This post was updated on April 7, 2022
Benjamin Moore’s Arborcoat is a 100% acrylic exterior wood stain that provides water repellency, mildew resistance, and UV protection. This stain is a waterborne product that was introduced in 2010 as a two-component system: One coat of stain and one coat of a protective clear coat need to be applied. Available in a range of colors, this wood and deck stain is marketed as a good solution to help you protect and beautify your outdoor furniture, deck, and siding. However, our testing told a much different story.
Please note that this is our initial review of this product. You should also take a look at our follow-up review, in which we re-tested this stain on a different deck material in a different location.
We’d also love to hear your reviews of Benjamin Moore Arborcoat deck stains. Please post your rating below if you’ve used this product, and if you have any pictures of your experience with Arborcoat stain, add them in the comment area with a description.
Detailed Review of Benjamin Moore Arborcoat Stain
All factors have been rated on a 10-point scale.
Appearance After Initial Stain Application: 4
After it dried, the Arborcoat stain gave a “plastic,” unnatural look to the wood. The finished result was a film-forming stain, similar to a varnish. These stain types are definitely prone to peeling in cold-weather states, such as the location of our test deck in Michigan.
Some Arborcoat users have noted that they had better results when applying this stain to a dry 12% non-PT wood deck. While the majority of comments and user experiences have been negative, the application is definitely a factor in the results.
Preventing UV Graying at the 1-Year Mark: 9
We only tested this Benjamin Moore deck stain for 1 year, but it did very well with preventing UV graying. The nanotechnology seemed to fully halt the graying effect. We noticed no color change after 1 year.
Wear/Tear and Peeling: 1
We applied this stain in the summer, and we got a call from the homeowner the following spring to look at the deck. On inspection, we were extremely disappointed. The Arborcoat had peeled significantly on the brand-new pine deck. Patches of the finish had peeled off the wood in strips. You could peel back large sections of stain with your fingers. The product did not seem to have penetrated into the wood at all.
Cost per Square Foot: 5
Arborcoat retails for $59.99 a gallon. Nine gallons were used for the 1,000-square-foot deck at a cost of $0.59 per square foot.
Preventing Mold/Mildew/Algae: 10
No mold or mildew was present at the one-year mark. The zinc oxide in the formula definitely seemed to help.
Ease of Application: 4
We found the Arborcoat to be difficult to apply. As with most water-based formulas, the Arborcoat dried fast and displayed overlap marks. Adding the clear topcoat did help even out the appearance somewhat. The stain applies like paint and dries on top of the wood. We were skeptical about the appearance and whether the stain would make it through the winter (it did not).
Color-Shifting (Darkening) After 2 Years: 8
There was no visible darkening of the stain except for some dirt that accumulated on top of the finish.
Difficulty of Reapplication: 1
The customer was so displeased with the condition of the deck after less than one year that they requested that the Arborcoat be removed. A traditional deck stain stripper did not remove the stain or topcoat. Power-sanding was needed, which cost the unfortunate consumer a substantial amount of money.
Overall Score: 5.75
Benjamin Moore’s Arborcoat did not perform well in a cold-weather state and on a newly built deck. The unnatural appearance was reason enough not to use the stain, but the peeling and difficulty of removal really were tough to swallow. We’d suggest choosing from our top-rated deck stains instead.
Benjamin Moore Arborcoat Stain Photos
Arborcoat Stain Details
- Where to Buy: Benjamin Moore paint outlets
- Cost: $59.99 per gallon
- Stain Type: Semi-transparent, water-based
- Available Colors: 75 custom colors
- Application Temperature: 40-90 F
- Coats Required: Two, a stain coat and a top clear coat
- Coverage per Gallon: 150-200 square feet in field tests
- Application Tools: Sprayer, pad, brush, roller
- Dry Time: 24-48 hours
- Cleanup: Soap and water
- VOC Compliant: 250 compliant in all states
- Manufacturer: Benjamin Moore
About Our Test Deck
- Deck Wood Type: New pine decking, ACQ
- Deck Square Footage: 1,000 square feet
- UV Exposure: Mostly shade
- How Many Years Tested: 1 year
- Stain Color Used: Cedar
All products tested and results are from our hands-on experience. We offer no guarantee of similar results. Take into consideration that results may differ widely due to different wood types, exposure to UV radiation, and natural weathering.
Frequently Asked Questions About Benjamin Moore Arborcoat Deck Stain
How Long Does Benjamin Moore Arborcoat Last?
We found that Benjamin Moore Arborcoat stain didn’t even hold up for a full year: Less than a year after application, we saw severe cracking and peeling of this Benjamin Moore exterior stain.
Is Arborcoat a Good Stain?
No. While Arborcoat stain scored well in regard to keeping mildew and mold at bay and preventing UV graying and color-shifting, it performed quite poorly in all other areas, such as application, durability, and appearance.
What Sheen Is Benjamin Moore Arborcoat?
Arborcoat stain comes with only a flat sheen option.
Is Arborcoat a Paint or Stain?
Arborcoat is a Benjamin Moore exterior wood and deck stain.
Does Arborcoat Need a Top Coat?
Yes. Benjamin Moore advises to use a topcoat in order to get the most protection possible for your deck. not sue why as this leads to additional peeling.
Is Arborcoat Oil- or Water-Based?
Benjamin Moore Arborcoat we tested is a water-based stain.
Does Arborcoat Solid Stain Need Primer?
No. Arborcoat solid stain is self-priming, so there’s no need to add a layer of primer before applying it.
How Do You Apply Arborcoat Translucent Stain?
First, make sure there will be no rain for the next two days. Then, use a roller or paintbrush to completely cover each board on the deck. Ensure thorough coverage. Then, allow the stain to dry completely.
How Many Coats of Arborcoat Do You Need?
Arborcoat uses two coats: one coat of stain and a top clear coat.
Is Benjamin Moore Arborcoat a Sealer?
Yes: Arborcoat is considered a sealer and a stain.
Deck Stain Help & Questions
Stain Reviews & Comparisons
As an article and comment contributor to the site, Scott has been around the pressure washing industry since attending college. In 1993 he started his first company called Oakland Pressure Wash specializing in exterior pressure washing and deck staining. That company evolved into OPW L.L.C. shortly thereafter concentrating more on exterior wood and deck restoration. Scott and his Deck Cleaning Michigan company have restored over 10,000 decks in the Metro Detroit area since the early years. He has become an authority in the deck restoration industry and has contributed to numerous wood restoration forums and informative sites.
All the products he suggests through this site are sold through online sites and in retail stores, allowing the consumer to choose their own means of purchase. Scott’s eCommerce sites do sell many top brands he endorses and if you appreciate any of the help he has offered then feel free to purchase from one of them.
The Arborcoat semi transparent is the absolute worst product I’ve ever used. I pressure washed the deck, and then followed all directions carefully, used the two prep products, and two coats of stain. It was very hard to use and looked like a mottled mess when completed, showing all back brushing intervals, etc. It didn’t even make it a year. I did it early fall ($800 in materials and 8 days of hard labor) and by the end of winter is was peeling off where ever any runoff hit it. I’m not an inexperienced, first timer. I’ve built entire houses and have painted for over 30 years. I know what I’m doing. This is expensive garbage, that left me with a real mess. I have to figure out how to remove all of it, on a 1,000 square foot deck, and apply a product that actually adheres to wood, and lasts a while. I have never written a review of anything before, for or against, but this crap is “special”
Here’s my No2 cedar deck one year after ArborCoat. Terrible.
I am beyond upset about the Arborcoat solid stain that we applied to our deck. We have stained the deck numerous times over the years with other products and never had such a bad problem as we are now. We did everything right from application to letting it dry properly. It has been nothing but a horrible experience ever since. My dog’s paw prints stick to it and cannot be washed off. I’ve tried everything. And even a representative came out to look at it. I need some recourse!
Sheila, EXACTLY our experience. Sanded 700 Sq Ft deck on lake & EVERY footprint/pawprint sticks out. The deck looks filthy. The rails are peeling. Rings End, Danbury CT came out to inspect & gave us a gallon of Krud Kutter to clean. That’s not the problem. this is NOT a stain. it sits on top of the wood & attracts dirt. Any suggestions?
No stain pigments of any kind penetrate wood, All stains ARE film forming. You folks having issues with this product should really leave it to professionals. Did anyone of you do a moisture test before you applied it? I didn’t think so. SMH
You are wrong about this. Not all deck stains are film-forming and yes, they can penetrate into the wood.
I have the same problem, wondering if you found a solution.
Do NOT use Arborcoat over Benjamin Moore clear wood preservative no matter what BM or the BM dealer tells you. I’ve been using Benjamin Moore clear wood preservative on redwood siding for 35 years without issue. BM discontinued the clear wood preservative and recommends Arborcoat. After 2 years of New England weather, the Arborcoat on the south facing side of the house has a chalky, milky appearance. I’m going to drop BM and use Cabot clear wood preservative instead. I hope I’ll have better luck.
Use daly’s teak oil. Uses the same type of phenolic resins the old BM clear was using
Applied this to my deck September 2019. Didn’t last the winter – it peeled/flaked off all over the place.
Today, I was attempted to clean grime off the surface to start prepping for another coat and the stain peeled off from the pressure from a garden hose. So, I bought a pressure washer to strip it all off and I’m now looking for another stain to spend a few hundred dollars on…
IMO 5.75/10 is far too generous.
Arborcoat was recommended by our painters for our new pine deck. The product was applied, one coat and looked horrible. It was streaky and uneven. They came a reapplied another coat. Within months, it was cracking and peeling. Painters came and ‘fixed’ things again. Now the stain is bubbling everywhere. How can it be a stain if it never soaked in?
Total loss. Will need to get the entire deck sanded and find a stain that actually works.
Yep. This is why BM is one of our worst-rated stains. Once it is fully removed, see here for a proper stain: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/the-5-best-deck-stain-reviews-and-ratings/
Man, I wish I had seen this review and all of these comments before I allowed my client to dictate that I use this product on the new deck and stairs that I built on her lake front house. Only time will tell how it holds up to the Lake Pontchartrain salty water and sub-tropical weather. I will take pictures and post them as time goes by and my time to allowed to take pictures dictates.
I love Arborcoat for all reasons cause it works if you prepare and apply correctly. Better than all of the others in my opinion as a licensed Ca. contractor of 25 years.
Good to read that! last spring I had a pro refinish my deck (fir) including sanding off the old (ugly) dark oil finish He then applied one coat of BM Arborcoat and advised me to redcoat it in one year (now). He didn’t put a clear coat on top — just the one coat of stain. It held up very well except that there were stains from pollen and mildew — I cleaned that with vinegar and water. Question – should I follow his advice and apply another coat now?
Just bought this at suggestion of local lumber yard. Not easy to apply as it was thick on the mullions of the fir exterior door I applied to. Can I apply Helmsman water based indoor/outdoor spar urethane now? I’d like to protect from harsh direct UV exposure and winter rain/snow.
You can never topcoat over a deck stain. It will blister and peel.
Used on outdoor cabinets was going to use a polyurethane on it. So your saying I can’t ? So what do you use to clear coat ?
You can’t. It will peel if you put anything over it.
We painted our screen porch 3 weeks ago and it is still sticky. I have a fan on it and its been in the 90’s for weeks now. I need help
Since it has been three weeks, it will probably not cure so you will need to remove and start over. It will not be easy and you will have to sand it all off.
I am sick,,, after reading these reviews we all have the same issues. This is a failed product , we all should get a new deck from the company. At age 70, I powered wash, chemical treated my deck twice . Taking over 3 three weeks to complete May 2020, it is horrible. Dog prints, dirt, peel, washes away !!!! Shame on this company and a slap in the face for all their faithful, now to be past, customers. I still have not heard from rep. Change products everyone
Is arborcoat Protective clear coat the same as Thompsons Water sealer??
No, and the BM clear coat peels horribly. Do not use it.
Can you recommend a better product , we are about to clean an stain our one year old deck, that is we built around our in ground pool. It has been a year for the wood to cure??? thank you . we just want a clear coat since our fence is almond ( We do all the work ourselves, rehabbers)
You need a semi-transparent stain for UV protection. Clear will gray. Clean and brighten for prep. Use one of these stains: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/best-semi-transparent-deck-stain-reviews/
Sikkens is the best on the market for deck stain….period!
Sikkens used to be very good but they changed the formula and now not so good.
Extremely disappointed with Arborcoat!! The stain did not last through one winter. Taking it off has been awful. We have spent days with stain stripper and sanding to remove this product. The cost of renting equipment and the time it is taking to take off this stain is ridiculous. Never making this mistake again.
I have pressure treated wood on my deck. The deck was power washed & will be sanded. I was going to use the Arborcoat natural color in a oil base. Is there another brand that I would be better off using since the Arborcoat did not get good reviews?
Look at one of these: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/the-5-best-deck-stain-reviews-and-ratings/
This is actually a good product. This review is completely biased. As for other products I would suggest this or the Behr premium wood coating. I myself prefer the Behr but that is because of price alone.
What you need to remember is regardless of what anyone says a stain for decks is more like paint unless you go transparent. If you go solid it will have a more of a paint look because of the latex in it. It does work and lasts but don’t expect miracles. It is in the elements and on wood. Hot and cold change not only the make of the paint but the wood as well so yes there will be some fading, cracking and peeling overtime, even within a year because not one board is the same
Biased? Our experience with this product is extremely poor so no, it is not biased but from our experience as contractors. In addition, read all the other reviews from consumers complaining here and on other sites about how the product has failed for them.
WORST product I have ever used on decks
Do you have any reviews of arbor coat oil based? Specifically on hardwood?
I used TWP – 2 thin costs last September on my mahogany handrails and it was completely washed away by March of this year. Couldn’t believe it!
Was thinking messmers uv plus or arbor coat oil. Wanted your thoughts.
Nothing will last longer than 1 year for exotic hardwoods. It is an annual clean and reapply: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/ipe-exotic-hardwood-stain-review/
We have not tried Arborcoat on Hardwoods and would not due to all the issues the brand has with their deck stains,
Thanks for the reply! But you haven’t tried the oil based? I would recommend trying it. We have used it on several softer woods with good luck! Very good color retention
We tried the oil-based version and it did not perform very well. Never used it on hardwoods.
use Sikkens. It is amazing. wood looks beautiful & it lasts.
Abject failure. Removed old stain in september. Sanded to 60 grit the week after pressure washing. Lightly washed again 2 days before staining, using fans to maximize the 2 days of drying. Stained (roll and tip) in early october after having 2 dry (post-wash) days, and 2 more days to dry before next rain. Deck was wrecked by february. The wasted money is disappointing; the wasted time is infuriating.
What was the moisture content of the wood when you applied it?
Allowed my pressure treated deck to dry properly . Applied with brush and followed with a rag in other hand. kept a wet edge. Deck is 650 sf. Used 326-30 translucent teak. Also applied to mahogany railing. 3yrs is 100% southern exposure,northern Ma., no shade. Looking great ! Will reapply this summer. My only regret; I had my boards with the grain down but wish I had applied stain to bottom first. All my boards are cupped and hold water. Bummer. Also used the Camo side screw system.
Very pleased !!
i have just been dealing with Benjamin Moore over a serious Aborcoat peeling issue on all horizontal services after 9 months. The local BM rep stated that this was due to the fact that I did not sand with 60 to 80 grit paper, after power washing the deck. It should be note that no were on the product label or in the dealer do they advise that this is a must. I now have to strip the deck, sand and re coat. BM will only replace the stain. The local dealer has offered to help with prep, as he understands what good customer service is all about, something BM does not understand.
BM need to change their labels and advice to advise customer sanding is a must.
A bloody shame they treat customers like this, after spending meg bucks on their products. No longer a loyal customer!
Do you recommend Murphy’s soap for mopping my covered porch with arbor coat stain?
It should work.
I stained my new cedar deck last year with arbor coat transparent stain. It is uneven and I want to fix things. Do I need to strip it all and sand? If yes, what kind of stripping do I need and what grit sand paper? Or can I just restain over the top? Do I need to clean it first and if yes with what?
Best to sand ti all off and start over with a better brand that performs better and is easier to maintain.
What is the the best type of stain to use on PT decking, semitransparent, etc
Worst Product EVER!. Completely ruined the cedar wood. Had to replace all this.Product didn’t last 2 year. Never again.
Before buying any Benjamin Moore product, take a look at the photos of my deck. This is how it is 9 months after receiving two coats of Benjamin Moore stain. The customer service and concern from Benjamin Moore and the local supplier was as bad as the stain.
John Blake Ontario.
Bottom Line…..buy something else. (especially if you are located in the Northeast)
We had our house painted July 2020 including our front and back decks. The paint company recommended Benjamin Moore. The decks were done with Arborcoat solid color stain……..It was disappointing to notice that by November every time it rained the the stain bubbled……..and the front steps……40-50% has peeled off. I have never in my 25 years at this house…..ever seen that happen…….I used other brands of solid deck stain and never had that happen.
The deck was pressure washed a week prior to staining……..
This was the first…..and most likely the last time I will hire someone to stain the decks…….I have read about this issue in other posts and BM reimbursed or provided more product, but I am assuming we’re out the labor cost……what good
does that do?
Other posts mention prep…….I can tell you from experience……prep didn’t make much difference over the years that I have done the work myself…….whether I did 2 days of prep (wash, scrape, dry) or 2 hours of prep…….I usually get 2 years before I add another coat. And heavy traffic areas? 1 year…..
Your timeline doesn’t add up. It’s currently July 2020. November 2020 is still a few months away. Evidence of time travel… I think so. 🙂
can you use this on the exterior wall of a house?
Yes, you should be able to.
How to remove stain from cloth ? Had a can of Arborcoat Exterior waterborne solid deck and stain (red) pour accidentally over a stack of sheets/towels in a closet. Some items only have a splash of stain on them…how to remove?
Please reply. Many thanks,Carol
You cannot remove it from cloth. They are ruined.
Arborcoat Solid is the worst stain I have used. It holds dirt like nothing else. Even people wearing socks leave marks on my deck. Those marks are difficult to remove. Soap and water won’t do it. Only bleach based cleaner will remove the marks. The same goes for pollen stains or staining from leaves. The coating remains soft even after weeks of curing. My advice? Never use this stuff. My advice to Benjamin Moore? Pull it from the market.
Thank you Ken. We share your frustration and your opinion. Any advice on help from BM?
Complete garbage. Had a beautiful deck installed 3 years ago and I then ruined it with this crap. I am now in the process of power sanding it off and staining it with a much better product. Finally, I’m getting the deck I wanted. I have been warning everyone to stay away. Oh, and I’m a huge Benjamin Moore fan. I insist on Benni Moore on all my interior walls. But they screwed the pooch with Arborcoat.
What are you using we are just about to clean an stain a new deck. and were recommend
this product. I would really appreciate your advise. We built a new deck around our in ground pool. which is 20 by 40 . We did the work ourselves,
Its been over a year ( though the winter) IL
I found the Arborcoat stain has poor adhesion qualities. With in 2 months of application it has peeled in numerous sections of my deck. I am going to restain the entire deck again and will try using a Kilz primer prior to using the Arborcoat stain….maybe this time it will remain on the wood…
Benjamin Moore Arbourcoat Transplant Teak looks amazing on my teak covered porch. It rained heavily right after it was applied and we sanded lightly and reapplied with a soft cloth. It has only been two weeks so I’ll need to see how it stands up to the test of time.
IT has been three years now. How does the deck look now, and what have you done to it over the last three years, since you typed this ?
I used Arborcoar Transparent and after two years parts of the deck, underneath the dripline of the roof, are peeling. Many parts of the deck, in shade or less weather, are fine.
Question: What do you recommend that I do to treat this problem?
You would have to strip it all off and apply a new coat if you want it to be even again.
Would you apply a chemical stripper and also sand?
Possibly. The BM Arborcoat is tough to strip so sanding may be needed as well.
Strip or power wash and apply Behr stain from the depot. If the wood and old paint is in really bad shape, Use the Behr solid color stain. You will lose the Beauty of the grain but at least it will be neat and even, and it will last!
Behr has horrible reviews and feedback: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/behr-deckover-review-2015/
Behr Stain is very good, Behr Deckover, IS NOT, Behr Deckover is not a stain, its like a very thick paint. and lots of problems reported, it is a product that has not been on the market many years, and it is a newer type of Deck “paint like” but offers 3 types of textures. with grit levels. Rustoleum has a similar type of product, and that also has problems. But remember the Behr Premium Solid Stain is good, I have applied it on over 2 dozen decks for customers. Have not had one complaint from any of the jobs I had applied it to. Always make sure to power wash a deck before applying stain, and always make sure to let the deck dry 24 hours before staining, and no rain 24 hours after application. People alos must understand, that Transparent stain, Semi-Transparent Stains, last about 2 years…..( deck environment sun, usage, rain/puddling, snow sitting on a deck all affect the longevity of deck stains, no matter what brand. Solid color stains, last longer than transparent, and semi- transparent stains, no matter the brand.
There is a lot of people including us that would disagree with you on this: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/behr-deck-stain-review/
Mainly only on this website as it doesn’t own Behr. Deck Stain Help and all of these domains are owned by the same company running on the same server: TWPrestore-a-deck.com, opwdecks.com, deck-stains.com, defystain.com, concretesealerstore.com, twpstain.com.
DeckStainHelp.com gives the lowest rating to Behr Premium yet it’s Consumer Report’s #1 rated deck stain for several years.
You are uneducated as to who we are and what we do and more importantly how bad the Behr stain is.
As for who we are, you can find that on the very first article on the home page. We fully disclose who we are and always have. Your other assumptions on this are incorrect.
As for Behr, it is just a plain bad stain. Don’t believe us? See the many 1000s of complaints from consumers on this site, Youtube, and more importantly on your mentioned Consumer Reports site. While CR is obviously paid to rate the Behr stain, you will see numerous consumer reviews in the CR site giving it very poor reviews! Don’t believe us, just read the reviews on the CR site.
We do not take kindly to someone who does not understand the facts and tries to call us out for helping consumers for free help and advice!
Arborcoat is easy to apply and looks good for a while. But on parts of my front porch deck and wood shingles on my house, the stain started bubbling and blistering, which looks awful and is very difficult to fix.
My experience is similar to the other posts. Had a brand new pressure treated deck built. Let it dry for eight months. Had a reputable and experienced painter prep and stain the wood and apply clear coat. Cleaned and reapplied clear coat annually per Benjamin Moors directions. Two years later the Arborcoat started mildewing and peeling. Year three I have a mottled finish and big strips started coming off during cleaning. Now I need to strip the deck down to bare wood. Plan to restain with TWP.
Using the Benjamin Moore “stain” was a wasted effort, an exercise in frustration and is costing me money.
Plan on sanding as well to remove fully. Strippers have a limited effect on the Arborcoat.
I used arbor coat semi transparent stain and was surprised by your review. It does not go on like paint at all. The grain of the wood shows through. In fact I used it on my front porch including the stairs. I love it it is maintenance free after 2 years Are you sure you didn’t use the semi solid stain? That goes on more like paint.
Yes, we are sure and many consumers have had the same issues as us. Many complaints in the comments below.
I used arborcoat oil last fall, and the previous fall on our deck. I bought special deck wash, and powerwashed the deck before application. the arborcoat product cost me 50 bucks a gal. and I believe I needed 2 gal (but I have some leftover) for a 12’x16′ decking and all the railings, 3 steps. it was very difficult to apply – it’s thick and sticky and covers poorly. stain needs to constantly be stirred/mixed too, as the oil starts to separate. I recommend buying a mop pad applicator and broom handle for deck applications. It’s a miserable job to do with a brush on your hands and knees. this product streaked. it also looked milky and faded after a year. it had several worn areas (one was from the gutter leaking down on it, the other spot was from wear). every year it needs another coat. i’m sick of dealing with it. this year i saw another deck stain on clearance for 5 dollars at lowes, olympic elite, which i purchased bc i don’t have anything to lose at this point. i was surprised by how much easier to was to apply. and the color matched but looked nicer too… i only over-stained the actual deck (not the railings) and i only used 1/4 gal. I had powerwashed it, lightly sanded it with 80 grit sandpaper, broomed it, and blew it off with the leaf blower first. i cannot comment on the wear bc i just stained it yesterday. we’ll see…
After using the Benjamin Moore stripper and then the B-M Restore, I erred in the middle of our properly prepared 4 y.o. deck. Overlapped, and now we have a board that is darker and more ‘plastic’ looking than the rest of deck. How can I recover from my mess-up? 🙁
If just one board, try sanding it down and restain.
My old GC used this on my new covered porch 1.25″ interlocking pines boards, the boards were painted in their entirey inside, left to dry then installed. My GC didn’t apply the clearcoat and the stain has failed miserably, all boards on the edges are warping. The boards that get zero water by the door are also chipping etc, this stain is absolutely terrible.
I don’t know what to do to fix and what to use next, any advice would be helpful.
The clearcoat would not have mattered. It still would have failed. You will need to sand all to remove and start over.
can i use a belt sander for floors and hand for sides? what stain should I use now?
Use a drum sander for floor and belt/hand sander for the verticals. Once fully sanded off, do a final prep with a deck cleaner and then a wood brightener. Stain one of these brands: https://www.deckstainhelp.com/the-5-best-deck-stain-reviews-and-ratings/
North Vancouver, arborcoat translucent natural applied under ideal conditions to a well ventilated new deck which we allowed to cure for a year, which was then cleaned thoroughly with Thompson’s WaterSeal heavy duty deck cleaner. One year later….the translucent st peeling off in some areas in ribbons. Beyond a complete waste of time and money as now I need to sand off this mess and start all over again !
> peeling off in *some areas* in ribbons.
Stains and paints don’t decide to fail randomly in some places and hold up fine in others. Failure is due to lack of or improper prep.
I do house painting, deck staining, and pressure washing. I’ve used Arborcoat with great success. I do a great deal of prep work including belt sanding and pressure washing. The surface has to be dry, clean of dust and mildew, and free of all other product. If you do a shabby job prepping the surface, you will have difficulty down the road. Don’t paint of mildew, wet wood, or dust.
This Benjamin Moore deck stain Arborcoat is an inferior product. It was applied two years ago and it looked as though it was applied 25 years ago after the first 6 months. Dirt from walking on our grass and onto the deck, including dog paw prints are like glue. Every Mark shows. O called BM customer service and they claimed they have never had that complaint. Dry disappointing because that is simply not true. It was a waste of money plus I had to pay for the deck to be stained. People come over and ask “What happened to the deck?” I reply, “Benjamin Moore Arborcoat deck stain. It’s a substandard product. None of our friends and neighbors will use it because if our deck. It’s a complete waste of money. BM sent me four new cans to say they were sorry. How does that make sense?
EXACTLY the same experience. VER POOR product & we love BM. Lets see hw the Rep handles us.
They make good paint but have no clue how to make a good deck stain.
I have Arborcoat by BM on my deck and every year deal with bubbling and peeling. Can I lightly sand and apply Flood stain over it? I have too much decking to completely remove or is it something I have to continue to deal with every year?
No. You will have to completely remove it before using a different brand. 😥
DON’T USE THIS STAIN! I applied the Arborcoat to my cedar deck railings and posts on a new deck mid-June 2017. I was very careful to apply one thin coat as instructed. Days after application, the stain was still tacky and this was after wiping down any residual. By September 2017 the stain was getting mold spores and appeared some of the stain was coming off (blotchy). I called the local hardware store that recommended this stain and they came out to my house. The hardware store was surprised the stain looked so bad after only a couple months. I’ve lived here for 32 years (CT) and my other deck and my cedar sided house never got mold like this. The hardware store gave me a gallon of bleach based cleaner for free to see if I could clean it. The cleaner didn’t do anything to help along with an aggressive powerwash. Now one year later I’m stuck with this stained cedar that has most of the stain gone and blotchy. Never seen anything like it. My deck boards are mahogany and I’m grateful I didn’t use the Arborcoat on the mahogany. I’ve used Cabot’s semi-transparent on my cedar siding since 1985 and though the formula has changed over the years, I never had a problem. Benjamin Moore has done a disservice to all of us that found this stain to be a problem. I would rather have the stain completely come off the cedar than now having to figuring out how to recover from this mess. Benjamin Moore owes me!
I totally sympathize. Consider Restore-A-Deck Cleaner and Brightener. I live in humid Savannah, GA and am waiting for autumn to clean and stain my deck, so I haven’t used this yet. After much research I chose TWP stain and the manufacturers recommended the Restore-A-Deck cleaning products. This video demo made by a novice convinced me to give the cleaner a try. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Q1mrKbIuXU
I have the same exact issue. Terrible.
Having used BM products at other homes with great success 5+ years without a reapplication, we decided to use this Arborcoat SemiSolid Stain on our existing home. It is being used on the screen enclosed North facing porch as well as the exposed to weather stairs. We have lived in the home 4 years this summer. The deck stain has been applied to the deck for about 3 1/2 of those 4 years. Every year this stain has been a PAIN! Every year after pressure washing the pollen (we have pollen storms in the South East) off of the deck boards the stain either had to be touched up or reapplied completely. I went back into the BM store, which is now out of business, and they told us to think about using a clear coat on the deck. The one difference between the deck of other homes and the deck today is the pressure treated wood. Today’s wood doesn’t have the arsenic content as it used to, thank you environmentalists. I don’t know if that makes a difference in the performance of the stain. However, I want to enjoy the covered porch not continuously work on it. I do believe that the next time we deal with any deck. We’ll consider the TREX deck boards now in a multitude of colors. Cost is way more but my time is worth something also.
Hey guess what don’t use a pressure washer. Use a deck cleaning product, a bristle deck brush and garden hose. I would not recomend the clear coat, once you use that then your stuck with it for good. People just want to slap the stain on and when it fails blame the product. No one ever wants to hear this but proper cleaning and prep is key to success with any acrylic solid stain.
Ive used a pressure washer on 100s of decks beforehand to get it clean. First off 9/10 people dont know the first thing as to how to use a pressure washer and how to clean it. Ive seen some wild jobs done with a pressure washer where i came in and did it myself and did it right. Good clean boards are the key to make sure stain is on and stays on
Do you have to use the top coat sealant?
The clear coat is optional. Talk to your dealer about your specific requirements….
My god the comments on this website never cease to amaze me. Latex obviously do not penetrate in the same way solvent based products do, are film forming and require more prep work end of story. Its 2018 and latex products are the future so get used to doing a bit more prep! Bubbling and peeling are a 100% indicator you did zero prep work and/or painted over a damp surface or other moisture issues. Sand your boards to 80-120 grit or use a wood brightener to open the wood pores, make sure your stuff is dry with a moisture meter, then stain. Check out the pic from “Anthony maldonado”, my dude those boards look like I hired my 5 year old niece to stain them in fact she would do a better job.
Nailed it ^
Seems like there are so many cons to Arborcoat . Having deck powerwashed and re-stained. Should I consider another produck??
We are very unhappy with the look of our deck after using Arborcoat. We had a very experienced painter prepare and stain our deck about a year ago. This spring it is pealing and darkening in many spots. I was not very happy with the initial look of the stain on the wood. It looked very flat and plastic appearing. I would have been ok with that but it is already showing wear after less that 18 months. Very disappointed!
Homeowner called me about there deck I stained back in August last year said the deck was this was a new deck on a newly built house the home allowed the deck to dry and wait before deciding to go ahead with staining the deck and all the deck boards and hand rails are peeling and it’s chipping like a latex paint.
My can of deck stain was in the garage all winter here in Ohio, certainly exposed to some single digit temps. Can says protect from freezing. I want to use it and it looks fine, but has it been damaged?
Possibly, might want to contact BM to make sure.
I used arborcoat on my deck, it turned black from Mold. Sent pictures to Benjamin Moore rep, they do Not stand behind their product! Just pressure washed again and put Sherwin Williams on…. Will NEVER use Benjamin moore products again!
How do you like the SW stain? I have the BM stain right now and thinking about restaining with the SW.
Our experience with BM Arbor Coat solid stain has been horrible…excessive and unnecessary work, major expense and hugely disappointing. I will NEVER use this product again and I urge others to do research before embarking on this kind of project. It was applied to a new treated pine deck after adequate aging…that lasted less than a year. Another attempt several months later resulted in similar failure. Now we will follow the directions of this website and I expect success. A hard lesson learned! Shame on Benjamin Moore for marketing this product!
Use Sherwin Williams, it will cover the Benjamin Moore mess after pressure washing…… I will NEVER use Ben again either!
I stained my decks with Arborcoat last summer on my new decks. The wood was dried for over a year before I stained it. I primed and stained the decks as recommended. The stain is now peeling up after only 6 months and I have now even used them. I did my research and chose Arborcoat. Now I was told I have to strip my decks back to bare wood and start over. If I would have known that I would have to strip and redo my deck every using this product I would have never purchased it. I spent over 400 dollars on the stain which is twice the cost of the other products I researched. I should have used one of those at least it would have been cheaper. Benjamin Moore representative actually did nothing to resolve it only to blame it on the customer. Now it will take days and money to strip the stain off. It allot of time and money staining the deck the first time. It is going to be harder now since it has been stained.
I sanded my PT deck down to bare wood, it was dry and clean and the BM Arborcoat STILL chipped and peeled within 3 months!
I used the Benjamin Moore Arborcoat on my new deck. I let the deck season, cure and used the deck preparation cleaner recommended. The deck looked amazing the first few months after the application. After that, the deck started to get mold between the wood and stain. It looked aweful with black mold spots everywhere. I’ve talked to my stain rep where I bought the stain. The said it’s very rare but it sounds and looks like the stain flash dried before it penetrated the wood. This has been a nightmare to remove. I’ve used multiple other brands over the past 30 years and never had this issue. I’ll never use this product again. I’m over 100 hours in stripping and sanding.