How To Remove Paint From Wood Deck With Pressure Washer

Pressure washers are a useful mechanism by which you can do many things other than cleaning. Using some attachments, you can even make the snow from a pressure washer in winter. If you need a new paint job on your wooden deck, you will need to scrap the old layers of rusted paint. The most common way to remove the paint from the surface is by sanding, but the problem is that it is a long process and requires patience and effort.

A pressure washer might be the best solution if you want to save your precious time and do not want a long task. You can easily remove the paint layers from your deck with the pressure washer, but there is one little problem. Using lower pressure than required will result in ineffective paint removal from the pressure washer, and using too high pressure will damage the woods. This article will discuss the perfect way to remove the paint layer from the wooden deck with a pressure washer without any damage. So let’s get started.

Removing The Paint From Wooden Deck

If you want to paint your wooden deck, then it is very important to remove the old paint. Painting the wood without removing the old paint is even worse than old paint, and you will get a rough and dirty-looking paint job. These are the steps to remove the paint from the surface.

Gather Your Equipment

First, you will need to gather all the necessary tools and chemicals. Of course, you will need a pressure washer but make sure to use the low power pressure washer with pressure under the range of 1200 psi. You will need a powerful and resistant brush, preferably made from synthetic material, so that it remains intact when you use it with paint remover.

You will also need a paint remover that contains sodium hydroxide or linoleum. Avoid using paint strippers that have methylene chloride in them. It is also very important to wear all the safety equipment, including gloves, goggles, full sleeved shirt, long pants, and boots.

Prepare The Area

Before cleaning any surface with a pressure washer, remove any unwanted things from the area. Remove the plants, pots, light bulbs, and furniture from the deck if possible. Prepare the area so that you can clean it with the pressure washer.

Use the broom or brush to remove the dust and any visible debris from the surface. Dust can cause problems when you apply the paint stripper to the surface, and you must get rid of it.

Apply the Paint Stripper

You must check the paint type if you do not know it. There are two types of paints, and oil-based paints are much more difficult to clean than water-based paints. Dip a fine piece of cloth in alcohol and rub it on your paint. If it comes out, then it is latex paint. Otherwise, it is oil-based paint. Use the paint stripper according to your paint, and make sure you are using a verified chemical.

First of all, apply the deck cleaner with the brush or with the pressure washer. The main purpose of doing that is to remove the paint and the debris. You must also apply the paint stripper to the surface and scrub it with the scrubber. The main goal of doing that is to remove most of the paint.

Use The Pressure Washer

Use the pressure washer on the surface to remove the paint. It would be best if you choose the right pressure. Otherwise, it might damage the surface. First, check the pressure washer on a small area to see if it works properly. Make sure to check all the pressure washer components, including all the hoses and valves, to confirm that there are no cracks.

Use the pressure washer properly, and spray at an angle. The optimum angle to spray the water is between 25 to 45 degrees. Keep the distance between the nozzle and the surface more than 12 inches. Apply the water relative to the wood pattern, or you will get a rough surface.

The Right Pressure

Choosing the right pressure is very important when cleaning the wood with a pressure washer. A high power pressure washer can remove the fiber from wood and might cause it to degrade. If you soft grain wood, then 600 to 800 psi would be enough for the job. It is recommended to use 800 to 1200 psi on standard grain wood, and in extreme cases, when you have rough grain wood, then you can use the pressure between 1200 to 1500 psi. When applying pressure of more than 1200 psi, follow extreme caution.

Safety Precautions

Removing the paint from the wooden deck with a pressure washer has triple hazards. You are at risk from high pressure and electrical hazards, and the chemicals might also be harmful. Therefore, you need to follow the safety guidelines properly. These are some of the safety parameters that you must follow.

  • Wear the proper full-sleeve shirts and long pants when using a pressure washer. Also wear safety goggles and gloves to avoid any damage.
  • Make sure to remove all the visible debris from the surface and remove everything from the area.
  • Make sure that all the components of the pressure washer are working fine.
  • Keep the pressure washer nozzle at a distance from the surface and spray the water at an angle.
  • Avoid using the pressure washer if you think that it can damage the wood.


In this article, we have discussed the proper way to remove the paint from the wooden deck. If you want to paint your wooden deck, you must first remove the previous paint. Painting the wood without first removing the previous paint can result in a rough and dirty-looking paint finish. To begin, assemble all of the essential equipment and chemicals. It is also critical to wear all safety equipment, such as gloves, goggles, a full-sleeved shirt, long trousers, and boots. Remove any visible dirt and dust from the surface with a broom or brush. It is preferable if you select the appropriate pressure. Otherwise, it may cause harm to the surface.

Jose Kelly