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Best Deck Cleaners 2020 – Reviews & Top Picks

deck cleaning

Cleaning your deck with a high-powered solution can be a straightforward process. In this guide, we look at products designed to simplify your life while revitalizing the appearance of your deck.

The ten deck cleaners featured here today have all been selected on effectiveness and value.

We have also done our best to look at a wide range of scenarios. Need to treat 1,000 square feet of fence or deck? There is something on this list for that. But there are also products available for people that want to perform minor repairs and cleanings.

That being the case, read on for some deck cleaner reviews!


A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Star Brite Non-Skid Star Brite Non-Skid
  • Versatile
  • Removes grime
  • Protects against future buildup
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Mr. Clean FG411 Mr. Clean FG411
  • 450 feet
  • Hose port
  • Very affordable
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    30 SECONDS 1G30S 30 SECONDS 1G30S
  • Very quick
  • No scrubbing needed
  • Very low maintenance
  • Sun Joe House & Deck Sun Joe House & Deck
  • Quick
  • Effective
  • Chemical reservoir for further protection
  • Rust-Oleum Wolman Deckbrite Rust-Oleum Wolman Deckbrite
  • Fortifies against UV rays
  • Reverses effects of mold
  • Plenty of bang for your buck
  • The 10 Best Deck Cleaners – Reviews 2020

    1. Star Brite Non-Skid Deck Cleaner — Best Overall

    Star Brite 085900N Non-Skid

    Star Brite is a comprehensive protective agent that both cleans and fortifies. The solution is designed to remove dirt and grime with no need for labor-intensive scrubbing. It lays down a protective coating that will, at least in theory, prevent future mildew build up.

    We were also partial to the fact that this is a very versatile deck cleaner. It can be used on wood, plastic, fiberglass, or essentially anything that a deck might be made of. It is also designed to ensure that the cleaning agents will not remove wax, polish, or other agents that were deliberately included on the deck.

    We have observed that the solution is very thick. Consequently, leaves a very thick layer on top of your deck immediately after being applied. Of course, the visibility of the solution will diminish over time but the immediate result may be cosmetically unappealing.

    Pros
    • Removes grime
    • Protects against future buildup
    • Versatile
    Cons
    • Thick appearance immediately after application

    2. Mr. Clean FG411 Outdoor Cleaner — Best Value

    Mr. Clean FG411 Outdoor Cleaner

    Mr. Clean is our best deck cleaner for the money and an extremely affordable option that benefits from several key features. It features an easy spray-on applicator that will allow you to lay down the chemicals on a large space of up to 450 square feet.

    The unit features a port through which you can attach a common garden hose. The solution naturally mixes with the water for quick results.

    The container is also designed to be ergonomic and the chemicals from the cleaner are completely safe for outdoors wildlife (according to the manufacturer).

    One of the major issues of this cleaner is that the hose port makes the application too quick. It can be very easy to accidentally over-focus your efforts on a single area, thus wasting some solution in the process.

    Pros
    • Hose port
    • 450 feet
    • Very affordable
    • Ergonomic
    Cons
    • Easy to waste solution

    3. 30 SECONDS 1G30S Outdoor Cleaner — Premium Choice

    30 SECONDS 1G30S 4P Outdoor Cleaner

    As the name suggests, this cleaner starts to kick in after just 30 seconds. The best thing about this unit is its very low maintenance. Spray the solution on and then spray it off. No scrubbing is needed to remove dirt and grime.

    The solution can treat mildew and mold while also establishing a preventative layer that keeps the stuff from coming back. You will also be pleased to know that it can be used on wood, plastics, and fiberglass for a wide range of use.

    Unfortunately, this is one of the more expensive products on our list. Granted, no deck cleaner will bankrupt you, but it is worth noting all the same.

    Pros
    • Very quick
    • No scrubbing needed
    • Versatile
    Cons
    • Fairly pricey

    4. Sun Joe House & Deck Pressure Washer

    Sun Joe SPX-HDC1G House and Deck Pressure Washer

    This next product is a little different than the last few we have looked at. While the other choices on our list treat dirt and grime with a chemical approach, this unit is all about sheer power. As a pressure washer, the Sun Joe makes it easy to take a more organic approach to your outdoor cleaning.

    To strip your deck or home siding of mold and mildew, simply spray the surface down with highly pressurized water. Thanks to a detergent reservoir, chemicals can further fortify the surface you are cleaning as needed.

    As far as effectiveness goes, power washers are outstanding and most homeowners can enjoy their utility. However, remember that this is much more expensive and difficult to store than the other cleaning products on our list.

    Pros
    • Effective
    • Quick
    • Chemical reservoir for further protection
    Cons
    • Pricey
    • Hard to store

    5. Rust-Oleum Wolman Deckbrite Wood Cleaner

    Rust-Oleum 16003 Wolman Deckbrite Wood Cleaner

    The Rust-OleumRust-Oleum is a fast-acting wood cleaner that can be kicked into gear in a matter of minutes. The cleaner can refortify your deck against harsh UV rays while also reversing the effects of mold and mildew.

    This is a three-pound container that gives you plenty of value. However, buyers will want to note that application is a bit complicated. The solution foams when it is wiped onto the surface of your deck, creating a tough, thick layer of detergent. The durability of the coating is great as far as cleaning goes, but it makes the detergent difficult to work with.

    Pros
    • Fortifies against UV rays
    • Reverses effects of mold
    • Plenty of bang for your buck
    Cons
    • Difficult to apply

    6. DEFY 300186 Wood Cleaner

    DEFY 300186 Wood Cleaner

    The Defy Wood Cleaner is great both for removing dirt and grime, and also just enhancing the appearance of your wood deck. The oxygenating solution will bring out the best qualities of your wood’s natural color, while the chemicals are great for stripping mildew and grime.

    The product is also listed as generally safe for use outdoors. This means that it should not kill the plants or grass in the surrounding area of your deck. You should keep in mind that there is a value issue. Though not the most expensive product on our list, it doesn’t come cheaply.

    Pros
    • Brings out color of wood
    • Strips dirt and grime
    • Safe for outdoor use
    Cons
    • Pricey per ounce

    7. Restore-A-Deck Wood Cleaner

    Restore-A-Deck Wood Cleaner

    Restore-A-Deck is specifically made for the outdoors. This means it is durable against weather and UV rays. The formula is considered safe for plants and the powdered solution gives you lots of bang for your buck. When mixed with water it equates to roughly six gallons worth of chemical solution.

    The solution is great for lifting stains and grime. It can also be used for mold and mildew protection, making it a versatile means of fortifying your deck or fence.

    However, there are some questions as to the effectiveness of the material. It requires more solution to get the desired results, which cuts against the value.

    Pros
    • Weather-resistant
    • Safe for plants
    • Lifts dirt and grime
    Cons
    • Not very effective

    8. SIMPLE GREEN Pressure Washer Cleaner

    SIMPLE GREEN 8541813566 Pressure Washer Cleaner

    Simple Green is a powerful solution that can be used with a pressure washer. The chemicals give your power wash system the added fortification it needs to be as effective as possible. It lifts dirt and grime while also protecting against mold and mildew.

    However, the biggest selling point of this solution is both a strength and a weakness. This is a “green” cleaning product, which means that it is supposed to be as natural as possible. It also means that it is relatively non-toxic. However, and as is the case with many green products, it is not as effective as it could be. You will need to use quite a bit of it to achieve your desired results.

    Pros
    • Can be used with power washer
    • Green
    Cons
    • Limited in its effectiveness

    9. MiracleMist Instant Mold & Mildew Stain Remover

    MiracleMist Instant Mold and Mildew Stain Remover

    MiracleMist is a fast-acting cleaning solution that activates in just thirty seconds. It is considered safe to use on all surfaces and it leaves behind a “refreshing scent” (or such is the opinion of the marketer). The solution can be used both indoors and out, and it is designed to last for a long time.

    There are, however, a few things to be apprehensive of. For one thing, it takes quite a bit of solution to experience the desired results. You will find yourself going through the container very quickly. We have also heard reports from customers claiming that the package expired prematurely.

    When MiracleMist works, it works fairly well, but performance issues hold it back a little bit.

    Pros
    • Fast-acting
    • Safe for outdoor use
    Cons
    • Not very effective
    • May expire prematurely

    10. Woodrich Brand KitE2lb Wood Cleaner

    Woodrich Brand KitE2lb Wood Cleaner

    Last, the Woodrich. This cleaner gives you the ability to treat up to 750 square feet of deck per package. The chemicals are designed to naturally bring out the rich tones of your wood. But, while the concept is pretty good, the execution is somewhat lacking.

    It takes quite a bit of solution to experience the desired results. Even then, the impact can be fairly limited. It is also known to kill grass and plants. All of this is only worsened by the fact that the Woodrich is one of the priciest options on our list today.

    Pros
    • 750 feet of coverage
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • Kills plants and grass
    • Not very effective

    Buyer’s Guide

    And now, here are a few considerations that should help you choose the right deck cleaner.

    Goals

    Deck cleaners come in all shapes and sizes. For example, even though most of the products on our list today were of the chemical variety, we also looked at a power washer that might ultimately be more effective.

    It ultimately depends on your goals. Do you want something that will provide long term protection while chemically destroying mold and bacteria? Or, would you be better served by something a little bit more natural and reusable? There are lots of different ways to tackle this purchase. You just need to choose the right one for you.

    Toxicity

    Many people are hesitant to use toxic chemicals outdoors. It is bad for your garden, the animals surrounding your home, and the environment as a whole. You can find low-impact environmentally friendly chemicals but they tend to be fairly mild in their results.

    You will certainly want to be aware of the potential ramifications of the chemical solution that you choose. Even if you don’t opt for an organic option, it can still help to know the risks associated with your product.

    Volume

    How much cleaning product you get will ultimately determine its value. If you have a large deck, it may be well worth it to invest in more cleaning solution than you need. You will pay a better price per ounce and you may have product left over for additional cleanings down the road.

    That said, you don’t want to buy too much. Cleaning products will expire eventually, after which point the overall effectiveness will diminish.

    Conclusion

    Hopefully one of our deck cleaner reviews has helped you to make a buying decision. However, if you haven’t made up your mind, there are two products that might get you there. Our top choice, the Star Brite 085900N Non-Skid Deck Cleaner is a good option for people that want something uncompromisingly effective.

    On the other hand, you don’t have to spend a ton of money to get a good product. Our best for the money pick, the Mr. Clean FG411 Outdoor Cleaner is a good option for people who need something that is affordable and effective.

    Featured Image Credit:Your best dig, Flickr,

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