4 Tips For Revitalizing Your Deck This Summer
Few things in your home create lasting memories like a backyard deck. It's a great place to spend time with the family, host the company party, or spend some time alone with a good book. In order to enjoy your deck year after year, it's vital to undergo routine maintenance on a yearly basis. There are several things to think about such as pressure washing your deck, making necessary repairs, re-applying stain periodically, and of course give it the right coat of sealant which extends it's life and protects it from the elements. Below are a few handy tips to help you with your wood deck, including choosing proper stains, sealants and deck cleaning in Atlanta, GA.
Pressure Washing Is The Crucial First Step
The simplest and most practical thing you do to your deck is to keep it clean. We often think that deck maintenance is merely keeping it swept and pulling out a wet mop to give it a good scrubbing. Your deck, however, absorbs harmful substances such as dirt, grime, liquids, grease, and mold and algae. All of these materials combined with outside elements instantly deteriorate the wood and begin compromising your decks stability and strength. Hiring a professional pressure washing company in Atlanta to pressure wash your deck will do wonders for its longevity and keep it looking good without damaging the surface.
Refinishing: The Key to Wood's Natural Beauty
Decking is very similar to wood floors. It can only be refinished so many times before it loses it's lush appearance. If you refinish a worn surface you may find that you're just spinning your wheels and wasting time and money. Although there are many different times of stain, the primary purpose is to accent the current surface, so even with multiple layers of stain, your surface may be so worn out, that there's no way to bring out it's natural beauty. You want to consider replacing the top boards and start all over again. The quality of the wood that you used for your deck is also a factor, so don't go cheap. Invest in high quality north American wood that will last.
Choosing The Right Stain For Your Hardwood Deck
Just like choosing the right wood is important, so is choosing the right stain if you're going to invest in deck staining in Atlanta. There are essentially 3 different types of stain that you can use for decking.
- Transparent Stain - Transparent stain is available in both water-based and oil based. Water based are simple to apply, but do not have the long lasting qualities that oil based stain has. The proper application of transparent stain is to merely bring out the qualities of wood that already has a beautiful natural finish. Some examples of this may be cedar or red wood. Transparent stains have to applied more frequently than other types of stain.
- Semi-Transparent - You can get semi-transparent stain in water or oil based as well. They generally last much longer than fully transparent stain and need to be applied about every three to four years. Semi-transparent stain has more flexibility than other types of stain and can be applied to different types of wood. If you use your deck a lot, then semi-transparent stain is the way to go.
- Solid Stains - If the wood in your deck is a bit more worn and filled knots and unattractive spots, then you can cover them up with solid stain. Although solid stain is great at creating a brand new look over the decking, it's also vulnerable to scratches and wears out quite easily. Be aware of how much activity will occur on a deck with solid stains and treat the surface with absolute care.
Don't Forget The Sealant
No deck restoration project is complete without applying sealant. Sealant protects both the finish on your deck and the wood. Since your deck is outside it's exposed to wind, rain, humidity, and constant sunlight. Atlanta has both hot summers and sub-freezing winters, so temperature will also be a factor. The right coat of sealant will insure that your deck can withstand all of these elements, and will give it long life. It's smart to hire a professional for deck sealing in Atlanta, so that it gets done correctly and fast, as efficiency is the key to proper application.