The long and rainy Vancouver winter is over, making it the perfect time to spring clean your vinyl deck! Spring is a great time to host friends and family for barbecues, get-togethers and backyard parties. Make the most of your beautiful vinyl deck by giving it the spring cleaning is deserves. With the warm weather coming, it’s the perfect time to learn how to spring clean your vinyl sundeck. Make this year’s deck cleaning the easiest ever, with the Citywide guide to spring cleaning your vinyl deck.
Vinyl decks are almost maintenance free, but like anything outdoors, require a little TLC to remain looking great for years to come!
Make the most of your deck this patio season – and spend more time outside! The first step is to clean your deck. By using our Citywide Vinyl Deck Cleaning Check-List, you’ll be on your way to more quality time outside!
STEP 1: PREP YOUR DECK
Protect your deck from premature degradation year-round by clearing it of debris.
Start by walking around your deck and clearing it of anything that could cause damage. Trim back branches and vegetation to at least a foot from the edge of your deck and supports to reduce future risk of damage. By letting plants grow unchecked around your deck, you risk insect infestation, storm damage, and dropping leaves, branches, and sap.
Next, clear your deck surface. Remove patio furniture, barbeques, plants, and decor. Then, sweep the deck to remove leaves and other debris, and clean gutters and downspouts to prevent drainage problems.
STEP 2: INSPECT YOUR DECK
BC’s stormy weather can take a toll on your outdoor space. On a sunny day, head outside and look for potential problem spots and wear and tear such as:
- Torn seams on vinyl decks
- Loose or cracked trim
- Detached or rusted flashing
- Peeling or missing caulk
- Signs of decay (soft spots)
- Separation of gutters
- Improper slope
- Insect damage
- Rodent/bird holes
- Cracked or leaking faucets
- Shifted curbs and retaining walls
The best way to avoid costly repairs, is to maintain and upgrade your deck the moment you spot a problem. Rot and worn fixtures weaken your deck, making it unsafe.
Inspect your vinyl deck’s surface and supports by walking the surface of your deck. Notice if you feel any weak or spongy spots beneath your feet. Pay special attention to any damp spots and parts in contact with fasteners. If a screwdriver can easily penetrate the wood ¼- ½ inch or break off a sliver without splinters, you might have rot.
Fixtures and supports—like posts, joists and the ledger board—can degrade over time. Take a close look where the deck connects to the house, and under your deck for signs of aging.
Next, check your railings for rot, loose bolts, rusted fixtures and general sturdiness. Consider replacing your maintenance-intensive wood railings with custom aluminum railings.
Make any necessary repairs before continuing your deck spring cleaning. Give us a call at 604-786-3325 if you need an expert.
If you’ve made it this far, your deck is well on its way to being party ready! The next few steps are easy and will have your deck looking fantastic in no time.
STEP 3: WET YOUR DECK
Thoroughly wet down your deck with a garden hose. If you use a pressure washer, don’t exceed 150 psi or point the nozzle directly at any seams or attachments. Improper use of a pressure washer can cause permanent damage, so don’t hold the nozzle too close to the deck!
Always use a cleaning product that states it’s safe for use on vinyl. By following the manufacturers’ recommendations for use, you can avoid any potential damage.
Some of the most popular Vinyl Deck Cleaners are:
- Vinyl Deck Cleaner (available from Duradek and on Amazon)
- Cascade Powdered Dish Detergent (diluted) – this is our most commonly recommended household solution
- Simple Green
- Tide Detergent (diluted)
Choose a gentle cleaner that’s available in your area, as some cleaners can damage your deck. Avoid using powered abrasives, steel wool, dry cleaning fluids, or lacquer thinner solvents.
STEP 4: SCRUB YOUR DECK
You’ll need a soft-bristled broom or brush for this step. The only time you might need a stiff bristle broom or brush, is for getting out really tough stains. Be very careful not to apply too much pressure, as you risk wearing down the embossed pattern of your vinyl.
Citywide Pro Tip: Use warm water on tough stains and save yourself the elbow grease of scrubbing!
STEP 5: RINSE YOUR DECK
Give your deck a good rinse, to remove any cleaner residue, and to make sure you haven’t missed any spots.
If you’ve used rock salt or other ice melting chemicals over the winter, it’s vital to clean it off at the start of spring. You risk having the sun ‘bake’ any of those chemicals into your deck if you don’t clean your vinyl at spring.
Give yourself a big pat on the back for making it this far!
Taking the time to spring clean your vinyl deck pays off. Enjoy your deck all summer long (and for many more patio seasons) knowing it’s clean and safe for you and your family!
If you need a hand getting your deck barbecue-ready this spring, Citywide Sundecks is ready to help!
When cleaning doesn’t cut it, it might be time to replace your vinyl deck. Citywide is your complete decking contractor for Metro Vancouver, with no job being too big or small for our expert crews.