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Old 06-04-2018, 08:45 PM   #1
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How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


Hello,

I am having my cedar siding replaced and hired a (highly rated) contractor as it's a bit out of skill set. They used a Sherwin-Williams solid stain. They stained the boards prior to placing and then touched up afterwards. However, the touch up spots did not blend in with the original coat and the manager told me they needed more $$$$ for a second coat to blend it in. They said they "never seen this before". A strong sense of a scam came over me and asking more questions found out they only applied one initial coat. I got a second opinion from a different contractor company renovating my bathrooms in parallel and I also called Sherwin-Williams and they all told me a second coat is very highly recommended, 1 coat is not right. One of the bathroom members even went out and was even criticizing them for it, which was kind of funny.

I fought the owner about it, that this wasn't my problem and never was told this upfront of the original quote. He gave me a much lower cost but this still feels not right. They also tried to hide a cracked board from me, told me they didn't notice it even though I saw a big steak of touch-up paint on it where they attempted to hide it. So I can only half trust them anyways.

I am surprised because they are highly rated on Angie's List and got good reviews. Is 1 coat a normal thing?

Thanks for any help
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:56 PM   #2
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Re: How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


In over 40 years in the paint biz and I can count on one hand how many times I've only applied one coat. Two coats gives the best coverage and protection. If they used something like Woodscapes, it's a great product. Two coats and you will get a good 8-10 years before having to re-do it.
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:13 AM   #3
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Re: How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


I've done some one coat jobs over the years but in the end, making the job look right was my responsibility! Unless I expected issues and informed the customer prior to starting the job I figured it was up to me to make it look right. More than once I've bid a 2 coat job and had to apply 3 in some areas to make it look right.


Is there a written contract? if so, what does it specify?
Personally, if a contractor failed to do the job to my satisfaction I'd hire someone else to fix it before I'd pay him more.
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Old 06-05-2018, 05:46 AM   #4
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Re: How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


Not a lick of the resemblance of being a painter, is in me. So I have often wondered about this topic. I know some stains have a sealer built in them. So to me, if I applied a stain with sealer in it, the second coat would not be soaking in to the wood anyway ? How does this work anyway ? Do they make stains with no sealers in them ?
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Old 06-05-2018, 11:01 AM   #5
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Re: How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


@Gregsoldtruck79 , "sealer" is one of those terms like "enamel." It can mean just about anything, especially in the painting world. Each brand/type of sealer/stain has its own set of directions for application. Some are "wet on wet" applications where a coat is applied and before it is dry, another coat is applied for maximum soak-in ability. Once those types of sealers dry, you would be correct, applying another coat would just lay on the surface. CWF-UV from Flood Co is like that. Solid stains, on the other hand, are more like paint and require 2 coats just like paint. They don't soak in like stains did back in the old days.

So, I guess I didn't really answer your question other than to say, each has its own set of rules to follow to get maximum performance.
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Old 06-05-2018, 07:43 PM   #6
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Re: How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


Here's a story that goes against the grain.
My parent's house. BTW I'm not a painter. Vertical t&g redwood siding in NJ. From the 50's, solid stain and maybe company called mcclosky with dark brownish/reddish color. By the time they asked me, oil based stains were gone. I used water based cabot. I think I used a primer first I applied 3 coats. Excluding the primer, 2 finish coats were a must. I am pretty sure that stain is over 20 years old (reviewing my age, that stain could be near 30 and, I don't know how, it doesn't look faded. It's also not chalking. The gist is that stains don't have to be considered short term. But about 10 yrs is all anybody would say.

As for your problem, a paint job means the surface must look presentable, finished and last as long as the maker says, as long as you don't have leaks, tree branches hitting it, etc. Blotches don't count. 1 coat, even if the can says 1 coat coverage or primer mixed in (and I don't know if such exist in the stain world), on bare wood will not work. If the can said 1 coat, it should say over a primer or such. Depends on you now. You can take the painter to the small claims court. As with other problems in the forums, send a letter to the painter with a return signature. Take photos of the work. Complain to angie's list and BBB. If the painter is willing to finish the job, I would stand over their shoulders.
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Old 06-06-2018, 05:19 AM   #7
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Re: How many coats of stain needed for cedar siding?


Normally a primer isn't needed under a solid stain but there are times it's prudent to use an oil base primer first.
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