How to clean composite decking

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With the first signs of spring in the air, many are looking to tidy up their gardens in anticipation. Decking is a popular choice in many gardens and in recent years many have invested in composite decking – which is made from both natural hardwood and synthetic materials, such as plastic – instead of traditional wood decking.

Composite decking is known for its durability, standing up well against weathering and stains.

Other positives associated with composite decking is its low maintenance reputation.

The decking is also known to come in a variety of different colours and it doesn’t need to be repainted or sanded.

However, composite decking is not without its criticisms.

One drawback of the decking is its high price, as often composite decking is more expensive than traditional wood decking.

Although composite decking looks more authentic than plastic decking, many argue hardwood decking has the edge looks-wise.

While composite decking is relatively low maintenance, it still needs to be cleaned every so often.

However, Decks.com say it’s important to stay away from harsh chemicals that might be used to clean other types of decking, as these might damage composite decking.

How do you clean composite decking?

Online, the general consensus is composite decking can be washed easily with a soap and water method.

Online and in DIY stores, several composite decking cleaners are available to purchase.

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However, some people have also reported good results from using a basic power washer to get dirt off their decking.

The Decks.com website explains: “All you need to make your eco-friendly composite deck cleaner is a little soap, water, vinegar and baking soda (for cases of mold) and a gentle pressure power washer (no greater than 3100 psi) and/or soft bristle brush to remove dirt, debris and other grime.

“It’s recommended that you administer a semiannual cleaning on your composite deck to preserve its longevity.”

Start by spraying the deck off first with a hose and then spray soap onto the decking.

Give the decks a gentle scrub and rinse the areas thoroughly afterwards.

For cases of mould, Decks.com says to start cleaning by rinsing the boards and applying a solution of two parts vinegar and one part water to affected areas.

Sprinkle some baking soda onto the area and let it soak for 20 minutes then give the areas a gentle scrub.

Rinse the area thoroughly to avoid leaving a sticky film on the decking surface.

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