Making Aged Wood Look New Again
Eco Paint Specialist's Painting Contractor of Denver/Aurora, painting the Front Range of Colorado with over 32 years exp. recently learned something new & exciting wishing to share with all.
Not only painting, but cleaning, power washing, pressure cleaning decks, fences, and Cedar Sided homes is a key area of expertise with most painting contractors, especially in the Colorado market. Many homes in the Colorado market have some portion of wood treated with a Semi-Transparent or Solid Body exterior stain. Stains protect decks, fences, cedar siding homes, and of course log homes. Leaving untreated, this wood will grey and blacken to later deteriorate over time, in that order. Getting grey out of the wood is and has been quite easy over the years with a wide variety of deck and wood cleaner products available on the market today.
Most wood cleaners cost an average of $12.00 per gallon, some being concentrate, making 5 gallons of wood cleaner which can be sprayed out of a garden sprayer, or as we've administered, out of our power washers using a low pressure siphon. All products require a bit of elbow grease, after applying, scrubbing into grain, leaving on to penetrate and clean, then by pressure washing with cleaning pressure around 2500-3000 psi.
We contracted with a homeowner in Littleton Colorado recently, doing the same thing. Our customer informed us they ran off and fired previous painting company, as they could not get cedar siding clean enough for the owner's acceptance. Walking the exterior, I could see uncleaned portions, and others extremely clean, where the homeowner told me the very clean lower, small sections, testing out Oxi-Clean. Somewhat embarrassed seeing a homeowner doing a far better job than a paint company, he told me the other company refused to use what he had suggested. Suggesting Oxi-Clean, I too thought, we'll give it a try if all else fails. Not coming out short handed, we brought out a full array of wood cleaners from Sherwin-Williams to Behr. Power washing 3 and 4 times, nothing would clean near as good as one time with Oxi-Clean. Applying as normal, then scrubbing into wood with a large floor sweep broom, letting it stand, you could watch the black oozze out of the pours of the Cedar, then hitting with high pressure washing, like no bodies business. Homeowner called me after work the first day with extreme pleasure and gratification.
This cedar home, quite large is a great undertaking no matter what type of exterior work is involved, being well over 4500 sq. ft. Thinking how much money was saved on cleaners, bleaches, labor hours, and other chemicals getting the black out of this Cedar Siding is anybodies guess, we used approx. 8 boxes of Oxi-Clean ($9.99 per.bx) Detergent over the complete exterior over one day, making this like a brand new cedar sided home, ready for stain, after allowing to dry for 72 hours.
Oxi-Clean states it has 101 uses on box, being very "Versatile", one of them cleaning decks and fences. This was not known until now, wishing to relay my findings to all in the cleaning of decks, fences, and cedar siding getting the black out, making like new once again, with the least amount of effort and material costs.
Inspecting after cleaning, we f0und a small section of siding that was beyond repair, having curled up, leaving gapeing holes where snow, ice and rain could find it's way behind siding, next to roof line. Replacing a section approx. 12' X 12'
Letting this home dry back out over 3 days, we applied a Sikkens SRD Translucent Cedar Stain, spraying and back brushing into grain for an even uniform finish. Keeping up the maintenance with a re-coating of stain on a regular basis, this Cedar will never undergo an intense cleaning again.
This exterior below, was totally black with mildew aged over 20 years without any protection. Cleaning 2 applications with Oxi-Clean, saving days if not weeks trying to clean with typical cleaners listed above. Also note, homeowner did not wish we clean deck, as it will be replaced very soon. Some boards having holes as big as your foot through the floor, showing previous homeowner did not take any care protecting exterior wood surfaces.