How To Stain Your Deck
The Water Bead Test
Chances are your deck is brand new and you're going to be staining it for the first time. But not so fast! It may be too soon to seal your brand spanking new boards. What exactly do we mean by that? You wood has to be ready to accept a sealant. That may be right away or a few weeks. Applying sealer to your deck too early may result in the deck not being properly sealed.
Luckily, there is a easy way for you to tell if your deck is ready to sealant. We call it the water test. Take a few tea spoons of water, or wait until a rain shower occurs and watch to see if the wood absorbs the water. If it soaks it up, then congratulations, your deck is ready to stain. If the water beads up, then it's not ready.
When to Stain.
We recommend staining when it comes to any horizontal wooden surface such as a deck or porch floor, because of the level of foot traffic it will receive. Staining will withstand more wear before needing to be re-applied.
Overall, staining is a great all in one solution to sealing and protecting your investment from premature wear.
When to Paint.
Painting is a fantastic option for vertical wood surfaces such as deck and porch railings, patio cover, and awning posts and exposed rafters.
Deck floors can be painted with exterior grade paints, but will require more upkeep, in turn, being more costly of an option to maintain. Even the best exterior paints cannot stand up to the foot traffic a floor will receive.