A deck is a perfect place to enjoy cool or warm weather. Whether you’re hosting a family gathering or hanging out with your friends, a lot of memories can be made out on a deck.
Homeowners add wood decks onto their homes for a variety of reasons. Decks add value to your home, offer more functionality, add livable space, and improve yard aesthetics.
The visual quality of a nicely finished wood deck can turn a plain yard into a stunning one. The decision comes down to the type of finish you choose--stain or paint. Either option will give you a beautiful-looking deck, as long as it’s done right.
Which Option Is Best for You?
Although a wood deck is aesthetically appealing and functional , it requires some care from time to time. It needs a protective coating to shield it from the elements. One of the most important maintenance choices you can make for your deck is whether to stain it or paint it. Let’s go over the pros and cons of each.
Deck Stain Pros and Cons
For traditionalists, staining wood decking is the only way to go. There is just something about the look of a freshly stained wood deck.
A film is formed on the surface of the wood when the stain is applied that doesn’t trap moisture underneath. It provides a thick coating that gives better UV protection, while not covering the natural beauty of the wood. A high-quality stain job will penetrate deep into the wood and protect it against the rotting damages of moisture.
Most brands of wood stain already contain a preservative, which means you won’t need to add a primer because it will adhere without it. With staining, you can control the degree of opacity, ranging from clear to a more solid color. This option is perfect for people who have decks made of high-quality wood such as cypress or cedar. There are different types of stain such as semi-solid or semi-transparent that reveals more of the natural grain of the wood.
Staining usually creates a flatter finish that makes it less slippery than a painted deck. If your deck is going to get a lot of foot traffic, then you’ll probably want to opt for staining over painting. You can also expect to pay less to stain your wood deck than to paint it.
Stains do have a few drawbacks that might change your decision to use them. Deck stains are limited to very few color options. Also, staining should be reapplied every year or two to protect the surface from the elements.
Deck Paint Pros and Cons
One advantage of using paint over stain is there are far more color options available. If you want your wood deck to complement the rest of your home, painting it will give you a variety of color choices. You’ll end up with a unified color scheme that is vibrant and beautiful.
A painted wood deck is easy to maintain and lasts longer than a stained deck. When you hire professionals to paint your deck with care and quality, you won’t have to repaint it for about a decade. The thickness of the paint also hides wood texture. This might be a positive for older decks in poor condition, where you'd want to hide imperfections.
Painting your deck isn't always the best option. Paint forms a thick layer on the surface that's more prone to peeling from the expansion and swelling of deck boards. It doesn’t hold up as well against moisture and will eventually crack because of it.
If there is water puddling on the deck floor or railings, these areas will be the first to start peeling. Paint can also trap moisture inside the wood, leading to wood rot.
Removing peeling paint from a deck often involves more scraping and sanding than stain. You do have the option of switching to stain after all of the peeling paint is removed.
You’ll have to factor in extra costs that come with painting a wood deck. Painting can involve extra steps and coats of paint. A coat of primer is required before painting, and a second final coat of paint is often needed. In some cases, a wood preservative is also necessary before painting.
Trusted Painting Professionals
Whether you want to stain or paint a deck, Battle Born Painting has you covered. From painting and coating to rotten wood repair, we will have your wood deck ready for your family gatherings this spring and summer. Contact us today for a free consultation.
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