How to Prepare Exterior Wood for Staining
Whether you are doing the job yourself or hiring a contractor to do the work, you should have a thorough understanding of the staining process. The following information offers some guidelines for preparing your home's exterior wood surfaces for staining.
The best time to stain your home's exterior, deck siding, or outdoor furniture is when temperatures are moderate (above 50°F, but below 85°F), the humidity is low to average, and there is no rain in the immediate forecast. Ideally, you should have three to four consecutive dry days prior to beginning any exterior staining project.
Tools for the Job
The Paint Shoppe offers a complete line of brushes and rollers designed to work with wood stains. Alkyd or oil-based stains should be applied with natural-bristle brushes. Synthetic-bristle brushes are ideal for latex or waterborne wood stains. The following is a list of tools and supplies for exterior staining projects. Speak to your Paint Shoppes sales associate for advice on the right application methods and products for your particular project.
- Stain brushes or pad applicators
- Benjamin Moore rollers and roller covers
- Stain mitt
- Hose or power washer
- Paint scraper
- Painter's tape
- Wire brush
To achieve the best results, be sure to take the time to properly prepare the surface to be stained. As with paint, proper preparation is the key to a successful staining job that will last. See the following categories to find which best describes the condition of your wood, and how to prepare it for staining.
- New wood – "mill glaze" is found on new, smooth planed wood, and interferes with the adhesion and penetration of stain. Use Benjamin Moore Brighten (317) to remove the mill glaze found on all new wood.
- Unfinished wood – Use Benjamin Moore Clean (318) to prepare wood for staining. Clean removes mold and mildew.
- Maintained finished wood – Use Benjamin Moore Clean (318) to keep stained surfaces looking crisp as well as to prepare for regular maintenance touch-ups.
- Mildewed/neglected wood – Use Benjamin Moore Restore (316) to remove dead wood fibers and for cleaning. Please note that Benjamin Moore RESTORE darkens tannin-rich woods such as cedar and redwood. Use Benjamin Moore Brighten (317) to reverse the darkening effect.
- Worn/stained wood – Use Benjamin Moore Remove (315) to remove existing oil and/or latex finishes as well as to remove opaque solid color stains and water sealers from wood prior to refinishing or restoration. Use Benjamin Moore Brighten (317) to neutralize Benjamin Moore REMOVE residue.
- Tannin-rich woods (cedar, redwood) – Use Benjamin Moore Alkyd Primer (366) to control tannin bleeding when using solid color stains, particularly under lighter colors.
DECK APPLICATION GUIDE