Composite Deck Care & Cleaning Guide

To maintain the beauty of your Trex® deck, a little care and cleaning goes a long way. All exterior building materials require cleaning and a Trex deck is no different. For early-generation composite products (Trex Accents®, Trex Origins®, Trex Contours®, Trex Profiles® or Trex Brasilia®), we recommend a semi-annual cleaning with a composite deck cleaner. If your deck is one of the high-performance product lines from Trex (Trex Transcend®, Trex Enhance® or Trex Select®), soap-and-water cleaning or a gentle pressure washing will do the trick. Learn how to clean and care for your composite decking by reading the information that applies to your decking product and get ready to enjoy maximum outdoor living with minimal maintenance.

The affected area should be sprayed off with a hose to remove surface debris. Use warm soapy water and a soft bristle brush to remove dirt and debris from the embossing pattern.

A pressure washer with no greater than 3100 psi** that has a fan attachment/adjustment and soap dispenser may be used to remove dirt or mud. Spray deck with soap, then follow by gently scrubbing each deck board with a soft bristle brush. Spray/rinse each individual deck board using a fan tip no closer than 8-in (203 mm) from the decking surface. RINSE THOROUGHLY. If dirty water from cleaning is left to dry, a film will remain on the decking surface.

When working with cement, concrete, mortar, or stucco, protect the decking as much as possible in order to not get dust particles on the decking surface. These particles, once they get hot or wet, can cause a reaction on the decking surface and are very difficult to remove. If particles get on the decking surface, Trex recommends using Sakrete™ Concrete Dissolver ( BE SURE TO FOLLOW MANUFACTURER'S INSTRUCTIONS.

Hard water is water with high amounts of mineral deposits like lime, silica and calcium. When the water dries, deposits are left behind, leaving unsightly spots on surfaces. This is not a defect of Trex products but an issue with the water itself. Generally, these deposits can be cleaned with white vinegar on decking surfaces. Rinsing is required, so care should be taken to not use hard water for this purpose. If hard water must be used, dry with a cloth or use a blower to dry surfaces. In some cases a deck brightener product may also be used to help clean hard water stains.

Most colored chalks are permanent and may discolor the surface. Use only Irwin Strait-Line® Dust-Off Marking Chalk (purple), available at

Remove all debris from the deck using a hose or broom. Once the deck surface is dry, apply a deck “brightener"* to the deck as directed by the manufacturer. Deck Brighteners contain oxalic acid, which will also remove tannins.

A plastic shovel may be used to remove snow from the deck. Use calcium chloride or rock salt to melt the snow and ice from the deck surface.

All food spills should be removed as soon as possible. The surface must be cleaned within seven days to maintain the stain warranty. To remove, spray off with a hose and use warm, soapy water and a soft bristle brush to remove spills from the embossing pattern.

If debris such as pollen and dirt is allowed to remain on the deck surface, mold can feed on the biofilm. Using a hose and warm, soapy water with a soft bristle brush is recommended to remove the food source and mold.

NEVER use acetone or other solvents on Trex Transcend and Select railing to maintain the beauty of the surface. For color transfer issues (from attachment of baluster spacer), use Mr. Clean®, Magic Eraser® Original or Magic Eraser® Extra Power to help remove this.**** For small surface scratches, marks or scuffs, use Dupli-Color Scratch Seal Clear Sealer Pen.*****

While this is not common, static electricity can occur on walking surfaces in dry climates or in areas where dry winds and dust-borne particles lay on the decking surfaces. Static electricity can build up on occupants walking across any composite decking surface, including Trex, then produce a small static shock if they touch a grounded metal surface such as railing, door, etc.

This condition can be decreased greatly with the use of a product call ACL Staticide®. Two products tested were General Purpose Staticide® and Heavy Duty Staticide®. Both are effective in greatly reducing static electricity on Trex decking surfaces. Apply full strength, using a mop on a dry decking surface, and allow to dry; no rinsing or diluting needed. Products are non-toxic, non-flammable, non-staining (will not change the color of decking surface), completely biodegradable, and safe to use. Product is water-based and may require a second application after rain or other weather conditions. Over a period of time, the effect of static will dissipate naturally on the decking surface.

See link for more information on product:

Use caution when using rubber-backed mats (i.e. welcome mats, etc.) as these may contain substances that can sometimes discolor or lighten the decking surface.

Store decking on a flat level surface and ALWAYS use proper supports (dunnage). DO NOT store directly on the ground. When stacking decking bundles, supports (dunnage) should start approximately 8-in (203 mm) from each end and be spaced approximately 2-ft (0.61m) on center. In addition, supports (dunnage) should line up vertically/perpendicular to the decking product. Adjust support blocks (dunnage) accordingly if bundles are loose. For Select decking, Enhance decking, and 1x12 and 1x8 products, the maximum stack height is 12 bundles. For all other decking products maximum stack height is 14 bundles (IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT PROPER DUNNAGE SPACING MUST BE IN PLACE FOR THESE HEIGHTS). When stacking multiple bundles, ensure that dunnage lines up vertically down through each stack. ALWAYS cover decking products on site until ready to be installed.

* Strait-Line® is a registered trademark of Irwin Industrial Tool Company.

** Use of products containing bleach or acid will lighten the surface of Trex. Use in an inconspicuous area to determine whether you like the effect. Neither product will affect the structural integrity of Trex.

*** Use of a pressure washer greater than 3100 psi could damage the boards and void the warranty.

**** Mr. Clean® and Magic Eraser® are registered trademarks of The Procter & Gamble Company.

***** Scratch Seal Clear Sealer Pen is a registered trademark of Dupli-Color® Products Company.


» Refer to to view general care and cleaning video for Transcend, Enhance and Select decking.

» Refer to for a care and cleaning guide for Trex Early-Generation Composite and PVC decking.

Clean deck to remove dirt and debris. Soap and water is all that is needed.

Most colored chalk lines are permanent. For Trex use either baby powder or Irwin Strait-Line®* Dust-Off Marking Chalk available at

The printing on the side of Trex decking boards is required by building codes. With careful installation, most printing can be hidden. Visible printings can be lightened with acetone.

Tannin leaching occurs naturally in Trex and all wood-based products. Allow for at least 12 weeks of normal weathering. This process may be hastened through the use of a product containing oxalic or phosphoric acid, commonly known as Deck Brightener. **

Calcium chloride or rock salt, available in many home centers, will melt ice on Trex decking. Rinse off when first practical. Use caution when removing snow or ice with a snow shovel, and NEVER use a metal snow shovel on a Trex deck. A shovel may scratch the deck, which is not covered under warranty.

Scuffs and abrasions can fade or disappear naturally after 12-16 weeks of weathering. This can be accelerated with a product containing oxalic or phosphoric acid, also known as Deck Brightener.

Use a cleaning product containing oxalic or phosphoric acid base, also known as Deck Brightener, to lighten or remove the rust or dirt. Product may need to sit on stain 10-15 minutes before rinsing. **

Rinse the stain with hot water as soon as possible. Use Pour-N-Restore® ***( as directed for any remaining stain. (Test in a small area first as Pour-N-Restore may remove some of the colorant from the decking surface).

Semi-annual (spring and fall) cleaning of your deck is important to prevent the build-up of pollen and other debris that can support the growth of mold. Refer to Mold Technical Bulletin for specific cleaning recommendations).**

NOTE: Trex Escapes® can be effectively cleaned by using a hose and warm, soapy water with a soft bristle brush.

Trex does not recommend the use of a pressure washer. The use of a pressure washer on deck surface could damage the decking surface and will void the warranty with respect to any condition caused by the pressure washing.

Trex does not recommend sanding. Sanding will change the appearance of the surface of Trex material and will void the warranty with respect to any condition caused by such sanding.

Trex decking and railing products should be disposed with normal construction debris or household waste. DO NOT burn Trex products.

* Strait-Line is a registered trademark of Irwin Industrial Tool Company.

** Use of products containing bleach or acid will lighten the surface of Trex. Use in an inconspicuous area to determine whether you like the effect. Neither product will affect the structural integrity of Trex.

*** Pour-N-Restore is a registered trademark of Edgewater Industries.

Note: Trex does not recommend the placement of rubber of vinyl materials such as those found in grill mats, rubber-backed welcome mats, vinyl or PVC potted containers, etc., on the surface of Trex Escapes® for extended periods of time. Over time, additives in the rubber and PVC products have a tendency to migrate from these materials to Trex Escapes, resulting in discoloration of the surface.