Pressure-treated is a process applied to wood for residential and commercial purposes. However, pressure treatment leaves some greenish tints on the wood sometimes that make the wood unappealing.
From this content, you will learn how to get green off pressure-treated wood within a few steps and easily remove the undesirable greenish tint from your wood. Besides, this guide will help to give you some additional tips on how to prevent stains on the wood in the future.
What is Green Algae on Wood?
Green algae is a greenish tint that is commonly seen on wood when it is wet and dark. Many people get confused between moss, algae, and molds, which are also green. Moss grows in damp and dark conditions, like algae, but it is soft and fuzzy. On the other hand, mold is a fungus we see as green-black streaks that causes health risks to people in some cases.
The Reasons for Algae Growth on Pressure-treated Wood
Algae don’t grow on wood overnight. When the wood is in dark and wet conditions for a long time, we gradually see green algae growth. If you see it in the first stage of its growth on your wood, you can prevent it from being affected. Check out the main three responsible factors for the algae growth on wood.
When too much debris affects the wood, it can’t get adequate sunlight. As a result, the sunlight can’t reach the wood surface, allowing algae to grow efficiently. So, sweep away debris frequently from wood and stop algae’s growth.
Wood shaded by big houses or trees for a long time has a risk of being affected by green algae. There might need to be more than sweeping to prevent its growth. The absence of sunlight is responsible for the growth of algae. Try to bring the wood somewhere to help the wood get some sunlight. Otherwise, go for an annual deep cleaning of your wood to prevent green algae.
Wet or rainy weather is a prime cause of algae growth. The wood is more prone to be affected by algae during or after winter. So, sweep away snow or water from the wood to prevent moisture. Try to keep the surface clean and dry always.
Importance of Removing Green Algae from Pressure-treated Wood
Green algae create an unsightly look on wood, which poses a concern to remove it immediately but the consequences it leaves are terrible. Green algae contain moisture that damages the wood and causes splinters. The damage created in the wood structure will stress you badly. Moreover, the slippery tint covers the wood, which anyone may get injured if it is on the staircases of your house or anywhere else. So, you shouldn’t ignore the importance of removing green algae from your wood in no time. It will take a long time and great effort to get rid of it. Therefore, removing it right after seeing it will be the best decision to make the process less time-consuming and stressful.
The Top 8 Methods to Remove Green Algae from Pressure-treated Wood
Using White Vinegar
You can use white distilled vinegar as the easiest method to remove green algae inside and outside the wood. The best thing is it doesn’t tarnish the wood’s top sealant like other chemicals for cleaning wood.
Take a bucket full of water and mix a cup of vinegar. The solution has to be mixed well. Then, take a brush and dip it in the solution. Gently rub the surface using pressure. Finally, rinse off the wood surface with clean water and check if any residues are left there. To avoid any inconvenience, apply the vinegar to a smaller area first. If everything seems alright, use it on the entire surface.
Using Pressure Washer
A pressure washer is one of the most effective solutions for removing green algae from pressure-treated wood. Those who want to avoid using chemical products to clean wood must apply this method. A pressure washer or power washer is a machine that releases high-pressure water to wash away dust, dirt, grime, algae, or anything harmful to the wood.
Trying Hydrogen Peroxide
You can find many cleaners on the market, but choosing the one with hydrogen peroxide as the main element is better. Go to any drugstore to buy a solution of hydrogen peroxide. The range of the component should be within 3-10 percent. Remember to wear a protective mask and gloves before working with hydrogen peroxide.
Pour a few amounts of it on the algae-affected area of the pressure-treated wood and leave it for around half an hour to sit on it correctly. Later on, create a mixture of soap or detergent and water. Mix the solution well. Then, dip a foam scrubber in the soapy water and scrub the surface. All wood might not react well with hydrogen peroxide. So, it is recommended to apply a small amount of it on a minor part of the wood surface to check whether it has the strength to bear it.
Using a Stiff Brush
Many consider a stiff brush an effective solution to remove algae from pressure-treated wood. Stiff brushes like wire brushes or scrub brushes should be your go-to pick. You should wear protective goggles and hand gloves before using a brush to scrub away the algae.
First, you have to put water on the wood surface and apply soap. Then, gently scrub away the algae with the brush and rinse the soap off using water. Lastly, let the pressure-treated wood dry perfectly.
Utilizing Chlorine Bleach
Chlorine bleach is an effective method to clean algae from non-porous wood surfaces. The more complicated wood reacts well with chlorine bleach, but softwood doesn’t. So if you think chlorine bleach is the go-to item for removing your pressure-treated wood, follow the steps very cautiously.
Take a gallon of water and mix a cup of chlorine bleach. You can also combine an additional element, borax, with it to get a better result. After that, add soap or detergent to the solution and apply it over the algae-affected area with a spray bottle. A spray bottle is safe and effectively spreads the solution over the entire region.
Let the solution sit for 15-20 minutes, and rinse it off. Using anything to remove the algae from your wood may fade away its bright and luster look. If you want to get back the fresh look of wood, use a wood brightener.
Applying a Deck Cleaner
You can find a wide range of deck cleaners on the market that doesn’t only clean the algae from pressure-treated wood but also clear the stains. Follow the instructions given on labeling the cleaner and apply it according to your wood. You should use a sponge or brush to apply the deck cleaner. Next, scrub the whole area until the stain is wholly gone. Finally, rinse off the wood surface with clean water.
Painting Over the Stain
Painting over the stain gives a permanent solution to cover up the green algae. This method will protect the wood from getting stains in the future. You should choose a paint carefully that matches the pressure-treated wood color. Apply the paint using a roller or brush and let the surface dry before using it.
Using Moss and Algae Removal Products
Many algae removal products on the market are mainly made to prevent green algae from pressure-treated wood. All algae removal products have different application procedures. Therefore, you must read the instructions beforehand to avoid any mess. Whatever product you use, ensure it doesn’t damage your wood surface.
Why should you use wood stain to protect pressure-treated wood?
A wood stain doesn’t only protect the pressure-treated wood from damage but also gives a fantastic finish. Strip the old finish when the time expires and apply the new one. The old stain must be removed completely. Apply the processes carefully to protect your pressure-treated wood from a stain.
How does a deck brightener work on pressure-treated wood?
After cleaning your pressure-treated wood with chemicals or moss removal products, the wood may lose its original color. You must restore the color by using a wood brightener. It is like a detergent that alters the wood’s pH and balances the discoloration issue caused by cleaning products.
Do you need to provide shelter to your pressure-treated wood?
Yes, because mold or algae grows on wood due to excessive moisture in the weather. If you want to protect your pressure-treated wood from humidity, provide shelter. It will help you to use the wood for a long time.
What is the difference between non-treated wood and pressure-treated wood?
Non-treated wood doesn’t have any layer of protection. That’s why it is not durable and prone to be affected by moss and algae. On the contrary, different chemicals are used to make the pressure-treated wood more durable and protect it from fungi or insects that are harmful to wood.
Is bleach safe to use on pressure-treated wood?
Using bleach effectively prevents mold, mildew, or dirt from pressure-treated wood, but using it frequently or in high amounts can damage the wood surface. It is better to avoid bleach if other alternatives are around you. Instead, use household cleaning methods to remove algae, moss, and mold without damaging the surface.
Different Ways to Prevent Future Staining from Pressure-treated Wood
You can follow some simple techniques to prevent future staining from pressure-treated wood. Following these techniques will also allow the wood to keep its luster for a long time.
Applying a Sealer
Applying sealer is an effective way to prevent future staining to your pressure-treated wood by blocking the areas for water and stains to get into the wood. Choose a high-quality sealer that is mainly designed for your wood. Before using, always follow the instructions written on the labeling.
Give importance to cleaning more to prevent future staining from pressure-treated wood. First, clean up the dirt and debris once you see them on the wood surface. Then, remove any harmful elements immediately with a power washer, algae or moss removal products, a deck cleaner, or any cleaning product.
Check whether any damage happened due to using cleaning products on wood. If you see any hole, crack, split, etc., repair it immediately. Otherwise, water and stains will affect your wood and causes more damage.
Store your pressure-treated wood in a clean and dry place to protect it. It will help the wood to be long-lasting and prevent damage. Covering the wood with a sheet when you don’t use it would be best.
When the green algae build up on your wood after the summer months of humid weather or cold months of snowfall, you must apply the best methods to get rid of it immediately and stop its growth in the future. This post on how to get green off pressure-treated wood has described some excellent methods with additional tips that will help your process be easy and effective. Wood is an essential metal that should be adequately treated. So, always try to protect the wood from any elements that are harmful to it.
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