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Cleaning Processes for the Different Dock Decking Materials

by Scott Myers

Maintaining your new dock is a crucial part of not only extending its lifestyle, but of keeping it in a safe working condition for you and anyone who may use it. But, each dock is different and different deckings require different cleaning methods.

Here is a quick guide with links to help you know the decking choices you have and how to keep your dock looking great.

Related Blog: The Best Cleaning Processes for Different Boat Dock Types  

1. Pressure-Treated Lumber Decking

Along with its affordability, pressure-treated lumber has a long lifespan due to the proactive chemicals used to prevent insect and weather-related decay.

You can paint, stain, or leave pressure-treated lumber in its natural-appearing condition. With our humid environment in Southwest Florida, learning how to maintain and clean pressure-treated wood will help you keep your pressure-treated lumber decking in its best condition. 

2. Tropical Hardwood Decking

Another natural wood choice is a dock using tropical hardwood. Along with the appearance and durability, this type of decking requires occasional maintenance and sealing. While you can paint tropical hardwood, it would detract from the natural beauty and appearance.

Depending upon your location's environment, tropical hardwood decking should only require thorough washing and sealing every 1 to 2 years. A stiff brush, with or without a pressure washer, should take care of the cleaning part.

3. Composite Decking 

With the appearance of wood, composite decking combines recycled plastic, wood pulp, and resins. Built to last for years, it's not vulnerable to weathering and it's not prone to material absorption. Accumulation of dirt may be a minor issue with occasional minimal algae buildup. 

Cleaning should be a breeze without requiring routine cleanings. Clean it when it needs it. Pressure washing with H2O, or a bit of soapy water, is the best way to clean this resilient-type decking that will last for years.

4. Recycled Plastic Decking

Recycled plastic, also known as PVC decking, is similar to composite decking. PVC decking is more sustainable. It's completely recyclable, making it a better environmental option. This material is also easily customizable in an array of colors or natural-looking wood grains. 

When it comes to cleaning, sweeping or rinsing is all you may need. When you have more stubborn stains or mold, use soapy, warm water with a soft brush, or even a mop, to scrub the deck clean.  

5. Recycled Composite Decking

Sustainability is becoming a popular trend around the world. Here in Florida, Duncan Seawall is proud to offer an eco-friendly choice to our homeowners and commercial businesses. We offer Trex decking as a popular choice. Made from nearly 100% recycled material, this type of dock decking is available in an assortment of wood-like grains.

The beauty of recycled composite decking is its durability and low maintenance qualities: never splitting or rotting and never having to stain or paint. The easiest method is to use a pressure washer, with or without biodegradable detergents applied with a medium-bristled brush, for a damage-free cleaning.

Whenever you're cleaning your dock decking, make it a point to also inspect for simple-needed repairs. By addressing minor problems, you will get the best return on investment. 

At Duncan Seawall, Dock & Boat Lift, LLC, we have years of experience to help you select the decking materials for a dock that is best for your waterfront location, and we have our process down to a science. It's always an honor to tell you more and have the opportunity to work with you. 

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