Stain A Deck In 9 Steps

Taking the time to stain a deck will ensure that the deck lasts for years. The steps and materials required to stain a deck vary depending on the current condition of the deck and the number of layers of stain already on the deck. It may be necessary to sand the deck down prior to applying the new stain.

Preparing to Stain a Deck

To stain a deck it must first be cleaned. Remove all objects from the deck and use a shop vacuum or broom to remove smaller dust and debris.

Check the current quality of the stain by pouring some water on the deck. If the water beads up then the current stain is in good condition. If the water begins to seep in then you should first sand the deck down to remove the top layer of wood and any remaining stain or sealant from the deck. You should also sand the deck down if you have added 4 or more layers of stain since the last time the deck was sanded. Sanding the deck down keeps the deck smooth and allows the new stain to absorb into the wood more effectively.

Use a pressure washer or a deck cleaning chemical to clean the deck thoroughly. Allow the deck to dry completely before progressing.

Applying the Stain

  1. Select the stain you want to use based on color and quality.
  2. Fill a rolling pan or a bucket with the stain you have selected for your deck.
  3. Insert a long handled brush or roller into the stain and allow it to absorb enough stain for several strokes.
  4. Using your roller or brush begin to apply the stain. You should use a smooth, flowing motion which will apply the stain in an even fashion.
  5. Check the deck for any puddles of stain. If you see any puddles then use a rag to wipe up the extra stain.
  6. Allow the new stain to set for 24 hours.
  7. Visually inspect the deck. Look closely for sections which appear lighter than the rest of the deck. If you find any such spots then apply another layer of stain to these locations.
  8. Allow the deck to dry for at least 24 hours before actively using the deck.
  9. Dispose of the used stain cans and the rolling pan or bucket you used according to your local government’s disposal policies.