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Whether you’re thinking about installing a new wood fence or looking for ways to liven up an older fence, tintable wood stains are an option to consider. Many homeowners aren’t aware colorful stains exist, and the design possibilities they offer are endless!

Paint vs. Stain

You might be wondering why tintable stains are a better choice for fencing than paint. While both will give you dozens of color choices, stain is better because of how it ages. You will need to reapply stain every few years to keep the look fresh, but you don’t need to worry about the fence looking unsightly if you can’t get to the job for a while.

That’s because stain sinks into the wood while paint sits on top. As paint becomes weathered, it tends to chip and peel; this doesn’t happen with stain.

Choosing a Color

This is the fun part! Tintable stains come in a rainbow of colors. It’s not a problem if your local home improvement store carries tintable stains but doesn’t carry the color you want; they can mix it for you just as they would paint.

As you think about colors, keep in mind the other design features of your home’s exteriors and the size of the fence. A bright color that might look great on a smaller fence may lose some of its charm on a fence that covers more area.

If you’re unsure how a certain color will look, it’s a good idea to try a small test area in a place that isn’t easily visible.

Semi-Transparent vs. Full Coverage

 In addition to selecting a color, you’ll also have to decide whether to go with semi-transparent tintable stain or full coverage. As the name implies, you’ll be able to see some of the variations from the wood grain if you use a semi-transparent stain.

The full coverage option gives you a look more like paint—especially if you apply more than one coat. This provides the benefit of a painted look in a stain that, as mentioned above, will not peel.

Applying the Stain

You need to decide whether you want to make this a DIY project or hire a professional. It’s not difficult job, but it can be time-consuming, especially when staining a large fence. If you choose to do it yourself, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • If you’re staining a new wood fence, wait for 3 to 4 months to give the posts time to dry.
  • If you’re staining an older fence, have it pressure washed first.
  • You’ll need more stain than you might think. Since the stain seeps into the wood, it typically takes more stain than it would paint to cover the same area.
  • Only use brushes intended for staining. Regular paint brushes should not be used to apply stain.
  • Most stains require several dry days before and after staining. There are “all-weather” stains that only require 24 hours of no rain prior to staining and that are rain-ready in just 8 hours.
  • If you’re only staining one side of the fence, be careful about going too deep between the slats to prevent it from looking sloppy on the side you’re not staining.
  • If you have a large amount of fence to stain, don’t make it a one-day job. There is nothing wrong with spreading it over a few weekends.
  • Consider renting an airless sprayer instead of brushing on the stain. This will make the project go much faster. Just check with the paint pros at your hardware store to verify the stain you select is intended for use with a sprayer.

Thinking About a New Fence?

A new fence is a smart investment in your home that adds privacy and curb appeal—and now you know a fence is also an opportunity to add some color to your home’s exterior! Integrity Fence provides professional installation of new fencing in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and other Hampton Roads communities, and we deliver our services with a level of customer care that’s getting hard to find.

Call 757.500.9011 today or fill out our online form now to schedule a free consultation and accurate cost estimate. You can also get started online by using our simple roofing cost estimator.

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