This post was updated on January 30, 2023
Remove Wood Fuzzies on Deck
For 2023 and beyond, Deckstainhelp.com vows to remain committed to being your go-to source for deck staining tips and the latest industry news on the internet. Pesky wood fuzzies/furring may show up when you are prepping your deck. If this happens, we have some suggestions on how to fix the problem. If you have any further recommendations we may have left out, please feel free to share them in the comments below. Also, we encourage you to share pictures of your completed super deck projects.
Wood Fuzzies on Deck After Prepping?
Why it happened and how to fix it.
Before applying a deck stain or sealer you should prep the wood properly first. Prepping is the most important part of the deck stain’s longevity. When evaluating the prepping process you should look at two options. Does the wood need to be cleaned or does an old stain need to be removed?
When To Use A Deck Cleaner
-Best to prep with a deck cleaner if you do not have an old stain, the wood is heavily grayed, the wood is new, or you plan on applying a maintenance coat of deck stain.
When To Use A Deck Stain Stripper
-Use a deck stain stripper if you need to remove an old stain that has failed unevenly, was over-applied, or are planning on switching stain brands. This will allow the new stain to properly absorb into the wood grain.
One of the negative effects of using a Deck Cleaner or Deck Stripper is it is possible to get “wood fuzzies” or “wood furring” when finished. This looks like very small raised wood grain fibers or hair on the decking boards. When you are prepping a deck you essentially remove a layer of oxidized or damaged wood cells. The more you need to remove, the greater the chance of making the wood look “fuzzy” or “soft”.
Here are a couple of examples of when there is a greater chance of this happening:
Heavily Grayed or Neglected Wood
-When the wood is left to gray (oxidize) from the UV you will need to remove all of the damaged wood cells. The grayer the wood, the more you will need to remove from the surface and the greater the chance of getting the “fuzzies”.
Multiple layers of Older Deck Stain is Being Removed
-Deck Stain strippers are mild caustics that may also create a furry look to the wood grain. The heavier or stronger the concentration of the deck stripper, the greater the chance of the wood fuzzies showing
Preventing Wood Fuzzies
-Only use as strong of a concentration of the cleaner or stripper as needed.
-Minimize the wood fuzzies from showing by using a wood brightener as soon as you are done with the deck cleaner or deck stain stripper and while the wood is still wet. This will neutralize the cleaner, leaving the wood in a neutral state.
-Do not let new wood sit too long unstained.
How To Remove Wood Fuzzies
-Make sure that when you are done with the prepping that you rinse the wood extremely well to remove all excess wood pulp from the decking during the washing.
-After the wood has dried, you can remove the fuzzies by lightly sanding or buffing the wood. As contractors, we like to use sanding buffing pads. They are not aggressive and will smooth the wood without over sanding. You can use these buffing pads on floor buffing machines that can be rented from your local rental yard. We can remove the wood fuzzies from a 500 sq. foot deck in 10 minutes with a floor buffer. Use a smaller pad and handheld buffer for the railings if needed.
Questions on this Topic? Ask Below
Deck Stain Help & Questions
Stain Reviews & Comparisons
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.
This web site has been very helpful in my process of cleaning and staining my deck. What seemed to be just a labor intensive chore required knowledge I did not have and every question and obstacle was answered by deckstainhelp. Sometimes what appears to be a simple job is more detailed than first glance.
HI! I have been reading this website when my huge deck project started in 2018. First, pressure washers, in my experience, should be banned. They ruin wood, cause leaks in windows, split cedar, spelled, expensive, etc. I began with my Insurance underwriter and mortgage company writing me up for “unsafe deck due to no stair rails and some rotted boards. I did not know where to start. My deck was old redwood, 1200 square feet, electric, benches, speakers built by a talented carpenter in the 1980s before the now, 9 pages of deck code, chapter 507 of the IRC. I got estimates of up to 50,000 for a rebuild. Yikes. I studied your website, the code, Professional Deck Magazine, YouTube videos, the, bought tools. Cutting to the chase, after lots of rain, cold, heat, and Covid, I am at the end of rebuilding my deck to current codes. Did, I say, since the original deck had been built, 3 trees dumped leaves, algae, mold, and were never cleaned. I have, so far, spent over 15,000. on materials, including twp stain, brightener, cedar, pressure treated framing, hardware now required, copper naphenate, now required, and am, after 400 hours, almost finished. I hired a few helpers for a week to push the project along and had to redo their work. If you want your deck done correctly, study and stand over any carpenter that you hire or your inspection may fail. Wood, especially cedar, and forget getting redwood in the northeast, has become irreplaceable. Mills are shut down and those still in business are working at 50 to 25% capacity plus the fires on the west coast. I wrote this so that homeowners will take care of their decks. My neglect could have caused me to lose my house. Decks are high maintenance but make a house so much more enjoyable. I bought my house partly because of my deck and then took it for granted. Follow the great advice on this website. An once of prevention is worth a pound of cure!😎
I need some help please!! I did a fence this morning and fuzzies are showing up all over as it dries. Do I need to use more pressure to get them off or do I need to sand? This fence is probably 5-7 years old and I don’t think it was ever sealed or stained. Do I need to talk to management company about sealing after I clean it? What steps do I need to do to get this fixed? Thanks for all advice!!
Just go ahead and use a semi-transparent stain it will not show: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/the-5-best-deck-stain-reviews-and-ratings/
The property manager wants to think about seal long or staining. with that being said, do I need to go and rinse off as much of those dead fibers as possible, get a brush, or go and sand it?
Your wood needs a stain/sealer in one. Hence a semi-transparent stain. This protects the wood from rot and UV damage.
No need to remove the fuzzies you have as they will not show when properly treated. If he does not want to stain it, then you can still leave it as is as the wood will gray naturally and you will not see the fuzzies.
Now that it’s dried, the fence is almost white. Did the oxalic acid not neutralize? or do i need to go rinse harder? i’ll attach some photos, please help me! this is a commercial contract i’m trying to secure for flatwork and the fence was just a one time addition but now i’m worried!
You did not remove all the oxidation during your cleaning. Redo and pressure wash (not rinse) it off.
Just powerwashed/cleaned/brightened and am now left with some wood furries. I am thinking i will sand, but, is it safe to just stain over this in this state? (see pictures). I’d rather skip sanding if it will be of minimal consequence. Thanks Scott!
You have a lot of wood fibers on the deck and rails that should be pressure washed off first. You can stain after.
are you saying wood fibers leftover from the first powerwash? so basically, just needing to rinse them off? like a light powerwash? thanks
The wood fibers that are visible on the metal sprindles are most likely all over the deck as well. They should be rinsed off.
Thanks so much Scott, awesome site you have here and the quick replies are outstanding. I rinsed a few times after, just not the spindles. 🙂 I’ll do a spot check but i don’t want to reset the drying phase as my window to stain in MN is closing.
I had my large IPE deck power washed and it turned a yellowish color with fuzzies.
What caused it to turn yellow?
Can the yellow be removed?
How do you remove the fuzzies as well?
Hi Scott. Cedar deck exactly 12 months old. Let it weather for a year. It’s on south side of house so received lots of sun. After using cleaner and brightener it looked great. And then lots of fuzzies showed up after it dried (see pic). I didn’t sand at all. OK to go ahead and use TWP cedar stain now? Or should I sand first? Thanks !
You can stain it. Knots will always stain lighter in color due to the density of the wood so that is normal.
Thank you ! PS when you say “new wood” should only get one coat of TWP, how do we define “new”? 3 months old? 6 months old? 12 months?
Anything less than 1 year is new wood and should get one coat.
Thanks Scott ! Your website is truly invaluable, thanks for all that you do. PS the deck turned out great I think (used TWP 1500 cedar, one coat).
Hello – refinishing vertical barn doors, looks like rough cut pine wood. I used RAD stripper + brightener. There are some fuzzies left on the doors. I plan to use RAD semi-transparent light walnut finish.
Should I try to hit these with 60-80 grit palm sander or go directly to stain? Or maybe try to modify the buffing pad from above to fit on orbital?
Proabbly okay to just stain. Do a test board to see.
Thank you. 1 coat or 2 if using RAD stain? Or personal preference?
2 coats in this scenario will give better coverage and appearance.
After cleaning pre treated wood and there are fuzzies. Can I just stain with oil base stain and protector or do I need to sand.
You do not have to sand off the fuzzies.
Thank you , I went ahead and orbit sanded it and now I’m ready to stain.
Hello! I’m hoping you can help with a major fuzzy issue. I wish I read some of the below questions and answers prior to staining. I have a 1.5 year old 250 sf mahogany deck that I was just able to get stained for the first time over the weekend (wish I were able to do it sooner). I cleaned and prepped with the RAD cleaner & brightener and scrub brush, not a power washer, and stained with AC hardwood. The fuzzies were not apparent after cleaning however there was graying and oxidation remaining and I didn’t realize that would be a problem. There are now a bunch of fuzzies that are making the wood look really bad. Is it possible, now that I have already stained it, to go over it with a buffer just to remove the fuzzies, or will that ruin the stain and I will need to start all over again? I’m willing to do this by hand if its a better option than renting a buffer. Thanks!
If you buff now then you proabbly will have to lightly recoat after.
What grit do you use with the floor buffer sanding pads?
The pads come in colors. We like the white or red pads.
What if there are nail heads that are slightly above the surface? I have tried to countersink them with a punch, but they are still not below the wood. Can you still use a floor buffer then?
Probably but get extra pads in case some get torn while using.
experiencing small patches of the furs on deck after prep. can i just buff the affected areas or do I have to buff the whole deck. never realized how widespread this is…
Best to do all so the stain applies evenly.
I have a customer that had another company come to clean an ipe deck that we installed several years ago. It was never stained and had no finish applied to it. This other company seems to haphazardly power washed it. It now has all sorts of white streaking and obviously visible signs of power washing. I have used the 2 part cleaner and brightener previously but I’ve never gas to address this type of damage. Wondering if I will need to sand this all out or not
Yes, you will have to power sand as a cleaner will not get out the pressure mark damage from the stop lines.
I am a Painting Contractor, and refer to this site frequently. Thank you for many years of sound advice! I am preparing to re-stain the sunny front of an old Victorian. The house may be old, but it has merely 12 year old, pristine 3 1/2″ wide cedar tongue and groove all over the front from a complete remodel. I could not find the old stain can the previous contractor used, but the existing stain sure looks like a latex, slightly-colored transparent stain on the surface, probably Arborcoat. The stain is almost all gone on the sunny front, with occasional little crystals of stain sitting up on the surface. I am not looking forward to making the pristine wood fuzzy when I strip! Also, the cedar profile, though not fuzzy, is no longer smooth, as the ‘ribs’ of the grain protrude, likely because the latex stain failed so long ago that the wood weathered down. I like the look, but I think using a sanding sponge after stripping and using a a wood brightener are sound advice. Will the stripper remain the vertical surface? I’m alternatively considering just sanding and brightening, without the stripper, but then the profile may not look so great. Thoughts?
There is a protected entry stairs where the walls are also stained, but the stain looks perfect here, except for the beginning of the entry, where the boards start out weathered, due to the sun reaching the beginning of the entry. Will I even be able to strip the sound protected area?
There is a big ipe deck we are not touching, except they want the ipe fence cap painted. I see the specs call for 2 coats oil-base primer for painting ipe, followed by 100% acrylic paint, and prayers!
I have some one working on my deck and there are some rotted pieces of wood that needs to be replaced. The guy started removing the some of the rotted woods then changed course and said he should power wash the deck 1st and then remove and restore the new planks. Is this the correct way to go about it?
Does not matter.
Do you have any recommendation of what floor buffer to purchase. I am not a big fan of renting any large equipment. Alternatively would a drywall sander do it? Thanks.
We only rent and buying a floor buffer would be very costly. Drywall sander will not work.
I saw you also recommended a sanding pole in other posts. Sanding poles are mainly made for drywalls and tend to swivel a lot which makes it difficult to keep it straight on a deck board. I tried. Any suggestion? Great site, BTW, very useful!
Rent the floor buffer. Less than $100.
Does the wood have to be completely dry before buffing out the fuzzies? Or can it be damp?
I am going to put a maintenance coat on my 20×14 deck. I prepped yesterday using the Defy wood cleaner and brightened with the Defy brightener. For the cleaning, I used a deck brush and garden hose with nozzle, not a pressure washer. I was concerned with fuzzies in areas.
This morning, we had fog and dew, so the deck is still wet. There are some areas where I can see fuzzies on the wet boards; the majority of the deck does not. I would rather not rent a buffer for just those areas (seems overkill), but I will if I need to. Can I lightly sand with 60 grit sandpaper on a sanding block and call it a day, or will the sanded areas stick out from the rest of the deck?
If I do buff the deck after it is dry, can I just go and re-stain with the maintenance coat (PPG Cetol SRD RE)? If I need to brighten again, then the deck needs to dry again, and here in New England, the days remaining to stain is getting shorter.
Yes, you can.
Yes, you can lightly sand with 60 grit on a sanding pole.
Thanks. I am thinking of using a hand sanding sponge or pad instead of sandpaper on a sanding block (more give with the sanding sponge and even more with the pad). Would I see comparable results using 80 grit instead of 60 grit?
Thank you! This site has been a great source of information.
You are welcome!
Hello, I hope someone can help me. I have a major nightmare with fuzzies. I am halfway through cleaning/brightening a new 500 square foot deck. The deck wood is only 6 months old and our builder told us to wait until the fall before we stained it. I followed all the directions on the Armstrong RAD kit, keeping the deck wet as I was working. I only used 2/3 cup cleaner per gallon of water. I used a garden hose and rinsed it several times. This is a weekend project and I will have to find a another good weather weekend to finish. How long can I wait before sanding/fixing the fuzzies? Will I have to start over again? I’m hesitant to use the RAD product as well. Any recommendations?
It is not the RAD that is the issue but the graying/oxidation that needs to be removed. You should be using a pressure washer to get it all off after applying the cleaner. If needed you buff after and then brighten. You can do this whenever you have time.
the bottom of my outside porch looks like the wood is shredding. its vey light when i scrap it off. what is causing this?
Sorry but no idea.
Do i need to spray deck after removing fuzzies or can i simply sweep it well and run a damp cloth over it?
Pressure rinse is what we do.
we have a cedar deck built last spring. We coated it with 1 layer of Ready Seal oil penetrating stain 2 months after the build but noticed the stain was fading in spots these last few months. I believe because the stain was applied by a contractor without first prepping the wood to remove mill glaze. Ready Seal advised we coat and lightly agitate the deck with a bleach and water solution or cleaner to remove the remaining non penetrating areas of stain and open all the wood fibers up , then re apply another coat of ready seal. We used “30 Second Outdoor Cleaner” in a 1/1 water/cleaner mixture as advised on the bottle. It’s states it’s “PH NEUTRAL”. Well, it worked and then some….It didn’t just clean the deck it took About 95% of the stain with it. My question is, now that it’s dry, we have a nice clean deck but tonsa “fuzzies” on the boards.
I’m going to sand them off but only question is, do I sand THEN do a final soak and light scrub with a designated BRIGHTENER before oil penetrating stain…or BRIGHTEN, then sand?…or no need to use brightener at all since we already used a PH neutral cleaner?…or some totally different set of steps? lol.
thanks in advance, this site has been invaluable during this ongoing project.
Sand and then brighten. FYI on the Ready Seal, it does not last very long and fades quickly. You might want to try a better brand unless you are okay with doing this every year.
hello, thanks for the clarification. The brightener won’t un do all my sanding and cause more fuzzies will it? Also, what brand do you recommend on the stain? i really like the look of the Ready Seal Natural Cedar and Pecan semi transparent stains. We live in WA State though and get a lot of rain so trying to go with a stain that takes anymore than a few hours to dry to the point it can get rained on is tough. That was one of the other big considerations in choosing Ready Seal.
A brightener does not create fuzzies. Try TWP 100 Series or Restore a Deck Stains.
Ready Seal fades very fast and does not last. We do not like it: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/ready-seal-wood-and-deck-stain-reviews/
lol, it’s literally on the website’s top 7 Deck Stain/Sealers at number seven but ok, im guessing you guys have had more time to R & D it. I’ll DEFINITELY look into the TWP next year. Unfortunately I already purchased the Ready Seal. It’s held up great on our rough sawn fence (3+ years now in WA weather) and still looks like it was applied yesterday, but smooth sawn S4S like decking I totally hear you. The one nice thing about the RS is how EASY it was to rinse off with a simple cleaner and a hose. I’m only sanding because these boards not only had mill glaze and didn’t take the stain well enough, but additionally needed a good go over with an 80 grit due to our temper mental rain and heat wave this year. Next year if it’s starting to peel again, we’ll just do the same cleaning process perhaps with the RAD cleaner and brightener pack and then finish it off with a TWP 100 in a darker tone. Thanks again for all your help. This really is invaluable help!
We still do not like it. It does not dry fully, rubs off because of this, and fades very fast. TWP is way better.
Hey sorry last question! So here’s what the deck looks like after cleaning. I posted 2 pics. The first is direct sunlight thr second shows how 1/2 of it looks out of direct sun. I’m sanding it next. As you can see it’s not grey or darkened but mostly a washed out pale yellow to whitish tone. It’s odd because later in the day or out of direct sunlight the deck looks really smooth and clean but in direct sun hitting different parts of it throughout the day you can really see the patchiness. My question is, after sanding off the fuzzies, will the brightener help bring the wood back to its more natural deep cedar tone and even out the patchiness we see or does that really matter if we’re re staining with a semi transparent Pecan pigmented penetrating oil stain like TWP?
Just brighen and then stain, you will be fine.
Sorry here are those pics to go along with my last question….
Hi. I have a new deck approximately 2 years old. Yesterday I used the RAD cleaner then brightener. When doing the cleaning part I didn’t have anyone helping so the cleaner did dry somewhat during application as I didn’t know you should just do small sections at a time. I was trying to do the whole deck at once. I tried to use a broom to help scrub the oxidation off as I went along but wasn’t very successful. So once I started rinsing I noticed there was still quite a bit up build up. I rinsed everything then I went to the store to get a deck scrub brush. I soaked down the deck again and scrubbed as much oxidation off as I could. I went ahead with the brightener as instructed.I’m just not sure if I should go ahead and stain or do I need to repeat those steps as I have a lot of fuzzies and maybe didn’t do the steps as indicated?? I feel there is still a lot of oxidation on the boards.
Next question is how long should I wait to start the staining process? The deck does feel damp still from yesterday.
That is oxidation/graying that you did not become fully during your cleaning. You should reclean and use a pressure washer after the cleaner to remove, not just scrub. When to stain depends on the stain brand you are using.
Can I use another brand of cleaner as I will not have enough of the RAD product to use today? I do have enough brightener.
I got the RAD semi transparent stain to use as well.
We put in new steps and rails about 18 months ago with pretreated wood. We never got around to doing anything. We power washed a week ago and have fuzzies. We want to paint not stain. Could you please give suggestions on this problem? Thankyou.
You cannot use a paint on deck as it will peel. You can use a solid stain: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/what-are-the-best-solid-color-deck-stains/
We built a deck 12 months ago with presure treated wood. Do we really need to go through the cleaning and deck brighting steps to apply Defy deck stain. If so, is waiting until next summer which would make the new wood sit for 18-20 months with out a stain ok to do?
Yes, you must prep. You can do it next Spring or Summer if you want.
I’m having this furring on my cedar deck after using the DEFY wood cleaner. I haven’t used the brightener yet because I’m having to clean sections of the deck at a time. Should I clean the remainder of the deck, sand the fuzzies off, then use the DEFY wood brightener, then let dry and apply the TWP 100 semi transparent pecan color stain? Or can I skip sanding off the fuzzies and move straight to brightening after cleaning, let dry, then stain?
You do not have to sand off the fuzzies as they typically go away when stained and do not show.
Okay good to know. Will I still get great a result and performance from my stain application if I don’t remove the fuzzies?
I ask because at the end of the article it states, “Taking care to minimize and remove the wood fuzzies from your deck will result in a longer-lasting and better-looking application with a deck stain.”
Are you saying that I won’t need to sand off the furring in my situation for a particular reason?
I’m completely okay with not having to sand off the fuzzies but I want to make sure I’m doing the best prep work.
It will not hinder the stain’s performance. We will edit that verbiage. You do not have to sand off the fuzzies and we rarely do as contractors.
Awesome! Thank you. One last question, if I am not able to stain my deck after cleaning and brightening it for at least 14 days afterwards due to weather and availability, will I need to reclean and rebrighten my deck or will I just need to make sure it’s completely dry after those 14 days and apply my stain?
14 days is about the max we suggest between prep and stain. If much longer, redo the prep.
Okay. Thank you for all of your help. I will hold off on cleaning and brightening until I can get it stained soon afterward.
I just want to say you all have been a huge help and have provided me with great advice and guidance for restoring my deck that has needed a lot of work. Any DIYer looking to do this type of work on their deck should definitely visit this website. I will definitely be referring people to you guys as well as posting pictures of the before and after pics when I am done with my deck.
You are welcome!
Is it okay for the wood to dry before using a brightener? I’m not able to get the entire deck cleaned in one day so I’m doing it in sections which will allow the wood to dry before I use a brightener. Will this cause any problems?
It is best to do it as soon as possible after cleaning but if you cannot do it the same day, then prewet the deck before applying the brightener.
Thanks. My deck had heavily grayed so I also noticed the furring after cleaning. I plan to let it dry anyway to lightly sand off the furring before brightening. Is this the right approach?
If the wood has heavy gray oxidation, is it likely going to have furring regardless of how quickly the brightener is applied after cleaning?
Not always but a stronger chance.
I have an old Electrolux B8 floor scrubber/polisher. I see buffing pads made from lambs wool, rayon, or a green scrub pad(looks similar to the red one shown above but called a scrub pad). Which is the best to use to remove fuzzies. I don’t want to make things worse. Thank you!!
Use a pad just like the one you see in the picture.
I cleaned, stripped and brightened and then sanded my deck prior to staining. I applied one layer of stain, and I can see several spots that have furring. Is there a way to correct this without sanding the stain off and starting all over again?
No, you will have to remove, buff the floor, then restain.
Ok. So, sand the stain off, then buff using a buffing machine and pad, then stain again. Do I have that correct? Thanks for your help. I really appreciate it.
Post some pictures and what stain brand did you use?
I have cleaned ( with BEHR All in One Wood Cleaner) and power washed (not on hardest setting) our cedar deck and the deck boards look great, however the walls look like cedar with grey patches…I am wondering whether to stain or seal the deck boards and if I should wait to do the the walls to let the red grey a bit to catch up to some of the grey patches? Or do I need to try and clean the walls again? I do like the look of cedar but want to know if I need to let this go to get back to the beauty of the wood
The cedar deck is about 5 years old but does not get much sun as I live on a ravine and this deck butts up against the it.
Here are some pictures of deck boards wet and dried/the walls dried after cleaned and power washed and the setting the deck butts up against.
We would rewash the walls again to get more of the gray oxidation off before staining.
Thank you sooooooo much!!! This is super helpful information as the deck is very large 15X40 (in my opinion 🙂 and we love living on the ravinebut do not like what it has done over time to the cedar deck…I will absolutely follow your expert advice and do this today…very much appreciated and I might utilize this site again when it comes to the next step of to seal, oil or to stain?
In need of you help – please: We installed a new Cedar deck late last summer. Before the winter (we live in Montreal) we cleaned it and then protected it with Benjamin Moore Arbor coat. This week we cleaned it with a Benjamin Moore cleaner and then saw the fibers. We were then suggested to do a Wood Restorer (which is their version of a striper from what I can understand), which should have been the last step before oiling it. 24 hours later….Now I am nervous as the deck boards, that were so smooth on the bare feet last week are now all with raised grain (on the length); you can now feel it on your feet when walking. I am not sure why this happened, it’s so upsetting. We have a 400 square foot deck. Will a light sanding (with a 150 pad) done by hand be a good long term solution? Or does it need to dry more perhaps before we sand and re-assess? It was brand new cedar wood…not sure how this could have been prevented. Any advise on how to move forward and not let this happen again would be much appreciated. Thank you
The above article explains what to do. Rent a floor buffer and get a sanding pad. It will come off.
one last question, we are using a unilateral buffer from Home Depot, the highest for these machines for the sanding is a level 120. There seems to still be in some area some fuzzies that look imbedded into the wood, is that OK to still oil and is this somewhat normal?
Are you use using buffer with a pad like above or sanding paper? You should be using the pad to knock down the fuzzies, not 120 grit paper.
I am using a 3M Very Fine hand sanding pad for my fuzzies on my deck since it appears to be the closest match to the larger buffing pad mentioned in this article. (Since I don’t have access to renting a larger buffer). It has done a great job on the horizontal surfaces but my vertical railing have been more stubborn/damaged and still have a light fur after a couple passes — would you recommend going slightly more aggressive with a light sand paper?
After buffing/sanding, do you recommend throughly sweeping or is a water rinse best? Assuming water is best rather than any cleaner/soap?
You can use a palm sander with 60- grit paper for the rails. Use a deck brightener and then a water rinse when done.
I already used brightener — is it needed again? Hoping to no repeat but maybe necessary to re-open the pores after sanding? That would be a bummer. If the brightener is needed will it dripping on the rest of the deck be a problem or okay because it is already brightened?
Yes, it will help to open up the pores, very easy to do. Apply to all wood with a pump sprayer and then rinse.
Well, I hit with fine sanding pad again and it is better but don’t know if it is good enough. Pictures attached to get your opinion on whether I’ll be happier doing 60 grit sand paper and brightening. Going to be rinsing anyway so being head deep in this process, might as well break out the sander! Phew! Thanks for the continued guidance.
We would do the 60 grit.
Appreciate it! I did go with the 60 grit and was happy I did. Eliminated furring on rails and was able to hit a few stubborn spots. Followed up with brightening so should be ready to stain after some rain days here in VT.
1) I’m assuming I will be doing two coats of stain, but assume I judge that based on how much the first coat soaks up?
2) Advisable to do railings and stairs first?
2) I am hoping to do a true maintenance coat next time around in 1-2 yrs where I only RAD clean and then stain. Is this possible? My AC stain always seems to mostly come off with cleaning, but maybe I can do a slightly lower concentration of cleaner and with doing the deck cleaning sooner the old stain won’t be as deteriorated? In short, how might I achieve doing a maintenance coat rather than my whole process of clean, brighten, sand, brighten again.
3) I have always gotten fuzzies/furries. What are the key factors to avoiding? From reading keys seem to be: 1) Brightening faster — I clean the deck in sections and have brightened whole deck in one step and maybe the cleaner is sitting too long 2) Maybe my power washing is too aggressive and maybe go with 3/4 cup RAD cleaner per gallon rather than 1 cup per gallon?
Thanks again! I am getting better (slowly) at this.
That makes sense on the prep always being needed. I was just hoping I could make future recoats easier/shorter with better execution. I love the idea of not sanding and will try to prevent the furring to eliminate that (sounds like less cleaning concentrate and perhaps lighter on the power washing). I guess I was under the incorrect assumption that brightening can be skipped in some recoat cases.
As always, thanks again for all the assistance.
OK, a day late & dollar short, my information bank was low.
After reading your instructions my question now that I have stripped AND brightened my deck to find enough fur to coat a small dog and I plan to get a sander/buffer on a dry day. Do I need to apply more brightener after buffing and before washing the final time prior to stain/sealer. If it would just go away in time I would stain over it, but I did a small test area I could see a “milky” appearance. Too bad the folks selling the products have NO knowledge
Thank You for a great site
If using the buffing pad, we do not brighten after.
I had planned to do a Deck Wash as last step, let dry,
and I thought building the deck would be the challenge, that was the beginning. I am proud of my work so far and wish to continue, so again thank you
You are very welcome!
Where would I rent a buffer and get one of these pads?
Most rental yards or Home Depot would have these for rentals.
Would it look bad if I clear coat deck over wood fuzzies?
With a clear, it would show through.