Being a homeowner means that you have to take care of every little thing in and around your house. It is said that the yard is the best representative of the home, and if you don’t take care of the patio and deck, you risk your friends and neighbors think that you are an irresponsible person. Maintaining these areas is not as easy as it sounds, and depending on the main material used, you may need to use some tips and tricks to make the whole space look perfect. Composite decks are used in most of the houses, but there are some things we do, and some mistakes we make that lead to the trim looking bad and getting damaged.
In this article, we are going to talk about the most common mistakes people make when cleaning this surface, and we will give you some tips on how to avoid them. Note that you should always listen to the recommendations of the professionals that craft and install your trim, and if you need help, you can always contact service and get this area professionally cleaned.
1. Pressure washing
We all love to use the pressure washer. It helps us get rid of all the debris and all the dust without spending too much time doing the cleaning. It is probably the favorite tool of millions of people around the world, but when it comes to your composite patio, this is a tool you have to avoid by all means.
This material is a lot softer than regular wood, so when you use too much pressure you risk making dents and just damaging the surface. Even if you don’t notice a difference the first time you use the pressure washer, know that with time, you will definitely cause damage. When we apply pressure, we risk the deck opening up, and in time, it will get sunburns, and you also risk mold appearing. If you don’t notice these issues and make repairs right away, the material may even start to rot. So, you should either forget about pressure washing or if you decide to do it, you have to use the gentlest function possible.
2. Using the wrong products
As we mentioned before, this material is different than traditional wood, so you need to use the proper cleaning products. If you use something that is too harsh on the composite, you risk seriously damaging both the inside and the outside of the area.
According to thecompositedecking.co.uk, the highest quality boards are made of eco-friendly recycled wood and plastic, and because of this, you should treat them with the right items. Note that oxygenated cleaners work the best when it comes to cleaning the surface of the boards as well as in between and inside them. You can always talk to the manufacturer about the products they recommend, or you can specifically look for items that are made for this type of material. Don’t risk with DIY products, because even one wrong ingredient can cause permanent damage.
3. Using the wrong tools
The next thing we are going to talk about the tools that should be used when getting rid of the dirt on your trim. We mentioned that you should use the right products, but even if you use the best products, that’s only half of the work. If you combine the right products with the wrong tools, you still risk damaging the boards and the material itself.
Depending on the season, you should pay attention to the different items that you use. In the winter you should never use metal to remove snow, instead, you should opt for a plastic shovel or a snowblower. In the summer and spring, when there can be a lot of leaves and debris on the area, you should use a garden brush or a regular broom to remove all the dirt. Note that these items should have soft bristles, and you should never press too hard. In case you want to do a deep cleaning, then you should use a special brush with soft bristles that will not cause any damage to the material.
4. Forgetting to clean the whole surface
The last extremely common mistake people make when cleaning their composite decks is not cleaning the whole surface properly. We tend to clean the things that we can see, and we frequently forget that the gaps in between the boards should also be cleaned.
When you don’t clean these gaps, you risk the bottom of the boards getting moldy, and it may also start to rot in time. To clean these spaces, you don’t have to do much, and it does not require any special care. When you sweep the boards, make sure you put your broom or brush in between the boards as well. Visually inspect the space, and see if there is anything left.
This is especially important during the rainy season because fallen leaves can get stuck between the boards, and the moisture can damage the whole area. If you leave the leaves there, in time you will have to replace the whole thing, and that may cost money you planned to spend on something else.
These are the most common mistakes you should avoid when cleaning and maintaining your patio. In addition to this, you should never leave the area unprotected. Know that if you don’t protect it, especially in summer and during the rainy season, you will shorten its life. So, use the proper products, and after every cleaning, make sure you apply a protective layer on the whole surface.
Don’t forget the gaps, because as we mentioned, they are the most likely to get damaged. The thing you should pay attention to are waterproof products because they are known to trap the moisture inside the board. So, if you choose to use them, the deck should be completely dried inside and out. If you need any help with the proper maintenance, you can always look for a recommendation from the seller of the boards, or just contact a professional cleaning service. Treat your patio with care and you will have it for decades to come.