A deck is central to the art of outdoor entertaining that Australians do so well. Whether it’s new or existing, a freshly finished deck is a great way to ready the home for summer. The key to achieving a professional looking result is ensuring that the timber decking is well seasoned, free from natural extractives (tannin) and clean. Coating unseasoned timber results in the premature degeneration of the applied coating and within a short space of time, will leave discolouration and staining under the coated surface.

It is preferable that you leave hardwood decking timber to season naturally over a period of three to six months after installation. However, if completing the deck in a shorter time it is desirable to use new Sikkens Cetol BL Tannin & Oil Remover which achieves a similar result in a matter of minutes.

Many people assume that decking timber does not need to be seasoned because it is kiln dried during the manufacturing process, but this is not the case. Proper seasoning is particularly important for oily, tannin rich timbers such as Merbau, which have become a very popular choice for decking in recent times.

To season a new hardwood deck quickly and easily, simply follow these steps:

  1. Sand thoroughly with a 60-80 grit sand paper to allow penetration of the Tannin & Oil Remover.  Clean with a hose or pressure washer.


2. Apply Sikkens Cetol BL Tannin & Oil Remover and leave for 15 minutes. During this time period, dark reddish-brown tannins will appear from the timber fibres


3. Rinse the treated decking boards thoroughly with a hose or pressure washer


4. Immediately after rinsing, apply Sikkens Cetol BL Deck & Wood Cleaner to wet decking boards using a mop or soft brush


5. Allow this to sit on decking boards for 15 mins before rinsing with water


6. Once completely cleaned the timber decking boards will look lightened and free from tannin stain, dirt and grime. Allow to completely dry prior to coating with desired Sikkens deck coating