Deck care is a lot of work. There are many things that you must take into account when keeping your deck looking its best, and one of those is the removal of solid stains from wood decking.

Solid stains can be tricky to remove because they often sink deep below the surface level and become difficult to reach with a typical cleaning product.

Luckily for us, there are some ways we can use to remove these stubborn marks! Here are 11 tips on how to get rid of any solid stain on your wood decking.

Tip 1: Use A Pressure Washer

A pressure washer is designed specifically for removing dirt and grime from hard surfaces. So if you have one available, this should be your first choice in getting rid of any leftover dirt or debris that may still be left on your deck.

After you use a pressure washer, be sure to rinse off all of the soap and grime with water before moving onto any other steps.

Tip 2: Use Dish Soap and Baking Soda

To remove any solid stains from your decking, wash the surface of your wood with water and a mild soap. Baking soda can be used for bulky stains to help scrub them away before using an acidic cleaner like vinegar if needed.

Use a scrub brush with soapy water if the stain is not too old or has not penetrated too deeply into the fibers of the wood.

If you don’t get rid of these marks within 24 hours after they first appear, they can become an even bigger problem to clean.

Combine one tablespoon of liquid dish soap with two tablespoons of baking soda for an effective scrubbing agent when removing tough, bulky stains from surfaces like wood decking.

Tip 3: Use Bleach

Simple household bleach is an excellent tool in the fight against stains. The bleaching agent penetrates deep down into the wood and lifts out dirt that other cleaners would have missed.

Apply bleach, ammonia, or other cleaners according to the type of material that makes up your deck. For example, if it’s made out of pressure-treated lumber, then mix ¼ cup chlorine bleach with 3 gallons water and apply using a garden sprayer.

If it’s made out of wood, use a solution of ¼ cup ammonia to ½ gallon water.

If it’s made up of vinyl or composite material, then you’ll need to bring some mild detergent and water to the surface with a garden sprayer.

Tip 4: Use Boiling Water

For tough spills that have been on the wood for more than 24 hours, you should boil water and pour it over your stain if possible.

Tip 5: Use A Scrubber

Deck care includes the use of deck scrub brushes. These are great for getting into those hard-to-reach grooves and can do an amazing job at removing any solid stains that you have on your wood decking.

The bristles help loosen up dirt and grime on the surface, which is what will eventually allow you to remove any stains that have been left behind.

Tip 6: Use Vinegar

Vinegar can be used as an all-natural cleaner that can help break down any stains on your wood decking. It’s also environmentally friendly and will not leave behind a strong odor after being used, so there is no need to worry about it affecting the smell of your home or attracting pests.

Just mix one part white vinegar with two parts water in a spray bottle and shake well before applying it to the surface of your deck.

Tip 7: Use Dish Soap and Vinegar

For stubborn stains from food or liquid on wood, combine one tablespoon of dish soap with two tablespoons of vinegar for an effective cleaning agent that will work well against those pesky solid marks without causing any damage.

Tip 8: Use Acid Cleaner

For solid stains that are on the surface of your wood, you can use a concentrated acid cleaner to help remove them.

Try using an acid cleaner like oxalic acid or vinegar diluted with water as it will help loosen up some of the more stubborn dirt and grime that has sunken deeper into the wood pores and cracks.

Tip 9: Use A Deglosser

To remove a paint spill from your wood decking, use a deglosser or stripping solution to help rinse off the paint without damaging your surface.

Tip 10: Use A Cleaner

For stubborn stains from oil-based products like motor oil on your wood, you can pre-treat them with an oxygenated cleaner before washing and rinsing it off in cold water for best results.

Use a deck cleaner that contains mild abrasives like pumice or seashells to help remove the stain. Any leftover residue will be sloughed off with water and shouldn’t require any additional scrubbing.

Tip 11: Use Mineral Spirits

Try using mineral spirits instead of paint thinner when trying to loosen up oils and stains in wood. Mineral spirits won’t discolor your deck boards like paint thinner will, which is a definite plus.


You’ve probably noticed a few solid stains on your decking that you can’t seem to get rid of. Solid stains are tough because they often sink deep below the surface level and become difficult to reach with a typical cleaning product.

We hope that these 11 tips on how to get rid of any solid stain from your wood decking have been helpful and informative! If you are looking for more information about this or other topics, please don’t hesitate to contact us.