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TWP 1500 Series Stain Review3.88/5(8)

TWP 1500 Series Deck Stain

TWP 1500 Series Deck Stain

TWP 1500 Series was introduced in the Summer of 2010 as the replacement for the TWP 500 Series. TWP 1500 stain is a semi-transparent oil based wood preservative registered by the EPA. The only deck preservative that is currently registered as an exterior wood preservative.

TWP 1500 Series is designed for all exterior unfinished wood. It has excellent UV resistance from graying. It is mostly used for exterior wood decking, wood fencing, log homes, cedar sided homes, etc. TWP 1500 comes in 10 colors that allow the natural grain of the wood to show through.

TWP 1500 Series Deck Stain Scores (1-10)

Appearance After Initial Stain Application: 8.5

- TWP 1500 Series had a beautiful rich look to the wood. Wood grain was highlighted naturally. 1501 Cedartone color was slightly brown for a traditional cedar color.

Preventing UV Graying at 2 Year Mark: 9

- Excellent at preventing uv graying at the two year mark. One of the top stains that we have tested in terms of absorbing the UV radiation that causes oxidation of the wood.

Wear/Tear and Peeling: 9

- Very good at preventing peeling. TWP penetrates deep into the wood. This seems to reduce any chance of wearing or peeling at the surface.

TWP 1500 Series

TWP 1500 Series

Cost Per Square Foot: 8

- TWP 1500 Series cost us $174.99 for a 5 gallon pail delivered. This breaks down to $.35 per foot for 2 coats of stain on our 400 square foot deck. We still had 1.5 gallons left when done. Coverage for the TWP 1500 was close to 200 square feet per gallon.

Preventing Mold/Mildew/Algae: 9

- Of all of the oil based stains we tested, TWP offers the best protection against mold spores that are known to grow in oil based stains. This is most likely due to the oils used in TWP’s stains. They do not use linseed oil but rather a mixture of natural and synthetic oils.

Ease of Application: 8

- For an oil based stain, TWP 1500 series applied well. We did notice that you need to back brush any puddles to ensure an even application. This is normal for most of the stains that we have tested. TWP 1500 Series did dry to the touch in 6 hours and we were able to put furniture back on the deck the following day.

Color Shifting (darkening) after 2 Years: 9

- The 1500 series did not “darken” in color like other oil based stains have been known to. TWP actually lightened up slightly at the 2 year mark. This gave the wood a more natural looking feel.

Difficulty of Reapplication: 8.5

- TWP 1500 Series would be an easy stain to reapply. A normal wood deck cleaner would be used to remove some dirt and grime, prepping for another coat.

Overall Score TWP 1500 Series at 2 Year Period: 8.5

- TWP 1500 Series (and 100 Series) have been known to provide tops in terms of durability and color retention. They have always been one of the best stains and is one of our top choices. Little to no fading on the railings. The deck surface faded to about 75% of the stain’ initial color after 2.5 years.

Product Information:

TWP Help? Search Google: TWP Stain Help
More Info: TWP 1500 Series
Cost: $36.99 per Gallon, $182.99 per 5 Gallon Pail
Stain Type: Semi-Transparent – Oil-Based
Available Colors: 1500 Clear, 1501 Cedartone, 1502 Redwood, 1503 Dark Oak, 1504 Black Walnut, 1511 California Redwood, 1515 Honeytone, 1516 Rustic, 1520 Pecan, 1530 Natural
Application Temperature: 45-95 F
Coats Required: 2 Coats. “Wet on Wet”
Coverage Per Gallon: 150-250 sq. ft
Application Tools: Sprayer, Pad, Brush, Roller
Dry Time: 4-12 Hours
Cleanup: Mineral Spirits
VOC Compliant: 250 Compliant in All 50 States
More Info: Product Data
Manufacturer: Gemini Coatings

Test Deck Stats:

When Tested: June 2010
Deck Wood Type: Western Red Cedar
Deck Square Footage: 400
UV Exposure: Full Sun
How Many Years Tested: 2 Years
Stain Color Used:
1501 Cedartone

*All products tested and results are from our experience. We offer no guarantee of similar results. Take inconsideration that results may differ due to different wood types, exposure to UV radiation, and natural weathering.


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385 Responses to “TWP 1500 Series Stain Review”

  1. Natalie says:

    Hello, we're going through the painful process of stripping / sanding a solid Behr stain applied by the previous owner and replacing a few rotten boards in our deck, we suspect the original ones were PTW or cedar, we're replacing with cedar. We're planning to stain with TWP1503 after using the RAD brightener. We're in Northern IL, so we get hot summer days and snow and lots of cold in the winter. My questions:
    1. Should we stain this fall or wait until the spring? There are some boards that, while not truly rotten, seem like they could use a little "drying" time, e.g. the upper surface in some boards looks a little "slimy", especially where the stain was particularly thick and the sun didn't hit very hard.
    2. Any suggestions on how to remove the "mill glaze" in the newer boards?
    3. Are there any downsides to just priming and painting the vertical surfaces with a good primer and exterior paint? We don't have much of an issue having them be a different color.
    Thanks again for all the info!!!

    • 1. You could let it weather until Spring and ten clean and brighten for the final prep.
      2. Weathering and the cleaner will remove the mill glaze.
      3. Bad idea on this as it will peel.

  2. William says:

    I live in upstate new York. I applied Twp 1500 in the summer of 2013 to my house which is sided in pine board an batten siding. The south side of the house which is completely exposed to the sun and weather has shown some spots that look like it might need another application just where there are knots in the wood and a few full length boards look very dry. Where the knot are they are sort of whitening out/ slash looking very dry. I was wondering what the process is to reapply twp 1500? Do you have to clean and brighten the wood or should just hit the knots with twp 1500 and wipe off the excess?

    • Knots are of higher density of wood and it is normal for a penetrating stain to be lighter in color around them. You could try touching up a pot and wiping off the excess. I would suspect though that ti will just lighten up again in a day.

  3. Britt says:

    We are having a 12 x 16 deck built using Cedar. We are in Northern Ohio and the beginning of winter starting soon. We are wondering whether we should seal the deck now or wait until Spring. Warmer sunny days are a rarity now rather than the norm. Will it hurt any if we do decide to wait until Spring to do this? I hate the thought of trapping moisture into the wood right now by sealing it.

  4. Chris says:

    Used TWP 1500 on my new deck 2 years ago. I built the deck with pine and after 3 months of the recommended drying process I stained it. 2/3 of the deck is covered and the uncovered part is already fading and the stain is thinning. All of the AZ sun exposed areas are fading even faster and the wood is drying out. This week I had some stain left over so I decided to restain the stairs and some of the heavily sun exposed areas. Before I stained them I used a steel brush and then a broom on the wood to knock off any dirty and loose particles. The stairs really soaked up the stain and turned darker than the original first staining. My wife and I really like the darker color and it looks like it will last much longer than the first staining. I think 4 to 6 months of new wood cure time would be better for green wood. The sap in the wood also keeps the stain from penetrating into the wood and time is the only cure for that to leach out. Restaing the deck after 2 years is disappointing but hopefully it will last longer this time and I wont regret painting it in the first place.

  5. Dean says:

    We have cedar siding that we've been staining with Sikkens ever since it was new, 24 years ago. Would we be better off sticking with Sikkens or switching to TWP 1501(cedartone)? We're in western Mass, next to Vt. The Sikkens has a beautiful luster and performs well on the north and east sides, but not as well on the south and west because of sun and weather. Thanks! And thanks for operating this excellent site.

    • For you to switch you would have to strip or remove all of the Sikkens and I am not sure you want to do that? TWP also does not have a shine/lustre so it may not have the same look you want? It is a penetrating oil based stain that has a matte or no shine.

    • Rod says:

      Do NOT… I repeat Do NOT change at this point. I build an all redwood home 27 years ago here in Missouri. Sikkens is great, provided you do recoat it every 3 years… otherwise it will start to peel (like varnish), and the only way to restore it is to sand back to bare wood… Also, do NOT use Sikkens on any horizontal surface, as it will peel within the year. How do I know all this? Well, how many people have actually sanded and recoated a 4,500 sf house, and 1,500 sf of redwood deck (including all 441 stiles)??? Now, I use nothing but semi transparent oil based stain on the deck, and a "refresher" coat of Sikkens every 3 years… as much as I love the looks of the redwood… I'm getting to the age where I almost wish I'd bricked the whole thing…

  6. Ronald Cooey says:

    I live California in the Sacramento area. Spent weeks filling all the nail holes and sanding the entire deck.used twp 1500 clear it looked great. We had a very mild winter very little rain. I now have black mold everywhere that is not under patio cover.now I will have redo eveything.

    • Couple of questions. Are you sure it is mold? It could be rust stains that look like mold. This could be due to how you sanded. If is is mold, is it \”in\” the stain or laying on top of the stain? TWP prevents mold growth in the stain but no stain or sealer on the market can stop mold from laying on top of the stain.

    • John says:

      You might look into add a mildicide to TWP. Just a thought

    • Derek says:

      I had a similar problem on certain areas of my deck. Since I only sanded a few areas I came to the conclusion that it was metal flakes/dust on the wood from sanding the screws. When it got wet it left dark stains on the boards. You will notice the same color around any fastener which is not weatherproofed in some fashion. I made a point to not sand the screws from there on out.

  7. M Britt says:

    After doing a detailed perusal of the reviews for all of the stains, the TWP 1500 appears to the best one for my project. We have a 1-year old pergola (just posts and cross beams, no walking surface built of pressure treated pine over paver patio. Unfortunately, after it was built in early summer of last year, it was not treated in any way (the plan was to stain at the end of the summer, after 1-2 months, but life got in the way), so now we are trying to determine the best approach and product for staining the pergola now that the bare pine has been exposed for about 12 months, including a harsh Ohio winter. Do you think the TWP 1500 is the right product for this project or is another product recommended? And what prepping should we do? Cleaner and brightener before stain?

  8. Jeff Sorrels says:

    Do you have to put two coats on no matter what for TWP.

  9. Andriana says:

    Were in MN and just had a new 500sq ft cedar deck built. I was planning on staining with a semi transparent Sikkens as suggested by our contractor, but after going through your site i think we may use TWP instead. Is the 1500 series the best bet for nearly full sun, Southwest facing? MN winters and young kids as well…. thanks so much!

  10. Chris says:

    I am putting in a brand new pressure treated deck and covered tongue and groove porch in the Milwaukee suburbs, which is east facing. I purchased kiln dried wood so it is ready for stain immediately after being installed. Would you recommend using TWP 1500 or TWP 100 for the project. I have read on several sites that the 100 is a better product. Thanks.

  11. Karl Shaner says:

    I just cleaned my old pressure treated deck. It is still strong, but has a lot of cracks in the wood. Also, some minor splinters that I will cut and sand. At least one plank will be replaced. Will the TWP 1500 fill in the cracks at all? Please advise. I really rather not use a solid stain.

    • No a penetrating stain like TWP does not fill in cracks. The only way to do this is to use a solid stain and many of them will not fill either. Cracks in outdoor wood is normal. Best to just leave them and not worry.

  12. Sandy says:

    What color will I get if I mix 5 gallons of black wanut 1500 twp stain into 2 gallons of honeytone 1500 twp stain??

  13. Bryan says:

    Hello,
    I have a pressure-treated porch that was installed 3 or 4 years ago. When it was installed, the boards were coated with a 2-year waterproofer (from Behr, I think). The vertical surfaces still have color (though not much water repelling properties) and the horizontal surfaces are quite worn. There is some mold on the wood. I'd like to stain it with either TWP 100 or 1500, but I'm unsure of the prepwork. Could you advise? Also, would the prep products harm vinyl lattice that is used on the skirting?

    Thanks,
    Bryan

    • Bryan, have to remove the Bher first before applying the TWP. Use a stain stripper and pressure wash off. Repeat if needed for difficult areas. Brighten all the wood after. Should not harm the vinyl.

  14. Cindy says:

    We have a pressure treated deck on our 2000 sq ft home in northwest Maine. Built in 1991. We recently used both stripper and power washed (this worked better than the stripper). It looks great, almost like new wood, however, there are still some small areas where, no matter how hard we tried, the solid stain would not come off. Tearing our hair out would not help either :-) The deck is too uneven (lots of grooves) to sand. So we feel we have done the best we can. We plan to put 1500 on the entire deck. Do you have any thoughts on this? Thank you very much.

  15. Joe says:

    If you had a choice between the 100 series and 1500 series, which would you choose for your own personal deck?

  16. Elizabeth Ann says:

    Thank you for this terrific forum! We live in central Texas. Our hot humid summers often include many long 100-degree days. We used many of the more well-known brands over the years to great dissatisfaction, but in 2002 a 150-yer storm and flood made it necessary to replace our 1000 sq. ft. cedar deck. We were glad to see it go. And in 2003 we installed 1000 square feet of new Western Red Cedar, kiln-dried, but despaired of how to preserve it. Our deck is in full sun 12 hours a day. So my husband and I tried an experiment–we decided to test some 60 cut ends of W. Red Cedar boards after the deck was all finished, half staining them so we could also see what happened to the unstained pieces in full weather, the other half stained with every store sample deck product available to us in 2003, then left all 60 ends in the back yard (labeled for reference) in the elements, for three months. After three months, no fooling, hands down TWP was the obvious winner in (1) water resistance (beading up), (2) color-stay, and (3) moisturizing. So after 3 months of experiments, we hired "staining professionals" who sprayed on TWP series #300 (back then) Butternut on the deck. It puddled and dripped down below to a stone sidewalk, where they had great difficulty cleaning it off (after it dried on the stone). Bad application. I decided I could do no worse. So two years later when the color finally faded to yellow, I pressure washed it and prepped and after two days drying, took a sponge mop (wet it first, then wrung out) then applied a premixed 5 gallon bucket of Butternut and Redwood (purchased 6 gallons), by simply mopping it on. To my surprise I easily controlled the amount I applied and there were no puddles. The result was a beautiful Mahogany (brown with reddish highlights). We have photos. But red being the largest molecule, it burned off quickly, so the next year, 2005, I tried a radical mixture of 2 gallons #501 Cedartone (to increase penetration and moisturize), 2 gallons #502 Redwood for highlights, and 1 gallon #207 Butternut for pigment. This proved to be the best combination–durability, penetration, moisturizing the boards (like Oil of Olay on dry skin) and produced truly radiant color. In the Texas sun, however, this lasted one year. But application was a breeze, a very relaxing process, hardly any mess, and cleanup is the easiest. Plus, I could just use a new $6.00 sponge mop each year. That is, until the formula changed along about 2012. It was suggested I try a combo of #116 Rustic Oak, #103 Dark Oak, and 1502 Redwood. That formula almost lasted a year. In 2013 It was suggested I try 1516 Rustic Oak. but it lacked the color depth and duration previously achieved. Now I don't have the same great results and am relegated to using either #516 Rustic Oak or #1516 Rustic Oak, plus one gallon of #207 Butternut to achieve the same depth of color. But the problem? I now have to apply the new TWP *TWICE* a year–April and October. Same prep as always, radically different results. I have eleven years of experience on the same deck. The 1516 formula seems to last longer, but not much longer. I have tried both 516 and 1516, alternating every other year. This April I used 516. Now I am seeing green algae forming on the South side in the partial shade of a Red Oak tree. That tree has been there since 1994. I have never seen algae form on this deck, ever, and we have had several hot, wet seasons, though more were dry. Whatever changed in the formula has reduced TWP's moisturizing properties, its durability, as well as its mold resistance and staying power. For nine wonderful years, from 2003 until 2012, TWP's quality seemed incomparable. What changed? Yet, I still will not use another brand as no other works as well or is a beautiful a finish. So how do we accomplish the same previously met criteria with the new formula? (I really miss the old product…) Sorry this was so long.

    • Only the 500 Series was replaced about 7 years ago. The 1500 is the same as it always has been and the 100 has been the same since 1992. No other changes have been made. It may just be your deck has different weather patterns lately?

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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.

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