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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Deck Stain Problems

For most homeowners, deck care is frustrating, disappointing, and costly. Common problems include frequent maintenance, cupping and warping of boards, and in some cases wood replacement. Most homeowners have tried various stains that they see advertised or reviewed in consumer publications, and various online sources. Many times these tests are not conducted in a real-world situation, rather in a lab setting. Most stains carried by the national chains and warehouse type outlets lead to a paint-like look that covers the wood to get a high UV resistance rating. Many times these reviews do not take into account the natural beauty of the wood, wear and tear from dogs, kids, furniture, and mother nature.

For truly consistent and satisfactory deck care with enduring beauty, we must start when the deck is being built. Much of the treated lumber used for building decks today arrives at the jobsite containing approximately 60% moisture. This saturated wood dries rapidly leading to warping and cupping and stressing of the fasteners. Once the deck is built it is many times difficult to coat the bottom side of the deck.

When wood is uncoated on the bottom side, it allows moisture to be absorbed, especially if the deck is close to the ground. This moisture will cause expansion and contraction of the boards and in some cases, the moisture must pass through the bottom of the board and out through the top causing problems with the coating or stain on the topside of the board. More

When the deck is built and saw cuts are made we create another tremendous source of moisture intrusion. Saw cuts cannot be sealed once the deck is built. So the solution to this common problem is to get your wood a few weeks before the deck is going to be built, stack it with spacers allowing air movement through the stack allowing the wood to dry slowly before the deck is built. Once the wood is dry, a sealer or waterproof or can be applied to the backside and all saw cuts as the deck is being built. Once construction is completed, the topside of the deck can be stained or sealed or finished with the appropriate product.

We continue to see excellent results in our testing and evaluation of One TIME Wood Protector. One TIME Wood Protector is uniquely different than any other stain or wood finish we have tested.

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