No one likes seeing bird droppings on their wooden deck, let alone a deck you plan on using for a backyard BBQ or other hangout! If you have an event planned but a very dirty deck, what can you do to get things clean?
How to remove bird droppings from your wooden deck? You can hose it down, pressure wash it gently, use a scrubber and bleach, or even scrape it off with a putty knife.
But how do you safely clean bird droppings so that you don’t harm yourself? And what can you do if your deck is made from a material other than wood? Let’s dive into this not so fun activity together.
What to Consider Before Cleaning Bird Poop from Your Deck
There’s more to consider before cleaning bird poop from your deck than you first thought. If this is your first time cleaning bird droppings from a wooden surface, take the time to read these helpful safety tips first.
Bird poop can carry diseases, and you should take your time and be careful before diving into this cleanup process. Wear gloves and face protection if you need to scrub these tough stains, and you may want to wear gloves even if the hose is going to get the job done.
You should also wear clothes that you don’t mind getting wet or dirty. The same goes for your shoes- I recommend wearing waterproof and ankle high boots, just in case there are any unpleasant puddles or splash back that occurs.
While cleaning your deck may seem like an easy activity, bird poop shouldn’t be taken lightly. It can hurt you far more than it can hurt your deck!
The Amount of Poop
Let’s face it, we all get busy and have the tendency to put projects off. Even if it’s just for a brief period, birds can leave a large amount of droppings on your deck, especially if they have taken to nesting nearby or even above it.
If you find a lot of poop on your deck, you want to use a method that can clean quickly… you don’t want to spend all day scrubbing up bird droppings! Some of these methods will be much faster than others, though you may need more specialized equipment such as a power washer.
No matter what, this shouldn’t be a project that takes you forever, unless you are expecting absolute perfection. Bird droppings have been known to discolor and potentially damage wood if left caked on for a long period of time.
Depending on the amount of poop, your wooden deck may need sanding down and restraining. However, this should only be done in extreme circumstances. Chances are, all you need is a hose or pressure washer to get the job done!
How to Remove Bird Droppings from Your Wooden Deck
Ready to clean your wooden deck and remove bird droppings from it? Let’s take a look at our top five ways to remove bird droppings from your wooden deck today!
1. Hose it Down
Sometimes, all you need is a stream of water to get the job done. If you’re dealing with bird droppings, often hosing it away with a garden hose is enough. Using a simple spray or hose attachment should be enough to get things clean and cleared away.
Watch out for splash back and spray while you’re cleaning, and be aware should you happen to touch any droppings with your bare hands. Always take the time to scrub yourself up inside the home with plenty of soap and warm water.
However, if the poop has left permanent stains, you’ll need to clean it up with a bit more finesse and force. Often a garden hose will not do the trick with more set-in droppings. Check out the rest of this list for more solutions.
Using a scrub brush and deck cleaner, you can scrub the area thoroughly. Just be sure to wear protection, as working with droppings so close up can spell disaster. I highly recommend this cleaning set that includes a good brush: DeckMAX Concentrated Composite & Wood Deck Cleaner Kit.
If birds poop on your deck a lot, having a deck cleaner and a scrub brush set is a good way to go. That way, you’ll be ready anytime those pesky birds return to roost. A scrub brush is often all you need for more set-in stains, and deck cleaner is made to power through droppings without damaging your wood.
Read our guide on how to clean black stains from a wooden deck here.
3. Pressure Washer (Low Setting)
Pressure washing can clean a deck quite well, and quickly. Should you own a pressure washer, this could be your best bet for removing a large amount of droppings, and quickly. However, use a pressure washer with caution; it can damage your wood too, so be careful.
4. Warm Water and Bleach Mixture
If your deck is full of mildew and suffers from lots of bird poop, it needs a serious cleaning. Using a scrub brush and a mixture of water and bleach, you can get your deck clean of both the droppings and the mildew or moss.
Make sure your bleach and water mixture is a 3 to 1 ratio, with more water than bleach. Using this amount will help you remove even the toughest bird poop stains. Plus, it won’t be as harmful to your deck as power washing can be.
5. Scrape it Off Using a Putty Knife
If the droppings aren’t coming off from the hose and you have no pressure washer, you can get down and scrape off the designated area. While this doesn’t sound ideal, sometimes it’s all that can be done! Wear proper protection, especially eyewear. Be sure not to scrape too hard, as you might damage your deck.
This method is ideal if you only have a small area to clean up. If your entire deck is covered in bird poop, it might be wise of you to rent or borrow someone’s pressure washer for the afternoon!
How to Clean Bird Poop from Your Composite Deck
Often it’s far easier to clean a composite deck than a wooden deck, which is good news for you composite deck owners. You can use a hose or pressure washer, but just be careful that the water pressure won’t damage your decking.
I highly recommend checking out our list of some of the best composite deck cleaners on the market today. These will help you get the job done, and they also help battle any potential mold and mildew stains you might be experiencing.
If you happen to have old composite decking, cleaning it and adding a new sealer is a good idea to protect it from bird poop. You can take a look at some of our composite deck sealing options by clicking here.
4 Ways How to Prevent Birds from Pooping on Your Deck
There’s no need to clean if birds don’t poop on your deck! Learn how to prevent them with these 4 tips so that you don’t have to worry about birds in the first place.
Birds often stay away from owls, which is why you may have noticed many homes and commercial businesses with fake owls on their rooftops. You can get this owl scarecrow on Amazon. It may be just enough to keep your birds away!
Sometimes the location matters in terms of placing these owl scarecrows. You may have to try a few spots before the birds finally stay away. However, it is a small price to pay for a deck clear of bird droppings.
2. Move Your Bird Feeders
Let’s face it, it can be tough to shoo birds away from your property if you enjoy them, and this is especially true if you’re feeding them! If you have bird feeders nearby, you should move them far away from your deck.
While there is no guarantee that this will totally prevent birds from pooping on your deck, it could lessen the amount. Try moving your bird feeders across your yard and see if that helps!
3. Keep Your Deck Free from Garbage
Birds eat away at garbage bags and food left out on the deck. They can be quite the scavengers, especially depending on the species of bird. Keep your space clean and don’t give the birds a reason to hang around, whether the food is their birdseed or your food scraps.
4. Shiny Objects
Believe it or not, birds are known to hate and avoid shiny objects. This can lead to some fun home DIY in terms of creating bird repelling shiny things, but it may be just enough to work for you and your deck.
You could always try wrapping your deck in reflective material, such as this waterproof reflective tape available on Amazon. If you know where the birds are spending most of their time, you can stick this tape there and see if it works.
Many homeowners place silver tinsel or ribbon in their trees and around their gardens in order to shoo birds away. You can get creative and see what works best- chances are, a bird isn’t going to be a fan of anything you do if it’s shiny!
While cleaning bird droppings isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time, it is a task that needs to be done if you have a wooden deck. Take the time to wear proper protective gear, and with a few of these tips, you should have your deck clean in no time!
Jamie is the founder of The Backyard Pros. When he was 15 years old he started working at a garden centre helping people buy plants, gardening products, and lawn care products. He has real estate experience and he is a home owner. Jamie loves backyard projects, refinishing furniture, and enjoys sharing his knowledge online.