Restore A Deck LogoSee independent customer how-to videos for the Restore-A-Deck Wood Prepping and Stain Products. All videos have been made in the field without any compensation from Restore-A-Deck, by actual consumers.

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How to Prepare A Deck for Staining with Restore-A-Deck Products

Products Used

  • Restore-A-Deck Cleaner
  • Restore-A-Deck Brightener


How to restore a 30-year-old deck with Restore-A-Deck Products

Products Used

  • Restore-A-Deck Stripper
  • Restore-A-Deck Booster Additive for Stripper
  • Restore-A-Deck Brightener
  • Restore-A-Deck Semi-Transparent Stain


How to prep and apply a maintenance coat of stain with Restore-A-Deck Products

Products Used

  • Restore-A-Deck Cleaner
  • Restore-A-Deck Brightener


How to clean and stain Decks and Retaining Wall In One Day with Restore-A-Deck Products

Products Used

  • Restore-A-Deck Stripper
  • Restore-A-Deck Brightener
  • Restore-A-Deck Semi-Transparent Stain

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  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Wes · 05/19/2022
    I just installed new stair with the Veranda (PVC) trim & kicker boards.  Will any of the RAD cleaning and brightening products chemically attack the PVC?
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    Dan Sethner · 05/17/2022
    First two years I applied two light coats. This year the color is fading.(semi transparent) . Can I just clean with cleaner and apply an additional coat of stain. Or do I have to strip stain first.

     Thanks Dan Sethner
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 05/17/2022
      We would strip and brighen to get it to a nice even surface.
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    Bob · 05/15/2022
    Hello, I am going to be redoing my quite old deck this year and wondered if you had recommendations for your products. The stain that is currently on the deck is Timber Pro which is a water based stain. I would like to have this deck looking decent again and protect it. Thanks. 
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    Patti · 05/06/2022
     I have an Ipe deck and want to keep the natural color of the wood which is a mahogany with some lighter areas. What is the best color semi transparent stain to use to achieve this?
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    Blair Cockhill · 05/03/2022
    If I add the thickening gel additive to the stain remover, principally to handle the vertical components of our deck, can I still apply the combined solution using a typical hand pressurized garden sprayer? Will the longer dwell time with the thickener improve the removal strength so that 2 coats of 3 year old Behr Semi-Transparent Acrylic Stain (which is already shedding both coats on much of the deck, except for the 4x4 posts and the upper and lower horizontal railing lumber, which have not shed at all)?  Your many very positive customer comments, speaking to the quality and performance of your RAD products, is reassuring. Unfortunately, as we live in Ontario, we face both the US exchange rate and shipping costs. I’m hoping to find the most affordable and, yet, successful solution.  I am aware of the booster additive, but I’m unclear if our budget can include such.  Any suggestions, regarding our deck challenge, will be greatly appreciated!! Thank you, in advance, for your time, effort, and kindness in providing us your guidance.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 05/03/2022
      Yes, it can be sprayed with a quality pump sprayer. The longer it dwells, the better it will work. You need both booster and gel to remove Behr. Behr can be a very difficult strip.

      Feel free to post some pictures of the deck for prep help.
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    Susan · 05/03/2022
    2 year old pressure treated pine deck. Had it “soft washed” 3 mo this ago. Wood is lighter with few areas of fuzziness so I guess cleaner had bleach substance.  How do I now proceed to stain? Going with semi-transparent natural.
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    Greg · 04/27/2022
    I have a twenty year old deck that’s been stained several times through the years with Olympic semi-solid mahogany stains. It hasn’t held up well. Others in my family have used your product and been very satisfied.  Questions - can I use your dark walnut semi-solid on this, and which prep steps/products are recommended?  Same questions if you recommend your solid stain.  Thanks in advance for your guidance!  
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      RAD Products · 04/27/2022
      You cannot use the semi-transparent dark walnut over this but you can use the Restore A Deck Solid stains. Clean and brighen for prep.
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    Phil · 04/17/2022
    Last year I did the whole thing.....stripped, sanded, cleaned, pressure washed, brightened, and stained with Defy water-based light walnut.  It looks great except for dust/pollen accumulation on horizontal surface.  I want to clean it and re-coat with Defy in May.  Two Q's;
    If I just clean for a re-coat why would brightening be necessary since last year's stain will still be on the wood?
    Should re-coat be one coat or two wet on wet?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 04/17/2022
      Just use the Defy Cleaner for prep and apply one coat.
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    Rob J · 04/09/2022
    Will the stripper and/or brightener cause any issues to the coating of our Fortress aluminum railing?
    Will be stripping old TWP 100 stain off of Tigerwood decking.

    Thanks!    
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      RAD Products · 04/09/2022
      It should not but always test spot first as all coatings are made differently.
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    Zach R · 12/30/2021
    I recently had my 9 month old cedar deck stained with 1 coat of Readyseal Natural Cedar stain, but the stain seems like it did not take.  We’re not sure why.  It rubs off on shoes so you can’t even walk on it even after 1 week.  I recently purchased the stripper, booster, and brightener.  In order to use the deck now, I need to remove the current stain, but given the current climate I cannot re-stain it until the spring (approx 3 months away).  Is it okay to strip and brighten, but not re-stain right away?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 12/30/2021
      Ready Seal has a known issue with rubbing off as it never dries or cures. 
      You can strip and brighen now but when the Spring comes, you will need to clean and brighen for the prep.
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    Gary Bash · 12/16/2021
    First off your products are awesome. I stripped, brightened and stained my deck back in 2019I used the Cedar semi-transparent stain.This coming spring I want to apply another coat of stain.  Note: the majority of the deck has a roof.Most of the deck looks fine execpt in an area where sun has faded the floor (small area) and the railing on the same side.Do I Clean, or Brighten, before I stain againThanks 
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      RAD Products · 12/16/2021
      You do both. Clean and brighten for prep.
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    Don · 11/14/2021
    After I stripped and neutralized/brightened my deck yesterday the weather changed and I wasn't able to stain.  It might be a long time before I get a long enough dry spell with a daily low above 45 degrees.  The pores of the cedar wood are very open with some raised grain here and there.   The wood looks normal when dry but almost black when wet.  Will leaving it as is until spring ruin the wood?   Any advice on how to proceed?  What are the potential downsides of staining in too-cold temperatures or when there might be fog or dew overnight versus letting it weather until I get proper conditions for staining, which might be 3-4 months from now?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 11/15/2021
      You will have to wait until temps are warmer. Next Spring if needed. Clean and brighten for prep before you stain.
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    Ronnie · 10/31/2021
    Just purchased your cleaner,brightener & stain. Live on 3rd floor condo… no pressure washer or access to hose. Deck is almost 6 month old & has a fair amount of green streaks in the boards… some almost iridescent? Do not know what kind of wood was used. Should I be concerned and is it unrealistic to do this jub with a bucket & brush? 
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      RAD Products · 10/31/2021
      You can scrub and rinse but you will need a hose to rinse. Hook a hose to your kitchen sink or utility sink.
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    Sue · 10/08/2021
    We used the stripper without the booster, it supposedly only had one coat of stain on it.  As you can see by the pictures some of the stain came off really good, but others not so much.  We hate to continue if our new new stain won't stick what do we do with this?   
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      Susan Reimer · 10/08/2021
      It's old stain in the indentation in the wood.  And we have not used the brightener yet. 
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        RAD Products · 10/09/2021
        Strip it one more time and then apply the brightener.
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      Sue · 10/08/2021
      Here are a couple of pictures since it has dried. 
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        RAD Products · 10/08/2021
        What are the white spots and did you brighten the wood yet?
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      RAD Products · 10/08/2021
      Send pictures when the wood is dry. Cannot tell from these.
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    Cornelius Harrison III · 10/04/2021
    After using the Restore -A- Deck Stripper and Brightener, afterwards am I able to Stain my deck with another Stain/Sealer Product? The name of the Stain/Sealer is "Ready Seal Exterior Wood Stain and Sealer".  Didn't realize you guys sold Stain as well until after the purchase. 
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 10/04/2021
      You can use any brand of stain after our prep products. Be careful of the Ready Seal. It has drying issues and rubs off. Also does not last more than a year.
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    Bo · 09/29/2021
    My understanding is that if I strip and brighten one day and stain the next day or even a week later that I should moisten the surface before staining. Correct?
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    Bo · 09/27/2021
    My intention is to strip one day, brighten the next day and stain the following day because of time constraints. Any problem with that approach? Thank you.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/27/2021
      Strip and brighten the same day. You can stain the next day if you want.
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    Carolyn · 09/27/2021
    I scrubbed, then used an orbital sander to prep my very small 8X12 deck on my townhome.  Do I need to wait until spring to stain?  Do I have to use the cleaner / brightener before staining if I wait until spring?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/27/2021
      You can clean and brighten and then stain now. One coat.
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        Carolyn · 09/27/2021
        So I need to use your cleaner even though it is sanded? 
        P.S. I am in Portland OR, ordered your stain onrline.  I'm guessing I will need to do the same with the brightener and cleaner - i.e., no distributors here in Oregon?
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 09/27/2021
          You need the prep products after sanding to open up the wood pores. We sell online only.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Justin · 09/24/2021
    Hello.  I've purchased the cleaner/brightener/sealer kit for my cedar fence.  My plan was to do all three steps on a single day but due to circumstances I was only able to get through the cleaning step.  This took place two weeks ago.  I plan on finishing up the project this weekend.  Do I need to do a quick clean again?
    What is the max time between applications of the brightener and sealer?
    Thanks!  BTW, the cleaner worked very well!
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/25/2021
      Wash lightly with water and then brighten the wood. Stain within two weeks of prep.
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    Jim · 09/23/2021
    Thanks for your confirming that after stripping my cedar deck this week, I can wait until spring to take the next steps.  This lets me avoid the stain degradation that will surely occur over the harsh Chicago winter.  Just to confirm, the next steps in the spring will be cleaning, brightening and staining, with no need to strip or power wash again?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/24/2021
      No need to strip but you do pressure wash lightly when cleaning. 
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    Karen · 09/17/2021
    Hello,I ended up sanding my deck because it had too much of the previous stain on it. 
    Originally I purchased the stripper, brightener, semi-stain. Deck is about 30 years old.
    ...The deck looks really good after sanding.
    ...I have not been able to find a power washer to rent.
    ...If I had the cleaner I would use it, but I don't...should I still use the stripper to hose it off or skip it
    ...I need to get this done tomorrow, and I did not realize how important the power washer was or how hard it was going to be to find one. 
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/17/2021
      Brighten, rinse well, and then stain.
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    Kelly Caudill · 09/10/2021
    I just applied the deck cleaner to my deck which about 2 years old, never stained. It now looks fuzzy and didn’t seem to get all the mildew looking stuff off. I sprayed an area then took a broom to try to scrub. I then rinsed with power washer. What else do I need to do? Don’t want to neutralize yet as I don’t feel it got clean enough!! 
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/11/2021
      Reapply the cleaner and then pressure wash off, not just rinse. Brightener after.
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        Kelly Caudill · 09/11/2021
        So yesterday I ended up going to get a deck scrub brush. Once I wet down the deck again I was able to scrub a lot of oxidation off. I did power wash after to rinse the product off. I went ahead with the brightener and rinsed as directed. Today I’m just not sure if I got enough oxidation off or do I need to repeat these processes again? There is some white still on the boards but also the fuzzies. Are these boards sufficient to start to stain? 
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    Obed Juarez · 09/10/2021
    Here is another pic
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    Obed Juarez · 09/10/2021
    My covered deck is 9 Feet off the ground and serves as a porch from the underside. Do i need to stain the underside? Deck is 10x24 Never been stain or sealed Its about 10 month old How much product do i need?  Transparent is what i think in using.Please advise.Thank you.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/10/2021
      No need to stain undersides unless you want to for appearance only.
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    Obed Juarez · 09/03/2021
    I have an year old cedar deck that has black spindles 1inch wide  x 1/4inch thick attached to my cedar rails. Do i need to remove or protect them during the cleaning, brightening or staining with the semi-transparent process?  
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/03/2021
      You should be fine with the prep. Do not get the stain on them. 
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    JBR · 09/03/2021
    We have a new-wood deck-zilla with 450 deck railing spindles.We have to stain it ourselves because no local contractors are familiar with RAD products.
    1. Can I use a paint/stain mitt to apply RAD semi-transparent stain to deck railing spindles? 2. Can I use a mitt to apply cleaner and brightener to spindles?3. Can I use a mitt to rinse off the brightener from spindles?If not, what’s best to use?3. I don’t have a power washer. Can I use a strong spray from a regular water hose?Thank you.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/03/2021
      Yes on stain no on prep products. Use a sprayer and then pressure wash off. You need a pressure washer for best results. 
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    JBR · 09/02/2021
    We have a rebuilt deck of PTP. The railings have a lot of wood components: verticals and cross pieces. What would be the best tools and procedure to use for the cleaning, brightening and RAD semi-transparent staining?
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    Edward Vargas · 08/30/2021
    Finally getting a break in the weather and ready to do the 3 step process. The deck wood is 12 months old and has never been stained. It is graying a bit and is exposed to hot sun. Should I still apply only one coat? Secondly, do you recommend applying the semi transparent stain with the wood damp or dry? Does it really matter? Is one better than the other? 
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    Carolyn Cassel · 08/28/2021
    An unexpected rain fell on my deck about 6 hours after applying the second coat. This morning it had areas of white liquid. I swept off the extra water and the white areas smoothed out. What do I need to do next?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 08/28/2021
      Let it dry out for a few days and it should go away.
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    Bruce · 08/26/2021
    After applying semi transparent stain with a sprayer does it need to be brushed or sponged in to be effective
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 08/27/2021
      Yes, to ensure it applies evenly and dries correctly.