A timber deck is a gorgeous outdoor feature of a house, but it requires maintenance to keep its lustrous look. If you’re oiling a deck for the first time, there are some things you must know before you start the process. The preparation for oiling your deck will be different if your deck is newly installed, or has been part of your house for years. Here are our top tips for getting it right!
New deck installations
If you have had a new deck installed around your home, it may be tempting to oil the deck straight away to remove the dullness and bring it to a glistening shine. Before you get started on oiling your new deck, however, check with your timber supplier as some timbers need to weather 4 to 6 weeks prior to coating. Some may require as much as two to three months.
The reason for the weathering is that your deck is still full of tannins and oils and the exposure to sun and rain will leach these out to ensure the timber surface is ready for penetration of the oil and better adhesion of treatments. If the oil is coated on the timber too soon, the coating can be ruined. To help the leaching process, you can use a chemical solution or you can hose your timber deck every couple of days. Brisbanes Finest Floors can tell you the amount of time needed for your timber deck to weather and the correct ways to leach the tannins and oils from your deck so you can apply the oil sooner.
Once the timber deck has weathered for the right amount of time, it’s time to prepare the deck for the oiling process.
How to oil a new deck
Oiling a new deck is a fairly easy process, but it can be time consuming. Here is a checklist of how to prepare your new deck for oiling.
Preparation checklist for oiling a new deck
Ensure the deck has weathered as per the installer’s instructions.
Check the weather forecast before you decide to oil your deck. You will want dry conditions to ensure the oil penetrates the timber for an even coat.
Use sugar soap and warm water to clean the dust and dirt from the timber decking. A stiff decking bristle brush is the perfect tool to clean your timber deck. Rinse with a hose and allow to dry. For a deeper clean, some flooring manufacturers will recommend an appropriate cleaning solution. The boards can be lightly scrubbed with this solution, left for 15 minutes, then rinsed off with a hose. The deeper clean will strip the old oil from the wood. Your deck may require a day or two to dry before it can be oiled.
If there is mould on the deck, use bleach (check with your timber supplier for the right type) on the whole surface to remove the mould from the timber. Use a hose to rinse off the bleach and allow the deck to dry.
Once the timber is clean and dry, it’s time to add the oil.
Choose an oil that will highlight the natural grain, colour and texture of the timber. A quality oil to consider for your deck is one that is easy to coat, repels water, resists mould and fungus and offers UV protection so the timber can’t be damaged by the sun. Decide on whether to use a brush application or pad application. For larger areas, a pole extension with a pad application may save time and your back.
Oiling your new deck
Once your timber decking is cleaned and prepared for oiling, it’s time to apply the oil. Stir the oil thoroughly before application. Read the instructions on the tin to get an indication of the drying time and how long you have to wait between applications.
To apply the oil, run the pad or brush as far along a single board as you can, without touching any of the other boards. Do one row at a time and, once one row is done, move across the rest of the deck. For an even penetration, don’t rush the application. Use long, continuous strokes to ensure an even coat is applied to each board.
Once the first coating has been applied, wait as per the instructions on when the next coat can be applied. Less oil will need to be added the second time as the timber won’t be able to absorb as much oil. Too much oil can make the deck surface sticky and gluggy. Have a rag and some turps ready to clean any spills; the turps helps thin out the oil.
Leave the deck to dry after the second coat. It may take a day or two depending on the weather before furniture can be placed on the deck.
Timber deck maintenance
Once your timber deck has been oiled, you should keep a regular schedule of oiling and sealing the deck every six to twelve months to ensure the longevity of the deck and keep it looking its best all year round. Deck maintenance is an important part of the general upkeep of your deck.
Old deck restorations
If your timber deck has never been maintained and it’s been severely weathered, it can still be restored to its original glory. You may consider using a professional service like Brisbanes Finest Floors to reinstate the timber deck to how it would have looked when first installed – or even to a new, character-filled beautiful version of a timber deck look. It may be tempting to pull up your old deck, but an expert can recommend a plan to repair or restore your deck.
If you have a timber deck that needs to be brought back to life, contact the team at Brisbanes Finest Floors. Their years of experience and expertise can offer you an affordable solution to restore your timber deck so you can use it as another area for the family to enjoy and entertain.
If you’re oiling a deck for the first time, or you’re time poor and need someone else to oil your deck, contact the expert team at Brisbanes Finest Floors on 0411 220 488 to discuss all your decking needs!
Oiling a deck for the first time? Talk to the experts at Brisbanes Finest Floors for all your timber decking needs.