How To Clean Mold Mildew And Algae Off Your Deck
Here in BCs spectacular Lower Mainland, with all the wet weather that we get to enjoy, a common problem is this green algae that seems to build up in no time on the surface of decks. This is especially prevalent on wood decks, where it can build up in a matter of weeks, and is most common in shaded areas.
Theres no way to stop this algae from building up. Its a nuisance and can be dangerous because it can create slippery conditions. Dont be fooled by products that claim they will keep this from coming back, because such products dont exist unless you were to use something with a dangerous chemical compound that would not be environmentally healthy. Keep in mind that piled-up leaves or other elements that may be on your deck will lock in moisture and create an environment where algae can flourish.
The good news is that cleaning this off is very easy.
You can get environmentally friendly cleaning products and spray or brush them on your desk for a fast and easy cleaning process. Clear your decking entirely of furnishings and pots and sweep the deck thoroughly with a stiff brush, making sure you get right into the corners where mold and algae have a tendency to build up.
Get environmentally friendly cleaning products and spray or brush them on your desk for fast and easy cleaning
How To Remove Mold From Stained Or Painted Wood
Although mold grows most easily on bare wood, old stain or paint that is beginning to fail can allow black mold to take root and grow. To clean mold from a stained or painted wood surface, use regular household dishwashing detergent and warm water.
Three or four tablespoons per gallon are enough to do the trick. Apply the solution and scrub until clean. Avoid using bleach to clean stained or painted wood as it can cause discoloration.
A pressure washer isnt a good option with painted decks as the pressure washer can easily strip the paint. Once the area is clean, apply vinegar to kill any black mold roots and as a preventative to stop new mold growth.
How To Remove Mold From Composite Decking
Care needs to be taken when using cleaning products with composite wood to avoid damaging the deck. Pressure washers should never be used on composite decking as the force of the water can easily imprint the plastic in the decking, ruining it.
Its also a bad idea to use bleach on decking. Most composite decking manufacturers warn that bleach will discolor their products, especially if used in sunlight. Chlorine bleach can also affect the composition of the decking, causing it to crack or chip prematurely.
Instead, use a mix of dishwashing liquid and water, which will remove the mold but is mild enough not to harm the deck. As with cleaning stained and painted decking, apply vinegar with a spray bottle after cleaning to prevent future mold growth.
Read Also: How To Remove Mold From Basement
Preventing Green Mold Moss And Green Algae Growth
You can save yourself time and money by being proactive – protecting your deck from mold, moss, mildew and algae before it takes hold. Here are a few simple ways to keep unwanted deck growths from moving in:
- Apply a deck stain or sealer: seal over your deck boards to keep moisture out. Thats a big deterrent for fungi and plants, which need damp environments to survive.
- Clean your deck regularly: fungi like mold and mildew feed on organic matter – and a deck covered in leaves, pine needles and dirt is like a buffet table for these deck pests. Regularly sweeping debris off your deck will starve out any potential fungal invaders.
- Choose composite deck boards: one huge advantage of composite deck boards are their protective shells, which keep water from seeping into your boards. Compared to wood boards, composite boards require less cleaning and less maintenance to keep fungi and deck growths away.
The more you know, the better your deck and backyard projects will be! Whether you’re looking at a brand new start or a fresh end-of-season deck renovation, give our deck designers a call at or send us an email at . Our deck experts will help you get the information, products, and tools you need for an awesome deck completely personalized to your needs!
How To Clean A Composite Or Wood Deck
Designing and building a deck suited to your wants and needs can be fun and exciting. But when it comes to care and maintenance, its important to know what youre getting yourself into beforehand. Examine the pros and cons of composite or wood decking — specifically when it comes to how to clean your decking. And in addition to routine cleaning, you should also be aware of other maintenance work you may need to do from time to time on your deck.
For natural wood lovers, properly cleaning a wood deck requires annual care. You can buy deck cleaning solution at your local hardware store or make your own homemade concoctions from various household products that are effective in fighting mildew, algae, oil and debris.
In addition to cleaning, youll also need to routinely stain or seal your natural deck to keep it looking fresh and protect it from the harsh effects of elemental damage — mainly heat and moisture. In some cases, your natural wood deck may also splinter, requiring sanding or replacing loose boards from time to time.
Composite decks on the other hand, offer a lower level of all-around maintenance they wont splinter and you dont need to worry about periodic staining, painting or sealing projects.
Lets learn more about tackling cleaning and keeping your deck in great shape!
Recommended Reading: How To Kill Mold On Bathroom Ceiling
How To Remove Mold Off Decking
If youre the proud owner of decking and are frustrated at the build up of green algae that seems to keep spoiling its look, help is at hand. In this article, we want to propose a few ways to help you remove mold off your decking. The first thing to say about mold or green algae is that its a very common problem on decking and isnt something to be overly worried about. The bad news is that there appears to be no way of stopping it happening. All of that said, theres no getting away from the fact that mold and algae does spoil the look of your decking at the same time as making it slippery to walk on, so action must be taken to remove it!
No matter which method of cleaning you choose, you need to make sure your deck is clear of all furnishing and pots as well as surface dirt and debris. The best way to do this is to clear your decking entirely of furnishings and pots and sweep the deck thoroughly with a stiff brush, making sure you get right into the corners where mold and algae have a tendency to build up.
Thereafter, the first option is to buy an algae removing product from your decking supplier, which has been designed and developed with the sole purpose of removing mold from your decking. Available in green or eco , essentially what these cleaners do is attack the moss, algae and lichens that cause your decking to look a bit tired.
Prepping To Clean The Mold
You May Like: Getting Mold Off Bathroom Ceiling
Getting Rid Of Mold With Baking Soda
You can also use baking soda for other purposes, such as clearing black mold apart from its everyday use to relieve heartburns and absorbing odors in fridges. Again, the product is safe for use since its less toxic, kills black mold, and absorbs moisture that might attract the mold.
The procedure includes adding at least a quarter a tablespoon of baking soda in a spray bottle with water, then shaking until you realize that it has completely dissolved.
After this, spray the affected area with the solution, then scrub the surface with a soft scrub brush to remove the mold from the wood surface. After washing the surface, rinse it with clean water to remove the remaining baking powder and any other residue.
Finally, youll have to respray the area with the baking soda solution then allow it to dry without wiping. Doing this will ensure that no left mold survives and prevents any possibility of future growth.
What if your wood is highly infested with tough black mold. In such cases, consider mixing a baking soda, white vinegar, and water solution in the ratio of 2:1:1. After mixing, thoroughly stir the mixture to get a thick paste solution.
Next, youll gently spread the mixture onto the affected area then allow it to dry, after which you can scrub away any stains and black mold before wiping down with water.
Wood Deck Mildew Removal
Its no secret that conditions like excess moisture, poor ventilation, and a lack of regular cleaning are what encourage mildew growth. However, when you have mildew growing on your wood deck, one of the additional causes is likely neglect. The presence of mildew in a place like a deck suggests that the wood has not been treated or cleaned in a long time.
In fact, its not uncommon for mold on a wood patio or deck to be accompanied by even bigger problems like graying, splintering, cracked boards, and in extreme cases, instances of wood rot.
Hopefully, if youre ever unfortunate enough to encounter mildew on your wood decking, that will be the worst of things and youll still have time to react and save the deck from mold and rot.
If deck restoration is not yet needed, removing mildew is simple. However, it does require a number of tools and materials and a lot of scrubbing strength.
Step 1 Choose a Hot Day
When removing mildew from your wooden deck, select a hot and sunny day to do the job. A hot sun does a great job of quickly drying the wood and makes killing the mold spores and removing mildew that much easier. Dryness doesnt encourage spore growth and intense heat will aid in killing existing spores.
Step 2 Wash the Deck
Step 3 Prepare the Treatment Solution
WARNING: Make sure you have your face mask and gloves on firmly. These chemicals are harmful to your skin, lungs, and eyes, so it’s important to make sure your body is covered and protected.
Also Check: Clean Bathroom Ceiling
How To Get Rid Of Black Mold
Some places to find black mold are bathrooms, basements, and crawl spaces. The best way to identify black mold is how it grows in a circular pattern, its black color, and it grows in patches that resemble dots. On dry surfaces, it looks very similar to soot, while on a wet surface, such as shower grout, it looks like slime.
If you notice mold of any kind, you need to ask yourself what gets rid of mold. There are numerous homemade cleaning solutions you can use to kill the black mold some may work better than others. The key to cleaning black mold is to pick one cleaner and stick with it.
Mixing cleaners, such as bleach and ammonia, can cause adverse chemical reactions. Never use bleach or hydrogen peroxide when removing mold from upholstery.
- 1 cup bleach mixed with one gallon of water
- 1 teaspoon tea tree oil and 1 cup of water
- 2 parts water mixed with 1 part hydrogen peroxide
- 1 cup Borax mixed in one gallon of water
- Pure distilled vinegar
Select your homemade cleaner and apply it to the black mold. Allow the soap to soak for about 15 minutes. This allows the cleaner to reach and kill the roots and takes care of removing black mold to prevent it from coming back.
Scrub porous surfaces with a bristled scrub brush to work the detergent in. Rinse the area with clean water and check to see if all mold is gone.
If mold is still present, repeat the cleaning process. If mold is gone, dry area with a towel or squeegee to remove all excess moisture.
Composite Decks Are Mostly Maintenance
Composite decks enjoy a huge benefit when it comes to mold, mildew and algae because the compressed recycled synthetic material theyre made from means that these things dont get below the surface of the deck. With wooden decks, they actually do embed themselves right into the fibers of the wood, so you need to deal with them quickly before it gets too deep into the grain of the wood.
With wooden decks, you may need to repaint or stain your deck on a regular basis, depending on where youre located and which direction your deck faces. West and North-facing areas are most commonly affected because they spend so much time in the shade. The problem is less common on south-facing surfaces. On the North Shore, which tends to be more moist than Tsawwassen or White Rock, you may have to apply new paint or stain every year. In other places you may only need to do so every two years. Composite decks require very little maintenance, and even enjoy a limited 25-year residential warranty.
Read Also: Clean Bathroom Mold From Ceiling
Black Mold On Wooden Floors
Black mold manifests itself in the form of black spots. If you have wooden floors, you probably should be on the lookout for these toxic and damaging fungi. When your wooden floor comes into contact with moisture, it creates an excellent breeding ground for fungi growth. It does not only stain the floors but also growths beneath the surface and causes wood discoloration, rot, and warp. Immediate attention is paramount to prevent extensive damage and kill the black mold. Take a look at our in-depth guide to remove mold from floors.
Can I Clean Seal And Stain My Deck In One Day
Cleaning and sealing a deck is a two-day project. After washing your deck, it may need to dry thoroughly before applying a sealer. Once the sealer has been applied, it also needs to dry before you can use your deck. For some products, two coats are recommended. Read the instructions on the labels of the products you use, and allow plenty of time to do the job right.
You May Like: Cleaning Mildew Off Ceiling
Treat With Special Products
- You can treat mold growth with alkaline substances or chlorine related products such as outdoor cleaners. They perform better than water as mold thrives in water and dampness in general.
- Another way you can treat your deck is with a homemade solution consisting of water, bleach, vinegar and baking soda. This will not only clean your deck but also kill any signs of mildew that you cannot see.
How Does Vinegar Kill Black Mold
White vinegar is the most preferred vinegar type to kill black mold. The product is acidic. Hence, it helps deodorize, disinfect, and clean up to 82% of mold species. You can use the product on both porous and nonporous surfaces.
If you use it safely, its offensive odor will go away in no time. But, of course, it would help if you had a spray bottle to pour the dilute white vinegar. Besides, dont think of diluting the vinegar with water since it contains only 20% acetic acid. Thus water will make it less effective.
With undiluted vinegar in the spray bottle, spray it over the affected area and give it at least an hour to work effectively. After this, wipe off the area using clean water, then give it some time to dry completely.
You should also note that any smell will clear off within a few hours.
Recommended Reading: How To Get Mold Off Bathroom Ceiling
Can Cleaning Black Mold Make You Sick
Yes, it can. Getting exposed to black mold is no more dangerous than getting exposed to the other mold types. The worst part is that its impossible to avoid getting exposed to mold since they are all over in the air.
If you get exposed, you may suffer from allergies or more severe complications, especially if you have underlying health conditions.
For this reason, if you realize any mold growth in your home, consider getting rid of it before the colony expands.
How To Remove Green Mold From A Wooden Deck With Oxygen Bleach
For years, people have used chlorine bleach to clean their decks and for removing mold. While this is a useful measure for killing fungi, it can cause damage to the wood fibers. A safer alternative to chlorine bleach for mold cleaning is oxygen bleach. This homemade deck cleaner utilizes the strength of oxygen bleach, Borax, and soap to remove mold.
- Scrub brush
Sweep dirt and debris off the deck before you begin this method. Add the water, oxygen bleach, soap, and Borax into the bucket and mix the solution well until everything has dissolved. Apply the bleach solution by dipping the brush into the bucket and sloshing the mixture onto the wood.
Begin at the farthest side of the deck and work your way to the other as you scrub the deck surface. Re-wet the brush as needed. Allow the solution to sit on the decking for about 15 minutes and rinse the entire surface using a garden hose. You may opt to follow this treatment with a deck brightener solution.
Recommended Reading: How To Clean Mold From Ceiling In Bathroom