This post was updated on January 30, 2023
Olympic Wood Deck stain Reviews 2023
Note for 2023: This review is for the Olympic Maximum Stain + Sealant in One. This is their newer water-based version. For the Oil Based review see: Olympic Maximum Stain Review
OLYMPIC MAXIMUM Deck, Fence & Siding Semi-Transparent Stain provides a subtle color that allows wood’s natural grain and texture to show through. Core-shell hybrid resin technology provides deep stain penetration, waterproofing, and UV defense to strengthen, protect and condition wood fibers, ensuring the wood’s natural beauty lasts.
Recommended for use on properly prepared exterior wood, including decks, fences, siding, railings, outdoor furniture, and other wood surfaces.
Note: Olympic Elite Stain is the same stain, just a different label for different stores.
Olympic Maximum Stain + Sealant in One Stain Rating (1-10)
Appearance After Initial Stain Application: 6
– The Olympic Maximum Stain + Sealant in One is a water-based acrylic oil hybrid. What that really means is that it is a waterborne stain. This stain applies like the majority of water-based stains in that it is a film-forming stain that does not penetrate into the wood deeply. The appearance of the Cedar natural tone on the deck was a mild orange color. We applied evenly but the final look was uneven as some of the stain dried into the wood and some did not.
Preventing UV Graying at 2 Year Mark: 8
– After 2 years the Olympic Maximum in the water-based version did a fairly decent job with only about 30% fading
Wear/Tear and Peeling: 5
– This stain had worn about 50% on the surface and handrails. Not a very good showing here.
Cost Per Square Foot: 6
– We used 10 gallons to cover the 800 square foot deck and railings at a cost of $.53 a foot. Coverage per gallon was closer to 150 sq. feet per gallon
Preventing Mold/Mildew/Algae: 9
– Olympic Maximum Stain + Sealant is a water-based stain that did an excellent job and preventing mold and algae growth. This is typical of most water-based stains.
Ease of Application: 6
– Average to apply. We applied 1 thin coat as the manufacturer suggests. The coverage was poor and not even close to the specs. Application with a stain pad did cause some overlapping.
Color Shifting (darkening) after 2 Years: 8
– The OLYMPIC® MAXIMUM lightens in color instead of darkening.
Difficulty of Reapplication: 6
– Since the stain had worn unevenly we needed to strip off the rest and start over. This proved slightly difficult but the old stain did remove after a couple of attempts with the stain remover
Overall Score Olympic Maximum Stain + Sealant in One at 2 Year Period: 6.75
– The Olympic Maximum has moved away from oil-based to water-based stains and like many other brands, the performance has gone downhill. If you can still find the oil-based versions in your local Lowes or Sears, then consider yourself lucky. If not, there are many better stains out there.
Important Note: OLYMPIC® MAXIMUM claims a 6 years warranty for decks. Warranties that claim ridiculous amounts of 5, 6, and 7 years for exterior wood are using this for marketing. Do not believe these false advertisements.
Olympic Deck Stain Photos
Where To Buy: Lowes
Cost: $43.99 per Gallon, $219.99 per 5 Gallon Pail
Stain Type: Semi-Transparent Acrylic Water Based
Available Colors: Transparent Natural, Transparent Cedar, Clove Brown, Slate Gray
Application Temperature: 45-95 F
Coats Required: 1 Coat
Coverage Per Gallon: 150-250 sq. ft
Application Tools: Sprayer, Pad, Brush, Roller – Back brush as needed.
Dry Time: 24 Hours
Cleanup: Soapy Water
VOC Compliant: 250 Compliant in All 50 States
Test Deck Stats:
Deck Wood Type: Pine Deck
Deck Square Footage: 600
UV Exposure: Full sun
How Many Years Tested: 2 Years
Stain Color Used: Cedar Naturaltone
*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.
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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.