27 Jun Painting Versus Staining Your Deck
We hear from a lot of customers asking about our opinion on painting versus staining decks. Let me cut to the chase…stain will provide the best protection for your outdoor surface. It will need to be re-stained every few years though. Even the best stain fades eventually; especially in high-traffic areas. And that’s what decks are…high traffic areas for you and your family in the spring, summer and fall. For longevity, the best way to go, is to use a clear sealer or a semi-transparent stain on your deck. Staining a deck is often a DIY project, but for best results this work is often best done by professionals.
Painting is great for most exterior surfaces. However, the problem with painting a deck is that most deck surfaces are horizontal, so the paint just sets on the deck. As a result, those areas hold water. Painting, or using a solid-color stain with no sealer, will only help trap that moisture in the wood. So, as your deck boards expand and contract with variations in temperatures and weather conditions, paint begins to chip and you end up with peeling paint, or worse, wood rot that needs professional repair.
A quality stain and sealer, though, penetrates the wood grain to seal it, while also allowing moisture to escape from the wood. It won’t chip, peel or crack as the deck wood swells and shrinks. The more tinting the stain has, the better protected your deck will be from fading and moisture. So, our professional opinion is that stain and sealer is the way to go. If you do decide to paint, just understand that it will reduce the life of your deck even if done professionally.
As always, projects like painting or staining your deck can be huge time eaters and often times not turn out the way you planned. If your deck is an important part of your summer plans for entertaining and relaxing, consider hiring professionals. You’ll save a weekend – and your back – and ensure you get the quality you were expecting. Here’s to a great summer!