How to Restore an Ipe Wood Deck

Restoring an Ipe wood deck involves a few key steps: cleaning, brightening, drying, and finishing. Here’s a detailed guide to help you restore your deck to its original beauty.

Materials Needed:

  • DeckWise Cleaner
  • DeckWise Brightener
  • Pressure washer with a 12″ – 20″ orbital pressure washer surface cleaner attachment
  • Garden hose
  • Stiff bristle brush
  • Safety goggles and gloves
  • Ipe Oil Plus or DeckWise WiseCoat water-based finish
  • Paint roller or brush
  • Drop cloths or plastic sheeting (to protect surrounding areas)

Step-by-Step Instructions:

1. Preparation
  • Safety First: Wear safety goggles and gloves to protect yourself from debris and cleaning agents.
  • Clear the Deck: Remove all furniture, plants, and other items from the deck. Sweep away loose dirt and debris.
2. Cleaning the Deck
  • Mix DeckWise Cleaner: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to mix the DeckWise Cleaner with water in a garden sprayer or bucket.
  • Apply Cleaner: Spray or spread the cleaner evenly over the deck surface. Make sure to cover all areas, including railings and stairs.
  • Scrub the Deck: Use a stiff bristle brush to scrub the deck, focusing on any stained or heavily soiled areas.
  • Rinse with Pressure Washer: Attach the 12″ – 20″ orbital pressure washer surface cleaner to your pressure washer. Rinse the deck thoroughly, ensuring all the cleaner and dirt are removed. Hold the washer at a consistent height and move it evenly to avoid gouging the wood.
Power wash boat dock
3. Brightening the Deck
  • Mix DeckWise Brightener: Prepare the brightener solution according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Apply Brightener: Spray or spread the brightener evenly over the deck surface.
  • Let It Sit: Allow the brightener to sit for the recommended time (usually 10-15 minutes) to neutralize the cleaner and brighten the wood.
  • Rinse Thoroughly: Rinse the deck again with the pressure washer, ensuring all the brightener is washed off.
4. Drying the Deck
  • Allow to Dry: Let the deck dry completely. This can take 24-48 hours depending on weather conditions. Ensure no rain is expected during this drying period.
5. Applying the Finish
  • Choose a Finish: Select either Ipe Oil Plus or DeckWise WiseCoat water-based finish. Both provide excellent protection and enhance the natural beauty of Ipe wood.
  • Apply the Finish:
  • You need to choose if you are going to use the oil based finish or the water based finish. Use only one or the other do not use both together.
    • Ipe Oil Plus: Use a paint roller or brush to apply a thin, even coat of Ipe Oil Plus. Wipe off any excess oil with a clean cloth to avoid a sticky finish. Dispose of oily rags properly as the oily rags are extremely combustible and will almost certainly spontaneously combust. Many homeowners have started their homes on fire by not following the disposal instruction on the can.
    • DeckWise WiseCoat: Apply the water-based finish with a paint roller or brush, ensuring an even coat over the entire surface. Let it soak in and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for drying times. The water based finish ads some water protection and is not flammable like the oil based and is very low VOC so it’s more environmentally friendly.
  • Protect Surroundings: Use drop cloths or plastic sheeting to protect plants and surfaces around the deck from over spray or drips.
6. Final Touches
  • Inspect the Deck: Once the finish is dry, inspect the deck for any missed spots or uneven areas. Apply additional finish if necessary. (Do no apply too much, Ipe wood is so dense it will only absorb so much. If you apply too much and don’t wipe off the excess your deck will be tacky.)
  • Replace Furniture: Return all furniture and items to the deck once the finish is completely dry and cured.

By following these steps, your Ipe wood deck will be restored to its natural beauty and protected against the elements, ensuring longevity and a beautiful appearance for years to come.

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