Accomplish your to-do list of finishing the deck with ease this fall

(BPT) – If you have a wood deck, chances are that it’s made its way onto your summer to-do list. And if summer quickly slipped by you without that list being completely checked off, don’t worry, you still have plenty of time in the fall months to finish your deck. 

What many people don’t know is that the deck-refinishing process has greatly improved over the years. It used to require a long week spent sanding every board, treating damaged areas, finishing the entire area and then putting a protective coat on top. And then if something wasn’t done perfectly, you’d have to redo the area again, adding to the frustration. In many cases, these multiple steps are no longer needed.

Before you get started though, do a little test to see if finishing is even needed. Pour a few drops of water onto the surface. If the water soaks into the wood within 10 seconds, your deck is ready for a new stain. If not, enjoy your deck for another six months before repeating the test. If the wood looks gray, but passes the test, try a specialized wood cleaner to give it a fresh, new look.

If your deck didn’t pass the water test, you’ll want to spread the work over several days, just to make certain your deck has time to fully dry between steps. With excellent deck-finishing products available, you’ll be able to enjoy your deck with less work, and you won’t have to worry about finishing it again for a long time.

If you have never finished your deck or if it’s been a long time, check out the Decision Guide provided by Flood Wood Care at It walks you through the steps of determining which finish you want and helps you find a store in your neighborhood where you can make your purchase. Here are some tips for completing the project with ease:

1. Clean the deck thoroughly with a wood cleaner and a stiff scrub brush. Let the cleaner soak into the wood for a half-hour before washing away completely. Allow your deck to dry for a couple of days.

2. Choose your stain. Transparent finishes are ideal for new, less-weathered wood, and they allow the natural wood color and grain pattern to show through. Flood Wood Care CWF-UV penetrates into the wood deeply, protecting your deck against moisture and sun damage for many years to come. It also resists mildew.

3. Pick the right day, one when the deck area isn’t exposed to direct sun and the temperature is between 50 and 90 degrees. You also will want to look at the future forecast and find a date that will allow you to avoid rain for 48 hours.

4. Use a roller to apply the finish in an even pattern across the floor of your deck. Be sure to use a brush and back brush along the surface – in the direction of the grain – for uniformity and to help the product penetrate the wood for better absorption.

5. On vertical surfaces like railing posts, start from the top and work the finish downward, so you can smooth out any drips and runs.

6. Clean all tools thoroughly. Flood Wood Care CWF-UV cleans easily with soap and water so you can reuse your tools for future projects.

Thanks to more advanced products, you’ll spend less time on your hands and knees scrubbing your deck, and more time enjoying the beautiful finished look.

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