How to Stain a Deck Like a Pro: Guide and Tips

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How to Stain a Deck

Deck is one of the essential components of a household, therefore keeping it safe and nice is more than just important – it is necessary! The best way to protect a deck from destruction is to stain it.

You might think that the old deck on your backyard is not worth time and effort to take care of it. Well, if it’s completely rotten, then maybe it’s better to reinstall it indeed. But a couple years old deck covered with dirt, dust and some uneven spots, should not daunt you: there are easy solutions to fix that. And we will provide you with some of them. If you are about to install a new deck – just stain it and you will never regret it! Also, it’s a good way to make your backyard look more appealing and stylish.

So, here are some guidelines to staining a deck for those, who are new to this process:

Prepare the deck

First of all, if your deck is old, you have to clean it thoroughly by sweeping it with broom and washing. To prevent damaging the boards it is better to use a hose instead of pressure-washer. It will softly spray all the dirt off your deck. Let it dry for a while. If you don’t know how to define whether your deck is dry enough, you can use some moisture meters to measure the level of moisture in the wood. Or you can just give the deck a few sunny days to air out. You don’t want the wood to be wet before staining it, because trapped moisture can lead the deck to rot.

The next step is grinding the deck to smooth its surface. Also, if there are some spots you want to leave unstained, use tape to cover them.

The last step before staining is creating a plan: you got to determine a starting and stopping point for easy entry onto and exit off of the deck.

Start to stain

To apply a stain use a natural bristled brush going with the grain of the wood. A roller doesn’t work well enough for this (although it could make the process much faster), because it can’t get the stain into the grain of the wood as good as the brush does.

If you’re using a paint-pad, mix the stain with a paint stirrer, prepare paint-pad tray and add stain to it. If the paint pad doesn’t cover inside spaces between boards, use a 1” paintbrush for proper coverage.

We recommend to stain in the morning or evening.

Dry the deck

When you finished staining, leave the deck for 24 to 48 hours. Don’t forget to check the weather: the best time to dry the deck is when it’s warm and sunny for a few days in a row without any projected rainfalls. A perfect temperature range for drying is something between 50°F and 90°F. When it’s all dried – place the furniture.

To keep the deck safe for a longer time aim to re-stain it every two-three years.

Recommended colors

  • Olympic Stains’s Mountain Cedar: A classic.
  • PPG Paints’s Colonial Blue: We love this choice for the beach or a lake house.
  • Behr Advanced DeckOver’s Redwood SC-330: Deep and woodsy with a touch of vibrancy.

Date: 05.05.2020