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Old 03-22-2011, 06:00 PM   #16
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


Mark, I think you did an outstanding job considering the age and condition of the deck. It is amazing what the stain will do to bring it to life again. I don't think there's a whole lot more you can do. Personally, I think you can overdo the prepwork........I mean the more you put cleaners on the deck and the more sanding you do can actually do more harm than good. Maybe test an area first before going forward with the whole thing........that would give you a better idea of what you're up against.

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Old 03-22-2011, 06:39 PM   #17
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


Thanks Gymschu!

I think you're right. I'll see if the local paint dealer can give me a sample can (I know HD has the small sample cans of Behr stuff but I'm avoiding that) of semi-transparent Sikkens stain and I'll try it on a section where there is a lot of unevenness in terms of the wood as it is now, and see how it turns out. I'll post back with the results.
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:23 PM   #18
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


Nice and clean Mark...very good pics...

BUT...

I can tell it ain't gonna look very even. It's CLEAN - yes.
Will stain hold evenly - NO. You won't like it for long, I promise.

The "surface-crush" of the grain is very apparent to me. If my deck looked like that, there's NO WAY I'd stain it. Don't take this as ANY criticism!! It's not meant that way!

I GUARANTEE if, as a test, you just fully sanded half the deck, and then stained the whole thing...you'd be sanding the other half the next day.

>>> It's time for a full sand my man...it's time.

Faron
PS...Cue Metallica...."Enter Sandman"!!!
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Old 03-22-2011, 11:14 PM   #19
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


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Originally Posted by hyunelan2 View Post
I'm glad I have been following this thread. 2 years ago, right after I bought the house, I re-stained/sealed my deck. The floors didn't last the winter. Last summer, I pressure washed all the floors and resealed again. Now they look even worse. All the slats and other vertical parts are holding just fine, but the surfaces parallel to the ground (floors, top of rails) are all crapped out. I think sanding might be a good idea to fix? The deck is about 8 years old.
That deck needs a thorough sanding. The floor failed so quickly because you put stain on a layer of dead wood. Wood has a component called lignin, which is akin to the mortar in a brick wall. Lignin holds all the celluose together. UV destroys lignin and the wood literally washes away. Power washing doesn't remove it enough to allow it to hold stain, and it must be sanded. Verticals don't take the UV pounding that the horizontals do. I did a large deck two summers ago with a floor sander.
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Old 03-23-2011, 12:08 AM   #20
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


I third the sanding. "See the 'white' spots and the leftover grayish spots?" Those will be more pernounced when you go to stain so you really really really need to get those up.
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Old 03-23-2011, 09:13 AM   #21
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


Thanks guys. So what type of sander should I rent - an orbital or a 'vibrating disk' sander? I have one of those 'mouse' palm sanders but I think using that would take weeks and want to avoid that : (

Biggest concern is the nails - there are lots and many are not perfectly flush or recessed into the wood so I'll have to use a nail punch and hammer to recess them all, which will be fun!
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Old 03-23-2011, 10:32 AM   #22
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


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Thanks guys. So what type of sander should I rent - an orbital or a 'vibrating disk' sander? I have one of those 'mouse' palm sanders but I think using that would take weeks and want to avoid that : (

Biggest concern is the nails - there are lots and many are not perfectly flush or recessed into the wood so I'll have to use a nail punch and hammer to recess them all, which will be fun!
My cedar porch I sanded with an orbital sander. 12'x12', with stairs and handrails. Did it in half a day. This isnt furniture quality we're talking here Real quick sand with coarse grit, it knocks it down fast. The 80 grit finish sand gets rid of any grooves or lines. It goes pretty quick. Try a bit by hand and see how it goes.
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Old 03-23-2011, 09:23 PM   #23
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


I described in my earlier post (#8 here)...

>>> Find a 12"x18" Vibrating Flat-Plate sander. Call your rental-places, or Hardware-stores that rent stuff.

* Get some backer-pads, and 60-grit sheets.
* You may want to just get 60-grit only. 80-grit can almost "polish" things too much.
* YES...definitely...knock-down those nail-heads first!!
* Please also: sweep often during sanding, vacuum well with the brush attachment, and wipe down with paint-thinner.
* Yes, I know, you didn't wanna hear that last step, but you'll be surprised how much more dust comes off!!!
* Use your palm-sander for edges, steps, etc.
* Most sanders of this type are pretty heavy.
* Make even, steady passes with the direction of the decking. Pay attention to the cord too!
* Prob'ly need a dust-mask too!

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Old 03-23-2011, 09:47 PM   #24
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


One thing that no one has mentioned is that a deck brightner should have been used after you cleaned the deck to lower the ph balance and neutalize. It would also even out the color in the wood. As for sanding 60 grit should be good. You can use an orbit sander or if you choose to rent a larger commercial sander you will want a vibrating sander and not a drum sander, as a drum sander will take more surface off faster. Make sure you sink all nails below the surface before sanding. You don't want to sand to much as you will reach a point where you can actually close the wood poures. After sanding I would sweep, vacumne the deck. Wash it again and then use a deck brightner.
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Old 03-23-2011, 11:28 PM   #25
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


DO NOT USE A BRIGHTENER/further cleaning AFTER SANDING!!!

When you've sanded the wood thoroughly/evenly, and removed all dust...YOU'RE DONE.

You're ready to stain.

* Sanding doesn't "close wood pores". It shears-off useless, degraded/crushed wood material that won't absorb OR hold stain.
* What remains is, in a sense, is "New" wood.
* The newly exposed wood cellulose/lignin fibers, whose structure is now opened-up, WILL ABSORB & HOLD STAIN EVENLY.
* Why? Again...because all the crushed fibers are now GONE.

Sheesh!
WHY subject a sanded deck to another "wet process"?!?!!?
You'd have to wait another few days for it to dry.
It's already clean.
If fully sanded, the top layers are gone anyway...there's nothing to neutralize!!

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Old 03-24-2011, 06:06 AM   #26
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


If you sand to much you will close the poures. A brighnter should always be used after cleaning a deck for several reasons.
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Old 03-24-2011, 03:08 PM   #27
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


Respectfully differing with Housepaintingny-

EVERY stain company I visit with (especially people @ Sikkens) all agree that a periodic full sanding of a deck floor is the best prep.
A few U.S. Forestry and University studies on UN-stained wood left in the sun lose HALF of their Lignin & Cellulose...

>>> ...IN TWO WEEKS.

Translated:
* HALF of a boards stain-holding ability is GONE in 2 weeks, due to Sun-exposure ALONE.
* This isn't even factoring wear, dirt, freeze-thaw cycles, moisture-environment conditions, etc.

The only remedy: SANDING-off degraded wood fibers.

If you've sanded a deck, why in the He## would you need to "Brighten" it?!?!? You're back down to virgin wood!

Faron
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Old 03-24-2011, 04:16 PM   #28
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Faron79 View Post
Respectfully differing with Housepaintingny-

EVERY stain company I visit with (especially people @ Sikkens) all agree that a periodic full sanding of a deck floor is the best prep.
A few U.S. Forestry and University studies on UN-stained wood left in the sun lose HALF of their Lignin & Cellulose...

>>> ...IN TWO WEEKS.

Translated:
* HALF of a boards stain-holding ability is GONE in 2 weeks, due to Sun-exposure ALONE.
* This isn't even factoring wear, dirt, freeze-thaw cycles, moisture-environment conditions, etc.

The only remedy: SANDING-off degraded wood fibers.

If you've sanded a deck, why in the He## would you need to "Brighten" it?!?!? You're back down to virgin wood!

Faron

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Old 03-28-2011, 02:23 PM   #29
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


I cleaned my cedar deck thoroughly about 2-1/2 months ago, in preparation for a full sand. I am just now getting around to sanding it this weekend. My question is---do I need to re-clean deck again, before sanding?

I dont mind cleaning again, just didnt know if a full sand was going to do the same thing as cleaning.

Thanks
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:44 PM   #30
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Deck Power Washed...now many days of rain before stain!


A follow-up -

The weather has still been too chilly here in the Philadelphia area (highs in low 40's). I hear it will warm up later this week, so I plan on doing the following:

1. Re-power wash the deck using a deck cleaner and my 2000 psi electric pressure washer (I did as good a job as I could have before, using the rented 3000psi gas pressure washer, so I'm not expecting any change in condition after this). Only reason I'm doing this is because it will have been over 2 weeks since I originally pressure-washed it.

2. I'm going to stop by the Sikkens dealer and see what dark shade of semi-transparent stain he'll have and see if I can get a sample can of it. I'm going to try it on an area that is the most discolored and see how it turns out.

After discussing with some local experienced DIYers who took a look at the deck, they advised against sanding it because after closer inspection, just about 90% of the nails in the deck (there are at least 1000 nails) are slightly above flush and the sandpaper would just be torn constantly. I don't want to spend 3 days banging in nail heads so this is the best alternative I think. Those same guys told me to just bite the bullet and use an opaque stain, but these guys don't have the best eye for aesthetics based on their firebrick red-stained decks so I'm gonna give a darker semi-transp a shot first : )

If it doesn't work well to cover up the imperfections then I'll go with the opaque.

Once I make some more progress later this week I'll post some more pics.

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