Decks take a lot of punishment from Mother Nature. Excessive moisture, heat, cold and wind can all cause your deck to become dirty and stained. A variety of deck cleaning products are available, but most of these products contain harsh chemicals that can leave behind a toxic residue. Instead of using these harsh cleaning chemicals, opt for natural, non-toxic deck cleaners.
When it comes to cleaning, water is usually just an ingredient in a cleaning solution, not the only item. However, you would be surprised at what the water, paired with pressure from your water hose, will remove from your deck. The water will not remove stains or stuck-on dirt, but it can remove dust, leaves, moss and surface mould.
Vinegar is an all-natural deodoriser, cleaner and degreaser that will kill mould and mildew. According to Good Housekeeping's microbiologist Gina Marino, vinegar will reduce mould and mildew by 90 per cent. By scrubbing your deck with a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar, you will kill any fungus -- such as mould and mildew -- that may be lurking on your deck while cleaning and deodorising the wood. Adding a few drops of a mild liquid dish soap to the water-vinegar mixture will aid cleaning your deck.
Like vinegar, baking soda has been used for years to both clean and deodorise a number of surfaces, including wood. Baking soda is all-natural and will not harm people or pets. Fill a bucket with 1 gallon of water and add 1 cup of baking soda. Mix the baking soda and water together with a wooden spoon. The baking soda must be dissolved in the water. Use the scrub brush or brush broom to scrub the deck with the mixture. After you have cleaned the deck to your satisfaction, rinse the area with a water hose.
Oxygen bleach is an alternative to chlorine bleach and is used for a variety of household chores, including laundry, cleaning and dishwashing. Oxygen bleach comes in powder form that -- unlike chlorine bleach -- is non-toxic and does not contain harsh chemicals. Oxygen bleach will also not cause discolouration or a bleaching effect to the item. To create the cleaning solution, mix 1 cup of oxygen bleach for every 1 gallon of water. Scrub the deck with a scrub brush or brush broom saturated in the mixture. Once you have finished cleaning the deck, rinse with a water hose.