Composite Deck Care
Composite decking is an alternative to wood decking made primarily from recycled plastics and wood fibers. While not truly composite decking, some 100% plastic products are often included in the category. Composites are often positioned as having "lower maintenance" and higher durability than wood.
However, similar to any surface exposed to outdoor and environmental elements, composites can fade and are susceptible to mold, mildew etc. Therefore, composite decking will require standard cleaning and care to remove dirt and mildew stains and maintain its beauty over the years. Most manufacturers recommend you clean composite surfaces at least twice a year to prevent deep stains. In addition, some of them discuss staining or painting as a means to add color.
How to Clean Your Composite Surface
Equipment Needed: Broom, Pump-Up Sprayer, Hose and Scrub Brush
Optional: Mop, Roller, Watering Can, Bucket, Mixing Stick, Pressure Washer
Before starting to clean you will need to choose the cleaner product that is right for your composite surface. We recommend testing the product on a small trial patch before applying to the entire area as this will give you an idea of what it will look like on your surface. Remove all deck items and decorative furniture from the surface to help keep everything clean. Sweep any loose dirt and debris from the deck and if the surface is really dry or in direct sunlight, lightly wet it with some water.
Prior to application, it is recommended that you saturate the ground around plants or shrubs in order to dilute any overspray they encounter. Then cover the plants and shrubs to protect them from overspray. Wearing protective clothing, safety goggles and gloves can help reduce the chances of coming in contact with the product.
Planning the application process will help expedite the project. If you are cleaning a horizontal surface, work backwards so that you do not walk on the surface being treated. For vertical surfaces, work from the bottom up. Exercise caution when working on wet surfaces, as they tend to be slippery.
Our Products Can Be Used On Composites
Our deck cleaners perform well on composites. The Thompson's® WaterSeal® brand makes several ready-to-use cleaners designed to handle the spectrum of different cleaning needs. For example, Thompson's® WaterSeal® Deck Wash can be used to remove stains from dirt, mildew, algae and fungus on composites, as can Thompson's® WaterSeal® Oxy Foaming Action Exterior Multi-Surface Cleaner.
Our Thompson's® WaterSeal® Deck & House Oil and Latex Stains can be used to add color to composite surfaces. Before you begin your project, a small trial patch is recommended on an inconspicuous area before applying over the entire surface. Our stains are available in 50 semi-transparent and 67 solid shades.
Note: Read the product label instructions thoroughly.