Decking Maintenance

Decking Maintenance Advice

Whether you have a small or large area of decking it can really transform the look and feel of your garden. When it is first laid it looks and feels amazing underfoot, however, after a year or two it can start to look tired, faded and can become extremely slippery underfoot if it isn’t maintained and treated annually. The wet, cold weather in the UK can make it extremely slippery to walk on and the wood will start to change colour and become patchy. Read our Decking Maintenance Advice and it will prolong its life and ensure it looks lovely and is safe to walk on.

Decking is relatively easy to maintain, but like anything exposed to the elements, some maintenance is required. Regular maintenance will ensure it lasts anything from 15 – 30 years or more and when it has been treated it will look and feel brand new again. Adding some pots to your decking area, comfortable seating or an outdoor dining table and chairs will ensure you can enjoy your outside space in the warmer months and often bring the comfort of the inside out.

Maintaining your decking is easy if you know how to, and you have the right tools and products.

Like with any surface inside, debris and dirt will build up if it’s not cleaned and maintained. We are all guilty of not noticing our gardens in the winter and then when spring is on its way we all have a big haul and tidy up which takes forever to get it ready for summer.

When any outside wood gets wet which it will do in the UK throughout the summer and winter it often starts to go mouldy, grow mildew and algae and this is when it will become extremely slippery and dangerous to walk on.

Giving it a regular sweep in the summer and winter will reduce the build-up of moss, mould, mildew, algae and debris. It doesn’t take long and will help you when it comes to stripping it back and re-staining it.

However much you look after your decking it will always be subjected to stains from the elements, from it being used, the odd drink or food being dropped as well as the exposure to the sunlight. This can make your decking look uneven in colour and quite tired as the years go on.

The odd stain from food or drink can be wiped up using a damp cloth and you can try using a spray of Eco Solutions Grime Go if there is a stain. Read on for our  Maintaining & Renovating Decking Advice.

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Removing Varnish

Removing Varnish from……Home Strip® Paint & Varnish Stripper

Perfect for DIY and Up-Cycling Projects

Whether you are upcycling furniture or renovating a property, Home Strip® Paint & Varnish Stripper is a ‘Go-To’ product that you can use for Removing Varnish from all surfaces, quickly and safely.

Traditional Ways of Removing Varnish

Removing Varnish by Sanding

The traditional way to remove varnish from a surface has always been sanding, however, it is a laborious job and takes forever. You would use medium sandpaper (150 grit) to remove the top layers of varnish and then as you get closer to the original surface you want to remove the varnish from you would use finer sandpaper (220 grit). it takes a long time, makes a lot of dust and mess, is very labour intensive and hard work on your arms, hands and fingers. You need to sand the surface in stages and layers and then wipe it clean so you can then start on the next layer. You should wear a mask when you are sanding as you will breathe the dust fibres in and always wear gloves to protect your hands as much as possible. Flat surfaces are the easiest to sand, compared to curved surfaces and joins which are really tricky to completely remove the varnish from. When you have finished and all the varnish has been removed you should wash the surface with warm soapy water to remove any dust and leave it to completely dry before you treat the surface with anything else.

Removing Varnish using a Heat Gun

A heat gun works by softening and loosening the varnish making it easier to remove. It is surprising but a heat gun doesn’t scorch the wood or surface you are removing the varnish from, however, when you have used the heat gun to soften the varnich which is time-consuming you then also have the task of scraping the varnish to remove.

You should always wear protective goggles and gloves when using a heat gun and be really vigilant as you are doing it so as not to overheat the surface and burn yourself.

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