Stain play structures

Play Structure

Play structures are wonderful investments for your family. To keep your wooden play structure looking good for years, apply stain or waterproof coating on it every 1 - 2 years to prevent water penetration and maintain its beauty. Also complete routine safety checks of all the swings, railings, slides, ladders and ropes for safe operation.

Tools & Materials

Like any project, you will need the right tools and supplies to do the job right the first time. Because the sooner you finish the sooner you can get on with well, anything you want.

Drop Cloth



Replacement boards


Safety glasses

Pressure Washer



Touch-up brush

Extension cord


Preparing and cleaning the surface is one of the most important parts of the staining process. Follow these simple steps to ensure your job looks great and lasts for years to come.

Step 1 - Inspection

Inspect the wood framing for any splinters, large cracks, rough spots, sharp edges, mold, mildew or decay that may occur due to wear and usage. If required, you should sand them down and make them smooth.

Step 2 - Repair and Replace

Check damaged boards that may need to be replaced or repaired. If necessary, make any fixes.

Step 3 - Prep Work Area

Remove all nearby furniture, flowers pots, toys, and tables. Cover the sandbox or other objects that are near the play structure so the working area is clear. Keep all children away from the working area during the project.

Step 4 - Pressure Wash

Pressure wash the surface of the play structure and allow it to dry for at least 24 hours. Examine all the wood and make sure it is clean. Hand sand areas that need additional attention.


Now that you've completed the prep work, you're ready to begin staining.

Step 1 - Choose Stain

Choose a quality stain. Determine how much you will need for the project and what color will look the best. Understand if you want an oil or water-based product. Each Provides equal protection and will have different clean-up procedures and prices. In general water-based products will go on thinner and may need additional coats to get the same protection as oil-based products.

Step 2 - Cover Unwanted Areas

Cover all areas that will not be stained: swings, railings, slides etc. Using a spray shield or piece of cardboard will block any stain from getting to unwanted areas. Selecting a Wagner Control Spray will provide superior control, low overspray and quality results.

Step 3 - Spray

Select the right sprayer, then start spraying on cardboard or scrap wood to get a feel for the sprayer and flow settings. Once you are comfortable, work in a consistent pattern and cover the surface.

Step 4 - Clean Up

Clean up the sprayer and properly store any remaining material.

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