What the Process is Like

Choosing the correct stain. Consulting with a professional is typically the best way to ensure that you are getting the right kind of stain for your fence. If you are at all unsure of your choice, you can test out the stain on a small, unnoticeable area of the fence to see how it will look.

Cleaning. Prior to being stained, fences are cleaned to remove any mold or mildew. If the fence being treated is new, it probably will not need much prep work. However, if an older fence is getting stained, it may need pressure washing or removal and replacement of rotted wood to restore it to as close to its natural condition as possible. If the fence has been previously stained or painted, the wood will need to be sanded or scraped to remove the old coating.

Stain and sealant application. Once the fence has been properly prepped and cleaned, the stain and sealant are ready to be applied. Once applied in separate steps of the process, stain and sealant are now typically applied at the same time. Stains with built-in sealants help the stain last longer by acting as a shield against damaging agents. The stain is painted or sprayed over the surface of the fence in the direction of the grain, and it should be distributed equally in all areas; if a certain area receives more stain than others, it will be noticeably darker in color, which will cause it not to match the rest of the fence.