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    1337 Williamson St.

    Madison, WI 53703

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    Entries in deck staining (2)


    Power-washing and Deck Staining

    Deck Refinishing - enjoy complete deck restorations in Madison wi

    This time of year, we get a lot of calls for people seeking to refinish their back deck. The stain is flaking off, mold and mildew have discolored the deck boards and have created a slick and unsightly surface to walk on. There are a couple of methods to remove mold and mildew and generally restore a deck to its original luster. 

    1. Pressure-wash with a cleaning solution like Deckwash from Sherwin Williams or Jomax.
    2. Strip previous coating of existing stain and reapply new stain. 

    In the first example, a deck is power-washed with a bleach-solution. This will remove any dirt and grime in addition to mold and mildew from the deck. The power-washing will most likely raise the grain in the wood a little, so sanding is required. We like to use 80 or 100 grit sandpaper on an orbital sander and lightly scuff all of the deck surfaces. Not only will the sanding remove raised grain but will help the the new stain soak in evenly across the deck boards and railings. 

    Always make sure to let the deck dry a day or two in the sun after power-washing before sanding or staining.

    The second example, we are using a more drastic approach to the deck refinishing. Here, we are stripping the previous coating off and starting new. 

    When to strip a deck? A: When the previous coating is peeling or wearing off unevenly. Or when switching from a solid-color stain to a semi-transparent stain.



    How is a deck refurbished?

    A deck is refurbished by removing the previous stain and preparing the surface for a new sealant.

    Decks require power-washing. During any deck refurbishing job our painters put down the brush and pick up a power-washer. The house must be kept wet and clean if any strippers are being used to remove old stain. (Yes, there are green strippers.) A good power-washing will be with the grain and done in long straight motions over the deck boards. Maintain a constant height and steady hand. If wood grain does get raised we lightly sand it to make the deck smooth again.

    Purchasing a Deck Stain: Deck stains are not created equal, not by a long shot. Go with the best. Check with consumer reports, ask the professionals. The best deck stains are more expensive but more resistant to the extremes in climate we have here in Madison and the rest of Wisconsin. The longevity and sustained beauty of these high end stains, such as, Sikkens, will more than pay for itself in the long run. It’s an investment. We like to use Sikkens brand stains in a low-VOC formula.

    Eric Welch Painting and the Deck Refurbishing Process: Railings, deck boards, and spindles are all most commonly coated with an oil-base semi-stain. We are now seeing equal performance from water-base semi-stains as well. A china bristle brush is necessary to use with oil-base stains and nylon or polyester is fine with the water-base. Always start with the railings and spindles first and work your way down and around until only the deck boards remain. Apply stain evenly all the way across a deck board before moving to the next and work your way back and off the deck leaving the stairs or break in the railing for last. We like to apply two and sometimes even three coats of semi-stain to a surface as deck boards are exposed to the biggest extremes of the weather and heavy wear and tear. Due to the climate extremes EWP offers a one-year warranty on all deck refinishing. You can expect up to 2 to 4 years of looking its best. Be wary of deck-staining systems promising more.