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I have a large deck that was stained by the previous owner. The previous stain was Behr Solid Stain Acrylic based. The finish has probably been on for around 5 years and it is peeling, fading and very dirty. I am leaning towards an oil based Cabot stain to refinish. I am also planning on powerwashing, scrubbing dirty areas and sanding off any chipping areas of the deck before I apply the new stain. Does anyone have any results with this scenario? Does anyone recommend a different approach? (I am trying to avoid priming and based on what I have read the oil-based new stain should soak in but because of the quality issues with Behr I am unsure if this approach will last.) The deck is on the south side of the house with full sun 100% of the time.
 

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paper hanger and painter
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I have a large deck that was stained by the previous owner. The previous stain was Behr Solid Stain Acrylic based. The finish has probably been on for around 5 years and it is peeling, fading and very dirty. I am leaning towards an oil based Cabot stain to refinish. I am also planning on powerwashing, scrubbing dirty areas and sanding off any chipping areas of the deck before I apply the new stain. Does anyone have any results with this scenario? Does anyone recommend a different approach? (I am trying to avoid priming and based on what I have read the oil-based new stain should soak in but because of the quality issues with Behr I am unsure if this approach will last.) The deck is on the south side of the house with full sun 100% of the time.

Don't use it.:no:
Where are you?
 

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I have never understood why someone would build a deck that is in sun.Maybe they were sunbathers, I don't know.I think your approach would work fine with a solid color stain.
 

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Yes oil stain is the way to go for any walking sufaces. I had the exact same situation when my GF bought her house. Get all the old stain off first and some 36 grit sandpaper and a palm sander made really quick work of it for me.
 

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Deck Staining Pro
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Most of the projects we do with peeling solid we prime first and then top coat. At least that way you have better shot of avoiding peeling when going over a questionable previous stain that may continue to peel and pull the new stain off with it.
 

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Most of the projects we do with peeling solid we prime first and then top coat. At least that way you have better shot of avoiding peeling when going over a questionable previous stain that may continue to peel and pull the new stain off with it.
I do not recommend priming underneath a stain, atleast not an oil stain that by design will wear away over time. Now if you prime underneath an oil stain when it starts to wear away you will see the primer underneath, not to mention you are inhibiting the stain's abaility to penetrate the wood properly.
 

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Deck Staining Pro
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Im talking about solid stains here where penetration is already ruined by having an existing solid stain on top. Thats why I ask him whether he is talking about an oil based solid stain or what we traditionally consider oil as a semi transparent. We have had problems only doing two coats of an oil solid over a film forming latex already on the deck.
 

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Painting Company, NY
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When dealing with failed stain you want to strip and remove all of the old stain. A sodium hydroxide based deck stripper will remove the stain. Use a pressure washer with 500-800psi. You don't need, nor do you want high pressure when dealing with wood restoration. After using a sodium hydroxide stripper you will need to neutralize with an acid, such as citralic. You will also need a nylon brush to agitate. Be careful using the stripper if this is the route you choose. Follow instructions. We strip all stain off of decks, siding and log homes prior to staining if the stain has not been maintained and is failing. Once you stain your deck follow up once or twice a year with a cleaning and probably every other year with a maintenance coat. You will also want to be sure that the deck is dry prior to applying stain.
 

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You are going to have to strip off all the old Behr, look for RipIt or HD80 followed by washing with an acid to neutralize. Strip until all the Behr is gone. What color was the Behr? Red is almost impossible to fully remove.
I have had customers with odd color decks of Behr, bright blue, silver, and had to do multiple strips of the acylic finish to remove so do not be surprised that a lot of work is involved. Better yet hire a pro to do it correctly as strippers are VERY DANGEROUS to work with.
Now about the finish. Cabots I would not recommend no matter what Consumer Reports tells you. Look at what the pros use.
 

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Get yourself some 36 or 40 grit sandpaper and palm sander and you will be shocked how quick that old stain will come up. It will also strip the top layer of dried out wood and leave you a great surface for painting. Unless you are going to use the full strength stuff the pro's use that DOES eat holes in your skin the stippers are weak.

I spent a whole day using the weaker DIY strippers on my girlfriends large deck a couple years ago and got maybe 25% of the remaining stain off. The next day I used 36 grit and had the whole deck done in less that 4 hours ready to stain.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Update: There are quite a few questions in the replies and will do my best to handle them.

I am outside of Chicago so the deck gets all the weather elements. Also, the deck is big, 36 ft x 12 ft with some stairs and railings all around it. Because of the size, I am really not looking to strip the entire deck. The previous color is suppose to be "Cedar" but it just plain orange to me which is a big reason I want to get rid of it. The railings, except for the top, are actually doing fine so it seems I could stain/paint right over the top. The real wear and tear comes in on the deck surface. Since it is supposedly a "stain" rather than a "paint" it has worn all the way down to the wood color (rather than pealed) but definitely not enough that I could use anything semi-transparent over the top.

I also wanted to avoid priming because it is going to take me long enough just to get one coat on. Now, I want to get this done right so that it will last so if I go to all the trouble of stripping the deck then I will probably not put a new solid stain over the top. (The big problem is that someone used Solid stain in the first place.)

Which option should I use? (There seems to be pros and cons including time and effort but ultimately I want the best solution)
Option 1: Powerwash, Sand where needed, re-stain with Oil based solid stain?
Option 2: Strip the deck and then re-stain with Oil based stain (semi transparent or solid)?
Option 3: Prime the deck and the re-stain with Oil based solid stain?

Also, should I use an Arcylic based stain? Or better yet, what do the "Pros" use (as someone suggested)?
 

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This is what I do for a living. First I would strip the deck followed by neutralizing to get the wood ph back to normal. Then let it dry to 12% moisture content. Once it is dry I would seal all surfaces with either Ready Seal or Armstrong Clark sealer. Dealing with strippers is dangerous so I charge accordingly because you not only have liquid being used but it is sprayed on so you are breathing it in. Use a respirator, rubber gloves, boots and rain suit. Another reason it costs to strip, it is not fun to be dressed for a long time while stripping a deck. I would never guarantee a job unless I stripped any old sealer on a deck. If the customer does not want it stripped I decline the job. DO NOT RETURN TO BEHR.
 

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Painting Company, NY
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I agree with the Captin. The proper way to re finish a deck that has failed stain is to suit up in protective gear and use a sodium hydroxide based stripper I.e. HD-80. Then neutralize and balance the ph by using an acid I.e Citralic. Use a scrub brush, low pressure, read the directions and let the chemicals do the work. Both Ready Seal is a great stain. A product like hd80 is the most cost effective stripper per square foot and will remove behr stain.
 

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I've never used a stripper on MY deck, but we've been the only owners.

It's a 17y/o Construction-heart Redwood deck.
West-side...NO shade after 11am.
Fargo, ND location.
Temps range from sometimes -25 to 100. Summer dew-points/humidity all over the map...

SANDING:
* I've sanded my deck floor twice in that time-frame.
* Vibrating flat-plate sander, backer-pads, and 60-grit paper ONLY.
* Stainless-steel screws still look like the day they went in.
* I've taken my 9 steps (18 Redwood 2x6's) off 3 times & sanded them.

REASON:
* Boards STILL look almost new.
* ALL surface/degraded wood is GONE...instead of "stripped-and-clean-but-still-compressed" wood.
* ZERO chemicals used, other than a quick cleaning with DEKSWOOD.
* When dry enough, sand away!
* Sweep and vacuum off dust, then wipe-down with paint-thinner.
* 15 minutes later you're staining!
* You're LITERALLY back to a new deck-floor now.

With this kind of prep, the stain used doesn't matter all that much.
I'll only use Sikkens Oil SRD though.

Last summer, I took off the handrails, sanded-'em, and put 2 coats of Sikkens DEK-Finish #045 Mahogany on them. DAMN they look sweet!

Faron
 

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Faron, You have been lucky to use the same product year after year but unfortunately the poster has a real problem BEHR ACRYLIC It can not be treated with sanding as the Crap gets into the pores and will not release without stripping. Sikkens can be a real problem if you go pas the 18 month time frame and fails. Sounds like you have been taught well by a SIkkens Rep. who stressed maintaining. Customers do not listen and think "Oh I'll do it next year." Do you use a planer on your steps?
 

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Deck Staining Pro
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I don't think its reasonable to assume the OP is going to be able to easily strip solid behr acrylic off 500+ square feet of decking. Although that would be ideal it doesn't sound like he's dying to even have a semi transparent. We strip solids when necessary but sodium hydroxide needs boosters and extended dwell time to touch an acrylic. The strippers in most stores are too weak. The dyes in that Behr will also be tricky in the knots.
 

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Hey CR!

* I do work at a store that has sold Sikkens & Penofin for many years now.
* Even before I worked there (a decade ago now!), I had sanded my deck floor.
* Yes, Sikkens is more direct than some in recommending sanding as a prep choice. I've blended their advice with my own experiences/experimenting.
* I've obviously done it to my OWN deck, since I'm pretty-damn fussy! The Redwood I have just isn't available anymore.
* When clientele come in & ask questions about prep/etc., You'll ALWAYS hear the same 5 questions from me:

1) How old is the deck...
2) Has it ever been sanded?
3) What's on it now?
4) How high off the ground is it?
5) What side of the house?

Peoples expectations, priorities, & abilities vary of course, so I tailor my advice accordingly.

You may (??) recall from another forum, that the 1st time I "re-habbed" my steps was before I entered the Paints-and-Stains world!
* The steps had gotten VERY ridged in the center third.
* In retrospect, NO amount of stripping/neutralizing/etc. would've helped that issue!!!
* So...off they came, & I hauled my 18 Redwood 2x6's to a furniture-rest. shop, and asked them to plane-'em down until the ridging was gone. They had to take 1/8" off!
* Since planing "glazes/seals-off" the surface, I re-sanded them lightly with 80-grit to enable stain-penetration.
* Re-stained them/re-installed. WOW! They looked better than when it was built!

I have posted pics on a Gardenweb forum...

Faron
 

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Some pics I posted are on this thread at Garenweb:
http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/paint/msg0313211818739.html

(note the other posts too though!)

I've had many customers come back over the years & thank me for stressing sanding! When I first mention for certain situations, people seem incredulous! I sometimes hear this...."My neighbor said sanding was bad for a deck...?!"

WTF....IT'S WOOD for g*d's sake!!!:eek::eek::eek::laughing:

Faron
 
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