5 Easy Fall Composite Deck Cleaning Tips

Article by Faye Rook

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As the weather starts to shift, it’s important to keep your outdoor living area looking good. All exterior building products will require some maintenance to keep them looking their best for years to come, and composite decking is no different.

Thankfully, composite decking upkeep doesn’t have to be a time-consuming addition to your fall outdoor to-do list. Without the painting, sealing or staining requirements of wood, it’s easy to clean the durable boards before winter weather blows in. So, use these 5 easy steps to keep your deck ready for summer all winter long.


  1. Give your deck a simple sweep

    As the trees around your deck shed their leaves, sweep dirt and debris off the top of your deck with a broom, or use a leaf blower. Take a few extra minutes to inspect the spaces between individual boards and clear any trapped leaves and twigs. While high-performance composite decking is made with mold inhibitors that help resist rot, it’s still a good best practice to clear your deck before snow and ice set in.
  2. Say goodbye to summertime stains

    Composite decking brands with a smooth, wood-embossed surface like ChoiceDek composite decking make it easy to wipe up spills on the spot. However, since it’s impossible to monitor your deck 24/7, now is a good time to check for any summertime spills or stains that might have been overlooked. Household degreasing agents (such as dishwashing detergent) can help remove oil and grease left over from your last cookout. Deck brighteners with oxalic acid can help eliminate any water spots or rust stains from furniture and can also be used to remove the tannin oils that wash of out of plant matter as it dries. Remember to follow the cleaner label instructions closely.
  3. Clean with soap and water

    Once you’ve addressed any stains, clean your composite deck with mild soap, hot water and a soft bristle brush. This semi-annual maintenance helps ensure pollen, dirt and debris are removed, including invisible particles.
  4. Inspect the deck

    Once your composite deck is clean, take a walk around the deck and look for any areas requiring additional attention. Brands designed to hold up well no matter what nature throws at them, from harsh sunlight to soaking rains, should be in good condition and are backed by warranties that protect against rot, termites or insect damage. If you do see rotting, cracking or boards at risk for failure, don’t wait until winter weather has come and gone before addressing the issue. Now is also a good time to inspect your deck’s structural supports, beams and joists for damage.
  5. Get prepared for snow and ice

    Although inclement weather may still be a few months out, it’s better to be prepared for snowy conditions before they keep you locked inside. Consider purchasing calcium chloride or rock salt to help melt ice off composite decking. A plastic shovel is also good to have on hand for composite decks in areas with frequent snowfall.

    For more composite decking care and cleaning tips, please click here.

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  • Rick Johnson
    Tuesday, August 23, 2016 5:19 PM

    I currently have an issue with my 'Beach House Gray' post sleeves being a different color than the rest of my deck. I have one half of my deck that I installed last year and the other half this year. Even through weathering both sections have post sleeves that are different colors than the deck planks. In addition, I am currently two post sleeves short of completing my deck build. The post sleeves have been discontinued and I can't find two more available anywhere. How do I resolve these issue. I am happy with this product overall but spent a lot of extra money to get the quality. It is starting to look like the quality may not be what is represented.
  • Phyllis
    Thursday, May 12, 2016 10:25 AM

    This was great information on how to care for my new composite deck porch I'm having installed in a few weeks. So excited thanks
  • Patrick Stevens
    Tuesday, January 5, 2016 4:44 AM

    I have installed 2 decks at my house with Costal Redwood 1 deck looks good but I am having issues with the other deck after 30 days I have complete boards that are turning grey, filled claim with A.E.R.T took 60 days to get a response only after I asked Lowes to get involved still no resolution exsept 6 web sites sent to me on how to buy, install and clean the CD product. I am not happy with the product and the customer support from A.E.R.T I have now turned it over to Lowes to let them get this resolved and to date they are getting the same treatment I am getting.
  • Deckrevive
    Wednesday, September 30, 2015 10:55 PM

    Proper cleaning and repair are must maintain the beauty and freshness of deck and for accomplishing this we must have adequate knowledge about deck cleaning.Thanks for sharing these tips and ideas of deck cleaning.
  • Cathy
    Saturday, August 15, 2015 1:00 PM

    This product is just awful. It has only been on the deck for about 1month and is already stained from wet leaves! I also just unpacked the post covers and collars. The cover does not fit into the collar AND the covers have what looks like cardboard imbedded in the fake wood grain. They look AWFUL! So they will have to be returned and I will have to paint the existing posts - not at all what I wanted.
  • Serge
    Friday, May 29, 2015 10:09 AM

    Oil and grease stains can go unnoticed on decks from time to time because they are often hidden behind the grill. As mentioned dish soap can do a great job of removing these stains. It's true that deck should be able to handle multiple types of weather, especially if you live in an area with more extreme conditions. Thanks for the article!
  • Rob Harlan
    Wednesday, January 7, 2015 7:12 PM

    I am a loyal Choice Deck installer, and have been using your deck product for several years now! You have a great product, which always yields a superior finished product, and a warranty to boot. Question: I recently placed a special order with Lowe's, for CD material, color "redwood". When the product arrived I refused it! It looked as if it had been "on the road" for years. It had poor handling, and scuff marks so bad, that I did not want to pass that on to my customer. I have seen this before, but not nearly as serious, and I can usually work around small marks. My customer actually changed there mind, and we ended up going with Trex. Is this common? Is there a way to prevent, or repare such damage? And, when I order, I am trusting that the order arrive in good condition, or else it will postpone my own schedule. Very frustrating! Again, you have an exceptional product! *Except when it arrives damaged. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Rob Harlan