Frequently Asked Questions

We created these questions and answers to ensure our customers have access to consistent and accurate information about our products and services 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  If you have additional questions please shoot us a quick email at email and we will be please to respond with a prompt accurate answer.

Please provide very detailed steps for cleaning and brightening my wood.

These very detailled steps will help you produce the best results when cleaning your outdoor wood, and also provide the best preparation to enhance the performance of a subsequent application of deck oil. Although there may seems to be many steps the process is actually quite quick and easy, and will greatly improve the appearance and longevity of your stained deck.

Step #1: Cleaning

a) Cleaner is quite alkaline, so be sure to put on all proper safety gear (glasses or face mask, rubber gloves, full clothing and footwear).

b) Spray lots of water on surrounding plants and surfaces.

c) Cover any non-wood surfaces or plants that are likely to receive significant overspray of cleaner.

d) Spray all wood surfaces to be cleaned with water.

e) Mix "Ultimate Deck Cleaner: Step 1" (IMPORTANT: For Garapa Use ION-417 Architectural Cleaner) as directed in a pump-up garden sprayer or bucket, or pour full-strength into the chemical reservoir of a pressure sprayer. Always add cleaner to water, never the other way around.

f) Liberally apply cleaner to wood with pump-up garden sprayer, roller, mop, or pressure washer (on lowest pressure setting spraying in direction of wood grain). On vertical surfaces work from the bottom up.

g) Let cleaner stand for 10 minutes, misting with water or cleaner to prevent drying.

h) Brush surface with Ultimate Deck Brush or equivalent stiff bristled deck brush.

i). Rinse very thoroughly with pressure washer in the direction of wood grain on the lowest pressure setting (if no pressure washer is available, use garden hose).

j) Respray surrounding plants with water & thorougly rinse deck brush.

Step #2: Brightening (can be done any time after cleaning - immediately or many days later)

a) Mix as directed.

a) Brightener is acidic, so be sure to put on all proper safety gear (glasses or face mask, rubber gloves, full clothing and footwear).

b) Spray lots of water on surrounding plants and surfaces.

c) Cover any non-wood surfaces or plants that are likely to receive significant overspray of cleaner.

d) Spray all wood surfaces to be cleaned with water.

e) Mix "Ultimate Citric Brightener: Step 2" as directed in a pump-up garden sprayer or bucket, or pour full-strength into the chemical reservoir of a pressure sprayer.  Always add brightener to water, never the other way around.

f) Liberally apply brightener to wood with pump-up garden sprayer, roller, mop, or pressure washer (on lowest pressure setting spraying in direction of wood grain). On vertical surfaces work from the bottom up.

g) Let brightener stand for 15 minutes, misting with water or cleaner to prevent drying.

h) Brush surface with Ultimate Deck Brush or equivalent stiff-bristled deck brush.

i). Rinse very thoroughly with pressure washer on the lowest pressure setting spraying in the direction of the wood grain (if no pressure washer is available, use garden hose).

j) Respray surrounding plants with water & thorougly rinse deck brush.


Please provide very detailed steps for oiling my wood.

Best Practices for Oiling your outdoor wood:

a) Choose the type of Messmer's 100% Penetrating Oil appropriate for your wood (softwood, pressure treat, or hardwood).

b) Allow 2-3 warm dry days after rain or cleaning to draw moisture out of the wood before oiling.  Make sure there is at least 1 day after oiling before rain is expected.

c) Stir the deck oil very well before and during staining to evenly distribute the stain's pigment, making sure to scrape the bottom of the can while stirring.

c) Liberally apply Messmer's to the full length of boards with bee mop (sponge kitchen mop with wringer lever half way up the handle – it works great, it’s cheap and is available at most department and box stores).  A staining pad also works well for deck surfaces.  Apply in approximately 100-200 square foot sections before wiping excess (see next step). On vertical surfaces work from the bottom up.  For smaller or difficult to access areas a rubber glove and good quality cellulose sponge works best.  For spindles a rubber glove and a microfibre car wash mitt speeds up the job considerably.  For large vertical surfaces like fences and siding the oil can be applied quickly using a pump-up deck sprayer then spread around evenly using a rubber glove and microfibre car wash mitt.

d) Allow about 20 minutes for the oil to be drawn into wood before wiping off any excess.  For large areas, especially horizontal ones, a wrung out Bee Mop works well.  On smaller areas a rubber glove and a microfibre sponge pad work well (a thin sheet of sponge covered in microfibre cloth and typically about 8" x 6" x 0.25" in size) .  It is important to ensure that after wiping the surface does not appear wet or shiny.  The oil is meant to cure within the wood, not on top of it.  If it is left sitting wet on top of the wood’s surface it will dry to leave a shiny & tacky surface.  During the wiping stage it is fine to walk on the freshly-oiled surface with clean-soled shoes.  Take care as the oiled deck may be slippery until it cures.

e) Allow 1 day for curing before resuming full use of the deck.

Note: Here is what a Bee Mop looks like


Do you offer a "Clear" deck oil?

Our most popular tint of Messmer's UV+ and Messmer's UV+ for Hardwoods is "Natural".  Many customers and resellers sometimes refer to this as "clear" however that is not quite accurate.

The aspect of any deck oil or stain that protects wood from the sun's harmful rays is the pigment particles.  These microscopic particles act like tiny mirrors to reflect away the UV rays that weather wood to grey and deteriorate it's fibres.  Deck oil can be equated to sunscreen - it looks different in the bottle than it does when it's spread thinly on your skin.

Messmer's advantage over most deck stain manufacturers is that they use 100% transoxide pigments in their UV+ natural tints.  Transoxide pigment particles are 10 times smaller than the iron oxide pigment particles used by competitors.  The dramatically smaller transoxide particles mean better penetration of the pigment into the wood, and no clouding or covering of the natural features of the wood.

For customers with Hardwood decks there is even one step further than transoxide pigments.  Messmer's Extreme Caribbean Teak Oil utilizes nano-pigments which are smaller again than transoxide pigments.  This means even greater penetration and an even denser concentration of pigment without compromising the beauty of the oiled wood.  As such this teak oil lasts longer than any other oil on tropical hardwoods while also highlighting all the beauty of these woods.

Messmer's natural tint is intended to make wood look very similar to what it does when it is wet with water.  Wood is quite dull when it is dry, however when it is wet with water or oiled with Messmer's UV+ Natural it is a little darker and you see a great deal more of the natural beauty and features of the wood. A good analogy is that oiling wood with Messmer`s UV+ Natural is like wetting a rock - it darkens it a bit but it also highlights all the beautiful features of the rock that are barely apparent when the rock is dry.


What is better for my hardwood deck - Messmer's UV+ for Hardwoods or Messmer's Extreme Caribbean Teak Oil?

Messmer's UV+ for Hardwoods works so well and looks so good on tropical hardwoods largely because it utilized 100% transoxide pigments.  Most deck oil manufacturers utilize cheaper Iron Oxide pigments, or a mix of the two (so they can advertise use of transoxide pigments), to keep costs down and allow the margins necessary to sell through large paint retaillers and box stores.

The aspect of any deck oil or stain that protects wood from the sun's harmful rays is the pigment particles.  These microscopic particles act like tiny mirrors to reflect away the UV rays that weather wood to grey and deteriorate it's fibres.

The transoxide pigments Messmer's uses are 10 times smaller than the iron oxide pigment particles used by competitors.  The dramatically smaller transoxide particles mean better penetration of the pigment into the wood and the ability to use a denser concentration of pigment without clouding/covering of the natural features of the wood.

For customers with Hardwood decks there is even one step further than transoxide pigments.  Messmer's Extreme Caribbean Teak Oil utilizes nano-pigments which are smaller again than transoxide pigments.  This means even greater penetration and an even denser concentration of pigment without compromising the beauty of the oiled wood.  As such this teak oil lasts longer than any other oil on tropical hardwoods while also highlighting all the beauty of these woods.

Choosing between these two excellent products largely comes down to how much you value your time and the look of your deck over time.  The Teak Oil offers twice the UV protection compared to the UV+ for Hardwoods so it maintains it's looks better over the same period and it also tends to last about 50% longer.

Both products look very similar when applied, however the Teak Oil will look better at the 3/6/9 month marks, and it may allow you to get an extra year out of the stain before requiring a reoiling, thereby maximizing the return on the time you spend preping and oiling.