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How to Paint a Wooden Deck

Last modified: 2017/08/29 | 3 mins

Also known as patios, wooden decks are very popular in both small and large backyards. met with one of our contractors, Felix Deblois-Beaucage, as he and his team were working on a wooden deck renovation project. Here are the five main steps of this process:

1) Clean the surface of the wooden deck

Before you start painting, make sure you have a clean surface. If your deck is very dirty, an in-depth cleaning with a special cleaner will be needed. Otherwise, removing dust with a dry cloth should be enough. If the cleaning process has dampened the wood, let it dry before the next step.  


2) Sand the wood

When the wood deck is completely dry and clean, you need to sand it with 50 grit sandpaper. This is an important step because it removes old paint or stain from your wood. Besides, it also opens up wood pores, which will improve the new paint or stain adhesion. If there is no paint, varnish or stain on the wood, use 100 or 120 grit sandpaper. An electric sander can also be used to make this step easier. For this project, they had to sand twice to remove the old stain. In some cases, you may have to use a chemical remover or a thermal removing technique. If the product you want to apply is sheer, insist on this sanding step because wood will show trough the finish.  


3) Apply a primer

Since it's a wooden deck, it is advised to use a primer. Although some paints now come mixed with primer, a separate primer is better. It will seal the wood and improve the adhesion level of the finish paint. Therefore, the final result will be more durable. This type of primer/sealer can easily be found in any hardware stores or specialized paint stores. Follow the manufacturer's recommendations for application methods and drying time.  

4) Apply paint

When the primer is dry – if you have used one – you can apply the paint. For this project, 2 coats of opaque 100% acrylic paint where used.  To apply the paint, the workers used a paint roller for large areas and a paint brush for corners and edges. Once they had covered the whole surface, they let it dry according to the manufacturer's instructions. You could also cover your wooden patio using a sealant product or  a stain. For a stain, anywhere between one and three coats could be needed, depending on the type of stain you use.


5) Drying time

After you’ve applied the two coats of paint on your deck, let it dry for at least 24 hours depending on the weather. This is extremely important. Before you start your deck painting project, make the weather forecast for the next 24 to 48 hours is good.  Otherwise, if it starts raining before the paint dries out, you’ll have to do it again. Also, it should not be too hot while you paint: high temperatures decrease paint adhesion. For optimal results, take the time to complete each step properly and respect weather conditions. It may take more time- this project lasted three days- but that’s the best way to do it. If you're looking for a professional result, hire experienced contractors to do the job.


Get 3 renovation quotes for your wooden deck painting project can help you get quotes to paint or stain a wooden deck. If you submit your project to us, we’ll put you in contact with the most suitable contractors for you. Fill in the form on our homepage (only a few minutes), and you will receive quotes from companies that are specialized in exterior painting.


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