Deck and Patio Blog

How to Apply a Deck Stain

October 6, 2017

Tags: , ,

If you have a wooden deck, you probably already know that decks made of wood require regular re-staining. Professional deck builders suggest staining once every 2-3 years, at least.

Deck stain exists to help waterproof the wood, protect from rot, and minimize color fading. Fortunately, the task of staining your deck is simple to complete if you know the right way to do it!


  • Remove all furniture and décor.
  • Sweep your deck to remove leaves, branches, dirt, and other debris.
  • Clear any rocks or sticks stuck between boards.
  • Check for areas where the wood is worn or splintered.
  • Sand splintered areas, going in the direction of the grain.
  • Wash your deck with deck cleaner and let dry.
  • Make sure the forecast is free of rain for the next few days!

Choosing the Right Stain

It’s best to choose a stain that is as similar in color to your deck as possible, or sometimes even a shade darker. Always test the stain in a small area of your deck to make sure it is the color you desire. Ensure that the stain is water repellent and protects against UV rays. Consider a semi-transparent deck stain if you’d prefer your deck’s natural wood pattern to be more visible.

Staining Your Deck

  • Protect your skin and other body parts from chemicals by wearing pants, long sleeves, gloves, and safety glasses.
  • Stir the wood stain in the can and be careful not to shake it. Make sure there are no bubbles in the stain before proceeding.
  • Using a paint roller or bristle brush, apply an even, light coat to the boards. You may paint them one at a time or multiple at once, but always brush from one end of the board(s) to the other using long strokes.
  • Use the brush to spread out stain anywhere that it forms puddles.
  • Cover the entire deck with a single coat, then let it dry for at least 3 days.
  • Apply a second coat if desired, otherwise after the 3 days of drying, your deck is ready to be used again!

North American Deck and Patio, LLC designs and builds custom decks, patios, porches, and more. If you have more questions about how to apply deck stain, or want to enlist the help of our professionals on your next decking project, contact us today!

<- Back to Blog

Get a FREE

Don't just get an "estimate"... get a professional consultation from the finest designers in the area. Let us show you "the best use of your space," within the budget you have for your project.

Click to View Areas that We Serve

Anne Arundel County Deck and Patio Contractor: Annapolis (21401, 21403, 21409), Arnold (21012), Crofton (21114), Crownsville (21032), Gambrills (21054), Glen Burnie (21060, 21061), Hanover (21076), Jessup (20794), Pasadena (21122), Severn (21144), Severna Park (21146).

Baltimore County Deck and Patio Contractor: Arbutus (21227), Catonsville (21228, 21250), Cockeysville (21030, 21031, 21065), Dundalk (21222), Edgemere (21219), Essex (21221), Garrison (21055), Lansdowne (21227), Lochearn (21207), Lutherville (21093), Middle River (21220), Milford Mill (21244), Overlea (21236), Owings Mills (21117), Parkville (21234), Park Heights (21215), Pikesville (21208), Randallstown (21133), Reisterstown (21136), Rosedale (21237), Timonium (21093), Towson (21204), White Marsh (21162), Woodlawn (21207), and more.

Calvert County Deck and Patio Contractor: Dunkirk (20754), Chesapeake Beach (20732), North Beach (20714), Prince Frederick (20678), Owings (20736), Solomons (20688).

Charles County Deck and Patio Contractor: La Plata (20646), Port Tobacco (20677), Rock Point (20682), Waldorf (20601, 20602, 20603)

Howard County Deck and Patio Contractor: Clarksville (21029), Columbia (21044), Cooksville (21723), Dorsey (21075), Elkridge (21075), Ellicott City (21043), Fulton (20759), Glenelg (21737), Glenwood (21738), Granite (21163), Hanover (21076), Highland (20777), Jessup (20794), Lisbon (21765), Marriottsville (21104), North Laurel (20723), West Friendship (21794), Woodbine (21797), Woodstock (21163), and more.

Montgomery County Deck and Patio Contractor: Olney (20832), Damascus (20872), Laytonsville (20882), Silver Spring (20910), Clarksburg (20871), Gaithersburg (20878), Germantown (20876), Bethesda (20816), Chevy Chase (20815), and more.

Prince George's County Deck and Patio Contractor: Bowie (20715, 20716, 20720, 20721), Beltsville (20705), Adelphi (20783), College Park (20740,20742), Greenbelt (25689), Hyattsville (20781, 20782, 20783, 20784), Landover (20785), Laurel (20707, 20723), Springdale (20774), Upper Marlboro (20772, 20774), Woodlawn (21207).

St. Marys County Deck and Patio Contractor: Leonardtown (20650), Mechanicsville (20659), Lexington Park (20653), Piney Point (20674), Tall Timbers (20690)