Imagine paying tens- to hundreds of thousands of dollars on an extravagant, all-inclusive vacation. At those prices, it would be a vacation fit for royalty! And as you dream of sitting poolside after a day of sightseeing, enjoying the views of the pristine, turquoise pools, and sipping your favorite cooling beverage, can you almost feel the sunshine and breeze on your skin? Relaxing and luxurious, isn’t it?
Only you get there and find you way overestimated the extravagance of it all! Your beautiful poolside oasis…marred by the view of cracked and broken concrete with weeds growing through and weathered wooden boards that would leave splinters in your little piggies if you attempted to walk barefoot to the water.
What a disappointment. Refund, please!
Preserve Your Investment
If you own a pool, avoiding maintenance on your concrete or wood deck is about the same as wasting money on a lavish vacation that offers you no lavishness at all. With pool installations becoming increasingly more expensive over the past few years (an estimated $35,000 on average to upwards of $100,000), you’ll want to take steps to get the most out of your investment. Not only will regular maintenance keep your property looking its best, but it will also keep costly repairs to a minimum while ensuring the safety of you, your family, and your guests.
In Colorado, the freezing winter temperatures, spring and summer hail storms, gusty winds, and almost 365 days of sunshine can all take their toll on your deck surface. Like everything else in life, your pool deck needs some TLC every now and then.
Read on for our best tips on caring for your pool deck.
Regardless of what your poolside custom deck is made from, there are some basic cleaning steps that you can take for any surface.:
1. Remove furniture and potted plants.
2. Sweep to remove surface debris.
3. Mix about a cup of bleach and a squirt of dish detergent into a bucket of water. Douse your deck’s surface. Repeat with water/bleach/soap solution as needed to cover the entire surface of your deck.
In this case, less is more. Avoid adding extra bleach or soap to the water as it could result in spotting, discoloration, or overly dry wood.
4. Thoroughly scrub the deck with a long-handled brush that’s not too hard or soft for your deck surface. Check your manufacturers’ guide for more information about bristle harshness. Composite decking (sometimes referred to as Trex) requires softer bristles that won’t scar the surface. As you scrub, pay attention to indentions and expansion joints where grime can settle.
5. Rinse water/bleach/soap solution with either a garden hose fitted with a pressure nozzle or a pressure washer (3,000-3,500 psi and 3-4 gal/min). Be sure to wash and rinse away from the pool towards your street or driveway to avoid contaminating your pool water or soil.
Check the manufacturer’s instructions on what they recommend to treat stains. Often, you’ll need oxalic acid (for many composite woods), tri-sodium phosphate, or muriatic acid to remove rust, food, beverage stains, or other spots.
The chemicals used to treat stains are typically potent ones. Carefully read over instructions, wear appropriate safety equipment, and use as directed.
For cracked concrete decking, look to see how deep the crack is. You can repair shallow cracks with do-it-yourself concrete patching available at your local home improvement store. Contact a professional for more significant damage like chips, broken concrete, and cracks where the ground shows through.
While regular cleanings and maintenance will go a long way to preserving the beauty and functionality of your deck, it’s a good idea to call in the pros once in a while. A professional service can remove salts and pool chemicals from your deck surface safely and effectively using soft wash pressure and specialty cleansers that you may not have access to. Consider a professional cleaning once a year or every two years.
Seal Your Deck
Concrete and timber will need resealing from time to time. For most woods, resealing once every two years (or when you no longer see water beading on its surface) will prolong your deck’s lifespan. For concrete, reseal every two to five years.
Because your exterior pool deck is exposed to the elements and salt or chlorine water from your pool as you and guests get in, get out, and splash around, weathering and day-to-day wear and tear are to be expected.
However, there are a few things you can do to help your deck retain its durability for longer:
- Consider installing a solid fence around your deck, instead of a mesh or chain link, to cut down on the amount of dirt, grit, and debris that blows across its surface.
- Avoid placing rustable metal décor and patio furniture onto your deck surface.
- Create dedicated eating areas with tables to cut down on the amount of food or beverage spilled on your deck’s surface.
- Kill off mold and mildew with a special mold and mildew cleaner for decks during the washing process.
With proper care and maintenance, you can protect the beauty and functionality of your pool’s deck. Contact your custom deck installer in the Denver area for more information on installing, maintaining, and repairing a residential pool deck so that your outdoor oasis can have you feeling like royalty!