This post was updated on April 5, 2022
Will Darker Color Deck Stains Will Last Longer?
DeckStainHelp.com remains the Internet’s go-to site for all things exterior wood surface restoration related. Below we explain why darker color deck stains will last longer, so if you are looking for a long-lasting stain, choose a darker color. We encourage customer interaction on our site, so feel free to leave us a comment below.
The lifetime of a deck stain is determined by several different factors. Weather, climate, sun exposure, and foot traffic are some of the main factors that will determine the longevity of a deck stain. Out of these main key factors, sun exposure is probably one of the most damaging elements to a stain’s integrity. Harmful UV rays can break down the protecting elements of a wood stain in a season or two.
Most deck stains provide water protection but not all of them will provide UV protection. When exterior wood is exposed to the sun it becomes discolored and faded. The top layer of wood fibers turns gray as they are damaged by harmful UV radiation. One key element in the fight against sun damage can be the amount of pigment found in the stain. Color pigments will act like sunscreen and provide a certain amount of sun protection.
Darker Color Stains Will Last Longer
The more pigment in the stain formula, the more it will protect against sun damage. For example, a completely clear wood stain will provide no UV protection at all. A heavily pigmented stain will provide a lot of UV protection. More pigment can be found in darker color stains, therefore they will last longer. A very light transparent natural color stain will fade and wear off much faster than a darker color stain.
At the same time, very heavy pigmented stains can be harder to maintain. Some stains, like very heavy pigmented solid stains that are almost like paint, can have other issues like peeling and cracking. The trick is to find a penetrating decking stain that gives you the appearance you want, is user-friendly, easy to apply, and will provide an adequate amount of UV protection. Penetrating fully into the wood grain means you have little to no peeling or wearing.
Just remember that darker color stains will last longer than lighter color stains for transparent, semi-transparent, and semi-solids.
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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.