Share This Article Now

How to Choose the Right Exterior Stain

Choosing the Right Type of Exterior Stain

When it comes to staining your exterior project, selecting the correct type of stain is just as important as choosing the colour. Read on to determine how to protect your investment by using the right products from your Benjamin Moore Paint Shop.

Six types of natural wood with Cedar coloured stain applied.

Consider the Type of Wood

Before you start, it’s essential to know what kind of surface you’re working with. There are many types of natural wood and each will impact the final look of your stain. Pressure-treated, being the most commonly used, will appear much darker when the stain is applied compared to a lighter wood like white pine.

Consider the Age

New wood will be more forgiving with lighter stains than aged wood, as a darker stain accentuates imperfections like dings and scratches.

For older surfaces, cleaning is an integral part of staining success. Getting rid of old mildew, unwanted BBQ grease, loose wood fibres, dirt, and dust will make the staining process much easier. Products like RESTORE, REMOVE, CLEAN and BRIGHTEN from Benjamin Moore will help remove unwanted dirt and prepare the surface to achieve the best results.

Decide the Opacity

Can of semi-transparent Arborcoat stain

Arborcoat Semi-Transparent Stain. Great for horizontal surfaces.

Can of Arborcoat solid stain

Arborcoat Solid Stain. Great coverage for older woods.

Do you want to see the wood grain or cover it completely? We’ve got all of the options covered. The most popular opacity’s are translucent, semi-transparent and solid, each having different results.

We do recommend using semi-transparent for horizontal pieces, like floorboards and steps as it’s more forgiving in high-traffic areas. In contrast, a solid stain is generally more popular for aged decks as it hides more imperfections in the wood.

Choose a Colour

Sidings & Railings: Seagull Gray ES-72 Solid
Trim: Fairview Taupe HS-85 Solid
Door & Floor: Cedar ES-40 Translucent
Ceiling: Teak ES-30 Translucent

Arborcoat is Benjamin Moore’s most popular stain with various colours and opacities. Translucent stain is available in 9 ready-made colours, semi-transparent has a selection of 75 and solid is tintable in over 2000 Benjamin Moore colours.

Keep in mind that choosing a darker shade draws more heat, which can reduce the stain’s durability. Therefore, choosing a lighter colour option should make your stain last longer.

If you’re looking for serious curb appeal, try a two-tone deck! You can achieve a trendy modern look by using semi-transparent for horizontal boards and solid stain for vertical boards.

Our experts are Here to Help you choose and pair colours to prepare your home’s exterior for summer!

Drop by a Paint Shop Near You >>