Prepping New Wood For TWP Stains

Staining New Wood with TWP Decking StainsWhen applying TWP Wood Stains for the first time to new wood there will need to be proper steps taken. New smooth wood or decking is not ready to be pre-stained prior to installation or stained right after installation. It is best to follow the directions of the stain manufacturer when it comes to applying a coating to new wood for the first time, not the lumber yard or the paint store's as they do not understand the proper prep needed.

TWP and New Smooth Decking or Exterior Wood

It is important to understand that new smooth wood is not absorbent enough for the TWP Stains. New wood contains a higher moisture content and a "mill glaze". Mill Glaze is a waxy film that results from the fast turning blades that cuts the profile on a manufactured log. The high speed of the turning blades produces heat that draws sap and moisture out of the log. As it cools and dries, it creates a film or coating on the logs.  This will hinder the TWP's ability to penetrate into the wood grain.

Note: New Rough Sawn vertical wood/fencing can be stained right away with no wait and with no prep as it does have mill glaze and is very absorbent. Just make sure the wood is fully dry. If Rough sawn wood has aged or oxidized (grayed) then it will need to be prepped with Gemini Restore Kit. One coat for most instances of newly installed Rough Sawn wood.

Let the Wood Weather First

TWP wants the wood to weather and dry out for 4-12 months after installation. This will allow the moisture content to drop and the exposed wood cells will oxidize from the sun's UV, turning slightly gray.

Prepping New Wood for TWP Stains

After letting the wood weather it is time to prep the wood. This step consists of using the Gemini Restore A Deck Kit. This kit contains both a Step 1 Wood Deck Cleaner and a Step 2 Wood Deck Brightener. The Step 1 cleaner will help remove the dirt, graying, and mill glaze from the wood while the Step 2 Brightener will neutralize the cleaner and help restore the natural color.

Staining New Wood and Decking for the First Time

Even after the waiting period and the proper prepping, new smooth wood is still not as absorbent as it will be in a few years. We strongly suggest only applying 1 coat of the TWP Stains the first time. Do not over apply as the TWP may not penetrate into the wood correctly. Make sure to back wipe any excess stain that does not penetrate properly into the wood after 30 minutes. Use the For newer wood, TWP 100 Series if allowed in your state, otherwise use the TWP 1500 Series.

Maintaining TWP Stains

Apply a light maintenance coat to the flooring in 9-24 months. If just slightly dirty prep with soapy water to remove grime and reapply one light coat. If you wait 18-24 months make sure to prep again with the Gemini Restore A Deck. After the first year or two, your wood will be able to absorb more TWP stain which results in a longer stain life and protection!

Tip:

TWP is a penetrating wood preservative. It performs properly when it penetrates 100% into the wood. Over applying will not result in longer protection.

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753 Comments on "Prepping New Wood For TWP Stains"

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Chris
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Chris

Built a deck using pressure treated lumber this summer. Completed in late June. Planning to stain next spring. Sounds like I should use the restore a deck kit first. Do I allow it to dry between cleaning and brightening? Sounds like a pad is best for application? Any particular pad? Wait 48 hours to stain? Does this all sound correct?

Bubba
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Bubba

I’m having a new redwood fence installed in Southern CA. How long do I wait until after installation before applying TWP 1500?

Bill
Guest
Bill
I’ve used the first of the two Restore a Deck products and cleaned/prepped my deck for TWP (101). How long can I go (timewise) between Cleaning Step 1 and Brightening Step 2? How long between Brightening Step 2 and application of the TWP product? Reason for asking is that I plan to do all three during the 2017 fall season, but since it’s in a seasonal cabin that I cannot get to except periodically, I am breaking the project into hopefully 2, perhaps 3, parts: Step 1 Clean; Step 2 Brighten; step 3 stain. I’d like to combine steps 2… Read more »
Rebecca
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Rebecca

When using kiln dried lumber for your new deck project, do you still need to wait the 4-12 months before applying the first coat of stain? We are using composite decking, the stain would only be on the uprights, railings, and trim.

Valerie Martins
Guest
Valerie Martins

Hi
We had a new cedar fence installed in CT 2 months ago and some of the top pieces have started to turn black and warp slightly. Is it time to treat it? Either with clear or cedar color…which product, and does it need to be cleaned first. Thanks

Charlie
Guest
Charlie

My deck is two years old, made with pressure treated lumber.

It has never had any kind of finish applied.

After cleaning and brightening, should I apply one coat or two? I have to use TWP 1500 because of where I live.

Kate
Guest
Kate

We had our deck professionally stained with TWO 100 and the color is very uneven. Company does not seem to know how to fix this, today they tried mineral spirits. What should we ask them to do?

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Josh
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Josh

I am using tulip poplar as board and batten siding. The wood was rough sawn on a bandsaw mill in March and stacked to allow it to dry. It is around 12%-15% moisture now. Should I stain now or wait until it’s been installed 4 months or next spring? I live in Kentucky, would the 100 or 1500 series be best?

Gene Kalley
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Gene Kalley

My cedar deck is 4 months old. I bought restore a deck kit. After using the cleaner, I applied the brightener. Two days later I saw the deck had what looked like white powder that seeped into the wood. I rinsed and brushed the wood to no avail. Is it alright to go ahead with 1500 cedar stain?
How long after applying stain should it be before the next rain?

Tammany Flats
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Tammany Flats
We are installing new “Roasted Poplar” (Google it) on our porch floor and steps in NE Pennsylvania. Porch floor is under roof, with open sides. Steps are not covered and get about 4 hours of sun. We want to preserve the grain and rich brown color, hence something clear or transparent seems appropriate. 1. What protective/preservative product(s) do you recommend? 2. Should we apply the product to all 4 sides & cut ends prior to installation, as we have intended? If not, how long should we wait? We really want to coat it ASAP so we can avoid major cleaning… Read more »
Karriej
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Karriej

I built 2 covered decks approx. 8 months ago. I ordered the TWP 1520 and the Gemini cleaner/brightener kit. Is 8 months enough time for weathering since both decks are covered or should I wait at least a full year? thank You

Randy VH
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Randy VH

One more question, what kind of window do I have between cleaning and staining ? Thanks again.

Jim Weber
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Jim Weber

Great site, thanks. Live in the Pacific NW (WA State) so lots of winter rains. Slacked on maintaining my deck (“outdoor wood”, hem-fir) so have cleaned and sanded it and am excited to get it stained. Do I have to wait until it “weathers” as now that it is sanded – it is down to raw wood. There has been good sun so the wood is yellowing a bit. Also, TWP 100 or 1500?

Don O\'Connor
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Don O\'Connor

New decking installed is redwood con heart s-dry. Do I have to wait 4 months to stain with TWP 1530 Natural stain?

fred dahms jr
Guest
fred dahms jr

Hello,
We just received a load of redwood siding for a rainscreen application. Should we stain before installing (all sides?), or wait 4-6 months before using TWP 101? The boards are smooth.

Best,
fritz

Mike
Guest
Mike
I installed a new PT deck beginning of June, so it’s been 2 months. In reading, through some comments here, it seems there are two paths to treating: 1. Wait at least 2 more months and use TWP 1500. I’m in Virginia and the weather temps can vary. This would put me into October. Would this still be too early apply? Should i wait til spring? Any worries about the deck until then? Most of our bad weather here is ice. 2. I saw a response that for New Wood, use TWP 100. What’s the difference between the two? I… Read more »
Ellyn
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Ellyn

Just to be sure – my deck is less than 1 week old made of KDAT pine. Can we just sweep and hose it off or do we really need the Gemini kit this first time? It is really pristine and beautiful.

Sue
Guest
Sue

Hello. We are installing a new PT main deck and pool deck in MD. I know that you recommend waiting at least 4 months before staining with TWP 1500, but I’ve also read that it’s best to stain prior to snow. If we wait the full 4 months, we will be in winter. What should we do?

Donna
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Donna

I have a deck in CT., part of it under grape vines, the other exposed. Put the pt deck in august 2016, applied TWP 1530 natural in May, 2017. The deck portion exposed is black, while the deck under the grape vines looks great. Help?

Beverly L Pitts
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Beverly L Pitts

I bought new clear heart 2×4 redwood to use for rail caps screwed to a 2″ powder coated flat steel rail. To get rid of the mill glazing I used 80 then 180 grit sandpaper. The redwood looks good and is dry. Will your 100 series TWP penetrate well in your opinion?

Roy L McGhee
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Roy L McGhee

I applied TWP clear on a cedar picket fence. I didn’t realize the clear doesn’t provide UV protection. Can I apply TWP Cedartone 101 over the clear?

Lowry H.
Guest
Lowry H.
Hello. I live in the Piedmont area of North Carolina, about 20 miles north of Raleigh. I rebuilt my deck with lumber similar to the original treated lumber, using 5/4 pine decking boards. Some of the deck boards were stored in my garage for about a year, the remainder I got in June 2017. The deck boards have been installed since first week of July 2017. The boards have shrunk some, and show signs of cupping a little bit. I sanded the paint stenciling off the wood, and have been researching stain. I would like to see the wood grain,… Read more »
ron nugent
Guest
ron nugent

I’m in rainy Oregon. Stained a 2×6 cedar deck with TWP100 in 2014. Held up well. This week I cleaned with RAD, hand scrubbing, and Pres Washer. Most of stain on rain-exposed boards went away with the mold so I belt sanded with 100 grit so it’s not overly “smooth”. Looks good and there’s no saw dust. Am I supposed to rinse again with Step 2 or may I apply fresh coat of TWP100 over freshly sanded boards?

Bill Crowell
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Bill Crowell

Will sanding new wood improve penetration of the stain? We inherited a fir deck and are replacing a number of boards and turning others over.

Matt
Guest
Matt
I just finished the prep of a new wood deck that has ‘seasoned’ for the past 12 months. It is SYP and Cedar. I used Deck Restore cleaner and followed the directions using a pressure washer at a psi acceptable for wood fibers (1,500 psi). I then followed up with the brightener and rinsed. The deck looks new again but after drying there is a noticeable white film on the floor boards and after closer inspection these appear to be raised wood fibers I suspect were caused by the pressure wash? Should I sand these down before staining or am… Read more »
Phil
Guest
Phil

I have a treated lumber deck that’s aged 10 months – wood showing some cracking. I applied step 1 Restore-a-deck, rinsed well (I think) using a pressure washer. Ran out of time/weather so I applied step 2 of RAD the next AM after an overnight thunderstorm ( about 1/2″ rain). After rinsing w/ the pressure washer again, some boards are turning green. Now what?
Thanks,
Phil

Randy
Guest
Randy

I have a 15 year old deck that I have sanded to bare wood. I also need to replace 4 deck boards. How to a proceed with staining and which color gives the most natural cedar appearance ?

Donald G Cortez
Guest
Donald G Cortez

After building the deck just hoses off my wife likes the socalles wet look trying to keep that

Donald G Cortez
Guest
Donald G Cortez

I have a new ceder deck in upper peninsula of Michigan 3 months old want to keep all wood grain no tint what do you perfer

Cathy Cannon Jarvis
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Cathy Cannon Jarvis

Building a new A-line gable roofed patio, using tongue & groove (pine) on underside of roof w/ painted white beams and posts. Combo of natural and painted wood look. Support horizontal beams are natural rough sawn (Douglas Fir). We want to use TWP1500 on tongue/groove and support beams. Reading application instructions, it sounds like rough sawn can be stained right away but not sure about T&G.
What should be considered when using product on rough sawn vs. T&G?
Re: Color choice, goal is rich medium brown, not too red, what color is recommended?

John
Guest
John

My contractor let the new cedar fence dry for only 36 hours, not only was it new “green” or wet wood but it had rained several hours on the wood before he built the fence. The stain looks horrible but the biggest problem is that all of the defects turned dark brown to black in color. Should he put more stain, or strip the stain and start fresh? We would really like to tone down the black spots and have a much more even finish. Thank you!

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Connie
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Connie

I live in northern North Dakota and had a pressure treated pine deck built 4 years ago. We have never done anything to it. What do you recommend for our location and what is required before any applications? This is all new to me so any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks

Eswakon
Guest
Eswakon

I built for 4 Adirondack chairs out of cedar I was going to stain/seal them with TWP 101 before using them. Should I still wait the 4 to 12 months to allow these chairs to weather?

Sue
Guest
Sue

We have waited about 10 months to clean & stain new deck/stairs. This year it’s been raining LOTS! How long after cleaning, and then MORE rain probably, should we wait to stain with TWP 1500? Thank you!

Michael
Guest
Michael

New deck Pressure treated, weathered for 12 months in michigan. So it’s seen it all. Can I just powerwash, and we want to apply the cape cod grey. So do I need to use the deck brightener if we are putting on a that stain? It’s a semi solid it says.I feel like it’s a waste.

Bill
Guest
Bill

Installed a cedar fence last fall (Fall of ’16) would like to stain with TWP 100. Should I require a cleaner before the stain as this wood is fairly new?

Tim
Guest
Tim

Yes,the deck boards have started to turn gray. The pencil marks are all on the ceder posts, that are smooth,not the deck. The balusters are Deckorators brand, they are a textured matt black finish.

Tim
Guest
Tim

Getting ready to stain my Ceder deck for the first time. Just wondering if the Gemini cleaner brightener will remove pencil marks on the wood, if not what can I us. Also used the Black powder coated round balusters on my rail, will the cleaner affect those in anyway.

CJB
Guest
CJB
I have a rooftop deck. I would have to deconstruct some of the furniture to move it off the roof for staining. Imagine a rectangle, access door in the bottom center. My plan is to stain starting on day one, from the left edge to the center of the door. One day later, I would move the furniture to the newly stained area and then begin staining from the far right edge back to the door once again. What are the odds that I’m going to have color mismatch in the center of the deck due to this plan? I… Read more »
Ben
Guest
Ben
We installed a kiln dried redwood deck – it is now 2 months old. We had some rain about a month ago and the deck has now black water marks underneath the roof line. We live in Northern California (Napa area) with very hot summers and wet winters. The deck is mostly in the sun all day long. 1. How to remove the black water marks? 2. Do we need to use deck cleaner and brightener for the whole deck or will just presure washing before we stain do the job? 3. Do you recommend the 1500 or 100 series?… Read more »
Ben
Guest
Ben

Which natural/clear stain in the 1500 series offers the best UV protection?

richard
Guest
richard

I installed a rough cut 2 x 6 cedar rail fence 1 month ago and the wood is very dry now. Since it’s rough cut do i need to do anything else before staining with 100

Jenn
Guest
Jenn

I completely powerwashed my entire 25 yr old fence and it looks like new do I still need to wait to stain it after drying? Also trying to get deck looking as good as fence but more difficult to get in cracks and crevices. Should I use 100 or 1500 series? Live in Milwaukee but want good penetration of stain.
Also, if I have to sand deck opposed to pressure washing to get all existing stain off do I have to wait for that to stain as well?

randy
Guest
randy

hey guys just finished using the gemini kit and this is what it looks like. what do i need to do to get rid of the white streaks.thanks

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Petra Burns
Guest
Petra Burns

We have a new deck, which has weathered for 11
months. We used the step one cleaner and the entire deck has a waxy coating over all pieces of wood. We have not done step two yet because the deck is still “gray”. Should we clean the deck again? Thanks for any advice or guidance.

Jimw
Guest
Jimw
My deck is about 7 years old and has been stained with TWP 1501 cedartone two or three times, the last time was about three years ago, and I haven’t been able to do maintenance on it until now. Do I need to use BOTH the restore a deck (red label) cleaner AND the brightener (blue label) at this time? The stain is worn down now but I need to know if I need to use both products in the prep kit–red label cleaner and blue label brightener at this time before staining. TWP is the only stain used the… Read more »
Tim
Guest
Tim
Installed a new cedar deck 2 years ago. I was not patient enough to wait for the wood to weather and the mill glaze to wear off. I stained it with TWP Rustic Oak 1516 after perhaps only a couple weeks in the fall of 2015. The next spring I used a deck cleaner and it practically stripped the stain off and it appears that it truly never soaked in; appeared as new wood underneath the stain. I put another coat over it last spring and again it is looking poorly with some areas worn of entirely; appears that it… Read more »
Joe G Rodriguez
Guest
Joe G Rodriguez

I’m redoing My Gazebo it is Pressure Treated Deck boards and Red Cedar uprights and supports. I had Sikkens on it before. I have completely Sanded all the Stain completely off. Do I still need to prep the Surface? If I do how long do I need to let it Dry? I’m In San Antonio, TX with 90 degrees and higher temps. Thanks Joe

Patricia
Guest
Patricia
I had a new KDAT installed a few months ago. I didn’t understand that it could be stained right away and we have had a very wet spring. It feels like it is starting to “cup” a bit already and I feel like I have waited too long. I am ready to stain now, but I will need to clean some surfaces stains. Can you advise me on how to clean it and prep for stain? I know you recommend the Gemini products, but do I apply with pump sprayer, scrub, then powerwash off? Also , what type of stain… Read more »
Dave
Guest
Dave

My new cedar wood has aged 6 mos, and is ready to clean, brighten, and stain. How long do I wait to stain after the cleaning and brightening steps?

Karen Meadows
Guest
Karen Meadows

I have a 2 year old cedar deck. Original stain peeled off first year…I have sanded off old stain. Since the wood is 2 years old…should I go with the 2 coat system? Should it still be cleaned and if I use a different brand of cleaner will that make a difference?

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