As autumn transitions into winter, the staff at TimberSeal provides a guide to restoring and preserving the wood on your deck. Rebuilding a deck or porch is a project many homeowners take on in the Region, so TimberSeal offers a comprehensive guide to restoring and preserving any wood structure you may have.
The first step of restoring any wood that may be used for your home is to evaluate the lumber that you plan to use. Determining what your project needs is a vital step to beginning the restoration process. Obtaining the dimensions your project requires and inspecting the overall condition of your lumber is also crucial. You can get samples of different finishes from TimberSeal.
The next step is to perform a deep clean on the structure. You must determine if you need to use a deck cleaner or a stain stripper. If the wood on your deck is gray or looks dirty, then using a deck cleaner will be the best option. If the wood has a previous stain on it, use the stain remover to strip the wood of the previous stain. After the cleaning or stain removal is completed, let the wood dry for 24-48 hours to ensure the lumber has dried completely before applying a deck stain or sealer.
Once your wood has been cleaned and dried, you must brighten and neutralize the wood. This process is accomplished through applying a specially blended brightening agent on the lumber. The goal is to neutralize the pH of the wood that has been changed from the cleaning agents used in the previous step. TimberSeal provides their own specially blended brightening agents which can be adjusted on a per job basis. Once the brightening agent is applied, there will be a short dwell period, followed by one final rinse. The solution adds a mildew inhibitor to the wood’s surface and creates additional protection under the finish.
After the brightening agents are applied to the lumber, you must let the wood dry completely. The time this process takes can vary depending on the weather during the time of year you do the job. Typically, the process takes two to three days. The moisture content of the wood should be no more than 12% when sealing.
The most important step before sealing or staining your deck is performing any detail work or repairs to the wood. If the lumber is splintering or “furring”, you must sand the area down prior to staining. The sanding ensures that the area is smooth and splinter free for those who will be using the deck.
Finally, once your deck has been cleaned and sanded and you check the moisture, you must seal the wood. When applying your chosen finish to the wood, make sure you apply the coat in long, even strokes. For problem areas such as in between cracks, use a paintbrush. Usually, one coat of stain is enough to finish the job. Once the stain dries after about 24 hours, your deck restoration is complete. The new stain will breathe new life into any old, graying deck.
If you are interested in TimberSeal’s services, you can call them at 1-866-WOODCARE or check out their website at www.timberseal.net.