It’s amazing how great a brand new fence looks but how quickly the wood dries out and looks dull. Before you know it the sun, snow and rain have their way and your fence looks weathered and gray. My fence was installed last year so it still looks pretty good, but I want to apply a protective coat to keep it looking that way.
Even though it’s a relatively new fence, it still needs to be cleaned before applying stain, just like any fence does. It’s tempting to skip this step, but if you do, your new stain might look great at first, but won’t last very long. After hosing down the fence, I filled my paint sprayer with a half-and-half mix of water and wood cleaner. I liberally applied the cleaning solution to the fence, not really concerned with the spray pattern at this point since my goal is just to flood the surface.
After spraying one section of fence, I used a stiff bristle brush to scrub each board one by one. It’s important to keep the fence wet during the cleaning process, so I washed one section at a time, fully rinsing off all the cleaner with a hose before moving onto the next section.
Before moving onto staining, I let the fence fully dry for 48 hours and at this point it’s looking better already!
Since the fence is in good condition, I’m using a water based clear coat protective finish, just to give it that weather protection, without adding any color. I’m using my new FLEXiO 3000 Paint Sprayer by Wagner that comes ready to use right out of the box. Just need to fill the container and plug it in.
I started by coating all the vertical boards, before flipping the nozzle to the horizontal position and working on the horizontal boards. I worked the fence one section at a time, going with the direction of the grain, making sure to slightly overlap each pass.
Once a panel was fully coated I used a synthetic paint brush to back-brush the stain into the fence. This helps the stain penetrate the wood rather than sitting on top and also avoids any runs. The stain dries really fast when sprayed on, so you really need to alternate between spraying and brushing while the stain is still wet.
I worked my way across the fence like this, one panel at a time, until the fence was fully covered. After letting the first coat dry for 2 hours, I applied the second coat. And that’s it! When all is done, it looks pretty great!
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