Tag Archives: Hardwood

Restoring Wood – Hot Tub Project

It can be daunting when trying to decide which stain and finish product to use when staining or refurbishing wood. Not all products are created equal. Some are made for ease of application, others for ease of clean up and others for durability. Classes are taught on wood finishing and restoring that are equivalent to a full semester of undergraduate coursework.

Keeping the wood on your hot tub looking brilliant can be one of the easiest items in your home to maintain. Let it go too long and the moisture will tear apart your wood and discolor it black. Simply re-stain the wood every other year in order to keep the wood from drying out and being oxidized by the UV light . Due to the small surface area, using a top of the line product is cost effective. In a few words, lets not use a penetrating stain. Coat after coat of penetrating stain will continue to darken the wood and saturate the wood, thus causing the wood to further degrade. Most penetrating stains are loaded with solvents that evaporate instantly. The cheaper stains contain very little of the compounds needed to reflect UV, thus allowing for faster penetrating of water and additional UV.

Instead of using a penetrating stain, try using a hard clear coat, film forming urethane /stain blend that will do wonders for any type of smooth wood in your home. Not all surfaces are designed for this hybrid stain. A hot tub fits the bill perfectly!

 

Sikkens – Door and Window – Sikkens makes stain products that time after time stand up to the elements and are rated top of the line for industry standards. Choose a tint color after preparing the wood and finish with the clear color. Future coats for maintenence – use clear. For additional protection a Spar Urethane can be used at very light and multiple building coats. If you want to get serious about it…Sikkens makes a Marine Urethane that is at the upper eschelon of marine coatings, as well as a marine coating for teaks and exotic hardwoods. Okay, maybe I got a little carried away, we are talking hot tubs here, not a hand carved teak boat.

 

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Deck Staining

There is not a more difficult surface to keep refreshed and new looking than a horizontal deck surface. It takes the use of high quality coatings and stains along with regular maintainence to keep your decking in tip-top shape. We have 13 years of experience staining exterior siding, decks, doors and furniture. We always consult with every client on the varying issues exterior woods can cause.

It takes constant maintenance…

Staining and finishing new wood is obviously the best way to finish correctly and allow for years of brilliance. Using a high quality stain and sealer designed for decks will work better than a general exterior stain. Previously finished exterior wood MUST be prepared correctly in order to get a new look.

Preperation – Cleaning the wood with a TSP solution or a manufactured wood cleaner and brightener is always the first step in preparing old wood. Pressure washing the solution and removing the dusted and flaking previous coat is also essential. Once the decking is clean and washed allow for the wood to dry.

Wood Types –

Cedar and Pine. A large majority of deck wood is composed of these species. Both woods are cost effective to build with and can be finished to a quality appearance. These softer woods will fade and change color with UV, water and mildew. Keeping a coat of sealer and stain on the surfaces every year or two will keep the finish looking nice.

Exotics – Mahagony, Teak and Ipe. We see a fair amount of decks built with these hardwoods in the mountain regions. Decks take a beating in the high country and these species of wood can withstand the elements like no other. Special attention needs to be taken when staining/re-finishing/coating a hardwood deck. The hardwoods require a special stain that will penetrate the dense molecular structure and dry evenly. These exotic stains contain high quality oxide pigments and the three following oils: Tung oil, Lindseed OIl and refined Paraffin. Using a high quality brush to apply these stains and wipe excess will allow for the wood to remain brilliant. Preperaring hardwoods for transparent stains takes a little extra work.

Finishes: Depending on the appearance you are looking for and the condition of the wood there are a number of options. Many of these finishes also come in Water-born and solvent based (oil) products.

Clear – Gives crystal clear protection without color, and allows wood to gray naturally.

Transparent – Offers maximum grain clarity with a hint of color; best for wood in excellent condition. By far the most popular finish.

Semi-Transparent – Gives moderate hide to wood grain with subtle color; best for wood in fair to good condition.

Solid Color – Maximum hide with an opaque finish; best for weathered wood or problem surfaces.

We will talk more in future posts about Exterior staining products. We look forward to working with you!

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