RAD CLEANERdefaultRestore A Deck Cleaner Instructions and How To Tips

Keeping your wooden deck in good condition is without a doubt crucial to both its appearance and lifespan. Nothing looks worse and deteriorates more quickly than a neglected deck. Many deck owners have opted to do their own deck maintenance.

Restore A Deck cleaner is a specifically designed two-part system that is best used to clean and prep a wood deck prior to resealing it. The Restore A Deck cleaner system consists of a wood cleaner that will remove dirt, grime, mold, mildew, and grayed wood fibers. Step 2 of RAD Cleaner is a wood brightener that corrects the pH of the wood and brightens it up prior to applying a wood stain or sealer.

To clean a deck using the Restore A Deck system follow these easy step-by-step instructions.

1. Be sure air temperatures or between 45-90 degrees. Remove all furnishings from the deck and the surrounding area.

2. Though Restore A Deck is Eco-Friendly it is still a good idea to cover sensitive plants and shrubbery or pre-wet them with fresh water. Use plastic to cover doors and windows in the surrounding area.

3. Follow the Restore A Deck instructions to mix the Step 1 Cleaner in a clean bucket until all crystals are dissolved and transfer to sprayer to avoid clogging of sprayer inlet tube.

4. Lightly spray the wood deck with water. Use a pump sprayer or scrub brush to apply RAD Cleaner to the wood. Allow the cleaner to dwell for 5-15 minutes. Keep the deck wet by misting with water during the dwell time. If using a pump sprayer please make sure that no undissolved powder is poured into the sprayer. It will get clogged!

5. Hand scrub or use a pressure wash to remove dirt, grime, and graying from the wood surface. Do not use excessive pressure. Pressure washing at 1500 PSI is much more effective and easier.

6. Once cleaned, rinse the wood deck and the surrounding plants, windows, house siding, etc.

7. While the deck is still wet from rinsing, apply the Restore A Deck Wood Brightener (Step 2).

8. Blend the RAD Wood Brightener by following the product’s instructions and apply with a pump sprayer. Allow the brightener to dwell for 10 minutes then rinse off. No need to having scrub or pressure wash the RAD Brightener.

After the wood deck has been cleaned following the Restore A Deck Cleaner instructions allow the wood to dry for 1-2 days before applying a wood deck stain or sealer. Note that the RAD cleaner is not intended for removing old deck stains or sealers. Please see Restore A Deck Stain Stripper when dealing with existing stains.

If you have any specific questions about your project or just need some help, please ask below!

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  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 06/07/2016
    Kelly:
    Thank you for your reply. The product that we are planning to use is Armstrong Clark semi. One other question, the pergola's main vertical 6" x 6" beams were installed last fall however over the winter (in Canada) they developed large cracks. What product do you recommend to fill those cracks, preventing further cracking and that the stain will adhere well to? I must add that the deck floor was built last fall but the sides and railing of the deck were completed a week ago.

    2-3 months is the wait for the AC. Crack fillers will not work on outside wood nor will it stain to blend with the AC. Just leave alone as it is normal to have cracks in outside wood.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Kelly · 06/07/2016
    Thank you for your reply. The product that we are planning to use is Armstrong Clark semi. One other question, the pergola's main vertical 6" x 6" beams were installed last fall however over the winter (in Canada) they developed large cracks. What product do you recommend to fill those cracks, preventing further cracking and that the stain will adhere well to? I must add that the deck floor was built last fall but the sides and railing of the deck were completed a week ago.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 06/07/2016
    Kelly:
    We installed a new cedar deck and pergola one week ago. Can we use your 2 step restore-a-deck now, wait a few days and then stain or should we wait longer before cleaning, brightening and staining. I know that one must wait for approximately 1 year for treated wood but what is the recommended waiting time for cedar.

    How long to wait depends on the stain brand you choose. Best to follow their directions. Most want at least a few months.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Kelly · 06/06/2016
    We installed a new cedar deck and pergola one week ago. Can we use your 2 step restore-a-deck now, wait a few days and then stain or should we wait longer before cleaning, brightening and staining. I know that one must wait for approximately 1 year for treated wood but what is the recommended waiting time for cedar.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 05/30/2016
    fern609:
    OK above on step 8, it says to rinse off the deck brightener after 10 minutes. Reading other questions and feedback, it has been said to NOT wash the brightener off. Please advise which is the correct way? Since I have been sanding, I am assuming that t takes the place of the stripper as I am removing a semi solid stain from last year's owners. Correct? Thanks!

    In most cases you should rinse the brightener after 10-15 minutes. If you remove all of the stain with sanding, then you did not need the stripper.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Juanita Fernandez · 05/29/2016
    OK above on step 8, it says to rinse off the deck brightener after 10 minutes. Reading other questions and feedback, it has been said to NOT wash the brightener off. Please advise which is the correct way? Since I have been sanding, I am assuming that t takes the place of the stripper as I am removing a semi solid stain from last year's owners. Correct? Thanks!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 05/24/2016
    Tom Sfura:
    We had our deck stripped, cleaned and brightened last year and applied Armstrong Clark stain. It was in such bad shape last year, that AC folks recommended restraining this year. So a week and a half ago I cleaned and brightened. It has rained ever since. Can't get two days of warm dry weather And I'm now heading on vacation for over a week. It will likely be three weeks or more from original cleaning to staining weather permitting. Will this be a big problem.

    More than likely you will have to do a light cleaning again.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Tom Sfura · 05/24/2016
    We had our deck stripped, cleaned and brightened last year and applied Armstrong Clark stain. It was in such bad shape last year, that AC folks recommended restraining this year. So a week and a half ago I cleaned and brightened. It has rained ever since. Can't get two days of warm dry weather And I'm now heading on vacation for over a week. It will likely be three weeks or more from original cleaning to staining weather permitting. Will this be a big problem.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 05/20/2016
    Tim0784:
    After I mix it, how long is it still good or fresh or usable? What is the shelf life after mixing?

    Being an oxygenated cleaner, it is best to use within an hour or two after mixing with water.
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    Tim0784 · 05/19/2016
    After I mix it, how long is it still good or fresh or usable? What is the shelf life after mixing?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 05/04/2016
    Sean:
    My deck is pretty dirty and it has been awhile since I used your product and stained my deck. Do you recommend that I pressure wash the deck once before applying your cleaner or just go ahead and apply your cleaning product. I also have the brightener product as well.

    Thanks, Sean

    Apply cleaner, then pressure wash.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 05/04/2016
    thedeck:
    I am cleaning a pergola built last year over new patio stones which have the sealer built into them. Is the cleaner safe for the stone or will it damage the sealer?

    Thanks

    The cleaner should not damage a concrete sealer.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    mel · 05/04/2016
    I am cleaning a pergola built last year over new patio stones which have the sealer built into them. Is the cleaner safe for the stone or will it damage the sealer?

    Thanks
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 04/30/2016
    Bob Kunkle:
    I have a 30 year old pressure treated deck that has had several cleanings/stainings over its life. My plan is to clean & brighten with your products, then stain with waterborne semi-transparent stain (matching current color).

    Is this workable, or am I moving toward disappointment?
    If you are switching your stain brand, then you should remove the old coatings first.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Bob Kunkle · 04/29/2016
    I have a 30 year old pressure treated deck that has had several cleanings/stainings over its life. My plan is to clean & brighten with your products, then stain with waterborne semi-transparent stain (matching current color).

    Is this workable, or am I moving toward disappointment?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 03/27/2016
    Don Maddox:
    One yr ago did cleaner &brightener and pecan stain.Loved it.Just replaced the steps and some damaged boards.How do I get everything to be the same shade of stain?

    It is nearly impossible to match new wood to older wood. The new wood is less absorbent so it will be a lighter color. To get it close will require that you strip and brighten the current stain. TWP also require that all new wood season for 4-12 months before applying a stain so you might want to wait and do all the wood in the Fall.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Don Maddox · 03/25/2016
    One yr ago did cleaner &brightener and pecan stain.Loved it.Just replaced the steps and some damaged boards.How do I get everything to be the same shade of stain?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 02/28/2016
    Dustin:
    We stained our deck last summer with an Armstrong-Clark semi-solid and finished the project in July. It looks amazing! We live in Indiana and the way our deck is positioned it is hit hard with the sun all day and though this winter hasn't been bad, we of course have had snow sitting on the deck from time to time. My question is, do we need to clean our deck this spring since we just finished staining in July? If so, what product do we use and how do we use it?
    Thank you so much for your help!

    If you have dirt on the deck then just clean with soapy water with some liquid dawn or similar. Our prepping products are more for deep cleaning or stripping.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Dustin · 02/28/2016
    We stained our deck last summer with an Armstrong-Clark semi-solid and finished the project in July. It looks amazing! We live in Indiana and the way our deck is positioned it is hit hard with the sun all day and though this winter hasn't been bad, we of course have had snow sitting on the deck from time to time. My question is, do we need to clean our deck this spring since we just finished staining in July? If so, what product do we use and how do we use it?
    Thank you so much for your help!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 01/01/2016
    Harry W. Evans:
    I have a big deck(actually a pier and a dock) and am concerned I won't be able to clean it all in one day. I'll work in 200 sq foot sections. Any advise about overlapping or the best way to proceed? Please let me know of any tips that would be useful. Thank you

    Cleaning in sections is fine but brighten all the wood at the same time when done. Rewet all wood prior to brightening, apply to all wood, rinse all after 15 minutes.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Harry W. Evans · 12/29/2015
    I have a big deck(actually a pier and a dock) and am concerned I won't be able to clean it all in one day. I'll work in 200 sq foot sections. Any advise about overlapping or the best way to proceed? Please let me know of any tips that would be useful. Thank you
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 10/28/2015
    Adam Singer:
    We have a 4 month old cedar 'picture frame' fence that I will be staining in the next week or so. We share one section of the fence with a neighbor and it appears he used either a semi transparent or semi solid stain.
    1) Will the deck stripper remove his stain and any tips to only remove the stain on our side of the 'picture frame' fence?
    2) We have water stains from our sprinkler system, so should I use both the cleaner and brightener on the cedar fence?
    3) If I strip, clean and brighten the fence on Thursday, would it be okay to stain the fence on Saturday?
    4) Any differences in the process for a fence vs the directions for a deck?

    Thanks!

    1. Yes it will probably remove his stain. Not possible to prevent this when using a stripper.
    2. Yes you need both cleaner and brightener but if water stains are very deep in the wood then they cannot come out.
    3. Should be as long as it dries and it does not rain.
    4. Same as a deck.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Adam Singer · 10/27/2015
    We have a 4 month old cedar 'picture frame' fence that I will be staining in the next week or so. We share one section of the fence with a neighbor and it appears he used either a semi transparent or semi solid stain.
    1) Will the deck stripper remove his stain and any tips to only remove the stain on our side of the 'picture frame' fence?
    2) We have water stains from our sprinkler system, so should I use both the cleaner and brightener on the cedar fence?
    3) If I strip, clean and brighten the fence on Thursday, would it be okay to stain the fence on Saturday?
    4) Any differences in the process for a fence vs the directions for a deck?

    Thanks!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 10/23/2015
    David S:
    I used the RAD cleaner and brightener a week and a half ago. Since that time, it's rained on and off for several days.

    Should I re-apply the cleaner and brightener?

    No need to clean and brighten again.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    David S · 10/22/2015
    I used the RAD cleaner and brightener a week and a half ago. Since that time, it's rained on and off for several days.

    Should I re-apply the cleaner and brightener?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 10/15/2015
    Matt P.:
    I used the cleaner on my deck today, but did not apply the brightener. Is it still ok to apply the brightener tomorrow (after the deck has dried overnight)?
    If not, please let me know what you recommend I do at this point...thanks!

    Yes you can still apply the brightener.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Matt P. · 10/14/2015
    I used the cleaner on my deck today, but did not apply the brightener. Is it still ok to apply the brightener tomorrow (after the deck has dried overnight)?
    If not, please let me know what you recommend I do at this point...thanks!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 10/07/2015
    Keith Clark:
    Have a new pergola with walls that was built this spring, but being that it was a "weekend only" project, I have wood with varying degrees of greying. I want to use a clear stain to preserve the natural look of the cedar and your product was recommended. In reading the instructions, I see that the solutions are to remain on the wood for about 15 minutes.

    How do you suggest using the product on vertical surfaces to obtain the best results?

    Best to mix products in a pail then transfer solution into a pump sprayer and apply in sections of about 100-200 sq. feet at a time. Wait about 10-15 minutes then pressure wash off the cleaner. Repeat until finished with the cleaning. Apply the brightener to all wood then rinse that lightly after 15 minutes.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Keith Clark · 10/07/2015
    Have a new pergola with walls that was built this spring, but being that it was a "weekend only" project, I have wood with varying degrees of greying. I want to use a clear stain to preserve the natural look of the cedar and your product was recommended. In reading the instructions, I see that the solutions are to remain on the wood for about 15 minutes.

    How do you suggest using the product on vertical surfaces to obtain the best results?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    RAD Products · 09/27/2015
    Sam White:
    Will a deck immediately begin to weather gray when finished cleaning and brightening if no stain is put on? Most of this deck is covered on a wrap around porch and is shaded.

    It will start to oxidize but it will take a month or longer to start to visibly gray.