How to Freshen Your Deck With Paint or Stain

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 07/05

Composite decking is one of the lowest maintenance decking options available. With a smooth surface that doesn’t splinter, composite decks are ideal for families, especially with children who love to run around with bare-feet. Although composite decks have these great qualities, the surface does fade from the elements. If you don’t mind the faded-deck look, you can get by without an annual staining. But, if you want to freshen and beautify your deck, here are some simple steps you can follow to do the project properly and inexpensively:

1. If your deck has mildew (almost all decks over a year old have mildew), it must be removed first.

  • Make a solution of 3 parts water to 1 part bleach and apply it to the entire deck surface (including rails, stairs, or benches). Wait 20 minutes, then thoroughly scrub all mildewy areas with a long-handled brush. Then rinse off the water, bleach and any mildew residue.

2. Second, you want to gently sand the surface to remove the gloss on the composite material.

  • Lightly sand the entire surface area with very fine #220 sandpaper. Sand in the same direction as the wood grain for textured material. When you finish sanding, remove the dust and debris by washing the deck with any household all-purpose detergent or a special deck-cleaner. Be sure to thoroughly rinse away the detergent.

3. Let the deck completely dry before applying any paint or stain.

  • For Stain: If you are staining your deck, then you can now go ahead and apply the stain without applying a primer beforehand. We recommend a quality acrylic latex solid color deck stain for composite decking.
  • For Paint: If you wish to paint your deck, then you must first apply a quality exterior latex stain-blocking primer recommended for use on plastic material. After priming, you can complete the job by applying a quality latex deck paint in either a satin or semi-gloss finish (higher gloss levels are recommended because they have better mildew resistance and are easier to clean).

Another thing you should know is that once you paint or stain a composite deck, you will have to repeat the process every 3 to 5 years, because even the highest quality paints and stains receive abrasion from wear and from the elements.

One last thing: make note of whatever stain or paint you decide to use. When your deck needs a new finish years down the road, you will receive better results if you use the same or similar product.

Your deck will be better than new if you follow these steps!

If you have any questions, feel free to call Chism Brothers Painting at 858-454-3580. We are happy to help!

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