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Best Wood Stain for Pool Decks

Exterior wood surfaces need to be protected from harsh elements like UV rays and moisture. Foot traffic from people and even pets can also do damage. A wood surface around a pool however is subjected to a lot more moisture and harsh chemicals like chlorine so it becomes even more crucial to provide protection. Doing so will help the areas like a pool deck last much longer.

When it comes to staining wood there are a few things to keep in mind. Prepping the wood correctly and choosing a quality deck stain are crucial. Follow the proper instructions for cleaning and prepping a wood deck prior to staining. Once the wood is prepared correctly the decision must be made as to which stain to apply.

The best stain for pool decks is a penetrating semi-transparent deck stain. Look for one that has exceptional penetrating traits. Any pool deck stain is going to take a lot of abuse so try to stay away from film forming stains that stay on the surface of the wood. These will be prone to peeling and flaking due to the chlorine and extensive moisture from the pool and foot traffic.

A semi-transparent penetrating stain will lock out moisture and UV rays without blocking the wood’s natural beauty. There will be less chance of wearing and maintenance will be easier down the road. Penetrating stains have the advantage of diving deep into the wood pours so moisture can’t. They also act as a sunblock to protect against UV fading and discoloring. Excess moisture and harsh chemicals from the pool will take its toll on any pool deck stain over time, but using a penetrating stain will ensure the longest protection while providing a beautiful finish.

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12 responses to “Best Wood Stain for Pool Decks”

  1. DenLor says:

    Which brand do you recommend? We have a Pressure Treated Pine Deck built May 2012. Used Thompsons Honey Gold semi transparent stain/sealer spring and fall of 2013. Looked good for that year, by end of last season its a mess! Just pressure washed and some boards are "fuzzy". What is next step and is it recommended to use an oil base semi transparent? We are in Northeast Ohio, full sun. I posted a question in another forum and didn't see an answer.

  2. John says:

    I already apply one coat of stain and its looks solid and weak over the area.Should i put another coat on???

    How many coats of semi- trans stain should you apply on a deck???

  3. shelly says:

    we have a pool deck,have treated it 4-5 years in a row and it looks gray .full sun also.northwest ohio ,so snow all winter lays on it as well.graduation party coming this summer ,what is the best stain to put on it to give it life again

  4. Chris says:

    Purchased a house last summer with a 10 year old massive pool deck where they must have used one of the terrible behr or Rustoleum products because it is peeling really bad. We have scraped most of it off and then we will pressure wash. Now comes the hard part….what type of stain do we use? Our wood is splintering and cracking so we don't know if its best to sand/stain or get indoor/outdoor carpeting. We plan to take down at least half the deck in a few years. how quickly could carpet rot wood? I don't want it to become unsafe.

    If we decide to sand/stain, what type of stain will work in NE Ohio with full sun/pool deck that is cracking/splintering and what is the prepping process? I think I have been researching so much that I'm confused.

    Any suggestions on any of my ideas would be greatly appreciated.

    • You have to remove all the failing product if you want to switch to a better penetrating stain. After removal, try a deck cleaner for prep and brighten after. Stain with TWP 1500 Series.

  5. Holly says:

    I cannot get TWP in Canada, do you have another recommendation for a pool deck that is 5 years old and never been stained ?

  6. Gay Dumke says:

    We are prepping our pool deck and would like your advice on stain. Is oil based the best penetrating or can we use the the Behr semi transparent? Worried that the oil based might be stickey. Please respond. Thank you for your feedback. Your web site is extremely helpful! Regards, Gay

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*This is first and foremost a help site from our experience as wood restoration contractors. All stain and prepping manufacturer directions were followed with our reviews and ratings. We offer no guarantee of similar results. Take inconsideration that wood and deck stain results may differ due to prepping procedures, different wood types, exposure to UV radiation, natural weathering, etc.