How to chose the right penetrating timber oil for your project ?

Expert Stain and Seal penetrating timber oil is available in 3 types and 18 beautiful stain shades.

  • Transparent : In 5 shades from clear to Redwood.
  • Semi Transparent : in 5 shades from Pecan to Mahogany.
  • Semi Solid : in 9 shades from Eucalyptus to Black.

What is the difference and which penetrating timber oil is the best to use on your project?

The answer is simple and it all comes down to age and the proportion of pigments in the different oils.

The base oil is a fine penetrating wax oil, and it’s the same in all 3 products. In fact, it is only the pigment levels that change. Transparent has the least pigments whilst semi solid has the highest concentration.

These pigments provide surface protection against UV and weathering and help to lock the oil deep in the wood.

With new timber the grain is quite closed and less pigment is able to penetrate into the surface of the wood. This close grain is due to various factors including preservative treatments, machining, mill glaze etc.

The high grade trans oxide pigments used in our oils have a larger particle size than the base oils so they can’t pass as far into new wood as they can weathered, older wood. As the wood ages it opens up and is able to absorb more pigment. The older the timber the more pigment it’s able to absorb and the more pigment it needs for weathering and UV protection.

Below is our guide to which oil works best at the different stages of your deck’s life.


Great for decks 1-5 years old and will need to be re-applied every 12 to 18 months or so.

Semi Transparent:

Ideal to perk up your deck as time fades the natural beauty of the wood and is ideal for years 5-8. These oils are richer in colour than transparent and add depth to an older deck. Reapply every 2-3 years.

Semi Solid

Perfect for timbers over 8 years old with its high level of rich pigments. It’s also available in the widest range of colours from true black to deep browns and stunning greys.

This is a guide to why and when and not an absolute ‘rule book’. If you have a younger deck and want to stain it grey that’s also fine but please do ask for advice. Our friendly technical team is always on hand to help and advise.

For more assistance and technical support please contact


Demonstrating Pecan Semi transparent deck oil

Why use a penetrating deck oil ?

The exterior wood care market is awash with competing products designed to keep your deck or fence looking good. But which products really work?

The exterior wood finish industry is broadly divided into 2 categories:

  • Those that sit on the top of the wood and protect from the surface. These are broadly known as film-builders and usually require 2 coats.
  • Those that sink deep into the wood are known as Penetrating deck oils (PDO’s).
    • They nourish, protect and repel water from within.
    • The best of these are a single application product . 

Film Builders

Film builders cure on to the surface of the timber and are generally built of 2 coats. They protect the wood by preventing water ingress. This is fine for as long as they inhibit water ingress but bearing in mind that a deck board generally has 4 sides it does nothing to stop water from striking on any unfinished surfaces. Inevitably water will find its way round , and over time through these finishes , causing the deck board to hold and trap moisture and for the surface treatment to fail. This leads to flaking and peeling. It’s then difficult to remove the residual film and requires wood stripper and sanding. They may cost less to buy but need two coats and are hard to remove. They are best avoided.


Penetrating deck oil (PDO)

Penetrating deck oil is designed to penetrate into the wood, where it dries, oxidizes, and hardens within the wood grain of the timber. This forms a tough, durable, water and weatherproof barrier that beads rain and allows water to run-off. PDO’s can be either water-based or oil-based. Both work by penetrating deeply into the decking boards and working from within to protect the wood from water damage, as well as preventing cracks, splitting and warping of the decking boards. The high concentration of oil and wax make timber highly resistant to water and dirt ingress, while providing a highly durable and easily maintained finish.

Let’s have a look at the deck oil market leaders and see how they stack up :

  • Cuprinol UV guard decking oil : A 2 coat Film builder
  • Ronseal Ultimate decking oil : A 2 coat film builder containing linseed oil.
  • Liberon decking oil : A 2 coat film builder
  • Sadolin deck oil : A 2 coat film builder
  • Osmo decking oil : A microporous 2 coat PDO with a high VOC content.
  • Morrells Holzol oil : A 2 coat film builder.
  • Owatrol Textrol : A 2 coat PDO with a high VOC content (455g/litre)
  • Owatrol Textrol HES : A 1 coat PDO ( 2 coats may be required on softwoods) with a high VOC content (310g/litre)
  • Expert Stain and Seal : A 1 coat PDO with a low VOC content less than 100g/litre.


Expert Stain & Seal

Expert stain and Seal’s range of oils are a great example of a quality penetrating timber oil. They are made from a quality oil based paraffinic wax  with a very fine structure which allows the oil to penetrate deep into the wood, protecting and nourishing from within. Their super low VOC content  means good for the user and great for the environment.

There’s no massive strip and sand required with a high quality PDO either. A soft-wash with a product like DeckClean Pro, a flat sand of any areas of raised grain or mechanical damage and a re-coat is all that’s needed

With a 60% lower price tag compared to the current market leader, this option is a smart financial choice, without making the all too common environmental sacrifice!

Demonstrating Expert Stain & Seal packaging: how to clean and maintain a deck


How to Clean and Maintain a Deck


Deck care, when well managed, saves a lot of time and effort. Here we review the easiest, most practical steps to cleaning and maintaining a deck.

To start, it is important to apply a coat of DECK SHIELD PRO (to purchase this product click here) while your deck is clean and new. This can be done using a garden sprayer or a brush. By applying this protective coating, you ensure that your deck remains dry and well-protected during the first 12 months as it weathers in. This helps prevent excessive swelling or contraction and inhibits any cupping or warping of the boards.

If you’re working with a contractor, they can apply the sealer upon completing the project.After 12 months the Deck shield will be wearing out and will have done its job. Now is the time to give your deck some real long term protection. This step is the key to easy long term deck maintenance.

Once the initial 12-month period has passed, it’s time to focus on providing your deck with long-term protection. This step is crucial for easy maintenance in the future. Start by applying a bio cleaner and brightener to kill any algae and restore a clean and fresh appearance to your deck.

DECK CLEAN PRO (to purchase this product click here) combines all three necessary ingredients in one product. Keep in mind that this product is designed for professional use, so it’s important to follow the instructions carefully. Remember to wear a mask and gloves, and apply a liberal coat using a stiff brush. Avoid spraying the product and rinse well with a low-pressure washer at around 80-100 psi after use.

Once the deck is completely dry, take the time to sand any patches of furring (a slightly raised furry texture caused by the cleaning process) and address any damages. Make sure to sweep the deck thoroughly. These steps will prepare the deck for the next stage in ‘how to clean and maintain a deck’, which involves applying a coat of oil.

Rich colours and tints in 19 wonderful shades, make the best deck and timber oils around. Shades from Clear to black with wonderful tones of Pecan, cedar and Chocolate

A single coat penetrating deck oil is ideal for treating, protecting and nourishing your deck (for more information on why please check out ‘Why use a Penetrating deck oil?‘). In this regard, we recommend Expert Stain and Seal’s range of single coat application, ultra low VOC, penetrating oils. These oils sink deep into the wood and offer long-lasting protection.

There are 3 levels of protection depending on the age and use of your deck:


These stains contain lower pigments and are ideal for the first five years of your deck’s life. We recommend that a deck is re-coated with transparent oils every 18 months or so. Available in colours like Natural, Clear, Cedar and Honey (for our full range click here).

Semi transparent wood stains

Offering a mid-level of pigmentation, these stains provide enhanced protection and a deeper color as time fades the natural beauty of the wood. They are ideal for decks in years 5 to 8 of their lifespan. Recoating with transparent oils every 24-30 months is advised. A great example of this is our Pecan tone (for our full range click here).

Semi Solid wood stains:

These stains are specifically designed for older decks (8 years or more) with their rich trans oxide pigments. They are available in a stunning array of colours. For more product information click here or have a look at our suppliers at Expert Wood Care.


For more assistance and product support please don’t hesitate to contact Steve at or if you need product or specialist contractor information please contact Chris at


Demonstrating Expert Stain & Seal packaging: how to clean and maintain a deck

Here is why you should be using Expert Stain & Seal deck oils.

The Safe Smart Choice in Wood Stains

Expert Stain & Seal are easy and quick to use one coat application oils designed to give long lasting wood protection. Here is why you should be using Expert Stain & Seal deck oils.
Our products extend wood life and beauty whilst their ultra low VOC means they’re safe for you and the planet: natural oxide pigments are extremely low in toxins making them safer to use.
As penetrating deck oils they get deep into the wood protecting and nourishing from the inside. Our oils won’t drip, run or leave lap marks, can be spray, brush or roller applied, and their non-film building product means it’s easy to reapply without sanding or scraping.
Expert Stain and Seal helps your deck stand up to high foot traffic with up to a 3 year guarantee. It can be applied in super low temperatures down to 4 degrees centigrade, thus extending the oiling season and soaks in quickly so you can get back to enjoying your deck.
We offer 18 great shades across our range of transparent, semi-transparent and semi solid fence and deck stains. For our full range of Expert Stain & Seal products click here. Alternatively, check out our sister company WoodCareUK for a huge range of top quality wood-care products here. 
“An eco-friendly wood stain that’s easy-to-use, and out-performs with a great finish that lasts – now that’s a real good stain.” – JOE EVEREST, FENCE EXPERT
Demonstrating Golden honey tones of Southern pine: why Southern Yellow Pine is so good.

Is Southern Yellow pine any good?

Benefits & Characteristics


Whether you need wood for professional construction projects or DIY home improvements and decor projects, SYP is a solid choice. It’s beautiful, strong, flexible and good for the environment. It takes well to finishes and can be shaped and molded to your requirements. Dive into the many reasons why Southern Yellow Pine is so good.

Why Southern Yellow Pine is so good: strength and durability

Strong and Durable

Considered to be one of the strongest softwoods out there, DIY projects made out of SYP will most certainly stand the test of time.

Why Southern Yellow Pine is so good: cost effective


Projects using SYP lumber are less susceptible to cost overruns without sacrificing quality and aesthetics to cut costs.

Native to the U.S.

Beautiful and sturdy wood? Check. Satisfies urges to support US-made products? Check.

Why Southern Yellow Pine is so good: beautiful


 Whether pressure treated or left natural, its light and warm color, plus its unique wood grain patterns, will make any part of the home welcoming.

Large Abundance

Since it grows so well in the southern parts of the country, the supply of SYP lumber is abundant.

Easy to Grow

SYP grows on acidic red clay soil. Where other types of wood fail to grow, SYP has no trouble thriving.

Why Southern Yellow Pine is so good: easy to work with

Easy to Work With

SYP is easy on the tools and holds fasteners exceptionally well. With a high density yet still being soft, is easy to curve or bend.

Why Southern Yellow Pine is so good: sustainable


SYP is a good carbon sink, meaning it absorbs and stores carbon dioxide.


Southern Yellow Pine (SYP) is strong, stiff, and dense, able to fasteners exceptionally well, which makes it a great choice for any project. SYP has a unique cellular structure which lends itself well to pressure treatment. Its distinct grain pattern and beautiful gold color make it a great choice for anyone looking to showcase its natural beauty.

Check out our range of Southern Yellow Pine here 

Building a deck with Southern Yellow Pine .

wood deckSouthern Yellow Pine: One Wood to Rule Them all

Southern Yellow Pine (SYP), as the name suggests, has a soft yellow color that looks beautiful in any environment. It looks attractive as a small deck off the edge of a cottage or a huge deck that wraps around a mansion.

Some woods look brilliant and fresh when you first build. Over the next couple of years, though, they lose that attractiveness by slowly turning gray or black. SYP resists the aging process better than most wood, so you get a deck that looks beautiful for years to come. It’s like the difference between a gray, rainy day and a bright day full of sunshine.

Staining a deckPaint It, Stain It, Make It Your Own

If you want to paint or stain your deck, Southern Yellow Pine is the right wood for your home. It has a slightly porous surface that eagerly accepts any color you want to apply.

You may have seen other woods reject paint and stains. The paint will pool on the surface. When it dries, it looks like colored mud. That doesn’t happen with SYP. Just apply a coat or two of high quality paint to get the color you want. We recommend Expert Stain and Seal’s penetrating wood oils available on this site and for deep penetrating long lasting protection.

A Softer Side to Strong Wood

Southern Yellow Pine is technically a softwood. Many people assume that hardwood will make a better material for decks. After all, decks have to support a lot of weight, especially when you have people over for entertaining.

Don’t let the term “softwood” fool you. Southern Yellow Pine is an incredibly strong lumber that engineers and architects often use for support beams when designing homes.

That’s good news for you and your guests. It’s potentially not great news for ambulance-chasing lawyers.

Southern Yellow Pine Octagon Shaped DeckMore Money in Your Pocket, More Beauty in Your Home

When it comes to using real wood to build your deck, you won’t find an option much more affordable than SYP. Sure, you could use some of those composite woods or even plastic building materials like PVC , but you will spend a lot more for a material without the feel and beauty of real wood that will still need looking after and cleaning, albeit you won’t stain it you still need to care for it.

Your deck is only as good as the wood you use to build it. Building with SYP lumber gives you an attractive, strong deck that doesn’t cost a fortune. Whether you want to build for your own home or you build decks for others, Southern Yellow Pine is always the best choice.

To view our range of Southern Yellow Pine click here 


Timber VS Composite : balancing the facts with the hype.

Timber vs Composite : balancing the facts with the hype.


In the last decade a plethora of new and exciting landscape products have entered the market pushing the envelope of outdoor design and aesthetics. At the vanguard of these products is Composite decking available in a bewildering array of specifications and qualities. Here we will review the truth behind the timber vs composite debate.

The claims are that Composite solves all the problems of traditional timber decking but what are the real pro’s and cons such as cost , durability , useability and serviceability and what exactly is it and how’s it made?

Let’s answer the last questions first. What is it and how is it made?

Composite is an engineered product made primarily from wood fibre (often pulp or wood flour) Plastics , binders and adhesives. The product can be solid or hollow section and varies greatly in its constituent parts.  Wood fibre is generally a by-product of  timber and paper industries , which is then mixed with plastics and polymer (petro oil based) resins . Clearly these ingredients and a high energy production chain make these products expensive to produce and create a lot of CO2. This however needs to be balanced against the longevity of the product and all the other cost factors associated with maintaining this and other materials over the life of the deck.

Below I have compiled a list of approximate costs per m² for a variety of decking materials , including my go-to Southern Yellow Pine or SYP ( I have also included SYP as the framing material for all cost comparisons apart from Baltic pine decking which I have costed on a mixed softwood or Baltic pine frame). I have included SYP as the frame material for Composite as it has a great stress rating C24+ (it’s very strong) and a long lifespan in excess of 30 years. There’s no point spending good money on a fancy top if the frame is going to turn to rot in 8 years or so.


Material cost/M² for decking products including frame and fixings based on a flat deck structure circa 20m² :


Baltic Pine : £45/m²

Southern Yellow Pine : £60/m²

Hardwood Balau decking : £85/m²

Trex composite decking : £125/m²

Millboard composite : £160/m²


As we can see prices vary a lot but the 2 market leading composites top the chart . There are lesser composites available at lower prices but generally you get what you pay for. Also be aware you can spend a lot more on Composite constructions if you use the recommended composite joist materials such as Millboard’s Duoframe or similar, add a £60 premium/m².

Composite decks are more expensive to build not simply because of the cost of the material but also because it takes more joists more fixings and more time to work with a decking material that lacks structural integrity. Composite is not usually stress graded and is prone to move and bend when under pressure , meaning  joists need to be installed at around 100% closer centers than timber. This means more wood  more fixings and more time , all of which equates to more cost and a higher footprint. Check out our Southern Yellow Pine range here. 

What are the pro’s and cons of Composite over timber?

Composite has a definite maintenance cost benefit over timber. This doesn’t mean it cleans itself it will still need regular cleaning , algae moss and lichen will still grow in the cracks on composite and air born pollutants will still stick to it making it dirty , but it does not need to be “serviced “ like a wooden deck. A wooden deck will need cleaning , ideally with a quality alkaline cleaner such as Sodium metasilicate, never bleach,  it may need flat sanding periodically and it will need feeding with a good quality penetrating oil, all this needs doing every 18 to 30 months  . This all costs money . The question is whether it’s worth doing ?

Before we answer that let’s look at the cons of composite .

Non porous textured material is slower to dry out. Composite is textured in order to increase friction without which it will be slippery as smooth plastics inherently are. These textured pockets hold water after rain and this is what algae mold , moss and lichen live on.

All materials fade and weather with UV exposure despite what some manufactures might claim .

Millboard market this fading as “UV tone down and slight yellowing over time” . In reality this means parts of a composite deck with higher UV exposure will be a different colour to those more shaded areas. I have seen a lot of faded yellowing decks.

Composite just like timber will stain and discolour as a result of animal faeces, tannin from falling leaves and also juices from berries . They will also suffer scorching from BBQ’s and other heat sources. With timber this can be sanded off if it gets into the wood , it’s more difficult to remove from polymers . Specialist cleaners and some recoating products are available but this is all still maintenance.

Scratches or burn marks are also usually simple to sort on timber and require replacement on composite as it loses its top coat when sanded.

With all decks the more you use it generally the better it will look as continuous foot traffic will lightly abrade and clean the surface making it a tough place for anything to grow. However unlike timber with composite  the thin top surface layer of the board will be worn away over time often leaving a dull flat patchy surface. There’s a very good reason Millboard only offer a 5 year commercial warranty , it gets more traffic. Clearly each time you service a wooden deck you are removing a very small layer of timber revealing beneath great looking wood that matches the rest of the deck.

Composite warms up more than timber in the sun. This can lead in some products to warping and distortion, particularly so in products with hidden fixings and clips which are not as robust as top screw fixed decks.

To quote Millboard again “ As with all composite products the boards tend to get hotter than timber when exposed to direct sunlight. They may be uncomfortable to walk on and footwear may be necessary, darker colours particularly.”

So what of old fashioned timber? It needs regular maintenance yes.

It can also rot where a pot has been left standing for years .However it’s easier to repair it can be re coloured to any tone you chose and if the correct timber’s selected and well maintained will last as long as any composite deck. After all a deck’s only as good as its frame .

To conclude :

I have weighed up both sides of the timber vs composite debate and the question is how does a well maintained quality wood deck stack up against a premium composite in terms of maintenance cost over the duration of its life?

If we take the example of a 20m² deck . Millboard cost for materials would cost around £160/m² or £3,200 excluding VAT and installation cost (as of May 2023). It will also need cleaning ,and there’s a cost to that, let’s call it £5/m² per annum  for a jet wash and proprietary composite cleaner. That adds up to around £1,000 over 10 years, realistically a lot more if you pay someone else.

Compared to an SYP deck of 20m² at £60/m² or £1,200 excluding VAT and installation cost. That gives an approximate budget of £2,000 for servicing the deck.

Working on a generous £25/m² service cost that’s £500 to service the deck , on average, every 2 years. That means that after 14 years and 6 services your composite and timber decks are breaking even.

Obviously all this does not take into account factors such as increased composite installation costs ,  potential higher composite replacement board costs due to  scrapes , scuffs and staining.

The risk of your composite manufacturer deleting your deck board model etc .

Clearly composite avoids the hassle of finding a quality service contractor as many can wield a pressure washer but few, as yet, have the knowledge to correctly maintain a timber deck.

I am however delighted to say that change is coming with knowledge spreading and Deck service “Universities” springing up thanks to the likes of Steven Shires at DeckCleen (here) . Products are improving dramatically too with Expert Stain and Seals penetrating timber oils (here) in a wide range of colours offering amazing long lasting results. Knowledge and product advances are spreading and real wood decks have never looked so good or lasted so long.

To summarise. There are those who don’t want the hassle of real wood and prefer to spend more on Composite’s initial outlay safe in the knowledge that they don’t need to service the deck as thoroughly. However a composite deck owner still needs to pick up a phone or pressure washer lance and get the deck cleaned.

They will also watch the surface fade , wear and stain over time , even with the best available products and despite all those headline marketing promises .

While with a carefully selected timber deck you can have a long lasting great looking deck and change to another colour whenever you service. Safe in the knowledge that real wood can be fed , nurtured and re-finished. It has soul and personality which far outweighs that of it’s composite brethren (in my humble opinion).

Thus, in the timber vs composite debate I believe that natural timbers are by far the superior material.

Whichever side of the timber vs composite fence you may sit I hope you enjoy your deck whatever it’s made from and that you have enjoyed my article. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.


Best Regards

Chris Lowe

For and on Behalf of The Manchester Deck Company


Choosing the right deck screws for you

When looking for the best deck screws for pressure-treated wood it is important to make the proper selection.

For instance, make sure the screw in question is capable of enduring things like:

  • The weather
  • Structural loads
  • The caustic nature of Natural and Chemical wood preservatives.

You may face a question such as can you use stainless steel screws in pressure-treated wood? Well, there are several sure-shot alternatives available to accomplish this objective.

For example, you can easily settle down for items like:

  • Galvanised
  • Ceramic coated, or
  • Stainless steel screws.

Remember, these are appreciated for being the perfect corrosion-resistant fasteners. As a consequence, they produce outstanding outcomes when used for pressure-treated items like cedar or redwood.

Opt for good all-round decking screws

Choose perfect all-around decking screws to get expected results from screws or nails for deck framing.

Ideally, you ought to opt for 3 ½ inches to 2 ½ inch lengths. Let us bear in mind one important thing concerning these screws. These screws are incredible:

  • Sharp
  • Tapered
  • Self-sinking, and
  • Coated for corrosion resistance.

You can successfully meet your decking jobs completed by using them accurately. For instance, make use of a cordless driver/drill. This way you will succeed in driving them as fast as nails.

Deck screws have a special significance and importance

Irrespective of whether it is yellow zinc screws pressure treated wood or any other screws, the deck screws do play an instrumental role.

For instance, these are well known for securing the decking boards. IN this way they go about producing the best walking surface for a:

  • Porch
  • Dock
  • Deck
  • Boardwalk

This explains why choosing the best performing deck screws is so vital if you are constructing a new deck or repairing an old one.

Give special consideration to certain things while using fixings

Different construction projects require different kinds of materials and special considerations.

For instance, if you’re starting a project involving these screws, make sure you give importance to factors like:

  • Decking materials and
  • Climate

If you are planning to use these screws take note of these aspects:

  • In case the work involves non-treated wood, go for different screws rather than opting for commonly treated alternatives like pressure-treated lumber.
  • Make judicious selection of the right screw as it goes a long way in preventing unwanted damage. This is particularly true when it concerns things like coastal areas, salt exposure and chloride.

Know which deck screws suit your pressure-treated wood

Galvanized screws produce best results for pressure-treated decking. Similarly, if the decks in question are Redwood or Western Red Cedar, it is prudent to use stainless steel screws. It helps prevent instances of occurrences of stains around the screw heads.

Caring for your decking – the secrets to effective deck care

Deck care made simple

Looking after your deck can seem like a daunting task, but with a few simple pointers the job can seem a lot simpler.


Why should I clean my deck?

Cleaning your deck will remove algae build up (the green bloom that appears on all outdoor surfaces if left to do so). It’s the algae that makes any surface slippery especially when wet.

Removing the algae regularly will help keep your deck slip free and its original colour.

Regularly sweeping or blowing leaves and other matter from the deck surface , particularly in the Autumn , will help keep it clean dry and algae free. This will reduce how often you need to clean any deck.


When to do it?

Ideally clean your deck in the warmer months of the year when it will dry out quicker allowing you to carry out a deck service more effectively. April to September are usually the best months.


What tools to use?

A pressure washer is a handy, but not essential, tool when cleaning your deck.

A decent stiff brush to work in any chemical cleaners is also a must.

A rotating head cleaner such as the one pictured below can be used. These start at around £30 but can cost a lot more. The rotating head will keep the jet pressure even and help avoid any scoring or fluffing of the surface that can happen with needle jet heads if left in one place for too long. They give a good even clean to the surface without scoring the wood.

If you don’t have a pressure washer a small headed deck scrubbing brush can be used but there’s a lot more elbow grease required with this approach to deck care. You will also need a garden spray or a large bucket if chemical cleaners are required.

Pressure washer for deck care

What to do and why?

There are 3 steps to deck care and not all of them are needed every time so it’s helpful to be able to figure out what the best approach is to your particular deck.


Step 1 : Cleaning.

Step 2 : Sanding.

Step 3 : Oiling.


If your deck is becoming green in the corners and starting to get slippery when wet it needs a clean. A pressure washer will get rid of a lot of the dirt and a deck cleaning chemical will help, particularly if the green tinge is not readily washed away. Deck cleaner is usually applied  once the decks had a quick clean to remove surface dirt and is then scrubbed in to remove deep seated dirt and algae from the top layer of the wood. It’s usually important that all the chemical is washed off after cleaning before it’s oiled. Products such as Deck Clean Pro or the Expert Stain and seal range of cleaners available at WoodCare UK (click here) are perfect for the job. This process of using a gentle cleaning chemical is called softwashing as is considered the best way to restore the natural beauty of your deck.

A cleaning product with a biological (bio) element will also help to kill algae, moss and lichens and inhibit their return . A lot of professional cleaning products contain aggressive biological cleaners but are prohibited for DIY applications. Safe Clean Eco from Pureseal is an ecological biological cleaner that is safe to use and keeps on cleaning deep into the wood. It’s ideal for home use and goes a long way.

If the decks been down a few years you may need to give it a flat sand to smooth off any areas of raised grain and to flatten the knap of the wood after washing (a rotating head cleaner helps reduce this, stopping the surface of the wood from becoming fluffy). Always sand when the wood’s dry and it’s not going to rain for a day or more. A 60 or 80 grit paper is ideal for opening up the woods pores in readiness for a coat of deck oil.

While cleaning the deck will remove dirt it will also leave the wood dry.  Oiling the wood feeds the wood and improves its water repellence thus inhibiting algae growth and keeping the deck slip free and looking good for far longer. There are a wide range of deck treatments available, oil and water based can both be good. Try and avoid any product with a polyurethane content. These tend to act as a cheap varnish leaving the wood looking great for a few weeks then cracking and peeling over time and leaving you with a big job stripping the deck seal off when you next come to clean it. These are described as film builders and are often 2 coat products.

We recommend Expert Stain and Seals range of penetrating deck and fence oils. These soak deep into the wood and feed and protect the timbers natural fibres. They will keep protecting for years and help avoid frequent service intervals. Check out or this web site for more product information, and please contact us for any advice.

There are products and help on our website and please e mail me with any queries. We are only too happy to help.

Finally, if you don’t want to tackle the job yourself there are good deck care professionals who can help. Again, please contact me and I will let you know who to contact in your area.

Try and avoid “gifted amateurs” who usually present with a very impressive pressure washer , often with a heater element, and little knowledge of how to service a deck . They will often leave your deck in worse shape than before they started , dry and stripped of natural oils and untreated.


Wrapping around bench with back support

Why use southern yellow pine for decking?

Everybody wants to construct a home that’s catchy to the eyes and easy on the comfort. If you want to build a deck for your home, you will probably want to make sure it has all the qualities a wood should have. The good news is that decks add great beauty to a home. The bad news is that not every lumber will make a good deck. Now you must be wondering what type of wood should I use for decking?

Well, southern yellow pine is a name that stands tall amongst all other woods used for outdoor construction. Let’s take a look at why you should use the southern yellow pine or SYP for decking in your home.


Attracts The Eyes

Just like the name suggests, southern yellow pine has tones of yellow that are appealing to the eye and engage well with the outdoor environment. Soft yellow colours always blend beautifully with the environment and make a great choice for residential construction.


Good Quality

Everyone desires to make sure that their decks are sturdy and constructed with quality wood that can support a lot of weight. Even though SYP is categorized as softwood, don’t let the name fool you. It is incredibly strong lumber that can bear weights and take on all the nails that you dish out. Commonly architects use this wood to support beams.


Paint And Stain

Normally, when you paint on wood, it does not accept it and eventually, it ends up looking like a puddle of mud. But with the porous nature of SYP, it will happily accept any quality paint that you apply and you will see the best of results.


The Age Miracle

Even if you install any quality wood, eventually you will notice greying and fading of colour and soon your deck will end up looking grizzly and worn-out. Southern yellow pine slows down this ageing process and ensures that your deck looks fresh and state of the art for many years to come.


Light On The Pocket

Southern yellow pine makes for the most affordable lumber amongst all the quality woods with a knack for looking good. Even if you alternate it with a composite wood or plastic building material, your deck would end up looking tacky and gimcrack.

Building your deck with SYP gives out quality without costing a fortune and leaving you in debt. SYP is the best choice that matches your budget along with the aesthetics that your desire.


Final word

Manchester decks are the best solution for designing a stylish outdoor living space! With their zest for outdoor living, they can provide you with the creative looks that you desire for your home. Contact Manchester decks today!