Do I Need to Remove Old Stain Before Restaining a Deck – The Best Answer

Staining job is essential for maintaining and enhancing the wood structure’s inherent beauty. However, one of the most popular questions often asked is: Do I need to remove old stain before restaining a deck? If you also have the same question, don’t look any further than this post! Let’s dig into it and explore the answer.

Do I Need to Remove Old Stain Before Restaining a Deck

Do I Need to Remove Old Stain Before Restaining a Deck?

Needless to say, the aim of wood staining is to protect the deck from humidity, ultraviolet light, mildew, and rot. Wood stains can be semi-transparent, translucent, solid, semi-solid, or opaque, and they can be oil or water-based.

Here are some amazing benefits that the stain may offer:

  • Remove the dust motes
  • Kill mildew and mold
  • Improve the color’s adhesion to the wood

So, do you need to remove the old stains before putting in a new one?

A strong deck stain has already been applied, giving the wood great protection. Even though they are beautiful when fresh, they can degrade by time and exposure to the elements, flaking and eventually wearing away.

Hence, the answer is yes; it is preferable to strip and remove the previous stain before refinishing. If the paint on your deck’s surface is old, worn out, or flaking, the first step is to scrape off all of these stains.

Removing old stain before restaining is necessary

How Can I Determine If I Need Strip Before Restaining?

You can try some steps below to test if your deck needs removing old stain:

  • Carve: Firstly, you need to cut an ‘X’ form into various areas on the deck’s surface with a knife. You should be careful to avoid damaging the wood and concentrate on the areas that seem to be less visible and receive the most wear and tear.
  • Use the duct tape: After that, you have to apply duct tape to each ‘X’, firmly push it down, and rapidly remove the tape.
  • Check the tape’s surface: If paint particles have clung to the tape’s adhesive surface, you will need to remove the deck before restaining it. A paint remover can be used for this. If you previously applied a semi-transparent deck stain to the deck, you have to thoroughly clean it and let it cure for 3-4 hours.
  • Fill with water: Put a little water on both low and high areas to see if the stain has to be removed. If the water produces small droplets on the surface, this indicates that there are still lots of stains to get rid of.

On the other hand, when the water lingers in a big puddle for more than 10 minutes before being soaked the wood, the stain has disappeared, and you can restain without first scrubbing the deck.

How Can You Restain A Stained Deck?

Now, let’s move into the steps of restaining a stained desk. Rest assured that the staining job is extremely effortless with a few steps.  

Step 1: Clean Carefully The Deck’s Surface

This seemingly simple activity is, in reality, the most important stage in achieving the finest potential outcomes from the deck restaining process. At this stage, the pressure washer can come in handy. You need to begin at one of the corners, then go over each piece many times to ensure that all mold and moss are gone. After that, let the deck dry itself for about three days or longer.

Provide it a last wipe or sweep after you are confident it’s totally dry. This guarantees that you won’t try to stain on debris or dust, which might prevent the fresh stain from adhering to the wood.

Step 2: Choose The Cleaning Way

When you do not have a power washer, you may use high-standard deck cleaners instead. Even if you use this approach, you will still have to clean off any dirt before applying, wait for it to dry, then give it a last wipe to remove any dust particles.

After you have applied the cleaning tool to the deck’s surface, carefully follow the instructions on the item you’ve selected. This will assist with the removal of mold, moss, leaf markings, and other unwanted stains. Clean the product off the deck with lots of water, then let it dry completely before going on to the next step.

Step 3: Do The Stripping And Sanding.

Check your deck to see if there are any rough spots and sand these rough areas. You can do sanding with sandpaper or a wood sander. From our experience, peels will need to be sanded since staining them can cause the new coat to peel away even more. You may also use one paint remover in case you desire an equal surface.

Step 4: Begin Staining the deck

Stain the deck

You would perform your staining at this step, and you have to be clear that the wood stain type you choose will decide the number of layers you put on the deck. 

For instance, if you use a semi-transparent stain, a single layer with a good roller, paint spray, or brush is all you have to prepare. On the other hand, stains in solid colors will need two layers, using a paint brush or a roller. 

Keep in mind that deck stain should be put in thin layers for optimum effects. Leave each layer to dry completely before moving on to the next.

Step 5: Touch Up & Cover

After you’ve finished all the staining job, you have to back brush to make sure that each part of your deck is coated in the staining work. 

Then that’s settled! You’ve finished your restaining job on your deck with just five simple yet effective steps!

The Final Verdict

You are now confident to answer the initial question, “Do I need to remove old stain before restaining a deck?”, right?

If you’d like to give your deck a new look and maintain the wood, removing the layers of old staining materials is essential. This job will improve the new product’s adherence to the wood’s surface and minimize the risk of peeling.

Hope that all the information above can help you in your staining work. Good luck.

Reference Source: How to Clean and Restain a Deck | This Old House

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