While composite decking has all the aesthetic appeal of timber decking, it can also be a cost-effective alternative.
However, despite the financial benefits, you will still need to care and look after your decking to ensure it maintains its natural appeal; if you want to know when, how and what to do to ensure that your composite decking retains that terrific look and finish after you have had it fitted, then please read on.
Sweeping your decking – when and how:
An easy but effective way to clean your decking is to simply sweep it. The frequency of your sweeping routine will depend on several factors – how exposed your decking is to the outside elements, the frequency and type of natural debris that will fall and remain on your decking, and whether stains occur due to this fallen debris. Also, you will have decking ‘traffic’ due to your family and friends walking on it, and the activities that occur on your decking (BBQ’s, children’s games, etc). Sweeping is very effective in quickly clearing your decking from all types of debris, and the remains can go straight into your bin or mulching container.
“What if stains remain after I sweep?”
No one likes to see stains on their outdoor decking, so there are a few simple cleaning routines you can use to remove them.
Use your garden hose to remove excess dirt and debris:
This is a quick fix as your hose is usually located close to your composite decking; just turn it on and spray the hose in the direction where you want the debris to go.
Apply warm water to the stain and sweep again:
If brush strokes alone are not cutting it, pour warm water (not hot water!) onto the decking stains and let it stand and settle for between 5-10 minutes. This will allow the warm water to integrate, soften and dislodge the stained material; this will make it easier to remove when sweeping. Repeat the process if you can see it is working, but the stain has not been removed the first time.
Apply warm, soapy water and use a soft-bristled brush:
Another effective method is to add a soapy solution to the warm water and apply it as per the previous step. This time (after you have let the solution stand for 5-10 minutes) gently apply a soft-bristled brush to the stain until the debris has dissolved and can be readily removed.
In summary, a magnificently clean composite decking can be simply achieved if you follow a few simple steps; I have summarised them as follows:
Sweep your decking – the frequency will depend on the when debris settles on your decking,
- Sweep in the direction of the decking plank
- Use warm water
- Use warm, soapy water
- Use a soft-bristled brush
What NOT to do:
Do not use chemical cleaning agents – they will leave permanent marks on your deck.