Painting or staining a wood fence can help your fence last longer and look better. Either one will extend the lifespan of your fence by giving it some protection against rot, insects, wear, and tear. However, of the two we always recommend that you stain a fence rather than painting it.
Stains offer the same benefits as sealers but with some extra advantages. Sun damage can cause a fence to fade and become grey in as little as a few months. A quality stain can protect a fence against the UV rays at the heart of the process. The more opaque the stain, the more UV protection it provides.
Benefits of Staining and Sealing Fences
Staining and sealing wooden fencing not only keeps it looking good it also ensures it will last longer, particularly if a softwood like pine has been used for construction.
Use exterior oil-based stain or latex paint, which will seal out moisture, prevent wood rot, limit the amount of weathering and extend the life of the wood. Choose a stain or sealant with a UV inhibitor to help keep the wood from turning gray. Let the wood dry for about a week before applying a stain or sealant.
Does paint or stain last longer on a fence? Stain tends to last longer than paint – but it can be more difficult to apply. Keep in mind that stain will fade over time and may need to be reapplied, even if it does outlast normal paint.
Compared to paint, stain can be more economical, easier to use and longer-lasting while also letting the natural look of wood shine through. With these advantages in mind, consumers should take time to consider if staining is the better choice after finishing any outdoor wood project.
While exterior paints are designed to withstand these elements, in most cases, a stain is a better option for a fence because it provides protection to the wood without the risk of bubbling, peeling, and cracking.
Panels with clear stains are left for one year, and those with semi-transparent stains are left for two years. Each year of testing tells you how a stain will do after a year on your deck or about three years of weathering on vertical surfaces (siding or fences), as you'll see in our wood stain ratings.
A wood fence provides privacy, security and a great focal point for your property. Routine wood fence maintenance is important to maintain the aesthetic of the fence and the life of the wood. A fence should be stained every two to three years to preserve the look and function of the fence.
The price of having a professional paint or stain your fence averages $2,000. Homeowners could pay anywhere between $750 to $4,250 depending on the condition, height and length of the fence. Costs average $3 to $17 per linear foot or $1 to $2.50 per square foot.
If you're looking to change things up or bring new life to your old fence, you can also try staining or painting it. There are advantages to both staining or painting your wooden fence.
Your fence you are required to maintain it. Around here it has to be fully on your property by a few inches unless the neighbor gives permission. You are also supposed to put the better side out. Unless they have gone in on this fence with you, you should stain both sides.
There are two basic product categories for waterproofing: stains and sealants. Stains are used on wood to enhance color and make them weather resistant. Sealants protect concrete and wood from moisture but do not stop water movement through the concrete from the outside.
Unlike sealers, stains penetrate into the wood. Like the name suggests, a wood stain contains pigments that physically change the wood's color. This gives the wood protection against harmful UV rays. Stains also have the same beneficial water-repelling qualities.
A wood fence should be treated every two to three years with stain due to its durability on wood exposed to the elements. Plan to stain your fence every two to three years to preserve its sheen and weather protective qualities and keep in mind that extreme temperatures and precipitation can prematurely age the finish.
Two coats are best, and it's best to avoid applying the stain in direct sunlight. Woodscapes can be second coated within two hours, depending on the humidity and air temperature. Most products can be re-coated the same day. You should stain your fence every three to four years when the coating starts to fade and wear.
Generally, you only need 2 coats of stain. This is because stain is known to penetrate the material so you should only use the number of coats that the material can absorb. Most materials including wood can only absorb two coats of stain. Three coats will be too much and you'll need to wipe off the excess.
More often than not, it is not a good idea to power wash a fence before staining it. Power washers can force the mold and mildew (the greying color of the fence) deeper into the wood pickets. This causes the wood to deteriorate quicker. Power washing a stained fence can create divots on the surface of the wood.
The Cons of Staining Wood
While some stains can last up to five years, postponing re-staining a wood surface for too long can cause the job to become more complex and labour intensive. Even decks that are stripped and re-stained will still require maintenance every couple of years.
Done right, an exterior paint job can last 10 years; stain needs to be reapplied more often, anywhere from two to 10 years, depending on the type of stain. One key to how long an exterior finish lasts is how well the surface is prepared.
Oil-based stain can be kept for 1 year if the cans have been opened, but unopened cans will last 2 - 3 yrs. Water-based stain will last 1 year, if opened, and 2 years, if unopened. Oil-based varnishes will be good for 1 year, opened or unopened.
When properly maintained — which includes replacing individual planks and boards as needed — a well-built wooden fence can last in good condition up to 20 years or more. There is that tradeoff we mentioned, though: A wood fence needs regular care; otherwise, if it's left to rot, then it's gonna, well, rot!
When it comes to fence painting, you can do whatever you want to your side of the fence. So, if it is your fence on both the outside and the inside, then you are free to do whatever you like in regards to painting.
Divide the total square feet of fence to be stained by the coverage listed on the can. For example, if you have 1,000 square feet of fence and the stain says that 1 gallon covers 200 square feet, you would divide 1,000 by 200, which equals 5 gallons to cover the fence.