Wooden fences can be stained to extend their life or to enhance their appearance. Depending on your chosen stain, they can fade into the landscape or stand out and work as a design element. You may stain an aged wooden fence to bring it back to life, or you could stain a new fence to ensure it stays in good condition for years to come.
Choosing the correct time to stain a fence is crucial. If stain is applied to a fence too soon, it could jeopardize the long-term outcome. However, waiting too long can also risk the duration of the fence’s appearance and usefulness as well.
Choosing the best time to stain your fence is essential to prolong the lifespan of the project.
Stain a Fence No Sooner than Three Weeks Following Installation
Often, a fence is installed, and the homeowner wants it immediately stained. The professionals at Siara Designs do not recommend this practice. Wood, a natural material, expands and contracts, and adjusts to the humidity and the environment.
Upon installation, it takes a bit of time to settle into its main state. All outdoor wooden features go through this same process, be it your deck or a wooden ceiling on a porch. After installation, waiting at least three weeks before applying stain is best.
This is not a hard and fast rule, as weather conditions and other factors can influence when the best time to apply stain actually is. The professionals at Siara Designs can help you determine the optimum time to stain your wooden fence.
Stain Your Fence After It Is Dry
Prior to staining your fence, it needs time to dry. Wood needs to be dry before a stain is applied in order for it to appropriately absorb. Think about a towel – to be absorbent it must be dry, and the same goes for wood.
Stain acts as a protective barrier for wooden fencing as wood naturally has indentations and an irregular pattern. By allowing it to dry prior to staining, you are ensuring that the wood can absorb the protective barrier that the stain provides. Oil-based fence stain will be repelled by water, so waiting for the wood to dry is crucial.
If it rains, give your fence an additional day before you begin staining. To test to ensure your fence will properly accept the stain add a drop of water to the fence. If it is quickly absorbed, your fence will absorb the fence stain the same way.
Water that beads up or falls off the fence is still wet. Give it more time before you get out the stain. It will not absorb the stain if applied now.
Applying Stain to Older Fences
Older fences typically turn a weathered grey color. While this can be beautiful in the right circumstances, you may still choose to stain it. To do this properly, there are some actions that need to be taken first.
At Siara Designs, we can handle the process for you. The steps listed below are necessary before applying stain to an older fence:
- Your fence should be pressure washed. This will expose the layer of wood beneath the faded grey surface to show the richer wood below.
- A thorough inspection will be performed to ensure any damage is addressed. This may mean replacing broken or missing pieces of fencing or removing and replacing warped posts.
- The fence will need to thoroughly dry out before the stain is applied.
After an inspection, we can help you determine whether your fence is in good enough condition or can be repaired cheaply enough to make it worth staining. Some older fences may be too far gone to repair. Staining a fence that is brittle and overly worn may not be a good value for your money.
A consultation with Siara Designs can answer all of your questions about staining an existing fence or potentially installing a new one. If you choose to install a new wooden fence, staining it to increase its lifespan is important. We will discuss the process and associated costs with you if you reach out to schedule a consultation.
Types of Stain
We can discuss with you the type of stain that might meet your needs. There are several choices, and each has its benefits. These are as follows:
- To preserve the natural look of your fence, choose a transparent stain. This will allow you to enjoy the wood’s grain and texture while also adding a protective barrier to shield your fence from UV rays and water damage.
- To add a subtle tint yet still enjoy the wood grain and texture, consider using a semi-transparent stain. You will fend off water and UV damage, achieve a color you enjoy and still see the wood beneath the stain.
- You may want an opaque finish, depending on the effect you are trying to achieve. The solid stain is the most protective finish you can choose to keep out the UV rays and water damage.
- Semi-solid stain has a more opaque finish than semi-transparent, providing more color and coverage while still allowing you to enjoy the natural texture of the wood.
To remove mildew, dirt, and stains from an older wooden fence, consider cleaning with deck and fence cleaner made for wooden surfaces first. Do this before adding a coat of stain for best results on older wooden fences.
Contact Siara Designs Today
To determine the best course of action for your wooden fence, reach out today. The professionals at Siara Designs understand how to install, repair and renew wooden fences. Speaking to our crew about your options is the best way to make an informed decision about staining your fence.
We would be happy to speak to you about your fence project as soon as possible. Whether you need a coat of stain, a pressure wash to renew the wood, protection from the elements, or simply an updated look, we are here to help. Schedule a consultation today.