Is your deck ready for summer?

by RobertKeith

There is no better time to enjoy the timber deck than the warm summer months. Use the time before summer comes to make certain the deck looks beautiful and is ready for the summer.

Summer is without doubt the time for the decks to shine, as people flock outside to get the most out of the warm beautiful season. Whether it is for entertaining guests, enjoying a cup of coffee, or kids playing games, the deck is easily one of the most popular settings when the heat is on. The summertime is also the time when the deck is most affected by wear and tear, as the strong UV rays beam down on the wood, drying them out. If left untreated, the beautiful smooth deck becomes discolored, dry and even splintery, making the months leading to summer the perfect time to give the timber deck some love and care.

Faded Deck
Faded Deck

Ensuring the longevity of your quality timber decking is easy, as an annual quick application of decking oil all that you need to ensure the timber maintains a nice smooth surface with a nice rich color.  Below you will find some helpful tips to help you maintain the decks anyone can follow.

First of all, move all the furniture and loose objects from the deck, before giving it a good clean. Ensure that you remove all bird droppings and spills with a wet rag.

If your decking oil has protected the timber up until this time without the timber getting dry, all you need to do is give the timber a new coat of your favorite decking oil. If the timber is starting to get dry and splintery, you will be faced with the job of sanding them down to a nice smooth surface again before applying the protective layer of decking oil. When sanding the deck, make certain that you sand along with the boards. The professionals will use an electronic floor sander. If you choose to go down this path, make certain that you do not sand for too long in the one spot, as you will create a dip in the deck. A great tool for manual sanding is the floor sanding stick, where you can remain upright while sanding. This should do the majority of the deck, before finishing off the edges and hard to reach spots by getting down on your knees and using a sanding block or a piece of sandpaper folded in thirds.

Before applying the decking oil, make certain that you broom away all dust, hair and other particles that would otherwise get stuck under the decking oil.

Oiling Decking Boards
Oiling Decking Boards

Although you can use a paint brush to apply the oil, we recommend using a sheep wool application pad if you wish to save time. You can also purchase a stick that you can attach the woolen pad to in order to save your back, enabling you to stand upright while applying the decking oil. Using a woolen pas also reduces the chances of getting loose hairs and bristles being embedded into the deck. Ensure that you “cut in” around the edges, the hard to reach places, around fence posts and any other tricky area using a small brush. Make certain that the brush does not leave any bristles behind. If you are applying decking oil to a second storey veranda with gaps between the boards, make certain that you remove any objects from under the deck and cover the area with a plastic drop sheet, as the decking oil is guaranteed to produce drips to the lower area.

Plan ahead so that you will not stain yourself into a corner, rather ensure that you end up at a staircase or door after finishing the application to avoid having to be rescued by a ladder.

Pour some decking oil into a paint tray, and dip the applicator into the oil, while avoiding getting it completely saturated, as it will be more prone to dripping. Apply liberally without leaving puddles of oil by moving the applicator along the deck, covering every inch of timber. Dry timber can benefit of getting two applications. Wait at least 24 hours, before reapplying. The oil might need longer drying time depending on the level of humidity and the type of decking oil used. Repeat the steps of cleaning the deck before reapplying. For an ultimate professional job, give the deck a very light sand before the second application.

Timber Deck
Timber Deck

Your deck will now be ready to withstand the harsh conditions of strong UV rays and spilled coffee while being splinter free for the little feet to run freely around.

These tips have been brought to you by Max Francis Quality Floors.

Updated: 11/10/2014, RobertKeith
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