Washing and cleaning a teak wood boat deck will remove dirt, grime, grease and dirt and have the deck looking clean and like new.
Cleaning the teak wood will also add a shine and help rejuvenate the color of the softwood deck.
To clean a teak boat deck:
- Brush the teak wood deck with a deck brush
- Wet the teak deck with water
- Scrub the teak deck with water, a sponge and a teak cleaner product
- Rinse the deck with a hose & dry the teak wood with a towel or microfiber cloth
- Apply teak oil to add shine and protection
Following these cleaning steps will help refresh and clean old, dirty and weathered teak boat decks.
1. Brush The Teak Deck With A Deck Brush
The first step of cleaning a teak boat deck is to sweep the deck with a deck brush.
To brush the teak deck:
- Get a sweeping brush
- Sweep all the dirt up and put it into the bin
For most recreational boats, sweeping up the teak deck should take between 10 to 15 minutes to complete.
For larger boats with larger teak decks, sweeping it up should take between 20 minutes to 30 minutes.
The benefits of sweeping the teak deck are:
- Removes bulky loose dirt: A brush will help sweep the dirt and dust buildup on the teak deck
- Prepares the teak deck for washing: Brushing the deck helps remove excess dirt first and prepare it for washing in later steps
- Helps break up and loosen stubborn dirt: Using a brush to sweep the teak surface will help loosen and break up stubborn dirt before washing
To avoid scratching or damaging the teak wood, use a soft bristle brush only.
Brush and sweep the teak wood deck with a soft bristle brush. This will remove loose dirt and dust and prepare the deck for washing in later steps.
2. Wet The Teak Deck With Water
The second step of cleaning a teak deck is to use a hose to wet the entire teak deck.
To wet the teak deck:
- Get a hose with fresh water
- Spray fresh water with the hose over the entire teak deck
- Ensure every part of the teak deck is wet from the hose
Wetting the entire teak wood area will take approximately 10 minutes to wet.
However, larger boats with larger teak decks will take approximately 20 minutes to wet.
Wetting the teak deck will:
- Prepare the deck for washing: Wetting the teak surface helps prepare the deck for washing with soap in later steps
- Remove loose dirt: Wetting the teak surface helps further loosen the trapped dirt before washing with soap
- Removes lighter stains: Wetting the teak area helps remove the lighter stains before the scrubbing begins
Wet the teak boat deck with fresh water to loosen stubborn trapped dirt. This also helps prepare it for washing.
3. Scrub The Teak Boat Deck With A Teak Cleaner
The third step of cleaning a teak boat deck is to get a bucket of warm water, mix it with a top teak cleaner product and start scrubbing.
Once the warm water and teak deck cleaner are mixed in a bucket, it's time to scrub the teak deck.
To scrub the teak deck:
- Pour the soapy warm water over the teak deck: Pour the soapy water in the bucket over the teak deck in sections
- Scrub the dirty areas with a sponge or brush: Scrub against the grain with a soft bristle brush or sponge to ensure there is no damage to the teak material
- Ensure all areas of the teak deck are washed and scrubbed: Ensure every part of the teak deck is scrubbed without any sections missed
Using a sponge or soft bristle brush will not scratch the teak wood surface. It will also help remove even the deepest stains.
Using a teak deck cleaning product will not damage the teak material or cause fading of the color.
For most recreational boats, scrubbing a teak boat deck with water and soap should take approximately 30 minutes to complete.
However, for larger boats with larger teak decks, scrubbing the boat's teak deck can take 1 hour or more to complete.
The benefits of scrubbing the boat's teak deck include:
- It helps clean every area of the deck: Scrubbing the teak deck against the grain helps to safely clean the teak surface
- It protects against mold and seawater damage: Regularly scrubbing the teak deck surface helps prevent mold buildup or seawater damage
- It prolongs the life of the boat's teak surface: Scrubbing the teak deck surface will help prolong the life of the deck surface as scrubbing it will remove corrosive materials
Mix boat teak deck cleaner with warm water in a bucket and scrub the entire deck with a sponge or soft bristle brush. Scrub against the grain and do not use a hard bristle brush as it can damage the surface.
4. Rinse The Teak Deck With A Hose & Dry It With A Towel
The fourth step of cleaning the boat's teak deck is to rinse the scrubbed deck with a hose and fresh water and dry it off with a towel.
To rinse the boat's teak deck and dry it off:
- Use a hose and fresh water to rinse the teak deck surface
- Run the hose over the entire surface until all the soap has been rinsed off
- Use a towel to dry off the teak deck in sections in a circular motion
- Ensure every area of the teak surface has been completely dried to prepare it for applying the teak oil
As a reminder, do not use a pressure washer to rinse the teak deck as it can cause damage to the teak deck and damage the caulking.
Rinsing and drying off the teak deck surface takes approximately 35 minutes to complete for most recreational boats and it takes approximately 90 minutes to complete for larger boats with larger teak decks.
The benefits of rinsing the teak deck and drying it off include:
- Removes dirty water and teak cleaner: Rinsing the deck with fresh water will remove all that dirty water and dirty soap used to clean the teak material
- Helps spot any missed dirty stains: Rinsing off the teak wood with fresh water will help spot any missed stains or dirt
- Adds a shine to the teak deck: With all the cleaning water dried off and stains and dirt removed, the deck will start to shine and look great
Rinse the teak deck with a hose and dry it off with a towel. Ensure the entire deck has been rinsed and dried off.
5. Apply Teak Oil To The Boat Teak Deck
The fifth step of cleaning a boat's teak deck is to apply teak oil to the teak surface.
To apply teak oil to the boat's teak deck:
- Ensure the entire teak deck is completely clean and dry. Do not apply the teak oil until the deck is fully dry and clean
- Use a clean cloth and apply teak oil in sections to the dry teak surfaces
- Rub the teak oil into the teak surface in the direction of the wood grain during application
- After wiping it into the surface, wait for 5 minutes before wiping away the excess oil
For the majority of recreational boats, applying teak oil to the teak deck should take approximately 30 minutes to complete.
For larger vessels with larger teak decks, applying teak oil to the teak deck should take approximately 1 hour to complete.
The benefits of using teak oil on a boat's teak deck include:
- Add a shine to the deck: Teak oil will add a great shine to the deck once it's dried in
- Add UV protective coating: Teak oil will add a protective coating against sun damage which will help extend the life of the teak deck
- Rejuvenate teak color: Teak oil helps rejuvenate the teak color and enhance
- Helps prevent weathering: The formula used in teak oil helps with wear caused by weathering
Apply teak oil to the dry boat teak deck. Simply wipe it into the teak wood and let it dry. This will add a shine and provide UV protection.
Products To Use When Cleaning A Teak Boat Deck
When cleaning a teak boat deck, the products to use are:
- Bucket Of Warm Water: Use this to mix with the deck cleaner
- Soft Bristle Deck Brush: This will help with sweeping up any trapped dirt
- Teak Deck Cleaner: A top teak deck cleaner product will help remove the most stubborn dirt from the teak surface
- Teak Oil: This can be used to add a shine to the teak material
- Sponge And Towel: Used for scrubbing and drying the teak deck
- Hose: Used for rinsing off the dirty soapy water from the deck
- Teak Deck Wax: A great boat wax for teak surfaces helps add a shine to the vessel
- Boat Buffer Machine: A top boat buffer helps with applying wax to the marine deck surface
These products will ensure any teak deck is completely spotless and clean.
Use products like teak cleaner, teak oil, a hose, a soft bristle brush, a sponge and some water to help with cleaning a teak boat deck.
Products To Avoid When Cleaning Teak Boat Deck
When cleaning a teak boat deck, products that should be avoided include:
- Bleach: Do not clean the teak deck with bleach. Bleach will damage the surface of the teak wood
- Gasoline: Gasoline will damage the teak wood deck. It will also leave a bad odor and is highly flammable so do not use it to clean the boat's teak deck
- Pressure Washer: Pressure washers cause damage to the teak surface. It will cause the color to fade and leave a patchy stained look to the teak surface. It can also cause the teak wood to crack so avoid using it when cleaning
- Hard & Stiff Bristle Brush: Do not use a hard & stiff bristle brush when cleaning the teak deck as this can cause scratches to form on the teak deck surface
Avoid using bleach, gasoline, a hard bristle brush and a pressure washer when cleaning teak boat decks as it will damage the teak surface.