I head conflicting advise on maintaining my deck. Some say you
damage the deck by pressure washing it. Does pressure washing it
remove the pressure treated chemical out of the wood? Also, If you do
wash it is detergent required? Our deck is in good shape except in a
few shaddy spots, it has mildew. I was going to pressure wash it
then seal it. should I not pressure was the fence if I don't plan to
seal the fence? Thanks.
Are you working on your deck or fence? You seemed to have jumped the
If you have pressure treated pine as you deck surface, don't power
wash it unless it is filthy and you have one of the little pee-wee
electric washers. They are more rinsers than washers, and they don't
generally have enough pressure to hurt much.
If you have a bigger (more powerful) washer, you can ruin the surface
of your deck easily. You can dig out the softwood between the hard
grain, and what I have found with pine is that you will fray up the
surface leaving it looking very ragged and much in need of a sanding.
And if you have soft spots or loose knots the high pressuret will tear
We use TSP (tri sodium phosphate - available at a cleaning supply
store) and water with long handled scrub brushes. With heavy mildew,
we pretreat with straight commercial strenght bleach, wetting the wood
You can rinse with a high pressure nozzle on the end of a hose because
you have hand scrubbed the surfaces, but sometimes for effect to
impress clients we use out pressure washer. They like the noise and
mess of the power washer and it makes them feel like the remaining
surface is extra clean when finished.
Wait a few hot days, then seal.
As for your fence, wash off the horizontal surfaces with a hose to
remove accumulated dust/dirt/debris and apply your sealer when dry.
I pressure wash (1300psi) my deck (pressure treated) every 2-3 years
since it was built depending on how dirty it gets. No ill effects yet.
I just use water and it gets everything off just fine. I've sealed it
twice, once when new and once since then. It is due for another
sealing but it can wait till next spring. My deck is 13+ years old and
looks damn near new. Just don't get too close with the washer head.
I have found that washing chemicals can cause discoloration on vinyl
siding, so bear that in mind. Otherwise I've found no problems power
washing anything (deck, drive, walkways, siding, etc.).
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.