Ideal deck staining conditions
Consumers home loansLearn more
Is your deck looking worn? Check the weather forecast before you start staining.
While spending more time at home because of shelter-at-home orders you may have noticed your deck looking weather-worn. Before you embark on a fresh coat of stain, check the forecast to make sure your hard work isn’t undone by weather.
It can be too hot or too cold for staining
If you apply stain when it’s too cold it won’t cure properly and the stain won’t last as long. If it’s too hot the stain dries too quickly, potentially leaving you with lap marks and uneven penetration.
The ideal temperature window for most stains is 50°- 90°F. (Read the label on your stain.) Also, make sure temperatures won’t drop below 32°F the night after staining.
If you’re staining on a day when the mercury will go above 90°F, you may be able to stain in the morning before things heat up too much.
Check the humidity and rain forecast
Humidity refers to the amount of moisture in the air. The higher the humidity, the longer it takes for your stain to cure and dry. If you can, stain on day with low humidity for faster drying.
Rain can ruin your work if it comes down too early. Pick a day for staining when there is no rain predicted for the next 12-24 hours.
Little to no wind is best
A windy day can make your staining project an exercise in frustration. That’s because wind can blow leaves, dirt and debris on to your wet stain. Avoid unnecessary work and stain on a calm day.
Choose a time when the deck is in the shade
Staining in direct sunlight results in stain that dries in a flash. The problem with stain that dries too fast is that it doesn’t have time to penetrate the wood properly.
Choose a time of day to stain when your deck is shaded or when skies are overcast.
If you’re new to deck staining
Weather conditions are not the only thing to check off before you start staining. Read our guides on how to do deck-prep right and how to safely power wash if you’re new to deck staining or you need a refresher on the tips.
When you’re done and the stain has dried, sit back, relax and celebrate your accomplishment!
Consumers helps more than 1,000 members finance land, first and second homes, and home improvement projects each year. We’d love to help you with a mortgage or home equity line of credit; call us at 800-991-2221.