Staining a deck is an important step in enhancing your deck’s appearance and protecting your investment. Whether you’re refinishing a deck or installing a new one, it’s a good idea to use wood stain.
Why Should You Stain a Deck?
Staining a deck is a good way to enrich the color and prolong the life of the wood. Stains like Wolman Exterior Wood Care products include pigment, which lets you give bare wood a preferred color. Wood stain is also water-resistant, which means it also acts as a sealant. Deck stain helps protect the wood against wear and tear and exposure to the sun, rain and snow.
How Do You Prepare to Stain a Deck?
The most important part of your deck staining project is proper surface preparation. Giving the stain a clean and sound surface to cover goes a long way to a long-lasting finish.
If your deck was previously stained, you’ll want to remove the old stain with a product like Wolman DeckStrip Stain and Finish Remover. A power washer or deck brush is needed to help remove old coatings. Next, clean the wood with a solution such as Wolman DeckBrite to help restore the wood to its natural color.
After your prep work is complete, choose your favorite tint of wood stain and apply it to the wood. Be sure to follow the instructions on the product label, which will include tips such as appropriate outdoor temperature ranges, how many coats of stain are required and recommended application methods.
How Do You Apply Deck Stain?
You can apply deck stain using a high-quality brush, roller, stain pad or pump sprayer. Take care to work any excess stain into the wood with a brush or roller. This technique, known as “back-brushing,” will result in a more uniform appearance.
You may want to take your deck size into consideration and opt for more than one application method, such as using a paint roller to apply deck stain to large, flat surfaces, a brush on smaller areas and a stain pad on the narrowest wood, such as railings.
Do You Need to Seal a Deck?
If you stain your deck, you generally don’t have to apply a separate sealant. Unlike interior wood stain that requires a topcoat of sealant, most exterior wood stains provide stain color plus a sealant in a single product.
If you’re not using deck stain, you can protect a wood deck with a clear sealer that’s designed to repel water, resist mildew and help prevent wood from cracking, splitting or warping.
Wolman Raincoat Oil Based Clear Sealer is a unique formula that can be applied to a new wood deck for immediate protection. If you prefer a water-based clear sealer or stain with sealant, remember to let new wood weather for six months before application.
How Do You Maintain a Deck?
Wood stain or sealant goes a long way toward preserving the life and appearance of a deck. However, periodic maintenance is also important. Cleaning your deck can remove dirt and other stains, and it’s a good idea to reapply stain or sealant every few years to help maintain the wood’s appearance and protection.
How Do You Maintain a Composite Wood Deck?
Composite wood decks tend to require less maintenance, but they may still need some care to keep them clean and in good condition over the years. Over time, composite decks can fade and lose their water- and stain-resistant qualities. Cleaners and coatings specially formulated for use on composite decks can keep them looking great.
Dirt, mold, moss and spills can stain composite decks. Products like Rust-Oleum RockSolid Composite Deck Cleaner remove stains caused by dirt, mold, mildew and moss, while RockSolid Composite Deck Stain Remover tackles stains left by food and beverages, grease and cooking oil, as well as mold and algae.
As with a traditional wood deck, it’s important to clean the surface of a composite wood deck before coating it. Once your deck is clean, a coat of RockSolid Composite Deck Refresh can revive its color and add protection against damage, fading, mold and mildew.
A backyard deck can be an ideal outdoor gathering place, and upkeep efforts help keep it looking great over time. By knowing how to stain a deck and taking steps to protect and maintain it, you can enjoy your outdoor space for years to come.