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How To Stain A Deck

Use this easy 4-step guide to easily stain your deck


Q: How do I stain a deck? My deck's appearance needs some updating and I have never stained wood before. Thanks!

A: Staining a deck is a lot easier than you may think. It involves a simple four-step process. Follow our guide on how to stain a deck below.

How To Stain A Deck: Step 1

First you must sweep away all of the loose debris that is on your deck and then apply a deck cleaner, such as Olympic® Premium Deck Cleaner. This product can deeply penetrate the wooden boards of the deck and lift up dirt and particulates so that the surface of your deck can be washed properly. Deck cleaner also helps remove stains that may be caused by mildew, dirt, algae, mold, or even leaf marks left behind after the fall. Once you have fully washed your deck allow it to dry fully before moving on to the next step.

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How To Stain A Deck: Step 2

Now you must tape and hammer down any nails that could be raised above the surface. Using standard painter’s tape block off any surface that you do not want the wood stain to adhere to. In proper conditions stain penetrates quickly, so it is essentially to tape off anything that shouldn’t be stained. Additionally you want to take a hammer and tap down any nails that may be lifting up a bit off the surface. Loose nails can damage your roller or brush and give your staining application a rough texture.

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How To Stain A Deck: Step 3

If you are staining your deck with a clear wood sealant, a wood toner, or a semi-transparent stain it is important to apply a thin coat with a high-quality brush or sprayer. For solid color wood stains you can apply two coats of your product with a paint brush or a paint roller. To ensure that you do not get lap marks with your solid color wood stain, apply it to just a few of your decking boards at a time and keep a wet edge so that the stain blends well. 

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How To Stain A Deck: Step 4

Now that you have stained all of the major surface it is time to backbrush. Backbrushing is the act of forcing the brush or roller a bit rougher into the surface so that all parts of the wood, including the joints, edges, seams, and ends get the same coverage of wood stain as the flat areas of your deck. By pushing the stain-coated brush in between each board you are making sure there are no areas visibly uncolored by the product. Once you have completed backbrushing allow your deck to fully dry before moving any furniture onto the surface.

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That’s it – you’ve stained your deck. By following this simple guide you can make sure your deck staining project comes out looking beautifully in just a matter of hours. When staining a deck prep is just as important as the wood stain you end up choosing for your surface. By taking the time to prep and letting your deck properly dry following staining you’re ensuring a successful result to your project. Now, click the link below to find the right stain for your wood deck.

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Variance in monitor calibrations can affect the on-screen representations of our actual paint and stain colors. Your local Olympic® Paints & Stains retailer can match and/or order the exact color that you desire with the help of the Olympic Paint or Stain color name or number.

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