Tips On How To Stain Your Deck
Timely and proper maintenance of your deck is essential to its protection and longevity. Your deck faces all the harsh elements of the weather and over time the stain that is on it will be begin to break down and offer very little protection. If left untreated the deck boards will begin to split and rot and you will end up having to replace the deck. That is why proper upkeep is so important. But before you begin to stain there are some important steps that you should take first.
Before you begin to stain you will need to remove any dirt or mold from the pores of the wood. This is very important first step because if you fail to do this the stain that you apply will not adhere properly to the wood. To do this you will need to buy a good cleaning agent which is designed for this. Most paint or hardware stores sell deck wash which you can apply with a garden sprayer. Following the directions on the deck wash that you purchased, apply the deck wash to your deck. In some cases, if your deck is heavily stained you may need want to consider using a pressure washer to clean your deck.
If you decide to use a pressure washer to clean your deck you need to be very careful because if used improperly it can end up ruining your deck. Start out by using a wide fan tip, and keep the nozzle away from the decks surface about 18 to 20 inches. You may have to get closer to the surface in order to remove all of the stains but it is better to start out from a longer distance and move closer if necessary. When using a pressure washer make sure to use long, smooth passes with the wand and always clean in the same direction of the wood grain. Allow the deck to dry 24 hours before applying stain.
Next, you will need to decide what type of stain that you are going to apply. There are generally three types of stains or sealers that are most often used today, clear, semi-transparent and solid stain. Clear finishes go on clear and leave little or no coloration to the deck. The clear finish stains are usually water repellents and some offer U.V protection as well. Semi-transparent wood stains usually are a little longer lasting than clear sealers and will add some color to your deck. Solid wood stains penetrate the wood and allow some of the texture and grain to show through. The biggest disadvantage of solid wood stains is that they are inclined to show wear on high traffic areas, and when the stain begins breaking down, it can peel.
After you have decided on what type of stain that you want to use, it is now time to apply the stain. The best method to apply stain is by using a paint roller or an airless sprayer to apply the stain and then back brush to achieve a smooth, even finish. Start out by staining the vertical sections of your deck first, such as the post and handrails. Next, apply the stain to remainder of the deck.When you apply your stain, be careful not to allow the stain to puddle on the surface of the deck. Also, do not apply the stain in direct sunlight in order for the stain to penetrate and dry properly.
Staining your deck is the best way to keep your deck looking great for a long time while also providing a great layer of protection.