Author Topic: Guide me on my deck painting project  (Read 1656 times)

ctuser1

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Guide me on my deck painting project
« on: January 23, 2020, 06:43:46 AM »
I have a big deck, 12 ft X 35 ft. In 2018, I had ripped up and replaced all the deck boards with pressure treated wood. I did not keep a very good track of the labor cost - but the total labor+materials was a little over $2k, with 70% being labor.

I have let the wood dry out for almost 1.5 years now. This year, it is the time to paint it. I plan to paint *just* the new deck boards. Other components (railings, gate etc) will be left alone for the time being because I plan to replace them at some point of time.

If I was to hire a professional, it will likely cost $1k (or maybe even as high as $1.5k). I'd much rather spend the $200 on materials and leave the rest of the money in my brokerage account, if I can.

Questions:
1. What is the most DIY-friendly way to do the painting myself?
2. What tools do I need to buy? Which paint/stain would you recommend? why?
3. Paint? Stain? which one is better for DIY and why?
4. Can I use a sprayer for painting? Should I?
5. This dude suggests a hack to use a car-wash brush with an extension pole to do the staining. Any drawbacks? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwaJcn5Q3kg



lthenderson

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2020, 09:10:52 AM »
I would recommend a stain meant for decks versus paint. Paint on horizontal surfaces and exposed to heat and cold will crack, moisture will get in and it will blister and peel in short order. Stain isn't formulated as hard so it doesn't crack but seeps down into pores and essentially moves with the wood. If you don't like to see the wood grain, you can get opaque wood stains in a large variety of colors.

Like many things, you get what you pay for. I prefer to buy my stains from Sherwin Williams or similar stores versus big box stores. Their stains are much higher quality and tend to last much longer.

The best way to get a good quality stain job is to properly prep the surface which means clean it very well and then let it dry very well before applying any stain on top of it. There are many products you can buy to help clean your deck as well as many homemade solutions that you can look up online. I will often spend an entire day prepping the deck surface and then after letting it dry overnight and through the next day, stain it the following evening. I don't like staining in direct sunlight if I can avoid it so things don't cure too fast and leave dry edge lines.

Although I have seen people use sprayers, if you want a finish that lasts a long time you need to apply enough stain as the wood will absorb. This means putting it on and working it back and forth with a brush to push it into the pores and cracks. As you go along, you will see spots where it absorbed everything and spots where it is just puddling. With a brush, you can apply more to the thirsty areas and pull excess from where it is puddling so when you are done, everything is a nice even coat. Spraying usually leaves behind lots of areas that would have absorbed more stain. Whether or not the brush is at the end of a handle like that car wash brush or not isn't as important as making sure you apply more stain to areas where it has been absorbed and pulling off excess that is puddling up. I also like something that can reach down along the sides of the deck boards and apply stain there as well.

Hopefully that gives you some ideas on what is needed to stain a deck. It really isn't hard work and is very DIY friendly. Where I see most people go wrong is bad initial prep and trying to take short cuts in applying the new stain and then are left with a peeling mess a year or two later.

Le Poisson

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2020, 09:15:30 AM »
Don't paint or stain with coloured material unless you want to redo the job every 3 - 5 years. Instead use a clear product like Thompson's water seal to seal the deck against moisture.

If you go with a coloured product, wear paths will need upkeep.

ctuser1

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2020, 10:06:44 AM »
I would recommend a stain meant for decks versus paint. Paint on horizontal surfaces and exposed to heat and cold will crack, moisture will get in and it will blister and peel in short order. Stain isn't formulated as hard so it doesn't crack but seeps down into pores and essentially moves with the wood. If you don't like to see the wood grain, you can get opaque wood stains in a large variety of colors.

Like many things, you get what you pay for. I prefer to buy my stains from Sherwin Williams or similar stores versus big box stores. Their stains are much higher quality and tend to last much longer.

The best way to get a good quality stain job is to properly prep the surface which means clean it very well and then let it dry very well before applying any stain on top of it. There are many products you can buy to help clean your deck as well as many homemade solutions that you can look up online. I will often spend an entire day prepping the deck surface and then after letting it dry overnight and through the next day, stain it the following evening. I don't like staining in direct sunlight if I can avoid it so things don't cure too fast and leave dry edge lines.

Although I have seen people use sprayers, if you want a finish that lasts a long time you need to apply enough stain as the wood will absorb. This means putting it on and working it back and forth with a brush to push it into the pores and cracks. As you go along, you will see spots where it absorbed everything and spots where it is just puddling. With a brush, you can apply more to the thirsty areas and pull excess from where it is puddling so when you are done, everything is a nice even coat. Spraying usually leaves behind lots of areas that would have absorbed more stain. Whether or not the brush is at the end of a handle like that car wash brush or not isn't as important as making sure you apply more stain to areas where it has been absorbed and pulling off excess that is puddling up. I also like something that can reach down along the sides of the deck boards and apply stain there as well.

Hopefully that gives you some ideas on what is needed to stain a deck. It really isn't hard work and is very DIY friendly. Where I see most people go wrong is bad initial prep and trying to take short cuts in applying the new stain and then are left with a peeling mess a year or two later.

Thanks, I will go with the carwash brush in that case :-D easier on the back.

Is it important to stain the bottom of the boards? The deck is high up from the ground, so the bottom is accessible. I guess it will be a pain, however, to apply stain at the bottom with a brush - because the stain will drip on me while doing it. Any way to prevent that?

ctuser1

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2020, 10:10:35 AM »
Don't paint or stain with coloured material unless you want to redo the job every 3 - 5 years. Instead use a clear product like Thompson's water seal to seal the deck against moisture.

If you go with a coloured product, wear paths will need upkeep.

Thx. This is a great suggestion. I would definitely like to avoid redoing it every 3-5 years.

I'm assuming this is the product you are referring to:
https://www.amazon.com/Thompsons-WaterSeal-TH-A21711-16-Advanced-Protector/dp/B00C0E0PR2/


lthenderson

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2020, 11:01:56 AM »
Is it important to stain the bottom of the boards? The deck is high up from the ground, so the bottom is accessible. I guess it will be a pain, however, to apply stain at the bottom with a brush - because the stain will drip on me while doing it. Any way to prevent that?

No, you do not want to stain the bottom side of your deck. The pressure treated boards will be protection enough from insects and humidity in the air. Also, you run the risk of sealing in residual moisture inside the board which can lead to early failure or if the stain acting as a moisture barrier on the top side of the board fails, the stain on the bottom side can act like a bucket and trap moisture inside the board resulting in early failure.

MrSal

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2020, 07:12:25 PM »
Don't paint or stain with coloured material unless you want to redo the job every 3 - 5 years. Instead use a clear product like Thompson's water seal to seal the deck against moisture.

If you go with a coloured product, wear paths will need upkeep.

Thx. This is a great suggestion. I would definitely like to avoid redoing it every 3-5 years.

I'm assuming this is the product you are referring to:
https://www.amazon.com/Thompsons-WaterSeal-TH-A21711-16-Advanced-Protector/dp/B00C0E0PR2/

With that, you will have to redo it in 12 months. It seals well but it doesn't last long.

Even the best products only last 3-4 years tops! I heard good things about Cutek Extreme but they are expensive (it migh be wortwhile though). I went with Thompson Deck Oil Semi Transparent. Teak Color. I am expecting to reseal every 2 years or so.

2 gallons were enough for my 15x32 deck. Buy a 5-6'' deck brush for 11$ at Lowes and attach it to a broom pole and you're golden!

It took me about 1 hour this fall to go from this: total spent was about 50-70$



to this:



« Last Edit: February 21, 2020, 07:15:11 PM by MrSal »

Fishindude

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2020, 07:50:57 AM »
Our wood deck is 25+ years old and still looks pretty good.   We clean it good, then re-stain it every 3 years.
Used a good Sherwin Williams Deck stain last time in a light tan, semi transparent finish.   Stay away from the real dark colors as they get real hot on bare feet, and don't waste the money on that cheap Thompsons Water seal, it's only good for one season.

ctuser1

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2020, 08:14:58 PM »
Our wood deck is 25+ years old and still looks pretty good.   We clean it good, then re-stain it every 3 years.
Used a good Sherwin Williams Deck stain last time in a light tan, semi transparent finish.   Stay away from the real dark colors as they get real hot on bare feet, and don't waste the money on that cheap Thompsons Water seal, it's only good for one season.

Q1>
Are oil based sealers better than water based? or worse?
e.g. oil based: https://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/superdeck-exterior-oilbased-transparent-stain
water based: https://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/superdeck-exterior-waterborne-clear-sealer

Which one did you use last time?

Q2>
If paint is used, I am assuming you will need to scrape it off before re-painting.
Stain, however, is supposed to be absorbed in the wood. So what kind of prepping do you do before redoing the stain after 2-3 years?
Just clean/power-wash, dry, and re-coat the stain? Or something else?

 
« Last Edit: February 22, 2020, 09:18:40 PM by ctuser1 »

Sibley

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2020, 09:15:39 PM »
I'm also planning a staining project - fence for me. My research has lead me to oil based vs water, because oil will soak into the wood where the water based is more likely to sit on top of it. And my understanding is that with a stain, there isn't scraping needed when reapplying, just cleaning. However, haven't done this yet. Ask me again in a few years!

Systems101

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Re: Guide me on my deck painting project
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2020, 11:14:32 PM »
I would recommend a stain meant for decks versus paint.

+1

The best way to get a good quality stain job is to properly prep the surface which means clean it very well and then let it dry very well before applying any stain on top of it. [snip] I will often spend an entire day prepping the deck surface and then after letting it dry overnight and through the next day, stain it the following evening.

Also keep in mind if you use a pressure washer you may end up driving in a lot of moisture that make take more than a day to escape (depending on the local weather).  I used to wait 3 days when I had a wooden deck.  I'd probably only have to wait 1 day where I live now.

I also like something that can reach down along the sides of the deck boards and apply stain there as well.

This, and I also used a thin brush that can reach the top of the support beams.  That is a location that can catch a good amount of water, and any help you can provide to seal it will help in the long run.

Are oil based sealers better than water based? or worse?
Which one did you use last time?

I've always used oil-based.

So what kind of prepping do you do before redoing the stain after 2-3 years?
Just clean/power-wash, dry, and re-coat the stain?

Yep.