DecksDirect Pro Tip: Keep Vinyl Railing Looking Great
1) General Splish and Splash
As with most railing and fencing, a soft general cleaning will be sufficient for the majority of decks, porches, and patios across the country. Fill an empty bucket with some room temperature water, and slowly add in some soft detergent or a mild household cleaning agent such as Dawn® dish soap. Use a soft cloth or clean rag, soak it in the soapy water, and gently scrub your vinyl railing. Watch as your surface spots and dirt melt away with ease! Avoid any residue left behind by removing any soap on your railing for more than 15 minutes and remember to rinse well with clean, non-soapy water.
2) Pressure Washing
Pressure washing can seem like a wonderful option for cleaning your vinyl railing, especially if your deck has been neglected for a year or two and has some dirt and debris built up over time. While power washing can be a fun way to get a deep clean on your vinyl deck railing, you need to make sure that you're doing it correctly! Set your pressure washer to the lowest setting possible and be sure to use a fan-tip nozzle when spraying. This will keep the water from damaging your rails or scuffing up the finish at all.
3) Pesky persistent Stains
From kids to backyard projects gone awry, a lot of odd things can end up on your deck railing from time to time! From rubber marks or tar and oil, permanent marker or nail polish remover; what's a homeowner to do? Simply use a melamine foam cleaning pad such as a Magic Eraser™ or Easy Eraser™ to wipe away those marks and stains for a beautiful outdoor area.
4) Harmless Mold and Algae
From small black dots to small swathes of green buildup, occasional mold or algae appearances can happen from time to time. This surface-issue mildew doesn't damage or affect your railing material at all, however, it can become quite an eye-sore over time. As these spots are simply resting on the exterior level of the vinyl, give your deck railing a nice, firm scrub-down using a foam cleaning pad or low-level pressure washer. Once rinsed away, prevent future occurrences with a swift wipe of white vinegar over the newly cleaned area.
5) Stronger Cleaners
You've tried a big bucket of soapy water, even ran through a box of Magic Eraser™ cleaning pads; but you still can't get rid of a pesky stain? Try a long-time favorite! Goof Off™ works extremely well at removing stuck-on elements or marks such as stickers, candle wax, tape residue, tree sap, crayon, and more. No tough scrubbing, no discolored spots, just a straightforward way to help your vinyl deck railing keep looking its best!
6) Bring Dull Spots Back to Life
After giving your vinyl railing a thorough cleaning, you may notice some spots that have a duller shine or don't look quite the same as before. No worries, this is quite common, especially with newly installed vinyl. To restore the shine, wipe the fencing down with a clean, damp cloth and watch the shine reappear in minutes. Still not quite as you want it? Dry the surface and apply a non-abrasive outdoor paste wax, such as one from Armor All® or Johnson & Johnson™. House wax, automotive wax or plastic boat polish can also help you revive the shine you want!
Now, for a few things we recommend putting away in the back of your cleaning cabinet when it comes to your vinyl deck railing:
-Never use an abrasive material to clean your railings such as Steel Wool, sandpaper, or a Scratch Pad. This can dull and damage your vinyl surface possibly beyond repair!
-Never use an abrasive cleaner such as bleach, ammonia, or Nanoscrub to polish up your vinyl fencing and railing.
-Lastly, never use any cleaners, materials, or tools that are not approved for use on vinyl.
If at any point in your project you have any questions, feel free to give our deck experts a call at 1-888-824-5316 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.