Restore A Deck Prep and Staining Steps

We understand that everyone needs help with their wood/deck restoration and that not all projects are the same. Different species of wood, the age of wood, and types and brands of previous coatings make it difficult for homeowners to determine what is needed to restore their exterior wood or deck correctly.

We will ask some specific questions and reply to what you will need to do in your restoration process and the appropriate products and amounts to purchase, so it receives the proper prep and treatment required.

In the comment section below, you must include:

  • Square Footage of Area to be Restored:

-For Decks, use the calculator in the right column (scroll down) for desktop or below this article/comments on mobile

-Fences: Length x Height x 2 (for both sides) = Total square footage

-Homes: Do each side Lenght x Height, then add up all sides.

  • Type of wood if known:
  • Approximate Age of Wood:
  • If Applicable, Previous Stain Brand Used and Type (Examples of Type: Transparent, Semi-Transparent, Solid Stain, Oil-Based, Water-Based): 
  • If Applicable, When was the last time wood was stained:
  • Wood Type to be Stained (Deck, House, Fence, etc.):
  • Do you have access to a pressure washer:
  • Miscellaneous Info:
  • *Must Include 1-3 Photos of Restoration Project. There is a link to upload photos in the bottom right corner of the comment area.

Restore A Deck Stain Application Tips

 

 

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  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Helga Zimmerer · 06/18/2019
    I was planning to rent a pressure washer from home depot. They are also renting a driveway and surface cleaner attachment with it, but I am wondering if that is a good idea and worth the extra rental cost.
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    Vlapinta · 06/18/2019
    How long after it rains can I apply Rad solid stain? How dry does the wood need to be?
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    John · 06/18/2019
    I am planning on staining my cedar deck that was built 5 months ago and cured nicely. I have noticed in some blogs that it says not to sand as it will not allow max stain penetration. However, I have some raised spots on the hand rails and other places that are more than likely plainer marks and I'd like to smooth these out prior to staining. Will sanding these areas hurt the staining process? I am also using RAD cleaner and brightener. Thanks
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/18/2019
      You can lightly hand sand but do not spot power sand. That would create issues of uneven application.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Cairine · 06/18/2019
    All this info is great, “best deck stain in Canada”, but where do you buy it? I’m in Surrey BC
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/18/2019
      You can buy online from our site and we can ship it to you.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Doug · 06/18/2019
    The contractor we're looking to hire, to stain our treated lumber deck is pushing hard on using TWP 100 while I would like to use RAD. Since you sell both products, what are the pros and cons of using each one? Ease of use, longevity, etc.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/18/2019
      Both will last about the same. The RAD can be done the same day as the prep. The TWP cannot. Application is about the same.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Jim · 06/18/2019
    Can I apply 1 coat of stain in the initial process and then apply a second coat of stain 1-2 months later?
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    George · 06/18/2019
    Pressure treated deck, one year old. Sanded tops of railings with power sander yesterday to get smooth. How long to wait to start project?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/18/2019
      Wait for a few weeks and the use the RAD Cleaner and Brightener for prep before staining.
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    Judy · 06/18/2019
    Hi I used your stripper, sanded and have applied the brightener per your instructions. However after the 48 hour wait it has rained just about every day since then and my two week period is up this weekend and rain is in the forecast til next week. Will I have to start over or apply a cleaner and brightener again if I can't stain for 3 weeks or more?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/18/2019
      Lightly pressure wash rinse and brighten again is all you will need to do.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Judy Wnek · 06/19/2019
        Ok one last question - as I said I stripped and sanded, however I did not get all the Behr stain off. I did apply the brightener but while I am waiting for the rain to stop I have been researching a little and saw that you now have the additives that make removing stain more effective. Would I be wise at this point to buy more stripper with the additives and strip one more time to try to remove more?
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 06/19/2019
          Yes, it would help to give another round with the additives as well. Let it sit on the wood for 30-60 minutes and it should take more off.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Janet · 06/17/2019
    I am curious. I need gray stain and I want to use your solid stain, but the gray is a little bright for me. I want gray,

    and I am wondering if I mixed a little of the oak with it whether it might give me a color of gray I like better. Have you ever seen this?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/17/2019
      No, never tried this combo but you can mix colors.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Mary · 06/16/2019
    Also, I used Behr Premium Semi-Transparent Waterproofing Stain and Sealer 6 years ago. The sealer is finally wearing off somewhat. There is no peeling. Can I just clean and apply a RAD semi-transparent stain?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/16/2019
      No. When switching brands of stain you will need to remove the previous coating. Use the stripper and the two additives to remove. Brighten after. You will need a sprayer to apply and a pressure washer.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Helga Zimmerer · 06/18/2019
        If I use the stripper will I be able to apply semi-transparent stain? I don't want to sand, as the wood is pressure treated. What will the ongoing maintenance be like? Clean and apply a semi-transparent stain every 2 - 3 years?
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 06/18/2019
          Yes. Clean and recoat as needed. 2-3 years is normal.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Mary · 06/16/2019
    Do I need to use a pump sprayer for the cleaner/brightener or can I just apply it with a pad/brush?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    David P · 06/16/2019
    I applied RAD semi-transparent to home deck last week. Looks great...so far. Was easy. Am tempted to use RAD SOLID to vacation deck (only horizontal surfaces, in Vermont, wide temperature swings, 1980s PT yellow pine (we think)). We are not fussy about the color...only want BEST protection and easiest for periodic rejuvenation. I can find no info showing a comparison between your Solid and your Semi-transparent. Where do I find this info - ESPECIALLY as to rejuvenation at the 2 or 3 year mark? Thanks.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/16/2019
      The main difference would be that one is opaque and the other is semi-transparent. In terms of longevity, they are about the same and they can both be cleaned and recoated as needed.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        DavidP · 06/16/2019
        Thanks for info...Your text in the materials re the solid stain seems to indicate that the solid will last longer, is more durable, and needs only touch up for rejuvenation rather than clean/brighten and re-stain.....or am I reading it it wrong. Also, we do NOT care about the texture/grain of the wood...it is totally undistinguished wood. Would that also point us toward the solid stain rather than the semi transparent?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Neel · 06/16/2019
    Hello - we would like to use RAD solid stain to refinish our deck. Do any of your premixed colors match our current stain? I have attached a picture.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/16/2019
      Nothing will match this. Closest would be Cypress.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    PR · 06/16/2019
    How long can leftover stain be stored and safely used?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/16/2019
      Opened, about 12 months, maybe longer. Unopened, a few years. Cannot freeze.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Jerry · 06/14/2019
    Because the stain does not come in gallon style cans will I need to pour the stain into another container for applying with my brush? I have a new redwood fence (6 weeks old), can I just stain it without prep?


    Thanks
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/15/2019
      Yes, pout into a larger bucket or paint tray. As for prep, that would depend on the condition and if the wood is smooth or rough sawn. Best to reply with a picture.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Colonel · 06/14/2019
    I live in the mountains of western Montana at 5000 feet, lots of winter snow (hate it) and with no shade around the house lots of summer direct sunlight on my cedar three sided 2,400 sq ft deck. I have an additional 500 sq. ft. of railing horizontal/vertical surface. The deck and railing were installed in 2000 (19 yrs ago) and have been stripped and refinished with Benjamin Moore Arbor Coat in 2012 which is aggressively peeling down to bare wood. I have a pressure washer and wonder the following:
    1. Approx. how much stain would be required to refinish the deck and railing color to be determined?
    2. Would your stripper be of service with the pressure washer to help remove the remaining Arbor Coat?
    3. What is the formula of materials you would recommend start to stop for the project?
    Wifi here is so slow and unreliable that the addition of photos would take a long time to upload and would exhaust the little cyber munchkins carrying the signal up here in their tea cups.
    Thank you for your assistance,
    Colonel
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/15/2019
      1. About 20-25 gallons if using the semi-transparent stain.
      2. No. Arbor Coat is too thick to be stripped. It typically needs to be sanded off. Feel free to reply with a picture if you need help.
      3. Need a pic. Try downsizing the file size of the pics before uploading.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Rosanna · 06/14/2019
    we have cleaned and brightened our deck and now there is 30% chance of rain for next three weeks. What is the minimum dry time before any rain that would allow us to use the stain? we have twp 1500 stain.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Rosanna · 06/14/2019
    We have TWP 1500 stain
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Rosanna · 06/14/2019
    we have cleaned and brightened our deck and now there is 30% chance of rain for next three weeks. What is the minimum dry time before any rain that would allow us to use the stain?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Judy Haig · 06/13/2019
    How often does RAD need to be refreshed (stripped, brightened, restained) after the initial RAD staining? We live in Edmonton, Alberta and have a pressure treated wood deck.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Debbie · 06/13/2019
    I recently ( within the last few weeks) cleaned, brightened and then applied a RAD solid stain. It came out great but the color is lighter than I wanted (trying to match an existing color) Can I just go over with the same solid stain mixed a little darker this time? I only applied one coat the first time.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Lori · 06/13/2019
    How can I track my order?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/13/2019
      Check with the link on your order email and look for the shipping email from FedEx that is sent when it ships.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Scottbuf · 06/13/2019
    Hi there,


    We live in Buffalo, just arrived in our home a year ago, and need assistance with details on both cleaning/stripping and then covering our fence and deck surfaces for long-lasting quality. Very impressed with the comments/reviews for RAD. From the West Coast, we've been familiar only with other products that we've used on fences and decks there and are experienced in the procedures, including heavy-duty applications as we had a much larger house with much more deck and fence coverage there.


    We want water-based cedar-colored stain, and for the following package:
    Square Feet single coat coverage

    Section details Length x Width x Height = Total SF


    Main backyard fence (complete coverage, one side) 78x 6= 468
    Smaller 48 ft section to be covered on second side (one 30-ft section unreachable-on neighbors side of fence) 48x 6= 288
    Side by garage is 23x4x2 sides 23 x4 =92
    Deck fence section start to finish 44 12= 528
    Deck floor first section 11x 10= 110
    Posts up from deck floor, 1/3 coverage 7x 3= 21
    Deck floor second section 20x 11= 220
    Railing for deck 13x 3= 39
    Total Square feet of single coverage deck/fence = total of 1727 Square feet

    A few quick points:

    1) We have a nice and powerful pressure washer. We are cognizant of the care required when setting the power level for this type of application and avoiding damage to the wood

    2) We don't know the age of the structures but estimate around 7 years? Wood is in relatively good condition, only a bit of fence warping, none on the deck surfaces to speak of...

    3) Hot tub covers part of the deck, made a minor allowance for this in measurements

    4)We don't know the previous stain used, but looks like cedar that may have had a two-year cover and then weathered?


    Look forward to hearing back with estimates/recommendations ASAP. Also, please advise of likely time required to ship, how long one-coat coverage will take to dry and then reapply. Rainy here now, so given that and other factors, would like to apply partially with a pump sprayer and then finish with roller/brush as required.


    Final note: you may see one fence section in back of yard - that is the one on which we will only plan to apply one side of coverage. There IS a possibility we cover this other small side but would need to meet the neighbors to ask :)


    Thanks much and look forward to hearing back!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Bud · 06/12/2019
    We bought enough stain for two coats for about 1200 sq ft. To make it lighter, we are going to hold to one coat. We will have a lot left and wonder what the unopened shelf life for the 2 1/2 gallon containers?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/12/2019
      3-4 years as long as it is stored in a temperature controlled room.
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    Ben · 06/12/2019
    Hey, Should I use both the cleaner and the stripper?
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    Bud · 06/12/2019
    All we have read says that we can put the stain on a damp surface, but on the instructions on the container, it says the wood should be dry to the touch. What do you advise?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/12/2019
      The instructions on the stain container say damp or dry wood, not just dry wood.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Bud · 06/12/2019
    We ordered enough dark walnut stain for two coats on our deck, but after doing the railing, the two coats is darker than we want. If we apply only one coat to the deck floor, will it provide adequate protection?
    We ordered the samples and put two coats on the back of a board we are staining and it is lighter than when we actually put it on the top side.
    Oh, to prepare for stain, we power washed, stripped and brightened the deck floor.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/12/2019
      Yes, one coat will work if you want it to be lighter.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Rick Sercu · 06/12/2019
    I have a Barn that has been coated With CWF-UV, it is pealing and have to remove it before re-staining. I have tried other stripper from the big box store, it removes it after applying 3 times. will your stripper take it off faster and less coats?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    KWall · 06/12/2019
    We stripped and brightened our deck on Saturday... once dried, we opted to do a second stripping on Sunday. After stripping it the second time, we let it dry, then we power sanded (80grit) the entire deck. We ended on Sunday afternoon with a brightening step.

    Now Mother Nature is not agreeing with us. It may be a week or two before we will have the proper weather to stain. Are we ok to go straight to the staining step, or do we need to repeat the brightening step the day before we actually get to stain?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/12/2019
      If within 1-2 weeks, you should be okay to stain.
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    Steve · 06/11/2019
    Also, I'm ok if this pulls up the old stain. No worries with that. If some gets on my white painted spindles, will it take the paint off those?