Summer is finally here so it’s time to slap on some sunscreen, get your outdoor cushions out of the garage and take a book (and a cocktail) out to your deck for some chill time. But hang on a minute- how’s the state of your deck? Fit for daydreaming and relaxing or in desperate need of a lift?
We shared the signs your deck is in need of some TLC in our latest post, but basically, if your deck is patchy, weathered, mouldy or mildewy, it’s time to give it some expert loving. Here are our tips for getting your deck summer ready.
Our number one essential tool for bringing your deck back to life doesn’t involve paintbrushes, rollers or a pressure washer. The most important tool you need is a smart phone with a meteorology app, particularly if your deck is exposed to the elements. Why? You need at least 24 hours without rain to get the best results from your specialty products. Check the forecast, keeping in mind that direct sunlight can be as damaging to your end result as rain. When your deck is too hot the product won’t adhere to the timber and will give a patchy result. If you have days of fair weather- no rain, not too hot- go for it. If there’s a chance of rain or high temperatures, wait for a break in the weather.
It was Abraham Lincoln who said ‘Give me six hours to cut down a tree, and I’ll spend five hours sharpening my axe,’ and who can argue with Honest Abe? Its true- preparation is key to not only extending the performance and longevity of your deck, but also to getting the absolute most out of our technologically-advanced wood care products.
Timber needs to be thoroughly clean before applying deck stain, with all surface tannins, water stains, extractives and dirt removed. This allows the timber grain to open, so the stain can penetrate and adhere to the decking. Use Simply Woodcare Wood Cleaner with a stiff scrubbing brush, and allow to stand for ten minutes before using a pressure cleaner to rinse it off your deck.
Deck clean? Now it’s time to apply your deck stain in your chosen colour (see here for the latest trends in timber colour). In terms of the amount of product required, each timber variety has different characteristics, and coating specifications change for each. However a basic formula to determine how much product you need is by calculating your deck’s square meterage. For example, if your deck is 6m x 5m that means it’s 30 square metres. Haymes Dexpress has a coverage rate of 10 square metres per litre, therefore divide 30 by 10 which will give you 3, then double that amount for the 2 coats you require. Ok that’s enough maths for one day!
When applying the stain, be sure to apply as per our specifications so you get the life, colour and sheen that you expect. Apply it generously along the length of the board, working two to three boards at a time, using a good quality brush and applicator. If you’re trying a new colour for your deck you may like to test the product on an unobtrusive area, or use an off-cut piece of timber first so you can have a good understanding of how the end result will look.
Finally, periodically cleaning your deck with either a mild detergent or Simply Woodcare Wood Cleaner will rejuvenate the deck’s surface and extend its life by removing dirt and stains.
Haymes has a range of products specifically designed to protect and enhance the natural beauty of timber. Visit your local paint specialist or check out our Haymes Simply Woodcare range online. The best way to find a product suited for your deck is to look at the samples displayed in store, or alternatively take a sample home if available.
Recoating your deck is one of the (rare!) jobs around the home where you get a real sense of achievement with noticeable results. So what are you waiting for, go forth and enjoy being in your outdoors this summer!