How to remove mineral deposits from composite decking

Follow these steps to rid cement dust, stucco, clay, or similar mineral deposits from your composite deck.

One common question we receive is how to remove mineral deposits from Fiberon composite decking. The term “mineral deposits” covers a wide range of natural elements and building material by-products, including mud, dirt, stucco, cement or gravel dust, and calcium chloride in salt form used as an ice melt. Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to remove these messes and establish an ongoing maintenance program.

Where do mineral deposits come from?

Home construction, deck construction, or large-scale landscaping projects can all result in mud and other messes being tracked onto your deck boards. Similarly, if you have stucco on your home or gravel paths near your deck, you may find that dust and debris are settling on your deck space regularly.

How to remove mineral deposits from your composite deck

We recommend Wash Safe’s “Spray and Clean Composite Deck Cleaner.” Each gallon of cleaner will clean approximately 250 sq. ft. of decking. The product may be diluted in a range of ratios, depending of the age of your decking and its condition.

To test the product, we used a three-hour wait time as well as a 30-minute wait time. Keep in mind that a first-time cleaning will likely require a much longer wait than a routine cleaning.

In our experience, a 30-minute wait time really is the minimum. And while you should certainly read and follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions, here are a few tips to ensure satisfactory results.

  1. Pour the cleaner into a pump spray for decking application. For normal dirt/soil amounts, dilute cleaner with one gallon of hot water. For heavier, stubborn soil, use the product undiluted.
  2. Apply cleaner to the soiled area on the deck. Most stains will be dissolved on contact; however, for more concentrated soils, allow the cleaner to soak on the decking for 3-4 hours. Keep the boards wet during the wait period by applying additional cleaner as needed.
  3. Pressure-wash the decking to remove the cleaner. Use a fan tip only and keep the tip five inches from the surface. Always spray in the direction of the graining. If you move across the board’s graining, you risk scuffing and damaging the boards.

How to manage mineral deposits over time

The steps outlined above should remove any dirt residue or mineral deposits. If needed, the cleaner can be used periodically to keep messes at bay, should you have problems with stucco or gravel and the like.

For maintenance, use a 1:4 formula; that is, one gallon of cleaner to four gallons of hot water. Location, weather, environmental factors, and materials surrounding your deck will all factor into how frequently you’ll need to clean your deck.

For additional care and maintenance information for Fiberon composite decking and railing, download our handy guide.


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