Restoring the look and beauty of your home to make it more liveable and presentable. It could be that you need to restore the beauty of your fence, deck, etc. When such a time comes, one of the items you will need to make useof is an exterior wood stain.
Although there are many products you can choose from, but the question is; how do you choose the best exterior wood stain that is suitable for your home? That is the question we will be answering in this article as we provide you with very vital factors you need to think of when choosing an exterior stain.
1. What do you want to use it for?
The intended use will determine the kind of stain you choose. The reason is that these products are not made equal but are manufactured in some cases to work for a particular function.
For example, exterior-grade stains are perfect for outdoor surfaces such as fences, decks, sidings, or outdoor chairs that are exposed to weather elements. On the other hand, if you make use of interior-grade stains, such products will be unable to provide the kind of protection the former type did.
Furthermore, there are specially made stains that are perfect for decks because they provide better protection from UV sun rays and can standrainwater than other products.
If it is a deck that will see or sees much foot traffic, then you need penetrating stains. Consequently, transparent stains are better for outdoor wood that has grain patterns. With such a product, the grain will not be blocked, and the wood will still be protected.
These products come in different types which include oil-based, acrylic or water-based, and hybrid. The names are an indication or description of the liquid used for mixing the protective particles and the pigments during the manufacturing of the product.
Let ustake a look at these types briefly:
Oil-based make use of oil that can enter inside the wood. This allows this product to last longer. Since they have penetration power, they get inside the wood and carry out protection from within while strengthening the wooden fiber bonds. Furthermore, if you want the grain to be seen, using this type of stain is well-recommended.
One disadvantage about this product type is that cleaning up is a difficult task. You will need to make use of mineral spirits to get the job. Another downside about it is that you need to use a respirator mask when applying it as it can irritate your respiratory system.
Also known as acrylic, this stain type makes use of water as its base, and not all these products have the penetrating power of oil-based products. Nevertheless, the ones with the ability to soak into wood will also offer protection from within.
You can apply acrylic products more easily and clean them up with just water and soap.You do not have to wear a respirator mask as they contain a low volatile organic compound (VOC). Click here to read more about VOCs.
Hybrids make use of oil and water as their base. They are a blend between oil-based and water-based stains.
3. Penetrating or Film-Forming
Do you want a stain that will soak into the wood or one that will form a film on the surface? These are the two methods stains offer protection. The two methods have their advantages and disadvantages.
Penetrating products last longer and are more durable. They can also highlight the wood grain. Nevertheless, they cannot hide mismatched or damaged grain.
On the other hand, film-forming stains can hide wood irregularities. Their downside is that they do not last long as the film can break down with time.
How transparent do you want the stain to be? Do you want an entirely transparent one that allows all the grain to be seen? Or will you go for semitransparent ones that hide a bit of grain but last longer than transparent ones? Maybe you might like semisolid ones with more coverage and longer-lasting abilities? You could choose to settle with solid stains that hide the grain completely. Visit this link, http://www.howstuffcompares.com/doc/s/semi-transparent-stain-vs-solid-stain.htm, to learn more about semitransparent and semisolid stains.
There are many colors to choose from. Your decision might be to reflect or absorb light or match your overall décor. Whichever reason, you should choose a color that you will like.
The article above discusses the factors you need to consider when choosing an exterior wood stain.