Not only do green algae spoil the beautiful looks of your deck, but they also pose a danger to your life by inducing a slippery effect on the deck. If you are not watchful of your steps, you can easily slip and injure yourself. It is therefore important to get rid of the algae before it harms you or your loved ones.
Cleaning The Deck With Tri-Sodium Phosphate
You can get rid of algae by cleaning your unsealed deck with tri-sodium phosphate. If you do not have it in your home, you can get one at your local paint store. Apply the substance on the area you want to work on and give it 10 to 20 minutes to do its work. Then rinse the area using your pressure washer. Adjust the pressure readings of the washer to between 900 and 100 psi. And to avoid wood damages, use a wide angle tip of the pressure washer. Rinse until you can see no more green on the deck.
Cleaning The Deck With Sodium Hydroxide
For sealed wood, or what is better known as stained deck, you may have to use a different cleaning agent. Sodium hydroxide works best on stained decks, but be careful while using since it is a caustic solution that can burn your skin or any other part of your body that it can contact. Hence you must wear protective clothing that must include eye protection, gloves, boots and a breathing apparatus.
But despite all your efforts, the caustic solution may still come into contact with your skin. If this happens, you can neutralize its effect using vinegar. The cleaning procedure is the same as the one used in cleaning unsealed decks. Remember to mask off any glass surface that may be near your working area, since sodium hydroxide etches glass.
It is important to restore the original PH (acidity level) of the wood, especially if you have used a caustic solution. Get a deck brightener from your local paint store and apply it on your deck. Give it some time (10 minutes) on the deck before rinsing it with water. It will restore the wood's PH to its natural state.
How You Can Stop Algae From Growing
In the future, you can ensure that algae do not seek shelter in your deck by coating the deck with a biocide. A biocide such as copper can hinder the growth and development of algae. The only downside is that once you use a biocide, your deck will require regular maintenance.