Less is More When Staining Exterior Wood, Says CIL Paints

CIL introduces new line of environmentally-friendly exterior wood stains designed to make staining process simpler, longer-lasting

By Gail Bergman and Indira Tarachandra

CIL Woodcare Makes a Difference to Your Home
CIL Woodcare Makes a Difference to Your Home

Toronto, Ontario – May 12, 2009 – With the warmer weather here, now is the time to preserve your homes’ exterior wood surfaces, from decks and porches to fences, siding and outdoor furniture. But before you lift a brush, remember that less is more when it comes to staining exterior wood, says leading paint brand CIL Paints.

“Trees have only one layer of bark for protection, so there’s no need to apply multiple coats of stain to wood surfaces,” said Shaun Noble, Marketing Manager for CIL Paints, who recommends applying a maximum of two light, even coats of stain to achieve the desired colour appearance and surface protection. “For best performance, stains must penetrate as deep into the wood as possible, and rather than protecting the wood, a thick coating of stain doesn’t provide enough breathing room for the wood and actually leads to peeling, flaking and moisture damage.”

To help homeowners simplify the staining process and beautify their outdoor living spaces, CIL has launched a new line of exterior wood stains that are simple to use and better for the environment. Available in three different performance levels – ultra premium, premium and mainline – the new stains are formulated using a low VOC (volatile organic compound) mix of water-based acrylic latex and natural oils or alkyd resins to maximize the protection and shine of the coating.

“Our research shows that consumers want wood coatings that are gentle on the environment, make their stain jobs easier and last longer,” said Noble in introducing the new line of solid and semi-transparent stains, which features more than 1,200 CIL colour options in the solid stain. “CIL’s new exterior stain program delivers on all of these fronts, and takes into account today’s challenging economic times by offering products at a range of price points.”

Simple to apply, the new stain contains a weatherproof shield, resists mildew and UV rays, has strong water repellency and guards against wood rot and decay. It provides the best of both worlds by offering the protection and durability of an oil-based stain with the fast-dry and water clean-up of a latex coating, Noble explained, adding that it also prevents scuffing, cracking, peeling and colour fading. Depending on the performance level selected and if properly maintained, the stain lasts up to a maximum of 17 years on vertical surfaces (such as fences and siding) and eight years on horizontal surfaces (such as decks) for solid stains, and up to seven years on vertical surfaces and five years on horizontal surfaces for semi-transparent stains.

Before starting an exterior staining project, CIL offers these additional tips for best results:

Preparation is key: Be aware that preparation can make or break a stain project, so ensure that the surface to be stained is ready before you begin. Wood must be clean and free of dirt, dust, mildew, algae, moss, leaves, and loose wood fibres. It must also be dry. As a rule of thumb, wait at least three days after a rainfall or washing before starting your job, or use an electronic moisture metre to be sure. Hold off on staining new wood surfaces for at least a month. For woods like cedar, redwood or spruce that have a polished or glazed finish, use an exterior biodegradable wood wash solution or sand the surface first to ensure proper penetration of the stain.

Pre-treat deck wood: Horizontal wood surfaces like decks are most vulnerable to weather damage from the sun, rain and snow, so pre-treatment of the wood is critical. A good quality penetrating stain should be applied before constructing the deck to ensure that all sides, including end cuts, help control the amount of moisture that will naturally pass through the wood and allow it to breathe. If the deck is already built, coat as many ends, sides and edges as are accessible.

Weather matters: Making sure Mother Nature is on your side can significantly extend the life of your stain project. The best time to stain is when the temperature is between 10° C and 27°C. Stain shouldn’t be applied if the thermometer falls below 10° C and if rain is expected within 24 hours after application. On a warm day, feel the wood surface before starting the job – if the surface is too hot to touch, it’s too hot to stain, as doing so will reduce penetration of the coating.

Apply like a pro: The ideal application tool for staining is a brush. Rollers, sprays and pads can also be used, but may cause more pooling of the stain. To avoid lap marks, start at one edge of the wood plank and complete a full board length at a time. Stir the stain thoroughly in the can with a slow lifting motion before and, occasionally during, use. For best results, apply the stain in the shade. Follow the sun as you work so that you’re always out of direct sunlight. Avoid application late in the day to reduce the chance of dew, condensation or frost on the surface before it’s dry.

Currently available in stores, CIL’s new wood stain retails between $30 to $40 per gallon, depending on the product selected. For more information about CIL’s new wood stain line, to access its new colour stain card or to locate a CIL retailer near you, call 1-800-387-3767.


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