deck staining project

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Old 07-21-09, 08:23 PM
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Question deck staining project

When we bought our house few months ago, the inspector had said that the deck is in good shape and just requires staining. Well, now I have decided to do it in couple of weeks. So here is my plan and questions. (This forum is a great help for an new DIYer like me)
I don't think there is any old stain or anything on this deck left. (I don't know when it was last stained). Here are couple of pictures of the deck,
deck corner

up close

I don't know what kind of wood this is. (Is it pressure treated wood?) Does the decision of which stain to use depend on the type of wood? We would like to have some stain with the color of hemlock mulch. (reddish brownish). What is the recommended stain? The deck seems to have nails and not screws. Do I need to worry about gaps like this?

There is some moss on some part of the deck.

Should I use some decking cleaner? Do I need to sand? Do I need to wait until the deck becomes dry after washing? (diy network site suggested to stain 3-5 days after prepping the deck)

Planning to use rollers and spindlease for the spindles.

The shed under the deck has these walls.

Do they need to be stained as well? That would increase the total work

Thanks for reading all the rambling and thanks in advance for help/advice/comments
 
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Old 07-22-09, 08:22 AM
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to clean and prep the deck

Here is what This old house says. Thinking of following their directions for cleaning the deck this weekend. Depending on how that goes, will do the staining the weekend after.

The family handyman also has good directions here. They are using wood brightener like oxalic acid. I like that idea. Should I do that after cleaning and before applying borate? (Would that work for whatever wood I have on my deck?)
 

Last edited by tnkrer; 07-22-09 at 08:46 AM.
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Old 07-23-09, 06:28 AM
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I didn't bother with all the links - I'm stuck with dial up

Generally you start by clening the deck. I normally wet the deck, apply a bleach/water solution [never stronger than 50/50!!], let it set but not dry and then rinse with a pressure washer - a water hose will also work.

Bleach will often lighten the deck enough where a deck brightner is need although the commerecially prepared deck cleaning/brightning solutions are more diy friendly. The deck needs to be dry before applying any coating [especially if using oil base] On older decks, I usually let the condition of the deck determine what type of stain to use.. If it cleans up and looks fairly new - a clear or toner stain can be used. A semi-transparent will hide more than a toner. On severly worn or discolored decks, a solid stain looks better.

Drying time after clening is directly related to weather and enviroment. obviously full sun will dry the quickest. shady conditions will take longer. Occasionally it's ok to stain the next day - the main thing is for the wood to be dry!

There isn't a whole lot you can do about gaps in the deck other than make sure they are well secured. About the only thing I'll sand will be the handrail [if needed] Improper use of a pressure washer or too strong a bleach solution could cause need for more sanding. Stubborn areas may need to be cleaned twice - scrubbing may help. The lattice under the deck should also be cleaned and stained. Spraying is easiest but a shaggy roller will also work - slop it on covering all the wood and then reroll with a dry roller to remove the excess.
 
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Old 07-23-09, 08:04 AM
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Thanks

Thanks marksr!

Can you check one picture (deck corner or the closeup)to comment on the condition of the deck and wood that is used? That may help me decide the stain to use. I am leaning towards translucent or semi-solids (oil based)
 
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Old 07-23-09, 03:54 PM
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I think it's PT pine but can't say for sure. Because the deck is pretty well weathered I can't say for certain if a toner/translucent stain will look good - you can tell more after it's cleaned. A semi-transparent stain should do fine.
 
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Old 07-24-09, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by marksr View Post
I think it's PT pine but can't say for sure. Because the deck is pretty well weathered I can't say for certain if a toner/translucent stain will look good - you can tell more after it's cleaned. A semi-transparent stain should do fine.
Thanks. I will post the picture of the deck after its cleaned. Planning to do it this weekend. if weather looks OK
 
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Old 08-24-09, 01:27 PM
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Finally we found enough time to start the deck cleaning. This is how it looked before we started cleaning.


After 8 hours of work on the spindles, here is how it looks now


The horizontal boards still need cleaning.
So is this wood PTPine? would semi-transparent stain look good?
The wet clean post looks like this


We would like the stained deck to look like this. We are thinking that we will use cabot oil semi-transparent stain. (There are a lot of opinions on forums about which company is better. It seems that Cabot is supposed to be decent). Here are all the colors. We think new redwood, terra, sequoia or redwood should give us the color we want.

Also to maintain this color, every couple of years I would like to wash the deck (couple of hours) and reapply the stain. Or would I need to really clean the deck every couple of years?

Thanks for reading and giving your advice/opinions
 
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Old 08-24-09, 02:15 PM
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That looks like pine. A semi-transparent stain should do fine. My biggest concern would be after the cleaning is done if there is a big difference in the appearence of various boards - if they all look similiar it should stain fine.

How much prep is needed in a couple of years depends on how the deck is weathered. I've restained some decks that just needed a quick cleaning and others that required a lot of work first - it just depends....


How are you cleaning the deck? 8 hrs sounds like a lot of labor just to get the pickets clean.
 
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Old 08-27-09, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by marksr View Post
How much prep is needed in a couple of years depends on how the deck is weathered. I've restained some decks that just needed a quick cleaning and others that required a lot of work first - it just depends....


How are you cleaning the deck? 8 hrs sounds like a lot of labor just to get the pickets clean.
Using oxygen bleach (stain solver), letting the spindles / boards soak in it for a while (20 min) and then brush ..

Me and wife worked for 4 hours each. 2 in the morning and 2 in the evening. So that's total 8 person hours ...

We don't think that the deck was ever cleaned/stained since it was constructed some 10 years ago ... We had to do each board twice to get most of the grime/algae out. Some spots still have a little bit of green tinge left, but now we are done.

Took 8 person-hours to clean the boards and stairs. Now the deck is all clean. Now I am thinking of spraying borate. (timbor or bora-care) Not sure if I really need to though.

Also going to test the color we want (new redwood) in a couple of days on one of the boards .. If we don't like it, what do we use to remove it?
 
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Old 08-27-09, 04:13 PM
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If you know immediately that you don't like it, you can remove most of it with the proper thinner [water for latex] It would be better to stain a piece of scrap wood or in an area where the wrong color won't be overly noticable. Sanding may remove some of the dried stain.
 
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Old 08-28-09, 07:23 PM
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which stain?

I went to National Lumber to get sample cans and the paint guy told me that I can not use semi transparent for decks. Its only for siding. Really? I read on cabot site and they seem to say both. So if clears are OK for deck, semi transparent should be ok too. right?

Also the samples are acrylic and not oil based. (paint guy said samples don't come in oil..)

Assuming this is all OK, there are two kinds of oil semi-transparent stains,
0300 series and 6300 series, I couldn't figure out looking thru the datasheet on that page. which one should I go for? (6300 has more pigment than 0300)
 
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Old 08-29-09, 05:47 AM
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Not all exterior wood stains are rated for deck use but any deck stain can also be used on siding. Both stains mentioned can be used on decks or siding.

An acrylic sample may not give the same result/look as it's oilbase counterpart.
 
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Old 09-01-09, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by marksr View Post
Not all exterior wood stains are rated for deck use but any deck stain can also be used on siding. Both stains mentioned can be used on decks or siding.

An acrylic sample may not give the same result/look as it's oilbase counterpart.
After some more reading on cabot website found out that
1. acrylic semi-transparent stains should not be used for deck and are only for siding while oil based semi-transparent stains are for decks also. I had mentioned to the paint guy that I am looking for oil based. He could have told me that the limitation is only for acrylic .. (assuming he knows that)
2. Cabot site says that for the colors I am looking for (new redwood and sequoia, their sample for oil based and acrylic is the same. So even if the color might be slightly different, that's the best I can do.

No rain in the forcast for next 5 days. I am going to test the color today and start staining on Thursday
I am excited

Thanks marksr for staying with me and helping me out
 
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Old 09-01-09, 03:54 PM
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Tested the colors!!

I understand that oil based stains have linseed oil which acts as a sealer. So I don't need to seal the wood. What about acrylic stains? What acts as sealants in those?

preliminary results are in!
Here is how the two colors look on balusters
(left is semi-solid sequoia and right is semi-transparent new redwood)


and on the boards


We will decide when it drys by tomorrow, but we like sequoia better. So now I need to test Sequoia semi-transparent, or we may just go with sequoia semi-solid!

This test color is acrylic, can I get it off with nozzle? or do I need pressure washer?
 

Last edited by tnkrer; 09-01-09 at 04:23 PM. Reason: added question about sealing
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Old 09-02-09, 05:15 AM
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A pressure washer might remove the samples but it can damage the wood if too much pressure is used. I doubt it will just wash off since it's been allowed to dry. Sanding it some may remove enough of it where it won't be all that noticable after you recoat with whichever stain you choose.

All deck stains are also sealers. I don't know much about the chemical make up of stains just that they seal the wood along with coloring it. Oil base stains generally seal better than latex although latex stains hold up better with the intense sunlight of the deep south.... probably not an issue at your location
 
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Old 09-12-09, 09:07 AM
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Done!

Cleaning supplies and equipment - $80
stain and staining equipment - $160
Number of hours cleaning and staining the deck - 40
Looking at the stained deck - Nice
(We were hoping for priceless, but have settled for nice ...)

Also we did the staining over three days. So there were areas where we overlapped the stain. That looks more shiny compared to other stain. I am hoping that it looks homogeneous with other stain in few days ..

marksr, thanks for all your help and advice.
Here are the before and after snapshots (The after snapshot is while it was raining, that makes the deck look better than when its not wet)

Before


After
 
  #17  
Old 09-12-09, 03:56 PM
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With a little luck the lapmarks will fade away given a little time.

Maybe not priceless but look at the $s you saved and the bragging rites you gained
 
 

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