For a long time, one of the most divisive questions in the decking industry has been whether or not you should paint or stain your deck. As a Maryland deck builder, we’ve both stained and painted our fair share of decks. There are a number of pros and cons for each and we wanted to take some time to talk about them.
What’s Your Budget?
A gallon of stain typically runs between $20 and $35, while a gallon of exterior paint costs between $30 and $60. Plus if you’re painting then you’ll also need to factor in an extra $15 to $40 for every gallon of wood preservative and $15 to $30 per gallon of primer. Most all commercial wood stains come with a preservative so you won’t have any additional costs if you take the stain route.
Paint Can Give You More of a Variety
Stains are designed to accentuate the qualities of the wood, so there’s not really a lot of variety there, but with paint, you have nothing but variety. You could paint your deck anything from a nice rustic brown to a bright sky blue. No matter what design you have in mind, you can find paint that fits it.
It’s Easier to Apply Stain
Whether you’re applying stain or paint there’s going to be a good amount of work involved, but it’s a little easier to apply deck stain. Firstly with both you need to sweep and scrub the deck. Next, you’ll want to give a light sanding, and then here’s where the two get different. At this point, you can directly apply your stain with a brush or a roller, but if you’re planning on painting there are a couple more steps.
Before you can paint you need to apply both a wood preservative and a quality primer. Once you’ve done this, you can start painting but make sure you do at least two coats of latex or oil-based paint. After you’ve finished painting, you should seal it with a clear polyurethane sealer.
How Long Will They Last?
When it comes to longevity we have to give it to paint. Both stains and paint have their own specific problems, but paint tends to last a bit longer. A solid durable paint will generally last about 10 years or so before you need to repaint, though chipping or peeling could cut this lifespan down. Stained decks in Maryland tend to last from 1 to 8 years and the more pigmented the stain is, the more resistant it will be to moisture and UV damage.
Work With an Experienced Maryland Deck Stain and Paint Company
Here at North American Deck and Patio, we’ve been serving Maryland for years, and we’ve learned a few things along the way. We’ve built a number of decks in Maryland and are familiar with the climate. If you’re having trouble deciding between painting and staining your deck, don’t lose any more sleep over it, give us a call today!