My Cart


Staining Wood 101

Posted on

Maybe you’ve recently built a new deck, porch, or are just looking at the bare appearance of a wooden shed in your backyard. What is wood staining? How do you stain wood? Should you hire some Ottawa Painters to take care of it? We delve into these questions and more below, in this week's post on how to stain wood 101! 

Wood stain is a type of paint that is used to color wood by soaking pigment into wood fibers with a solvent and then having it set and bind to the wood (hunker,2019). Individuals will use stain on wood to achieve a different colour without having to apply coloured paint over top. The main use of stain is to color wood and also offer a layer of protection to the wood from the elements such as harmful UV rays. Stain helps reflect the UV rays rather than absorb them, which can cause fading or discoloration to the wood. Stain can also protect the wood from mold and mildew.

It is important to stain wood properly because if applied incorrectly  it can lead to blotching or tackiness. Follow along for the next few steps to learn how to properly stain your wood surface easily and effectively. 

Pro Tips: In order to get the results you want, apply a wet coat of stain and wipe off the excess before it dries. Use an old rag to apply the stain to achieve better results. Wiping away any excess stain before the stain dries is an important step as  leaving excess stain behind can lead to blotching. 

Steps to Stain Wood

Step 1: The first step is to choose stain and conditioners that are compatible with each other. For example, they should both have the same base; ie oil-based stain with an oil-based conditioner or water-based stain with a water-based product. 

Step 2: Before staining the entire piece of wood you are working on, test your products on a scrap piece of wood to see how dark or light the stain will turn out.

Step 3: Now it is time to properly condition the piece of wood you are wanting to stain. Sand the wood in the direction of the grain evenly. Wipe off the excess saw dust with a damp cloth.

Step 4: Cover the wood with wood conditioner by dipping a rag into the conditioner and completely covering the surface. Wait 10-15 minutes before wiping off the excess conditioner from the wood surface. Leave the conditioner to dry for half an hour (or as directed on the label of the wood conditioner). 

Step 4: Applying the Stain. Once the conditioner is dry, it is time to sand the wood surface again. Using a 220 grit piece of sandpaper, sand in the direction of the grain and wipe away the excess saw dust. Before applying the stain ensure you are stirring the stain thoroughly. Using a rag, spread the stain evenly in the same direction each time. Spread the stain evenly in thin layers. Wait four hours before adding an additional coat of stain. Ensure the stain is dry before moving to the next step.

Step 5: The final step, although it is not necessary, adding a finishing coat to your wood surface to seal it ensures the wood surface longevity and durability over the long term.

Seem like a bit much for a DIY project? Let us know, we’d be happy to help!

Hello You!

Join our mailing list