Clean before power wash?

Old 07-30-02, 09:37 AM
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Clean before power wash?

I've just purchased a house with a small deck which needs attention. It's a dull gray color, and the wood is weather-worn. Structurally it is sound. The previous owner said he powerwashed but never sealed it.

There is much mildew on the shady parts of the deck. I plan to have a contractor do the maintenance work on it, at least this first time, then I can maintain it myself in the future.

However -- I'd read that the deck should be "cleaned" before the power wash or the green mold will be pushed into the wood. If a contractor says he's just going to powerwash and seal, should I look for one who will apply a cleaner first?

Does $2 per square foot sound reasonable for powerwashing and sealing? (he adds a dollar/sq ft if I also want stain). I'm in northern New Jersey.


Old 07-30-02, 10:20 AM
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Two dollars a sf is a bit high, but maybe not in NJ. Do as a corporation is required to do. Obtain at least three estimates, in writing, and find out what cleaners are used. Do not let them use household bleach. It will take out all the color in the wood.
Find a contractor who uses oxygenated bleach on PT lumber. It is simply sprayed on(pump sprayer) and allowed to sit for about ten minutes. Then it can be pressure washed. And no, the pw doesn't actually push mildew/algae into the wood. The percarbonate bleach will kill it and the pw will remove it.

A stain and seal are the same thing. You should have a colored oil-base stain with water repellency an uv protection.
You should find a pw and staining for about 1.50 a sf.
Shop around.

Deck-Kleen Powerwashing

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