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Old 04-30-2011, 05:41 PM   #1
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


I think I have just ruined my mahogany decking. I have a new covered screen porch that was built last fall. The latex weather sealer that was on the mahogany decking failed at the start of winter. I wanted to strip it off and then apply new sealer. I used Behr Premium Deck, Fence, & Siding Stain & Finish Stripper, and it turned the mahogany black. I then used Behr Premium Deck, Fence, & Siding 2-in-1 Wood Prep as it claims to neutralize the stripper and brighten the wood. However, the mahogany is still all black. Is there anything I can do to restore the wood to its natural color, or is it ruined? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

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Old 04-30-2011, 08:21 PM   #2
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


this is really unfortunate. this may have happened due to a natural staining that happens with wood that contains tannins/tanic acids. this is done in wood working all of the time. all you need is tanic acid, iron and water. this is noticeable on fences when you see the black streaks running down from all of the nail heads. if you have a high iron content in your water, this could have been the cause or if iron nails were used to build the deck. do not try to clean it off with soap. soap will permanately lock this stain in. normally this staining does not go very deep. you should try to clean it with dish washer detergent mixed with clean water and a nylon deck brush. it will take some scrubbing but it can be removed most of the time. oxalic acid crystals may be needed to get some of the tougher stains. Home Depot may have these crystals in the tile section near the sulfamic acid crystals used for removing grout haze on tiles. i dont feel that this was caused by your paint remover.

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Old 05-01-2011, 08:46 PM   #3
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


Mike, Thank you so much for the information. I used the oxalic acid and it worked on some of the decking; those areas don't have the black stains anymore. Unfortunately, on other parts, it seems as though the stripper did not fully remove some of the original sealer, so the oxalic acid did not get to the wood and those areas still have black stains. I don't know what to do now. I am afraid to use the stripper again because I don't want to make it worse. It is my understanding that mahogany should not be sanded as it would close the pores and then new sealer would not be absorbed. Do you (or anyone else) have any suggestions? Thanks again.
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Old 05-02-2011, 02:27 AM   #4
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


I am glad the the acid worked for you. Just out of curriosity, did you try the dishwasher detergent. As far as sanding the wood, I can not give you an honest answer on that. I have never heard of that but that doesn't mean that it isn't true. You may want to start a new thread with something to do with wood working. I think that you will be safe to continue with the use of the stripper if you work in smaller areas and don't let it dry on the surface.
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Old 05-02-2011, 01:34 PM   #5
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


Mike, I did not try the dishwasher detergent, I went straight for the acid. It does not appear that the discoloration is very deep in the wood as you mentioned in your first response. I will try dishwasher detergent, water, and a scrub brush next, on a small spot first. If no luck with that, I may try sanding. I read on one website that sanding mahogany with a power sander was not a good idea, but on other sites, people say they have done it and had no issues. Itís hard to know what to believe. Thanks again for your help. I appreciate it.
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Old 05-02-2011, 01:49 PM   #6
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


From what I've read here, sanding will only close the pores if you use too-fine of a sandpaper. If you stick to the really gritty stuff (like 60), you should be able to sand it and reseal. At least that's what everyone has said in the other decking threads (though I don't think any specifically mention mahogany).
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Old 05-03-2011, 09:45 AM   #7
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


hyunelan2 - Thank you for the information. I probably would have bought the wrong sandpaper. I'll try sanding and also the dishwasher detergent on a couple of different spots and see which works best. I have over 200 square feet of decking to prepare for new sealer. Using a sander would probably be a lot faster. The nails should not be an issue either since the deck is fairly new.
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Old 05-03-2011, 10:51 AM   #8
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


Just be sure to practice in a small, less-noticeable area. If the sanding doesn't work out, you don't want a bad spot right in the middle of your deck.
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Old 05-08-2011, 08:14 PM   #9
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To follow up, the mahogany is in good shape now. I sanded all the decking using a 3" x 18" belt sander with 50 grit sandpaper. This made a big improvement. I then used the 2-in-1 Wood Prep solution again to brighten the wood a little more and prepare it for new sealer. After letting the wood dry for 24 hours, I applied two coats of Behr Waterproofing Wood Finish. Hopefully, I'm done with this for a while - the label claims the finish will last two years. We'll see!
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Old 05-09-2011, 01:16 AM   #10
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


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Originally Posted by KarenA1114 View Post
To follow up, the mahogany is in good shape now. I sanded all the decking using a 3" x 18" belt sander with 50 grit sandpaper. This made a big improvement. I then used the 2-in-1 Wood Prep solution again to brighten the wood a little more and prepare it for new sealer. After letting the wood dry for 24 hours, I applied two coats of Behr Waterproofing Wood Finish. Hopefully, I'm done with this for a while - the label claims the finish will last two years. We'll see!



Good luck with that.
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Old 05-09-2011, 06:16 AM   #11
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


yes, the label will probably last two years. as far as the product behind the label, good luck with that. maybe i should have went further in my last post to you by recommending a good sealer for your deck.i was only trying to help with the problem that you were facing at the time. we seem to get a lot of heat for steering people away from Berh paints.
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:58 AM   #12
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


I would welcome suggestions for a good sealer to use next time. I live in the northeast. I used the Behr because I had already purchased it and wasn't sure what else to use. Consumer Reports' highest rated product is a solid stain, which I don't want. I wanted a clear finish, no tint, but those seem rare. Cabot has a sealer that says it's crystal clear, but I wasn't sure if it is a better quality product than Behr. The one I used is transparant/natural, which has a yellowish tint. I can live with it for now.
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Old 05-09-2011, 04:09 PM   #13
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


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I would welcome suggestions for a good sealer to use next time. I live in the northeast. I used the Behr because I had already purchased it and wasn't sure what else to use. Consumer Reports' highest rated product is a solid stain, which I don't want. I wanted a clear finish, no tint, but those seem rare. Cabot has a sealer that says it's crystal clear, but I wasn't sure if it is a better quality product than Behr. The one I used is transparant/natural, which has a yellowish tint. I can live with it for now.

Better quality product? No question about it. Do some research and see for yourself.
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Old 05-09-2011, 04:43 PM   #14
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


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we seem to get a lot of heat for steering people away from Berh paints.
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Old 05-09-2011, 07:42 PM   #15
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Mahogany decking has turned black, need help


The next time I would use Cabott Australian Timber Oil. It works great for hardwoods and accents mahogony nicely. I would stay away from the Behr Cleaner and Stains in the future. The next time strip the deck, clean with a per carbonate deck cleaner, such as Wolman Deck Brite, brighten and apply one coat of a quality penetrating stain

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