Outdoor decks are great to have, not only can you relax and unwind in your outdoor deck, but they’re also ideal for hosting parties and events. If you’ve got an outdoor deck however, it’s also crucial that you maintain it properly. If not regularly cleaned, your outdoor deck could gather dust, grow mold, and even start to rot – which could be detrimental to you and your family’s health.
When it comes to cleaning your deck cleaner, however, there are plenty of deck cleaners, according to Homedit, that you can purchase. While some of them are made of natural ingredients, others could be made of ingredients that aren’t great for your health. Instead of purchasing deck cleaners, why not consider making some of your own?
Below, we’ve curated a list of some of the best DIY homemade cleaner recipes to get you started.
Why Clean Your Deck
Let’s start with why it’s important to keep your deck sparkling clean.
It can affect your home’s value
An outdoor deck can help with dramatically improving the value of your home. It does, however, have to be in good shape. Replacing a deck can be a costly expense, something that potential buyers will take into consideration. Regularly maintaining your deck and taking care of it properly can extend the life of your deck to 20 years or more.
Nobody likes a neglected deck as it’s unsightly. Not only will your outdoor deck develop stains, but it can also result in cracked or splintered wood. Since your outdoor deck is exposed to a variety of weather conditions, it’s important that you take care of it properly.
A neglected outdoor deck can be incredibly dangerous and lead to injuries and even death. If you don’t take care of your outdoor deck, it can result in dry rot. With regular cleaning however, you’ll be able to take care of your deck properly and avoid any problems.
Ideas for DIY deck cleaner
Here are some DIY deck cleaners that you can consider making for your home.
1. Mildew and Algae Cleaner
This particular cleaner is not only easy to make, but it’ll also help you with getting rid of any mold and mildew on your deck. It contains ingredients that aren’t difficult to find and is also exceptionally effective. The ingredients that you’ll need are:
- 1 cup of trisodium phosphate
- 2 gallons of lukewarm water
- 1 cup of household bleach
To use this cleaner, you can follow the steps below:
- Hose down the deck with water to soak the wood.
- Apply the cleaner one area at a time before scrubbing each area with either a brush or a broom.
- Give it about 10 to 15-minutes to soak through.
- Once all of the stains are gone, go ahead and rinse your deck with fresh water.
- Let the deck dry completely before putting back your furniture and other items.
2. Deck Soap Scrub
While this may not be as good as using trisodium phosphate, dish soap is also a great alternative to use as a deck cleaner. The bleach will also help with getting rid of algae and mould. The ingredients you’ll need are:
- ¼ cup of ammonia-free liquid dish soap
- 2 quarts of household bleach
- 2 gallons of warm water
The steps are relatively similar to the above. This particular deck soap scrub is also excellent for decks that have oily stains, dirt and grime. Make sure that you’ve covered your plants when you’re using this deck cleaner, and ensure that you’ve properly rinsed off the deck cleaner.
3. Natural Deck Scrub
A great natural deck cleaning solution will only require the following ingredients:
- 1 cup of white vinegar
- 1 gallon of warm water
That’s it, there’s absolutely no bleach required in this particular natural deck cleaner. Since it’s made with natural ingredients, it’s great for decks that are made with delicate wood, or if you’re looking for a natural mixture that won’t damage any nearby plants that you’ve got.
This mixture is also great if you only have a few spots on your deck that you’d like to clean. Simply apply this mixture with a paintbrush and you’re good to go – no pressure washer or sprayer required. Once you’ve dipped and painted the area, let it sit for a while before rinsing it off.
Easy to Make Mildew Cleaner
This mildew cleaner is easy to make and will help with effectively killing algae and mildew. The ingredients you’ll need include:
- 1 gallon of lukewarm water
- 1 quart of household bleach
- 2 tablespoons of ammonia-free soap
- 2 cups of rubbing alcohol
Once you’ve got the mixture, go ahead and scrub it into your deck, let it sit and then rinse it away – it’s that simple. This effective solution is great at getting rid of any algae and mildew.
4. Homemade Bleach Scrub
With this deck cleaner, you’ll be using powdered oxygen bleach laundry cleaner to help with getting rid of any mildew. As a bonus, this scrub will also help keep yellow jackets away and prevent any wasp nests from forming. The ingredients you’ll need are:
- 2 gallons of hot water
- 2 cups of powdered oxygen laundry cleaner
- ¼ cup of liquid dish soap
Go ahead and mix the bleach and water before adding the soap in. It’s also milder than regular bleach so you’ll need to use it as soon as you’ve mixed it together. This particular scrub is great for decks that are in relatively good condition and don’t have major stains.
If you’ve got stains in your deck, you can consider making a solution with half bleach and half water. This is a much stronger formula so make sure that you’ve got the necessary protective gear. Let the deck absorb the cleaner for about 15-minutes or so before you go ahead and wash it away. If you don’t have a pressure washer, you will need to scrub the cleaner into the deck, it’s hard work but worth it!
5. All-Purpose Homemade Deck Cleaner
If you just need a regular homemade all-purpose deck cleaner, this is the way to go. The ingredients that you’ll need include:
- 1 gallon of water
- 1 cup of powdered laundry detergent
- ¾ cup of oxygen bleach – this is optional, but if you’ve got mildew stains it’s something you’d want to include
Then, all you’ve got to do is combine the ingredients above and apply it onto the surface. Scrub it in with a broom or a brush and leave it to soak into your deck for about 10-minutes or so. Go ahead and rinse it once you’re done and repeat if required.
6. Homemade Maintenance Cleaner
Don’t have that many problems with your deck? This particular deck cleaner is great for maintenance purposes. You can mix any of the ingredients below with one gallon of water:
- 2 cups of household vinegar
- ¾ cup oxygen bleach
- 1 cup powdered laundry detergent
All you’ve got to do is apply your maintenance cleaner over the area and leave it there for about 10-15 minutes before brushing it with a stiff broom and hosing it off.
7. Heavy-Duty Deck Cleaner
If you haven’t cleaned your deck in a while and would like to make sure that it’s properly cleaned, go ahead and make this particular deck cleaner. The ingredients you’ll need include:
- 3 quarts of water
- 1 cup of oxygen bleach
- 1 cup of trisodium phosphate
Go ahead and mix this properly before pouring it over a surface and scrubbing the area with a stiff broom. After you’ve left it for about 10-minutes or so go ahead and scrub your deck once more and hose it off.
8. Mildew Deck Cleaner
Got some mildew that you’d like to get rid of? This particular deck cleaner will do the trick. The ingredients you’ll need are:
- 3 quarts of water
- 1 cup of oxygen bleach
- ¾ cup of liquid dishwasher detergent
Like the other deck cleaners, go ahead and apply it to the surface of your deck, brush it with a stiff broom. After it’s been there for about 15-minutes or so, scrub it before hosing it off.
Deck Cleaner for Removing Stains
Finally, we’ve got this deck cleaner that’s great for removing stains. The ingredients you’ll need are:
- Mixing 1 tablespoon of wood bleach with 1 gallon of water
To use it, you’ll go ahead and apply deck stains with a brush and allow it to soak in until the discoloration has faded. Once you think it’s good to go, go ahead and rinse it properly. If you’ve got grease spots on your deck, you can also apply powdered laundry detergent directly onto it, let it soak for a few minutes and go ahead and rinse it off.
Best Pressure Washer
When cleaning your deck, a pressure washer will help make things much easier. Below are a couple of pressure washers that you can consider purchasing to get you started.
This particular pressure washer not only has a powerful motor for maximum cleaning power but it also comes with a detergent tank that’ll help you with tackling even the most difficult grime. Some accessories that will come with this particular pressure washer include an extension wand, high-pressure hose, garden hose adapter and more.
Other great features of this pressure washer include five quick-connect nozzles that you can choose from to tackle a wide variety of cleaning projects that you may have in your home. To help save energy and prolong the pump’s overall life, the pressure washer will also automatically shut off when the trigger is not engaged. Customers have rated this pressure washer highly and like how it helps them get the dirty job done swiftly and efficiently.
Another fantastic pressure washer, this particular one will help with a variety of cleaning tasks from decks to patios, cars and more. It can generate a good amount of water pressure and water flow for optimal cleaning power. As it has dual detergent tanks, you’ll be able to carry more than one detergent with no problems at all.
It also has a safety lock switch that will automatically turn the pump off when it’s not engaged to not only help with saving energy but also prolonging its overall pump life. You’ll get a couple of accessories with your pressure washer purchase such as an extension wand, high-pressure hose and five quick-connect spray tips. Customers who have purchased this pressure washer have rated it highly and mentioned that it’s definitely a good one for the patio.
Other Deck Cleaning Accessories
When it comes to cleaning your deck, something else that you can consider is a pressure washer surface cleaner. This rotating surface cleaner will not only help to clean your driveway, sideway, decks, patios and more but it’s also convenient and easy to use. In addition, you can also use it on vertical surfaces like brick walls and more.
It’s compatible with most gasoline pressure washers and you’ll get everything you need with your purchase. Customers who have purchased this really like it and mentioned that it helped to clean their driveway quickly and efficiently. They like how the power and sprayer is powerful and mentioned that it cleans better than regular tip tools.
Below are answers to some frequently asked questions that we’ve received.
Do I clean my deck before staining?
Yes, you should always clean your deck before staining. The surface of the wood should be free of any dirt and contaminants to ensure proper stain penetration. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some quick tips:
- You’d also want to thoroughly sweep the deck and remove all leaves and other debris, and properly clean your deck before it gets stained.
- Make sure that the surface of your deck is clean and free from mildew. If the surface of your deck is not clean, it can result in stains and your finishes could have trouble sticking.
When is the best time to clean my deck?
It’s a good idea to pressure wash your deck when the temperatures are above 52 degrees. There should also be no rain or condensation to allow your deck to dry as quickly as possible. Before cleaning your deck, it’s also a good idea to cover any plants that may be growing by the deck and use either a paint roller or stiff-bristled brush broom to help you with applying the cleaner.
Can I clean my deck with natural products?
Yes, you definitely can clean your deck with natural products. There are plenty of DIY homemade deck cleaners that will help with ensuring that your deck is sparkling clean.
We hope that you were able to find a DIY homemade cleaner recipe from the list above. If you decide to go ahead with these homemade deck cleaners, make sure that you’re picking one that suits the current condition of your deck.
For example, if you’ve got mould and mildew, you’d definitely want to try out a mould and mildew homemade cleaner recipe. While you can scrub the deck on your own, you can also consider investing in a pressure washer for a quick and efficient job.