How to stain your wood deck to keep it in perfect condition all year

The spring is over, and you think it’s the perfect moment for a deck renovation? A lot of people use this period to protect the wood deck, as the sunny days come with great weather for this kind of work. It might be a little more complicated than you thought, but with some effort and a good deck stain, you will get the wanted results.

What information is crucial before the deck renovation?

The deck renovation should start after you solve some problems. Here is a quick checklist that will help you out.

Is the wood new or old, and does it need to be cleaned?

“New wood” might be still wet, as it takes somewhere between 3 months and a whole year to completely dry.  A deck staining company in Newton, for example, will ask you first if the deck is at least a half of year old. And they are professionals who know that new decks need some time to get seasoned. You could use a moisture meter or invite the aforementioned professionals for this job. In case you decide to benefit from the best deck repair services in Newton, we recommend EcoHousePainting. Remember that some cleaning is always a good idea, even if the deck is not that old. The wood gathers easily mud, bacteria, mold spores and other things that could simply ruin your whole plan if left in place.

Make sure to use a cleaner specifically made for wood decks, never use bleach or harsh substances. Remember to read the cleaning instructions, respect the indicated steps, and never mix substances that should not be mixed. After a thorough cleaning, think carefully if your deck would benefit from an application of wood brightener.

Is the deck ready for the renovation?

When the deck is fully dry (usually 3-4 days after the cleaning process is over) you could start the main procedure. If it rains, if water gets accidentally on the deck, wait some more. Don’t skip the sanding! Choose the right sandpaper, as each type of wood, will benefit more from a certain grit, and make sure to avoid metallic parts of the deck, if they are any (such as screws or nails, for example).

If your deck currently has a water/acrylic base finish count on at least a half-day (or more) to strip off the old finish. Wait several days (72 hours would be great), and proceed to the cleaning, drying, application and curing. Then, you will wait some more, before you can move your deck furniture back in place and use the deck accordingly.

If your deck currently has an oil-based stain, you can clean and recoat the deck in a single day, if you are lucky enough. However, you’ll have to sand off the old oil base finish if you want to recoat with a lighter colored finish, or if you want to switch to a water-based product. Floor and rail sanding is a task best left to professionals, it requires skills and knowledge, so make sure to choose wisely.

Did you choose a good deck stain?

Choosing exterior deck paint can be a challenge, especially with zero experience. The right deck stain will bring out the natural beauty of the deck’s wood grain and extend its life by protecting it against harmful factors: temperature and water damage. In any specialty shop, you’ll find an endless (maybe even a little confusing) selection of transparent, semi-transparent and solid stains in both oil and water/acrylic formulations. The formula is at your choice, you will probably continue with something similar to what was already used on your deck. As for the transparency… Clear deck stainhas no color added and shows the natural beauty of the wood, the translucent stain doesn’t obscure grain and texture of wood and includes just the slightest tone, semi-transparent stain allows most of the grain and texture to show through, with slightly more prominent color. Semi-Solid stain and solid types cover most imperfections, give a great color depth. It will be better if you try the chosen shade in a place less visible, just to make sure you will get the wanted result.

In case you are still not ready or afraid to mess up the job, hire adeck refinishing contractorthat will help you out. It’s not shameful to search help, it might even spare you some money, and time.