When it comes to wood fences, many property owners have the same question: paint or stain? Both protect fences from the elements and premature aging. To help you decide whether you should paint or stain, here are answers to frequently asked questions on the subject.
What you need to know!
Why should I paint or stain?
A wood fence has to withstand the brunt of rain, snow, sleet, hail, and the beating sun. The primary benefit of painting or staining is the layer of protection they provide from water and weathering. Painting or staining also add visual appeal to fencing. Fences can be treated to blend into the landscape or stand out from it. A transparent or semitransparent stain is a smart choice for a natural look that complements the outdoors. If you want to make a bold statement, choose paint. You’ll have a much wider palette to choose from.
How long do painting and staining last?
No paint or stain lasts forever. Stains tend to last about three years before reapplication is needed. Paint lasts a bit longer. A fresh coat every five years or so should be sufficient to maintain appearance.
Which is easier to apply?
Paints and stains have specific application requirements. Before painting, a wood fence needs to be sanded and primed. If you choose a dark color, you may have to apply two coats of paint to cover it evenly. When staining, the wood soaks up the stain. A second or third coat may be necessary to achieve the desired shade depth.
How long do they take to dry?
Paint typically dries completely within four to eight hours. It may dry faster if the air is dry and the sun is shining. Stains need up to two full days to completely dry, so check the weather forecast and begin the job only when you’ll have several dry days.