Having the best cleaner for exterior wood is vitally important for many reasons, besides making aged wood look brand new again. Having a cleaner that does the majority of the work is the best you can ask for. Saving time, money, not harming the wood anymore than you have to, when you power wash is key.
Making Aged Wood Look New Again With Best Wood Cleaner
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not selling this product, nor own stock in this company, or having any interest in it, even though I may feel like a Fuller Brush-man talking about it. Just wanting to share my experience over the years, finding the best way making old aged wood look new once again using the best wood cleaner I know.
Going back over this article, giving it a few updates as blog articles should do, talking about the best wood cleaner is just as exciting telling you this, as the day I first published it.
I should note: Since originally writing this article back in 2009, have used this same technique cleaning wood structures outside 100's of times, working like a charm in every case ever since. Fast forwarding to 2018, I still stand behind what I originally wrote back in 2009.
So here we go, learning the best way making old barn looking wood look new again, with the best cleaner I have found.
Understanding How Wood Ages
Knowing how wood ages over time, will help you clean wood even better. Wood that is outside needs some kind of protection. As it ages with time, and that protecting once given to it has diminished, not protecting it any longer, that wood will start turning gray, then black, and in many cases will have mold & mildew, deteriorating it even further, causing wood rot. This is the case for most wood types used in America.
Some of the best woods for exterior applications are Cedar, Redwood, Cyprus, and treated wood from the lumber mills. Even these types of wood need proper protection, or will need to clean them back, at some point also.
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 grow mold & mildew, deteriorating over time, in that order. Getting grey out of the wood is and has been quite easy over the years knowing best Cedar wood protection today, with a wide variety of deck and wood cleaner products available on the market today.
Power washing is good, the lighter you can do it. The harder, more forceful can damage the wood, taking off more top layers of wood. Each and every time after power washing, looking the next day, a fine wood dust is present surrounding the work area.
So, the less times you need to power wash, the better. Knowing this, even the blackest, grayest, most aged Cedar comes clean, like new, with the lightest pressure washing we've ever done.
Most wood cleaners cost an average of $12.00 per gallon. Some cleaners being concentrate, making 5 gallons of wood cleaner which can be sprayed out of a garden sprayer, or out of our power washers using a low pressure siphon. Fast forward to 2018, average cost per gallon of cleaner is over $20.00.
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. Just learning another great tip painting, staining Cedar wood siding, listing many more here. Suggesting Oxi-Clean, I 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 Oxi-Clean™ as normal, then scrubbing into wood with a large floor sweep broom, letting it stand, you could watch the black oozed out of the pores of the Cedar, then hitting with high pressure wash, only one time. After the wood dried back out from the cleaning, homeowner called me with extreme pleasure and gratification that this was the answer.
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 gaping 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 above, 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.
If needing Cedar cleaning, staining or painting in Colorado, contact Eco Paint, Inc. Today! Also, if you are somewhere else, trying this, let me hear from you in a comment below.