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  • Help me with this deck powerwashing bid!

    Hello. I was wondering how much to charge for a power washing a deck, and treating it. The decks are all around 15'x15'. Thanks.

  • #2
    It all depends. Do you know the steps to restore a deck or are you just going to hit it with pressure? If all you plan to do is to hit it with pressure do yourself and your future with the customer a favor and sub it out to a wood restoration professional.

    I have a guy around here that advertises $75 to clean and $75 to stain a deck but the customer must buy the stain. I constantly get work for these same decks in the $500 to $1500 range because I care for the final look of the wood. Sometimes I even have to repair the damage done by guys like him and homeowners that do not have the proper knowledge.

    My price for that deck would be $630 to $750 range and that would include the stain. I can't afford to let a customer buy the stain as my reputation is worth more than the crap you get at the box stores.
    Pat

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    • #3
      ok then. is there a guild that could help me?

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      • #4
        because I care for the final look of the wood. Sometimes I even have to repair the damage done by guys like him and homeowners that do not have the proper knowledge.
        What kinds of problems do you find you have to repair? What kinds of damage can be done by a newer business owner?
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        • #5
          No there is no guild... I did come across as a little harsh. What I was trying to get across was the fact that if you damage the deck you could damage the relationship with your customer. It would be better for you to refer the work and keep mowing than to damage the deck and lose the lawn contract also. Just Google deck staining and look at the before and after photos and you will see a quality guy vs a trunk slammer. If you can take care of your customer in this manner you build the trust that they always look for.


          Steve the damage can be anything from lines cut into the wood from using too narrow of a tip like the 0 degree or not keeping the wand moving. The other damage is caused by too much pressure. Wood has both hard and soft parts to it. What happens when you use too much pressure is the softer wood is blasted away leaving what is known as raised grain.

          Once the wood is damaged there are only a few things you can do.

          1. sand Sand SAND
          2. Replace
          3. Flip the boards (this only works when it has not been done before)

          Either way it is very costly to the homeowner and I don't even want to think about the costs if they happen to have IPE or Cedar. Very Very expensive.
          Pat

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          • #6
            That is very interesting.

            When working with wood, should the user use a certain tip or keep within a certain amount of pressure to avoid damaging the wood?
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            • #7
              The cleaner is the trick. You need to use the proper cleaner for the job and every one is different depending on the condition of the wood and if there is an existing sealer on the wood already. I normally use the 40 degree tip and try and get as close to 500 PSI as possible and still get the job done. I do occasionally have to sand afterward but that is just the nature of the wood.
              Pat

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              • #8
                That is very interesting.

                When working with wood, should the user use a certain tip or keep within a certain amount of pressure to avoid damaging the wood?
                The main reason for the sanding is water raises the grain of the wood.

                There is not cut and dry answer to quoting this, I have worked with wood as a side line for 30 years, I have to see the decks and as noted depending on what the client wants done it determines what tip we will use, pressure and how long it will take. Also depends on what they want on the deck afterwords, we will apply Thompsons Water Seal but if they want it painted or some other product, then we will only pressure wash.
                Andy
                Halifax, Nova Scotia

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                • #9
                  Ultimately it sounds like power washing wood decks is more of an advanced service and if someone were to want to get into power washing, they might do well by starting to clean other parts of a house first.
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                  • #10
                    Here are some photos of a deck we finished this week in Old Hickory, TN.
                    Attached Files
                    Pat

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                    • #11
                      whoa that looks nice. so what do you recommend i start out with?

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                      • #12
                        I have a couple of questions first.

                        What size pressure washer? If it is one of the electric ones, pick a day you have nothing to do because it does not push enough water to clean quickly.

                        What is on the deck now? Any existing sealer?
                        Pat

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                        • #13
                          Those decks are amazing looking! How does having a sealer on the wood effect the way you power wash it?
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                          • #14
                            What a previous sealer does is determine which cleaner you go with. Some sealers you just want to RUN from because they are sooooo hard to strip.
                            Pat

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                            • #15
                              I have a couple of questions first.

                              What size pressure washer? If it is one of the electric ones, pick a day you have nothing to do because it does not push enough water to clean quickly.

                              What is on the deck now? Any existing sealer?
                              1600 psi, electric, table, grill, and few other things (and no one has ever treated there deck before.),nope

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