Should I Clean My Deck Before Staining?

Do I Need to Use Deck Cleaner Before Staining?

Once the weather starts warming up, it's important to remember that spring cleaning applies to more than just the inside of your home. Cleaning and staining your deck is a crucial task to keep wood decks looking as fresh and strong as day one! While homeowners are planning out their deck cleaning methods and begin to prep their decks for the annual coat of new deck stain, they often ask us here at DecksDirect, "Do I have to use a deck cleaner before staining my deck?"

Throughout the year, dirt, mildew, sap, and algae growth can build up on the surface of your deck boards. If you're moving into a new home with an existing deck, it may have been a few years since the existing outdoor space has been thoroughly cleaned. As the rain, snow or extreme temperatures of the past year have worn down wood deck boards, UV rays from the bright sunshine have also been taking their toll on your decking materials.

How To Clean A Deck Before Staining

Cleaning your deck and treating your entire deck surface every year will extend the overall life of your home's outdoor space while preserving the long-lasting beauty of your deck. Here are some tips on how to clean a deck before staining:

Do I Need To Use Deck Cleaner Before Staining My Wood Deck Boards?

In short, yes. We highly recommend using a deck cleaner when prepping your deck for a new coat of deck stain. We'd also recommend using a deck brightener before staining your deck, though this step isn't required.

Deck cleaners, such as the Wood Deck Cleaner and Brightener by DeckWise or the TimberTech Deck Cleaner, will lift and remove any stuck-on grime from your wood deck boards. These deck cleaning solutions will soak down into the dry wood. Then oxygen ions will deep clean the wood deck surface by breaking apart dirt, algae and mildew molecules. You can then rinse off the deck with your garden hose.

Should I Sand Or Strip My Deck Boards Before Applying Cleaner and Deck Stain?

If you're working with a previously stained or painted deck, be sure to strip or sand the existing wood deck prior to applying the deck cleaner. Stripping, sanding, and then cleaning your old wood deck will truly get your deck primed and ready for a long-lasting and beautiful coat of deck stain or paint.

Learn how do I clean my deck before staining it and gain a gorgeous, exotic-looking deck like this beautiful Teak wood deck

Cleaning Mold, Moss, Or Algae From Wood Decking

You can also clean mold from decking, remove moss from your deck, and clean algae from wood with DeckWise Wood Deck Cleaner and Brightener. In stock and ready to use, this cleaner prevents mold, blocks algae growth and brings new life back to your outdoor space.

Want To Cut Down On Yearly Cleaning and Never Touch A Stain Brush Again? Go Composite!

It’s important to consistently clean wood decks to keep them beautiful and strong. But if you’re tired of the regular maintenance, consider replacing your wood decking with modern low-maintenance composite decking!

Composite deck boards are made from a blend of natural wood fibers and synthetic materials. The wood gives each board a beautiful, natural look, while the synthetic components add strength and durability while producing a board that holds its texture and color without ever requiring you to sand, stain, or paint your deck. To learn more, check out our guide to low-maintenance decking materials or browse our beautiful composite decking options.

More Deck Project Resources