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Comprehensive Guide to Cleaning and Maintaining Composite Decking: Tips and Best Practices

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Comprehensive Guide to Cleaning and Maintaining Composite Decking: Tips and Best Practices

June 24
18:44 2024

Composite decking has become a popular choice for outdoor spaces due to its durability, low maintenance, and aesthetic appeal. Proper cleaning and maintenance are essential to keep your composite deck looking beautiful and performing well for many years. This guide will provide you with detailed instructions and tips for cleaning and maintaining your composite decking, ensuring it remains in top condition.

1. Routine Cleaning

– Basic Cleaning Steps

Regularly sweeping your deck to remove dirt, leaves, and debris is the first step in maintaining your outdoor deck flooring. Use a soft broom or a leaf blower to keep the surface clean.

Washing the deck with mild soap and water helps to remove dust and minor stains. Use a soft-bristle brush to scrub the surface gently and rinse thoroughly with a garden hose. Avoid using pressure washers as they can damage the composite material.

– Cleaning Frequency

For best results, clean your composite decking at least once a month. Increase the frequency during seasons when your deck is more likely to accumulate dirt, such as fall when leaves are falling or spring when pollen is prevalent.

Adjust your cleaning schedule based on the weather and usage patterns. For example, if you frequently entertain guests or have pets, you may need to clean more often to keep your outdoor deck flooring in pristine condition.

2. Dealing with Common Stains

– Food and Beverage Stains

Quickly clean up any spills to prevent stains from setting. Use a mixture of warm water and dish soap to clean the area, scrubbing gently with a soft brush.

For tougher stains, a vinegar and baking soda solution can be effective. Apply the mixture to the stain, let it sit for a few minutes, then scrub and rinse thoroughly.

– Mold and Mildew

To prevent mold and mildew growth, ensure your deck has adequate drainage and receives plenty of sunlight. Regularly clean the deck to remove organic materials that can promote mold growth.

Use a commercial deck cleaner specifically designed for outdoor WPC decking to remove mold and mildew. These cleaners are typically eco-friendly and safe for composite materials. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results.

– Oil and Grease

Absorb fresh oil or grease spills with paper towels or an absorbent material like baking soda. Avoid rubbing, as this can spread the stain.

Clean the area with warm soapy water and a soft brush. For stubborn stains, consider using a degreasing agent recommended by your deck’s manufacturer. Always test the cleaner on a small, inconspicuous area first to ensure it does not damage the composite material.

3. Preventative Maintenance

– Protecting the Deck Surface

Use outdoor rugs, mats, or furniture pads to protect the deck from scratches and wear. Choose products specifically designed for use on composite decking to prevent staining or discoloration.

Avoid dragging heavy objects across the deck. Lift furniture and other items when moving them to prevent scratches and gouges.

– Regular Inspections

Periodically check the deck for loose fasteners, damaged boards, or other signs of wear. Tighten screws or replace hardware as needed to maintain the deck’s structural integrity.

Address minor repairs promptly to prevent them from becoming larger issues. This includes filling in small scratches with a color-matched composite deck repair kit.

– Preventing Water Accumulation

Ensure your deck has a proper drainage system to prevent water from pooling on the surface. Clean out gutters, downspouts, and drainage channels regularly.

Trim back vegetation around the deck to promote airflow and reduce moisture build-up. This will help prevent mold, mildew, and rot.

4. Seasonal Maintenance

– Spring and Summer

Prepare your deck for the outdoor season by performing a thorough cleaning and inspection. Remove any mold or mildew, and wash away pollen and dirt.

Apply a protective finish if recommended by the manufacturer. This can enhance the appearance of your outdoor WPC decking and provide an additional layer of protection against the elements.

– Fall and Winter

Keep your deck free of leaves and debris that can trap moisture and cause stains. Use a leaf blower or broom to clear the surface regularly.

If you live in an area with snow and ice, use a plastic shovel to remove snow and avoid using metal tools that can scratch the deck. Apply a calcium chloride-based ice melt product to prevent slips and falls.

5. Professional Advice and Product Recommendations

– Professional Cleaning Services

Consider hiring a professional cleaning service for a deep clean at least once a year. Professionals have the tools and expertise to thoroughly clean and maintain your deck without causing damage.

When selecting a service provider, look for companies with experience in cleaning composite decking. Check reviews and ask for recommendations to ensure you choose a reputable service.

– Recommended Cleaning Products

Use eco-friendly cleaning solutions that are safe for composite decking. Products such as Simple Green, Corte Clean, and DeckMAX are popular choices.

Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for cleaning and maintenance products to avoid voiding any warranties. Test new products on a small area of the deck to ensure compatibility.


Regular cleaning and maintenance are key to preserving the beauty and functionality of your composite decking. By following these tips and best practices, you can keep your deck looking like new and enjoy it for many years to come. Outdoor WPC decking offers a durable and low-maintenance option, but it still requires care to maintain its appearance and performance.

For more detailed information and expert advice, consult professional websites and forums dedicated to outdoor deck flooring. These resources can provide additional tips and recommendations tailored to your specific decking needs.

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