Archive for the ‘decks’ category

Dark, Leaf Stains on Patio

April 29th, 2010


I have some dark leaf stains on my patio from last year that just won’t go away. Should I just let it be, or do you recommend something to remove them? Perhaps bleach?


Eventually, the dark leaf stains will go away. Weather and ultraviolet sunlight will get to the stains, but it takes some time. Bleach can be effective with detergent.

If you want quicker action, try scrubbing with a strong solution of MEX. You will find MEX at the hardware store. It is a strong detergent specifically designed for concrete and masonry surfaces. Mix a strong solution in very hot water, then scrub with a stiff brush. Allow it to soak, then scrub repeating several times.

You could also use a cleaner that contains oxalic acid like Zud, wood bleach or a deck cleaner. This will remove the stains, but may also lighten the concrete surface color. You may need to clean the whole patio once you start with an oxalic acid cleaner.

Removing Mildew from a Cedar Deck

January 19th, 2010

How do you remove mildew from new cedar deck boards? Some of them were just installed. I can’t believe mildew would appear that fast! I would like to seal the deck, however I can’t do it until the mildew is removed. Thanks.



You can remove mildew from a wooden deck with any deck cleaner. You can also use a product called JOMAX – it’s a great cleaner that you mix with water and laundry bleach. Spray it on, let it soak for 15 min, then hose it off. Scrub if any residue remains.

The mildew was probably on the lumber when it was installed, and was activated by the exterior moisture. Cleaning will help remove the dirt that the mildew loves to grow on. You do need to seal the deck soon, as it is dry in the spring.