develop splitting and surface checking.
One coat of a water repellent preservative or an oil-based primer plus one coat of the selected finish shall be applied to the top surface of joists and to all surfaces of decking (including cut ends) prior to fixing. Additional coats shall be applied (to manufacturer’s instructions) to the top surface of decking after construction.
Decking Oils / Decking Stains
Decking oils and stains are available which provide a relatively natural, semi-transparent, protective finish. Solvent (Oil) or water-based stains are available often with mould inhibiting additives. Decking stains with light coloured pigments are recommended as they absorb less heat and only slightly change the natural colour of the timber.
Reapplication is generally necessary every two to five years depending upon the amount of pigment included, and the degree of exposure. Apart from cleaning, no additional surface preparation is generally required.
COMPOSITE DECK MAINTENANCE
Composite decking requires no sanding and oiling!
Of course, your deck will get dusty and dirty from normal living. To keep it looking at its best, regularly clean it with water using a mop or broom to remove any built-up dirt.
If you spill red wine, soy sauce, oil or other foodstuffs on the deck the best thing to do is to flush it immediately with water, and lightly scrub with warm soapy water.
To avoid scratching the deck, place furniture pads (or small squares of carpet) under your outdoor chairs. This will stop scratches from constantly sliding chairs in and out.
Around the pool, decking boards will not suffer from chlorinated pool water. However, be careful not to spill undiluted chlorine or pool salt directly onto the boards, as these are strong chemicals and may stain the boards. We recommend mixing your pool solutions away from the deck.
For more detailed information download the Care & Maintenance Guide: