Saturday, January 20, 2018

Fresh Enjoyment

April 17, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog

Conditioning Wood Surfaces for Spring & Summer Use

Whether it’s the intense summer sun or harsh winter weather, our outdoor wood surfaces regularly take a beating, and require regular maintenance to keep them in excellent shape.

Here are some ideas to insure that your decks, fences, benches, planter boxes, gates and all wooden outdoor surfaces are ready for your spring and summer enjoyment.   

Clean wood surfaces1. Clean wooden surfaces of dirt, stains, and noticeable wear. Since UV light from the sun breaks down the top levels of wood, you don’t want to apply any coating or sealant until the wood looks fresh and new again. We recommend a quick wash with either a power pressure washer or a stiff-bristled broom. If you use a pressure washer, get one that delivers 1,200 psi (pounds per square inch) of pressure or less, with a spray nozzle that fans an arc of water of about 25-40 degrees. This needs to be a QUICK wash, since softer woods, as well as the grain of the wood, can be damaged or eroded by power sprays. If you use a stiff fiber bristle brush, such as a heavy duty push broom, scrub the surface with a mix of water and laundry detergent, rinsing afterward. With both techniques, you need to allow the surfaces to dry for several days (7-10 days is recommended) before applying any type of finish.   

2. Treating Discoloration. If your deck, planter boxes or any outdoor wood surfaces are graying or looking dark and wood brightenersplotched, an acid wash is highly recommended. You will need to buy pre-mixed oxalic acid deck brightener, or you can buy the oxalic acid crystals and prepare the solution yourself. However, BE CAUTIOUS! You MUST wear protective clothing, eye protection, and gloves to keep yourself safe. If this method appeals to you, but you don’t want to try it yourself – please give us a call, we can do it safely, efficiently, and with the proper tools. Again, after acid washing, your wood surfaces must be allowed to dry completely.

3. Ready For Sealant. Now your wood surfaces are prepped and ready for the next step – sealant. There are many ways and methods of sealing. Some of these are:  


Before cleaning & sealant


*Clear Sealant  *Tinted Sealant (which is what we recommend)   *Wood paint  *Wood stain

Stained Fence

After cleaning & sealant

Take your time applying sealants and stains; if done correctly, the sealant or stain will save your wood for years to come, and save you time and money in the long run. 

Wood Planter4. Don’t Forget Other Outdoor Items. Remember, clean and treat ALL of your outdoor wood surface–planter boxes, benches, and even your fencing and gates. They will benefit greatly and last much longer when you give them careful attention.


5. Fix and Replace. If you have broken or warped boards (or perhaps a few loose screws!), NOW is the time to fix and/or replace them. Once the cleaning and sealing is done, your wood surfaces will have a consistent and uniform appearance, bringing you continued enjoyment throughout the years.

Deck refinished by the Fix It ProfessionalsDeck replaced by The Fix-It Professionals

Working in our yards, on our patios and decks, keeping our fencing sturdy and our planter boxes functional may seem like huge challenges, but by starting now, and taking the time to do it right, you’ll have a great sense of pride in your outdoor space!


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