This post was updated on April 5, 2022
Why Use a Deck Brightener
We appreciate your input here at Deckstainhelp.com as we continue to be your go-to source for the latest in deck restoration news and trending topics through 2022. See below for an article about Step 2 of the deck stain process, using a brightener, and why it is a key component to the deck stain project. Feel free to leave a comment below.
Woodcare and maintenance are the keys to having a long-lasting deck. Every year or two a deck should be cleaned and stained to protect the wood from the harsh elements. UV rays and unwanted moisture can wreak havoc on a deck that is unprotected. The number one reason a deck stain fails is due to the lack of proper wood preparation. Any exterior wood surface needs to be cleaned and prepped correctly in order for the stain to perform as expected. Failure to do so can lead to premature stain failure jeopardizing the wood’s integrity.
To properly clean and prep a deck it starts with a wood cleaner. A sodium percarbonate-based oxygenated cleaner is recommended. This type of wood cleaner has been proven to work the best in removing dirt, mold, mildew, wood graying, and in some cases an old failing sealer. It is highly important to remove all of these pollutants in order for the new stain to penetrate properly.
Most oxygenated cleaners have surfactants that help boost the overall effectiveness of the detergent. These caustic detergents do a great job of loosening pollutants but in turn, they also raise the pH level of the wood. Why does this matter? The deck stain will penetrate better in acidic conditions and when the wood pores are opened up ready to receive a coat of new stain. A lower pH also darkens the wood not allowing the true beauty of the wood to show a simple fix to this is to use a deck brightener.
Wood deck brightener, also called deck neutralizer, is an acid-based product that simply neutralizes the caustic cleaners and helps lower the pH level making the wood more acidic. This opens up the wood pores and brightens the wood bringing out the grain’s natural beauty. A simple application of deck brightener after cleaning is all that is needed to brighten and neutralize the cleaners and will complete the proper prep work needed for an outstanding stain finish that will last.
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As an article and comment contributor to the site, Scott has been around the pressure washing industry since attending college. In 1993 he started his first company called Oakland Pressure Wash specializing in exterior pressure washing and deck staining. That company evolved into OPW L.L.C. shortly thereafter concentrating more on exterior wood and deck restoration. Scott and his Deck Cleaning Michigan company have restored over 10,000 decks in the Metro Detroit area since the early years. He has become an authority in the deck restoration industry and has contributed to numerous wood restoration forums and informative sites.
All the products he suggests through this site are sold through online sites and in retail stores, allowing the consumer to choose their own means of purchase. Scott’s eCommerce sites do sell many top brands he endorses and if you appreciate any of the help he has offered then feel free to purchase from one of them.