Easy Guide To Deck & Siding Staining: Choosing The Right Stain

Easy Guide To Deck & Siding Staining: Choosing The Right Stain - Gilford Hardware & Outdoor Power Equipment

Choosing the Right Stain Gilford Hardware 

You've finally decided, It's time to Stain the House or Deck. It doesn't matter much if it's brand new, or years old. It's time for a change of color; Not to mention the mildew stains, flaking, and wood fibers cracking is starting to get to you. It's really screwing up the aesthetic of the house. Now is the time.

You've never done this before, maybe you've seen a few videos online or on TV. This is the real guide to Deck & Siding Staining, Follow our easy steps and you'll be through this easily. 

The First Question Everyone Asks is: How Do I Choose The Right Stain?

There are a couple different ways you can answer this question:

The Main Three Things you need to know about Stain are Color, Opacity and Type

Stain Opacity

       Solid: Total Coverage of the Wood & Grain, Gives MAXIMUM Protection

Barn Red Solid Stain Cabot  Burnt Hickory Stain Solid Cabot Gilford Hardware   Chestnut Stain Solid cabot Gilford Hardware

       Semi-Solid:  Adds Extra Pigment, Can still see some of the wood grain, though not very much adds longevity

Rocky Tundra Semi-Solid Stain Cabot Gilford Hardware  Driftwood Grey Semi Solid Stain Gilford Hardware  Barn Red Stain Gilford Hardware Semi Solid

       Semi-Transparent: Lightly Pigmented, you can see more wood grain then semi-solid, and increases protection of the wood. 

Foghorn Semi Transparent  barn red semi transparent  


       Wood Toned Stain & Finishes: Softly Pigmented for Natural wood grain, a slight tint of color. Adds protection of the wood.

heartwood cabot gilford hardware  natural gilford hardware  

       Clear Stain:  Adds water repellency, with zero-color, protects the wood.

 Stain Color Gilford Hardware

 Very simple, the Color you want to Stain the wood, this can be an easy decision or take awhile, but finding the right color is important, don't overlook this! 

 Finding a color is a breeze:

If your Deck or Siding is already stained, you might already know the color. If you don't you can bring a sample of the deck or siding (large flaked off pieces, pieces of the siding, or decking) Gilford Hardware & Outdoor Power Equipment can help you match the exact color. 

Color Charts:  There are color charts available at Gilford Hardware & Outdoor Power Equipment. You can also borrow fan decks to take home so you can decide on a color. 

Color Matching: Gilford Hardware is equipped with a Datacolor Spectrometer which can get the color codes, and formulate almost any existing color. It gets tricky when Stains have different opacities.

Oil base stains:

generally provide higher penetra the wood to provide greatetection from water absorption. However, they have a greater VOC content and require the use of solvents for cleanup.

Water or latex base stains:

Are better at retaining color longer, however commonly sit on top of the wood like paint, and do not penetrate as deep into the wood. This normally requires stripping the finish off before applying a new stain.

Hybrid oil and latex base stains :

Offer the best of both worlds, including higher absorption into the wood, however decrease VOC content material and easier cleanup with soap and water.

Brand and Quality Stain Gilford Hardware

To understand the Quality of Stain, you first need to understand that Stains are made from the same four basic ingredients as paint volatile, pigment, solvent and binder.

Volatile is the vehicle that carries the solids onto the substrate surface.

Pigment is the coloring

Solvent is the Liquid which the Pigment is dissolved into

Binder helps the Pigment adhere to the wood

High Quality Wood Stain Contains a good ratio of all four of these ingredients. Too much or too little of any of these can create a lesser stain.  This is normally  reflected in the price. Unlike some products, most of the time you are actually getting what you pay for.

There are many brands of Side & Decking Stain Available on the Market Today. Are most of them good? Yes, Most Brands will do the job, but will they last? do they actually protect the wood? Is the color correct or does it look 'off'?  Our Top picks for Deck & Siding Stains (In no particular order) :


Sikkens Proluxe Gilford Home Center

Arborcoat by Benjamin Moore:

Arborcoat Stain Available at Gilford Hardware & Outdoor Power Equipment

Cabot Stain:

Cabot Stain Gilford Hardware

You've chosen the correct stain, color, and opacity, now onto the next chapter, Supplies & Preparation 

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The Gilford Hardware and Outdoor Power Equipment blog posts exclusively reflect the views of Gilford Hardware and Outdoor Power Equipment and do not necessarily reflect those of the device manufacturers. Please be aware that product availability, specifications, and suggested uses are subject to change. For the most recent details, always refer to the manufacturer's website and product manual.