What is the difference between a Transparent and Semi Transparent Stain?

Stain protection is accomplished mainly by three methods; pigment, vehicle and bio protection. These three methods are the materials left on and in the wood and endure ongoing exposure to the elements, water, temperature fluctuation and ultraviolet light. To effectively protect and preserve the wood from all the elements, there has to be a comprehensive formula that works in a synergistic manner to refract ultra violet light, repel water while allowing the wood to expand and contract and fight microorganism attack (mildew/fungus). It is a proven fact that Semi-Transparent stains do hold up better than Transparent stains in harsh hot climate areas due to their ability to better block U.V. sun light. The Semi-Transparent stains have a high pigment loading as opposed to the Transparent stains, providing a “hiding” effect, thus the term Semi-Transparent. Transparent stains use expensive Trans-Oxide pigments that have been known to block U.V. light as well and allow for the “transparent” look, but have limitations due to the lower pigment loading and must be selective for intended end use. For example, when staining an older (aged) fence that has been weathered the Semi-Transparent stain functions and looks better in appearance than the Transparent stain, by hiding all the discolorations and imperfections in the wood, yielding a more uniform look. On the other hand, when staining a new clear cedar fence (selective) the transparent will show the natural grain of the wood along with protecting the cedar from darkening or discoloring. In conclusion, both stains have their place and serve a purpose. The Semi-Transparent stain is more widely used because of its “heavy duty” formula, offering a universal product for multiple uses, new and aged wood alike. Transparent stains work well and allow the natural wood grain to be highlighted; however, re-applications will be required more often versus those that are stained using Semi-Transparent stain.

Can you stain my weathered fence and deck or will they need to be bleached or power washed?

Older and unprotected wood can become grey, green or even black. This color change represents natural aging of wood and the possible growth of mold, mildew, and/or algae. In order to achieve the best effect, the wood surface area needs to be cleaned prior to applying stain. We use a variety of cleaning techniques, cleaners, and brightners to return the wood to a natural look. We always try to avoid any harsh chemical agents but in some extreme cases, strippers may be necessary to remove a failed stain/paint.

How long would it take to stain my fence or deck?

On a low wind day and few obstacles, the average 250′ fence should take around three hours. If cleaning is required, it will take an additional day for drying. The average deck usually takes around 4-8 hours also depending on weather conditions and preventive measures required prior to staining. This includes moving furniture, applying painters tape and plastic to concrete, siding, windows and covering plants with cotton cloth. However, an additional day may also be required if the deck also requires cleaning.

Does staining a fence or deck last forever?

No. fence and deck stains lasts around three years or longer depending on exposure conditions.

How does the stain work once applied?

By saturating the surface of the lumber, the catacomb nature of the wood allows the stain product to penetrate deep and uniformly throughout.

What happens after the warranty wears out and the fence needs restaining? Do I have to strip it or can it be simply be restained?

The stains we use have a modified oil formula enhances penetration and does not leave a surface film. The lack of a film on the surface of the wood makes re-coats a snap. This characteristic eliminates the need for caustic strippers or high-pressure power washing that can damage wood before a re-coat. In many circumstances if the stain is in good condition, there will be absolutely no prep work required before a re-spray. The ease of recoats allows us to establish a maintenance program of two to three years depending on the type of stain used.

What if stain gets on my house or windows?

No problem. our stains wipe off most metal, glass and non-porous surfaces with a simple rag. However, in an attempt to limit getting stain on surface areas not intended to be stained, our professionals will cover house siding; assist in moving lawn furniture; cover or move plants; drench rocks and concrete surfaces in order to achieve the best possible protection. Should stain get on other than intended surfaces, our professionals will remove it using our specially formulated cleaner. The cleaner was designed to remove overspray off windows, air conditioners, gutters, brick, cars, garage doors and pool equipment. We take pride in knowing that our jobs and the area around them are as clean or cleaner after we are finished.

What is in the stains you use?

Some of the materials that make up our stains include:High quality, deep penetrating natural oils used to replenish and revive the composition of the wood. Highest quality trans-oxide and finely ground iron oxide pigments that lessen the damaging affect of harsh UV rays while providing ample color choices for consumers. UV inhibitors to further lessen the effects of harmful UV rays and keep the color consistent through the duration of the warranty. Synthetic resins designed to promote maximum adhesion and penetration to the wood while beautifying the finished appearance of the wood structure. The latest available mildewcides and fungicides to repel the growth of harmful mildew and fungus spores that decay wood and turn the fence gray in appearance. Water-repellent silicone to repel water, decreasing the damage associated with warping, swelling and cupping. Unique dispersants and anti-settling agents used to keep the product consistent in its container and lessen the amount of stirring required prior to application high quality, deep penetrating natural oils used to replenish and revive the composition of the wood.

What effect does colder temperatures have on staining?

Temperature has a large impact on consistent staining results. 50 degrees Fahrenheit is an industry standard due to a long history of applying paints & coatings. Stains will work at 40 degrees Fahrenheit as well as 50 degrees Fahrenheit; however, higher temperatures provide better results. Temperature can be addressed in two areas, the substrate (wood) and the stain (liquid). When applying stain to a substrate (wood), situations of entrapped moisture, decreased penetration or poor color development could occur. Since wood is a cellulose material made up of a “honey comb” matrix, the matrix is very fine fiber (varies with species of wood) and can be swelled in the presence of moisture, causing it to become more rigid (non-flexible) in colder temperatures. If the wood is cold and already filled with moisture (a detriment), it is less likely to absorb another liquid “stain”. Typically, the higher the substrates temperature the greater the stain will penetrate. Penetration is important in the protection and preservation of wood, the greater the penetration the longer protection and prevention of future inclusion of moisture/water. All liquids perform in varying degrees with temperature, like motor oil when heated up the thinner it becomes, when cold the thicker it becomes. Stains perform very much in the same manner, the warmer it is the thinner it becomes and the greater the opportunity for penetration which is the desired effect. In addition, the colder the stain (liquid) the more problems can be associated with color development, which has everything to do with flow and leveling of the stain (liquid). Additionally, some liquids in the stain, namely solvent and vehicle evaporate more evenly at elevated temperatures as opposed to cooler temperatures causing drying/curing issues, taking much longer to dry/cure in cooler temperatures that can also contribute to color development.

Why is staining my deck more expensive per square foot then my fence?

Several factors come to play. First is that the price for Deck stain is more expensive than Fence stain. Second is that deck staining usually requires more time in preparing the area around the deck prior to staining to prevent inadvertent staining of other surfaces. Finally, since wood acts like a sponge and absorbs the stain throughout, we saturate the deck with twice as much stain per square foot then a fence. This increases the decks appearance and longevity of the stains rich color.

How much would you charge to stain my fence?

The price to stain a fence is based on square footage. Our prices range from 35¢ to 65¢ per square foot depending on the condition of the fence, how much hand staining, amount of prep work required and accessibility.

How much would you charge to stain my deck?

The price to stain a deck is based on square footage. Our prices range from 55¢ to $1.65 depending on the condition of the deck, how much hand staining, amount of prep work required and accessibility.

How long has vinyl fence been around?

Vinyl Fencing has been available since 1984. It is the fastest growing product in the fencing industry with sustained annual growth at more than 30%.

How strong is vinyl?

It has five times the tensile strength of wood and four times the flexibility. It flexes under load making it strong enough to safely hold cattle and horses. Our manufacturers use impact modifiers to make our fence strong and forgiving for horses and riders as well as other farm animals.

How does vinyl compare to wood?

Vinyl is stronger, lasts much longer, safer, looks better, and costs much less over time. It can cost the same as or more than wood initially depending local wood prices, type of wood and style of fence or deck but over it’s life it is about one third of the cost.

Can I paint Vinyl?

Paint doesn’t adhere well to the surface which is good in the case of graffiti but bad if you like to paint things. The color of the vinyl goes all the way through so it can’t be scratched or chipped off which means it will never need to be painted.

Will it discolor or become brittle over time?

It is warranted by the factory for your lifetime to never do that. We use a U.V.inhibitor called titanium dioxide at a rate of 10 parts per hundred which creates a solar barrier equivalent to a sun block of 38 so the sun can’t break it down.

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