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A 4-Step Practical Guide to Stain Your Deck

A 4-Step Practical Guide to Stain Your Deck

Exterior renovationsA 4-Step Practical Guide to Stain Your Deck

With summer at our feet, one can't help but quickly take out their lounge chairs and outdoor patio furniture to make the most out of the nice weather. While you may be barbecue ready, your patio, on the other hand, might need a bit more TLC!

In Quebec, the changing seasons will inevitably lead to varying temperatures and bad weather that will damage your wooden deck, meaning either its paint, stain or even the wood itself. While it goes without saying that these finishes aren’t foolproof, however, there are different ways to make your patio or deck more durable despite the hurdles.

How to Stain Your Deck in a Few Steps

1- Start by cleaning your patio

how to stain a patio

Source: Canva

To ensure that the products used adhere to your decking, it has to be well-cleaned. If the damages left by winter are light, simply use a broom and the garden hose set at its most highest setting to properly dust and clean the wood. Also, be sure to do a quick inspection to spot any other apparent damages.

However, if your wood was previously untreated or your patio is getting old, it may be that different stains have lodged on the material over the years. 

How to Clean a Patio Prior to Staining It

For tough stains, you can use a high-pressure washer designed for such a task. You can easily rent such a device at select retailers. 

It’s recommended to start with low pressure (500 Psi) and gradually increase the pressure if you find that it’s not cleaning as effectively as you would like. Note that it’s best to work gradually to prevent damaging your patio and avoid using the pressure washer too long in the same place.

Otherwise, you can use a wood cleaning product, found in most hardware stores, to then rinse off everything with your garden hose. Be sure to follow the directions on the product carefully. Allow your patio dry for at least 24 to 48 hours before applying any type of finishing product, so be sure to carry out the work according to the weather. 

Want to know how to build your patio or deck? This article will answer all your questions:


2- Sand the surface of your patio

how to stain a patio

Source: Canva

Another important step, although demanding, is that of sandblasting. A good sanding will ensure that the products applied to your wood surface adhere to it well. Regardless of the condition of your wood, don’t neglect the sanding stage.

Sander or floor sandblaster

Two ways are available to you: the electric sander or the floor sandblaster. The sander, however, requires more effort and patience. For its part, the floor sandblaster will save you a lot of time and you can easily rent it in hardware stores.

Want a ballpark price for a wooden patio? Read our article Wooden Patios: Models and Prices.

3- Apply stain to your wood deck

how to stain a patio

Source: Canva

Applying stain to your deck or patio should be an easy, hassle-free task, especially if you follow the steps above-mentioned. Once your products and tools are selected, as well as a day with favourable weather, you can get started! If necessary, you can apply a second coat after waiting for at least 6 to 24h. Both synthetic bristle paintbrushes and rollers are best to complete this type of task. Don’t forget to wear protective gear such as work gloves and goggles while applying the stain.

Application tips

During the application, be sure to apply stain with wood grain, not against it, to avoid irregularities or streaks left on the surface. Also, pay close attention to the ends, cracks and holes in the wood to saturate them with dye. As such, you will prevent water from seeping into these cavities and creating mould.

Beware of the sun and rain

For better results, keep in mind weather conditions. 

Although we’ve mentioned the importance of favourable weather conditions, keep in mind that it isn’t recommended to apply the dye in direct sunlight, since it may dry unevenly. 

Similarly, beware of humidity levels. The wood must be very dry for the stain to really seep in. Wait 2 to 3 days after rainfall to undertake any work and ensure (as much as possible) that it won’t rain in the next 48h.

4- Allow your patio to dry

how to stain a patio

Source: Canva

Respect the manufacturer’s instructions regarding drying time. To ensure everything is dry, allow at least 48 hours before settling in. This waiting period will give the product enough time to adhere to the wood and avoid damaging it.

How to Paint an Already Painted Patio

In the long run, it’s best to stain your patio every 1 to 3 years, following the same guidelines, to maintain it perfectly. However, you should add another step to the whole process. Naturally, if the former coating is chipped or damaged, it’s best to remove it prior to applying a new coat of stain. You can use a chemical stripper specially designed to remove stains or surface coatings. 

Would you rather paint your patio? Check out our article How to Paint a Wooden Deck: Step-by-Step Instructions.

Looking for a ballpark price for your next patio project? Try our cost calculator!

Get 3 renovation quotes for your patio staining project can help you get quotes for your painting project. If you submit your project, we’ll put you in contact with top-rated contractors. Fill in the form on the homepage (it only takes a few minutes), and you will get estimates from trusted professionals.

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Last modified 2023-11-07

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