Can You Power Wash a Trex Deck? Tips, Facts, & FAQ
Trex decking is a building material that resembles wood but is much stronger and sturdier. It uses recycled plastics, wood fiber, and binding agents in its construction and is available in many colors. However, it can get dirty, and many people wonder if it’s possible to power wash it. The short answer is yes. The Trex decking manufacturer states that it’s safe to power wash, but a few restrictions do exist. Keep reading as we discuss these limitations and provide tips and tricks for getting the best results.
Can I Power Wash My Trex Deck?
It is safe to power wash your Trex deck if you keep the water pressure under 3,100 pounds per square inch (PSI). The manufacturer also recommends using fan attachments when cleaning for a wider spray area and keeping the tip of the nozzle at least 8 inches from the surface to avoid damaging the engineered wood.
When Should I Avoid Using a Pressure Washer?
The Trex decking manufacturer recommends not using a power washer on older generations of Trex flooring, and using the machine on these floors can void the warranty. Specific brands of Trex that you should not power wash include Accents, Origins, Brasilia, Profiles, and Contours. Signs that you might have this type of flooring include fading color, flaking, and chipping, as these floors do not have a protective shell like the newer floors do.
What Damage Can Occur From Power Washing a Trex Deck?
If you are power washing an older Trex deck, the high-pressure water can lift and remove the small particles that make up the deck. Similarly, on a newer Trex deck, you can damage the protective outer shell if you use too much water pressure or put the nozzle too close to the surface. Once the outer shell is damaged, the flooring color will start to fade and may begin to chip and flake off like older types.
What Is the Best Way to Clean My Trex Deck?
- Use the lowest pressure possible on your machine when power washing a Trex deck. While the manufacturer recommends pressure up to 3,000 PSI, 1,500 PSI is usually more than enough to clean the surface and is much less likely to damage it.
- Use a fan blade tip, and keep it about 12 inches from the surface as you soak the deck with soapy water.
- Gently scrub each board on your Trex deck with a soft bristle brush to remove dirt and grime from the surface. Scrubbing also helps you inspect the surface for any damage.
- Once you finish scrubbing, use the power washer again to rinse the deck with clean water before it dries.
- If you have hard water, wipe the boards with a clean cloth to prevent staining.
How Can I Clean Oil in Greasy Food From My Trex Deck?
Oil and grease can build up on the surface of your Trex deck, especially if you enjoy grilling. You should be able to remove it easily by spraying it down with a hose or power washer. Putting dishwashing liquid on the surface can help break down the grease, making it easier to remove. Leaving spills on the surface for more than 7 days can void the warranty.
How Can I Remove Hard Water Stains From My Trex Deck?
Hard water contains an excessive amount of minerals and can leave stains behind on the deck surface when it dries, which is frustrating if you just washed it. Fortunately, these minerals won’t penetrate the protective coating, and you can remove them easily using vinegar and a clean water rinse. If you cannot rinse your deck with soft water, dry the boards manually with a cloth to remove the minerals and prevent staining.
Is It Safe to Remove Snow and Ice From My Trex Deck?
Your Trex Deck is extremely durable and can withstand shoveling, but you must use a shovel with a plastic edge. A metal edge can scratch and damage the protective coating. You should also avoid using salt or calcium chloride to melt the snow or ice because it can corrode and damage the metal fasteners that hold the deck together.
How Do I Clean an Older Trex Deck?
If you have an older generation of Trex, it cannot stand up to the force of a power washer, and it is more prone to staining and flaking. To clean this surface, use warm soapy water and a brush to remove any containments. Cleaning the deck at least twice per year will prevent the buildup of pollen, mold, and debris, helping the deck look new for longer.
What Should I Avoid When Cleaning My Trex Deck?
- Never use harsh chemicals with your power washer, as they can lead to damage and discoloration.
- Never use bleach or acid on your Trex deck, as it can lighten the surface.
- Never use abrasive cleaners or sandpaper on Trex wood, as it can dull the surface and damage the protective coating.
Power washing a newer Trex deck is an efficient way to clean the surface, as long as you keep the pressure below 3,000 PSI, use a fan blade tip, and keep the end at least 8 inches from the deck while working. We recommend soaking it in warm soapy water, using a scrub brush to remove debris, and then using the power washer to rinse it with clean water. Avoid using the power washer with older generations of Trex, and never use any harsh chemicals or abrasives.
Featured Image Credit: bubutu, Shutterstock