Defy Extreme Clear Wood Stain is the premier “crystal clear” decking finish on the market. The Defy Extreme Clear utilizes nano particles of zinc oxide into their formula. This is the same product that is used in sunscreen. These zinc oxide particles filter the UV radiation from the sun, prolonging the oxidation (graying) of the wood cells.
We tested the Defy Extreme on a wooden fence. Decking surfaces may have slightly different results.
*Note: Defy Extreme Clear Wood Stain is an “untinted” version of the Defy Extreme Stain. Clear wood deck stains traditionally will not last as long as a stain that has a tint when it comes to preventing UV graying.
Defy Extreme Clear Wood Stain Scores (1-10)
Appearance After Initial Stain Application: 9
– Defy Extreme Clear Stain did not change the appearance of the wood at all after drying. The Defy extreme Clear goes on the wood milky white but then dries clear without enhancing the wood or filming on top of the wood.
Preventing UV Graying at 2 Year Mark: 6
– After 2 years the wood fence had retained close to 60% of the initial color. There was some graying of the wood that had southern exposure. Consider using the Defy Extreme Stain in one of the three tints if you would like better UV protection.
Wear/Tear and Peeling: 9
– The Defy Clear had no wearing on the vertical fence. There was a small amount of peeling on the horizontal cross bars. On further inspection, it seemed as if the sprinkler system had worn off some of the finish.
Cost Per Square Foot: 7
– Defy Extreme Clear costs about $40 per gallon. We used 10 gallons of the finish to apply 2 coats to our 800-foot test deck. The cost was a little high but take in consideration that the wood fence was extremely absorbent. The first coat soaked into the wood within a few minutes of application.
Preventing Mold/Mildew/Algae: 10
– No mold or mildew was growing on or in the Defy Extreme Clear
Ease of Application: 8
– We applied the Defy Clear with an airless sprayer. The product is very “thin’ in consistency. Similar to as if applying water. The first coat of finish soaked into the wood immediately. The second coat took a little longer and we did not back wipe a few drips. There were no noticeable overlap marks.
Color Shifting (darkening) after 2 Years: 9
– The Defy Extreme does not darken in color but rather fades and turned slightly gray in color at the two-year mark.
Difficulty of Reapplication: 7
– A thorough cleaning of the wood would be needed to remove the graying. This should be followed with a wood brightener to lighten even more. There would be no need to strip as the Defy Clear faded evenly without any heavy peeling.
Overall Score Defy Extreme Clear Wood Stain at 2 Year Period: 8.125
– Defy Extreme Clear is a great choice if you want to use a finish that will retain the natural color of the wood. We did find though that the Defy Extreme Stain in one of the tints will prevent UV graying 2-3 times longer than the Defy Extreme Clear. If you are looking for a true clear wood deck stain and you do not mind refinishing every 12-24 months, then Defy Extreme Clear is the correct product to use.
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Cost: $39.99 per Gallon, $199.99 per 5 Gallon Pail
Stain Type: Crystal Clear – Water Based
Available Colors: Clear
Application Temperature: 45-95 F
Coats Required: 2 Coats. “Wet on Wet”
Coverage Per Gallon: 100-150 sq. ft
Application Tools: Sprayer, Pad, Brush, Roller
Dry Time: 2-4 Hours
VOC Compliant: 250 Compliant in all States
More Info: Product Data
Manufacturer: Saver Systems
Test Fence Stats:
Location of Fence: Toledo, Ohio
When Tested: October 2009
Fence Wood Type: Rough Sawn Pine Fence
Fence Square Footage: 800 Square feet
UV Exposure: 90% Full Sun, 10% Shade. South facing.
How Many Years Tested: 2 Seasons
Stain Color Used: Clear
*All products tested and results are from our experience. We offer no guarantee of similar results. Take into consideration that results may differ due to different wood types, exposure to UV radiation, and natural weathering.