Blog Stained Fence comparison to power washed and old wood fence

Published on December 20th, 2012 | by Grant Barnard


How To Stain a Fence

DIY Fence Staining

Before and After, Fence Power WashingFor Local Indianapolis Fence Staining and Paintign Click Here


Staining a fence can turn an old grey fence into a  beautiful brand new looking fence. Whether you want to use semi transparent stain for a natural look or semi opaque for more hiding of the knots and or some aging that you don’t want to totally clean off. The first step is the most important. Power wash the fence with no start and stop lines that will show through every time especially with semi transparent stain. If you are in the Indianapolis or Greenwood IN are please visit our Fence Staining page. Or contact us directly:
Grants Painting
(317) 800-4540

How To Properly Power Wash The Fence To Prevent Damage

  • Move the power washer at a very even speed and consistent distance from the wood. Start further away and moving slower to prevent damage. This will be from top to bottom on the outside and shorter section on the inside where the boards section off the lengths into usually threes. Consistency is Key!
  • Use a slight bleach solution to treat any green/white mildew or mold or algae.
  • Power wash the inside first and try to make it to the other side before it completely dries. When the dirt dries on the other side it will stick to it and just cause more work.
  • Rinse , Rinse, Rinse. The thing about stain is that in enhances the grain and knot discoloration in the wood. It will also enhance the dirt too if you leave it to dry on the fence. When doing the outside of the fence start at the top and point down slightly to push the dirt to the ground. This will also clean the very top that nobody really sees anyway.
  • As the fence starts to dry you will be able to see areas that are not well cleaned. If you are going with a semi transparent stain on your fence, this is your time to make the finished product really shine. Go over all areas that need it.
  • Be careful not to take too much of the soft part of the grain out. If you are doing this it is possible you may want to start by scrubbing dish soap on with a brush. The other cause of this is obviously being too close to the wood. Try to stay at least 6 to 8 inches away and move quickly. At closer distances the velocity of the water will destroy any density of wood.
  • Read Our Article On Power Washing Wood for further information.

Fence Staining Tips

Before and After, Fence Power Washing

  • Always keep a wet edge. This is easier done with a sprayer
  • Work all the stain into the grain and generously into the knots
  • After going over an area be sure to check  for drips
  • If spraying the fence be sure to cover nearby brick, fence and siding
  • Use a high quality brush to speed up the process greatly. We suggest the one pictured here

Staining Fences is a service we offer in the Indianapolis and Greenwood Area.

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About the Author

Grant Barnard started painting in 2000 and started Grants Painting in 2008. Originally doing business in northern Indiana, the business was moved to Indianapolis and Greenwood shortly after. Today the Grants Painting has blossomed into a reputable painting contracting company with an ever growing extensive website including our How To DIY Articles. Grants Painting covers all aspects of coatings and specialized in epoxy flooring, interior painting, exterior painting and cabinet painting.

  • melani fullmer

    I Just put in a pine fence. I want to stain it before winter. Since it’s new do I have to power wash? I wanted to stain this weekend. I am afraid of the rainy weather perhaps coming Monday also.

    • Grant Barnard

      Hi Melani
      If the fence feels oily you might as well wait. If there is no grey yet then yes you can stain without power washing but its not something that is suggested. That being said…. Its not suggested to leave a fence untreated for the winter either.

      Dont worry about the rain as long as you get it done 24 hours before the rain comes.

  • Hazel

    Want to stain our fence that is plain pressure treated wood (about 1 1/2 yrs old). Looking for a nice weathered grey look. Any ideas appreciated.

    • Hazel. Many stain companies make a grey stain. However I would suggest letting it grey and putting on a clear oil stain without colorant added(just the base). You also may want to look into applying tung oil after it grays a bit.

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