To Paint or Stain? What Should You Do to Your Deck

Should You Paint or Stain Your Deck?

Now that winter is gone and warm weather is here to stay, you’re probably going to be spending quite a bit of time on your deck. Whether you’re barbecuing, sunbathing, or just hanging out with friends and family. Before you start making any plans, give your deck a look over, is the wood lacking luster? Harsh winter weather may have damaged your deck, in order to make it look like new you have two options, paint or stain. Paints and stains are used to maintain the beauty of the wood, but which is the best option?

Choosing between painting and staining your deck shouldn’t be a stressful process, below we’ve weighed the pros and cons of painting and staining to help you decide how you should preserve and prepare your deck.

Why You Should Paint or Stain

Depending on where you live, and the climate in your area, leaving your wooden deck natural could potentially be an option. While in most cases, unfinished decks will diminish the lifespan of the wood, causing premature warping, cracking, splitting, or rotting. Even with tough woods, you should apply some sort of finish, whether paint or stain, to ensure your decks longevity.

Stain vs. Paint

Knowing the differences between painting and staining is very important, the strengths and weaknesses of each should help you decide which option is best for you. Here’s some pros and cons of both to help you decide.

Painting Your Deck

Painting your deck gives you a variety of color options, it’s also great at protecting the wood, and filling in any existing gaps. Painting your deck will give it a thicker finish, if your wood is slightly damaged, but not enough that you want to fully replace it, go for paint.

Cons of Paint:

• Hard to clean
• Slippery when wet
• Hides the wood’s natural beauty

Staining Your Deck

Your woods natural grain will shine through with a stain, making the finish appear more authentic and rustic. Staining your deck won’t create a slippery surface as paint would, stains are also available in a variety of colors.

Weaknesses of Stain:

• Shorter lifespan depending on quality and number of coats
• Requires regular maintenance
• Won’t conceal cracks or repair damages

Expert Paint or Stain Deck Recommendations

If you’re still unsure about what option you should choose, don’t be afraid to ask your local hardware or paint store for advice. Consider the type of wood you have, the age and overall condition, professionals will be able to assist you and recommend whether painting or staining will provide the best finish for you. You can also do some research of your own online, from what we’ve found, stains penetrate bare wood and don’t typically create a high film build like a coat of paint and primer would.


Before Finishing Your Wood

Once you’ve decided what option works best for you, it’s important you clean your deck. Check the absorbency of the wood by sprinkling some water on the surface, if you see the water penetrates the wood quickly, the wood is ready to be finished. If you see water beading up or doesn’t penetrate, allow the wood to weather a few more weeks before you test for absorbency again.


If you’re planning a backyard landscaping project or plan to replace your existing deck with a new one, consider renting a dumpster for the clean up! Renting a dumpster is an affordable way to get rid of your yard waste and debris and will leave you with a beautiful backyard that you can enjoy all summer long. If you need a dumpster for your project call the professionals at Dumpster Rental Inc!



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