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Summer will be here soon, and now is the time to start thinking about outdoor barbecues. Exposure to varying weather conditions can cause a wood deck to look gray and worn. Fortunately, wood is resilient. With a little work, you may be able to get your deck looking as good as new. 

Get Rid of Loose Debris
Start by sweeping the deck to remove dirt, leaves, twigs, acorns and any other debris. Once you have done that, check for any loose nails or screws and tighten or replace them. Then use a power washer to get rid of any tough stains. Don’t use too much pressure or you could damage the deck.

Clean the Wood
If your deck has visible stains, a deck cleaning solution can eliminate them and help restore the wood. Use a product intended for your deck’s species of wood. Choose an environmentally friendly cleaning product that won’t damage your grass or plants. Wear protective equipment, such as safety goggles, a mask and gloves, when using harsh chemicals. 

Use a mop or push broom to spread the cleaning solution evenly across the deck. Push any excess liquid off the deck, rinse the surface with a hose or power washer, then let the deck dry thoroughly.

Re-Stain the Wood
Your deck will probably look a lot better at this point, but if it could still use some more work, you can give it a fresh coat of stain to protect the wood from moisture. Look for a quality product that’s appropriate for the type of wood used to make your deck. Pick up some brushes, rollers and trays when you buy the stain. 

Spread the stain evenly and let it dry. Keep people and pets off the deck while it’s drying so you don’t wind up with footprints detracting from the appearance of your revitalized deck. Once the stain has dried, reassess the condition of the deck. Apply another coat of stain if necessary, but only after the first coat has dried completely.

Get Your Deck in Shape for Summer
Exposure to rain, snow and ice can leave a deck looking worse for wear, but restoring it is easier than you may think. Take some time now to tackle that project.