Restore A Deck Stain Stripper Instructions and How To Help

Maintaining a woodRAD STRIPPERdefault deck will ensure you get the longest lifespan and most use out of the extra outdoor living space. To maintain the appearance of a deck it should be cleaned and recoated every couple of years on average.

When preparing a deck for refinishing it is vital that it be cleaned properly. It is important to remove any old stain or sealer remnants that may be on the deck that would block the new stain or sealer from penetrating the wood properly.

Restore A Deck Stain Stripper is a specially designed two-part system for stripping old transparent and semi-transparent deck stains from wood prior to refinishing. There are some basic step-by-step instructions for stripping a deck with the RAD Stain Stripper system.

Restore A Deck Stripper Steps

1. Be sure air temperatures are within 45-90 degrees before starting.

2. Remove all furniture and décor from the deck and the surrounding area. Move at least 20 feet away and downwind from overspray.

3. Although RAD products are Eco-Friendly it is still recommended to cover any sensitive landscaping, shrubbery, and/or plants or pre-wet with water. Make sure to rinse well any overspray that may get on plants.

4. Cover any windows, doors, and other areas of the house with plastic or pre-wet with water.

5. Be sure to wear personal protection equipment such as eyewear, gloves, and clothing.

6. Mix Restore-A-Deck Stain Stripper by following the suggested instructions. Mix until all the crystals are fully dissolved. If using a pump sprayer to apply, mix in a separate bucket first and transfer to sprayer to avoid clogging of sprayer inlet tube.

7. Option 1: Mist fresh water onto the deck then apply RAD Stain Stripper using a pump sprayer or scrub brush. This is the most effective way.

   Option 2: Use your chemical injector to apply RAD Stain Stripper for medium to light stain removal.

8. Allow RAD Stain Stripper to sit on wood for 10-15 minutes or until the surface becomes slippery. Keep misting deck with water so is not allowed to dry.

9. Gently pressure wash at 1500 PSI or hand scrub vigorously the deck until all dirt, grime, and gray fibers are removed. Rinse deck, shrubbery, and surrounding area with fresh water. Pressure washing is more effective.

10. Reapply RAD Stain Stripper to any stubborn areas repeating steps 7 & 8 to remove old stain or sealer as much as possible.

11. While wood is still wet apply Restore-A-Deck Wood Brightener following the mixing instructions and using a pump sprayer. The RAD Wood Brightener does not need to be washed or scrubbed, simply rinse off after 10 minutes of dwell time. Make sure to rinse the RAD Brightener thoroughly for 20 minutes until all soap suds are removed after the 10 minutes dwell time.

Note that RAD Stain Stripper is not intended for use to effectively remove solid deck stains or paints.

Need Help Stripping an Old Stain? Ask Below!

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  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Lorraine francisco · 05/06/2020
    LF. May 5 2020

    Two days ago we used your semi transparent light walnut stain on our six month old 450 square foot cedar deck, but we were not happy with the colour. The temperature on the second night also dipped to 5 or 6 degrees which was below the 45 degrees that you recommend. We would like to strip the colour back to original with your product. Do we need the additives as well to mix in the stripper solution? We are thinking of going with a clear application after stripping and brightening. Thx. LF from Oakville on Canada
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    DH · 04/29/2020
    I ordered the thickener and booster additives. Do I add these both to the 5 gallon mixture when mixing the powder? Then transfer to a sprayer? What do I do differently when using the thickener and booster additives compared to the instructions above?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 04/29/2020
      Mix the power first. Add the additives and then mix. Add to the sprayer. Apply and let sit for 30-45 minutes. Keep wet if needed by misting with water.
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    Tara Tomita · 04/27/2020
    Will the stripper remove epoxy bondo wood filler?
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    Mo · 04/26/2020
    Do I need to power wash prior the deck prior to stripping?

    if so, what degree nozzle?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 04/26/2020
      You pressure wash while using the stripper. 25 or 40.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Mo · 05/02/2020
        After I'm done stripping & brightening, can I wait a few days or a week to apply the stain or does it need to be done the same day?
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          RAD Products · 05/02/2020
          You can wait a week.
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            Mo ali · 05/03/2020
            Opinion on wood filler for small cracks or holes? Can a stain be placed over that.
            • We will reply to your comment shortly
              RAD Products · 05/03/2020
              Wood filler doe snot work on decks not will it "stain" to blend.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    John Hazen · 04/17/2020
    Can I touch up Restore A Deck stain I have some additional product for yours I’d like instructions how to use it to do a touch up
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    Ray · 04/15/2020
    I am building a new fence which will have cedar framing materials to hold welded wire panels in place. Right now, the only thing in place are the posts, which are treated douglas fir posts. I realize I need to wait about a year before cleaning and bleaching the cedar materials to prep them for staining. Would it help to lighten the appearance of the treated posts to use a stripper and brightener on them now and let them weather for a year, and do it again next year with the cedar materials (since they will be installed in a couple of weeks?)
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    Peter · 04/08/2020
    Peter
    can i wait 6to 8 weeks after stripping deck to use brightened and then stain .
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 04/09/2020
      No. If you do that you will need to use both the Cleaner and the Brightener for prep again.
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    carissa · 04/04/2020
    I have 8 yr old behr deckover on my deck, I have sanded the whole thing, power washed but still some remaining deckover on the boards but smooth surface- will stripper work or just use the cleanser first

    we are going to apply solid stain of course after all the preps
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Heather · 11/02/2019
    On the RAD stain stripper side bar, it says application tools needed Injector, sprayer, stiff brush. What is an injector?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 11/02/2019
      The use of an injector is an option, not required. Most just use a pump sprayer for applying.
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    Brian Rood · 10/11/2019
    Will the RAD stripper remove Cabot semi-transparent stain? I had thought only solid stains could not be removed by the stripper. I ordered the whole package with additives but am having a hard time getting the stain removed. I have used a pressure washer along with the stripper and additives.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 10/12/2019
      Yes, it should remove this. Let the stripper dwell for up to an hour before pressure washing off. It does look like you are removing it in the picture.
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    Douglas · 10/05/2019
    Will the RAD paint stripper remove Behr 436 primer that was improperly applied to wet wood and will not dry?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 10/05/2019
      No it will not remove a primer.
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        Douglas · 10/05/2019
        Thanks. Would a solvent paint stripper remove the Behr 436 primer or is sanding it off the only way?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    S.g. · 10/04/2019
    I have to strip stain off 1/2 of the deck (screened porch) with the RAD stripper. The other 1/2 of the deck (uncovered) has newer wood (3 years old) that was never stained.

    Questions:

    1. Can I use the RAD stripper on the 3 year old unstained wood as well without causing any issues, or do I need to buy both the stripper and cleaner?

    2. The instructions say do not let stripper/cleaner dry after application. What can go wrong if it does dry?

    3. Will the stripper cause any issues if it drips on the brick patio below the deck, or on the porch screen?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 10/04/2019
      1. Use the cleaner for the unstained deck and the stripper for the stained portion.
      2. Mist with water so it does not dry out. Letting it dry and you would have to reapply.
      3. No, it should not.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    James Michalski · 09/29/2019
    How long after I mix the stripper will it have to be used? Can I let it sit overnight?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/29/2019
      The Stripper and the Brightener do not have a shelf life after being mixed. Only the Cleaner does.
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    Judy T · 09/27/2019
    I was unable to apply the Brightener immediately after the stripper. What should I do?
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    Charles · 09/24/2019
    Will RAD Stripper remove Cabot’s alkyd base (includes petroleum distillates, linseed oil, paraffin, lecithin)?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/24/2019
      Depends on the type of oil-based stain. Best to post a picture or two.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Charles · 09/28/2019
        Stain is 4 years old
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 09/29/2019
          That is a solid stain. No stripper will remove this. You will need to sand it off.
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            Charles · 09/30/2019
            Thank you, and if I have a few spots that cannot be removed via powerwash or sanding, is it ok to apply RAD solid stain on top?
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    Lotus Blossom · 09/15/2019
    I have a deck that's probably 25 yrs old. Previously used Sikken Cetol Dek in 1998 with follow up cleaning/coating of same over the years. More recently, the product changed and is lousy. I want to use RAD. Do I strip, clean, brighten or just strip and brighten then stain? Thanks in advance.
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    Zachary Bennington · 09/14/2019
    Will it strip polyurethane off mahogany door?
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    CorgiMom · 09/08/2019
    I have a similar question to another customer. I just applied a layer of Olympic semi-transparent stain and sealer and hate the color. What products do I need to remove it (600 square feet of deck). Also, it's an oil based stain...can I apply a water-based stain once I've stripped and brightened? Thanks!
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 09/09/2019
      Are you sure it is oil-based? Can you post a picture of the can of Olympic and the stain on the deck? This will help determine the correct prep products to use.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        CorgiMom · 09/10/2019
        Here's a photo of the stain and the deck. The stain was a bit too orange in color for my liking. It's an older deck (maybe 10+ years) and the wood has a lot of knots in it. I'm wondering if a dark solid stain might look better. Can RAD stain work if I strip off the Olympic stain?
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 09/10/2019
          For the prep, use the RAD stripper and pressure washer to remove. RAD Brightener after. RAD Solid stains will work after.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    SG · 08/05/2019
    I applied a single coat semitransparent cedar stain to one rail of the deck. The color is terrible. Will this be effective in removing a newly applied stain?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 08/06/2019
      What brand of stain?
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        SG · 08/06/2019
        Valspar semitransparent stain and sealant
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          RAD Products · 08/06/2019
          It is always more difficult to remove a newly applied stain. Could you post a picture so we can see how thick it is?
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            SG · 08/06/2019
            Here are some photos
            • We will reply to your comment shortly
              RAD Products · 08/06/2019
              Yes, it is a terrible color! While we would be more than happy to sell you some Stripper, Booster, and Gel to help remove this, it would be way easier for you sand this off since it is just one board.
              • We will reply to your comment shortly
                SG · 08/06/2019
                Thanks for your input. Hopefully it comes out easily
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Brooks · 07/02/2019
    My deck is about 4 years old. I've been using transparent Thompson water seal on it. Do I need to use your stripper product or just the cleaner/brightener combo? before using the semi transparent cedar stain ? Also its about 1200 sf with no railings or stairs. I'm trying to figure out if I need 10 gal of stain or 20 ?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 07/02/2019
      Stripper/brightener. About 10-12 gallons for two coats applied wet on wet.
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    2D · 06/24/2019
    Side note, recently got the house, so this is the shape the poor deck was at =\
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    2D · 06/24/2019
    I am planning on getting my deck back in shape. I don't think it was stained, but rather painted. What would you recommend on doing in this case or what products do I need to get? I'm thinking of doing the upper deck, stairs, and lower deck.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 06/24/2019
      Pressure wash with the RAD Stain stripper to remove the loose paint, dirt, and algae. It will not remove the solid stains fully so you will need to cover with the RAD Solid stain: https://www.restore-a-deck.com/restore-a-deck-wood-stain/restore-a-deck-solid-stain.html
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        2D · 06/24/2019
        Thanks, I was wondering if it was a solid stain or a semi-transparent. Is there a way to completely remove the solid stain and switch to a semi-transparent? Is there a benefit to sticking with solid. Thanks again for the help, I am new to this whole deck world.
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 06/24/2019
          The only way to switch would be to sand it all off.
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    Marc · 05/27/2019
    If you add the Stripper Gel additive to the Stripper mixture to aid adhesion, can the Stripper plus the Gel be applied to the surfaces through a garden sprayer? Will it be too thick and clog the sprayer? Does it need to be applied by brush only? Thanks.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 05/27/2019
      Yes you can spray it with a high-quality pump sprayer.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Matt · 05/25/2019
    I have 691 sq’ of what I believe is pressure treated pine. I last used Sikkens semi-transparent stain and I am not sure what was used prior. The deck is about 8 years old. How many gallons of the stripper, Brightener and semi-transparent stain will I need?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 05/25/2019
      Post a picture of the current condition. Thanks
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        Matt · 05/25/2019
        The deck is in need!
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 05/26/2019
          1- 2 of the RAD Stripper. 1 of the RAD Brightener. 6-8 gallons of the stain.
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            Matt · 05/26/2019
            Thank you, I’m going to order now!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    LA · 05/16/2019
    Just want to make sure, the stripper can be applied to a wet deck correct?

    And secondly, is this harmful to vinyl siding?


    thirdly, I likely wont be able to perform all three steps at once: strip, brighten and stain. how long can I go between steps if this is the case?

    thanks.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Sandra · 05/08/2019
    Will your RAD Stripper used with a pressure washer remove Behr Deck Over? This product was applied about 7 years ago. It is a 19 year old deck and the Behr product is cracked and peeling.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 05/08/2019
      No. No deck stain stripper anywhere can remove the Behr Deckover paint. You will have to sand this off.
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    Cynthia · 04/28/2019
    I have 822 sq.' of 15-year-old PT pine decking, with decks on the NE, SE, and SW sides of the house. The last two times it was stained w/ Olympic Wood Protector / Sealant / Clear; don't know prior to that. There is tremendous variation in the amount of stain left (see photos). Should I order 1 or 2 containers of stripper? For areas that have more of the old stain should I do a second application of the stripper or mix it stronger and do it once? THANKS!!!
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    lma · 04/22/2019
    more precise deck info: 5y.o. pressure treated pine, 750sf deck with 14 steps (2 sets of 7steps) 3ft wide steps, approx. 120ft of 3ft high railing/spindles. Will be stripping off twp500 stain. Live in MA
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      RAD Products · 04/22/2019
      What is the total sq footage of all wood added up?
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        lma · 04/22/2019
        according your calculator, 1052sq ft
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          RAD Products · 04/22/2019
          What are you trying to strip? Brand and type of stain? Pictures would help.
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            lma · 04/22/2019
            twp100 prairie gray.
            • We will reply to your comment shortly
              RAD Products · 04/22/2019
              10 Gallons of Stain
              2 Stripper/Brightener Kits
              2 Booster Additive
              2 Thickening Gel Additive
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    lma · 04/22/2019
    does the stripper work on vertical surfaces?

    (750sf deck, 3ft high railing, 14 (2 of 7steps ea) 3ft wide steps)
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Dan · 04/08/2019
    Can I use an airless sprayer such as the Wagner power painter to apply the stain?