The cleaning process as seen above involves the removal of the mold/ fungus buildup as well as the removal of any previously applied finishes. The process to remove this build up involves a saturating mildewcide chemical reaction that breaks down the growth, dissolves it and flushes it away with low pressure and hot water. The pressure washer is not used as the primary tool; it is used as a way to effectively remove the solidified growth from the surface. As you can see in the pictures at the top right, mold/fungus is actually lifted out of the deck surface and rinsed away at low pressure. No-damage is done to the wood and the unsightly stains are removed.
For finishing we prefer modern synthetic or water based finishes depending on the wood type and condition. We usually have a recommendation after looking at the deck but wait to make a final decision until after the cleaning process is complete. The finishes we typically use are "Sikkens", "Defy" and "Wolman". There are new finishes being developed everyday and having done literally thousands of decks, we receive large samples to test each year. Rest assured, if there are any new products for which you would like information, we probably have samples in the field already.
Water Based / Synthetic finishes allow us to leave the wood with a light cedar finish that will not darken with time as commonly seen in saturating oil finishes. Our finishes also offer full VOC compliance and most are safe to use over waterways and around vegetation. It is reasonable to expect 2- 4 years of water resistance and protection from UV rays as well as mold and algae growth.