The Worst Foods and Household Items to Drop on your Deck

How stain-proof are different decking products? We put their warranties to the test on this episode of TimberTips.

It's inevitable that someone at some point is going to drop a burger or spill some wine on your deck. So what's the best decking surface for the accident prone? We took four different decking products and put them through a series of stain tests. For this experiment, we chose Cedar, Ipe, TimberTech, and Azek. To help make these tests as real world as possible, we also oiled the Cedar and Ipe.

TimberTown sells and loves all of these products, so we invited Matt Risinger from the popular youtube channel "The Build Show" to provide an unbiased opinion.

For the first set of tests, we dropped four common foods on each of the boards: mustard, ketchup, wine, and one of the greasiest burgers we could find. We then let the stains sit for about an hour. Now Azek and TimberTech have 30-year stain and fade warranties so we expected those two products to perform well. After wiping the boards down with a little soap and water, the TimberTech looked the best, you couldn't see any stains. The Azek looked equally good, there was a hint of mustard left behind but we think a little extra scrubbing would have taken care of that.

The Ipe had some dark areas where the stains had been, which may have been a result of the oil not being fully dry. Regardless, I think a little more elbow grease or a power wash would have done the trick. The Cedar, even with the oil, had the wine soak into the board which would make it difficult to get out. The non-oiled cedar looked even worse.

Next, we wanted to test the deck boards against bug spray and sunscreen. We labeled the boards with a "B" for bug spray and "S" for sunscreen and soaked the boards then left them in the sun over the weekend. We may have gone a little overboard with this test, but we received some interesting results.

After letting the board sit in the sun all weekend, we applied some soap and water to the boards. Interestingly, the Cedar did remarkably well, we think the stain was an excellent repellant. TimberTech also did great, the residue came right off. The Azek board was affected but it was difficult to tell if it was from the aerosol cans or the adhesive from the tape. Lastly, the Ipe faired pretty well against the bug spray but the sunscreen left a nasty sticky residue. We weren't sure if that was a result of the oil or not.

So the bottom line is, avoid spraying sunscreen, bug spray, or anything in a metal can on your deck. It's in a metal can for a reason and could void your stain and fade warranty.


To see Matt Risinger's take on these tests, check out his episode of BUILD Show here:


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