The 5 W’s and 1 H of Staining A Fence

In this post we will be answering the 5 W’s and 1 H regarding the need to stain a fence. The “It depends” is not an answer most homeowners like to hear, however it is a valid question that we will answer with the who, what, when, where, why and how. Staining a fence in the Dallas-Ft Worth may be different than other areas in the United States because Texas has such high temperatures in the summer always going over the 100 degree mark and in recent years Texas has experienced very cold temperatures too!

Let’s dive into what Texans experience when they need to stain a fence.

Who Should Stain A Fence?

Staining a fence can be time consuming especially if you have a large area for your fence. However if your handy and like to do these kind of tasks the homeowner can usually do a great job when they have all the right equipment to perform the task.

Knowing the process will also help with staining a fence. There is always preparation work before the stain is applied.  If the preparation work is ignored than the fence stain may not adhere very well and you will be re-staining sooner than you want to. So knowing that, it could be a weekend task for the DIY family.

On the other hand if time and resources are not available or you just don’t want to do it on your own, finding a reputable fence company in your area is the best choose.

The BBB has accredited businesses that earn there spot and important to know if the fence company is local, from out of state or have terrible reviews online. Choose wisely and get recommendations from neighbors, friends, or family.

Who what and where need a fence staining

What is Staining A Fence?

Staining a fence is a process of covering the wood in a transparent oil based stain or a solid latex stain. It protects the wood on the fence from rain, wind, rotting and sun damage.

Both options are acceptable however, Fence Makeovers always recommends the solid oil based stains as they are transparent to give the wood its natural color and also shows the grain of the wood.

In Texas and many other states when the fence is exposed to direct sunlight, wind, and rain the oil based stain will be the best choice. This is because it is more durable than a water-base and will provide a more complete protective layer against these elements.

  • An oil based solid stain is the better choice for longevity because of its superior durability.
  • When applied to the fence it goes on easier.
  • It penetrates the wood better.
  • It adheres to the surface.

Sometimes a solid latex stain will need to be used because that is what the fence had previously.  Once a solid latex stain is used on a fence, going over it with an oil based stain not adhere to the wood.

Where Can a Fence Be Stained?

Seems like a silly question however if a homeowner shares the fence with one, two or three neighbors you have to know what is your responsibility and what is the neighbors responsibility.

Not all neighbors like the same color or process so having a plan before the project gets approved is your best scenario. Depending on where the fence lines are plotted out from the city will offer insight on where your part is on fence staining.

Sometimes we get calls from neighbors of a job we are doing and they are angry because they don’t like the color the homeowner chose.

We also receive calls from neighbors because they love the job and how much better their property looks. They now want us to give them an estimate to stain their fence.

Knowing where the fence stain can be applied  is key in having a great situation with all parties being happy.

When Is a Good Time To Stain A Fence?

Believe it or not staining a fence in Texas can be done year round. The only time a fence can not be stained is if the temperature is below 40 degrees. It is rare in most of Texas that it drops down to 40 degrees or colder.

The best time to stain a fence is early or late summer. The optimum time would be with a few dry days of warm weather. A cloudy day works well too.

The biggest challenge that fence companies have is the rain and the wind.  When it is windy they can’t stain because the wind carries the spray pretty far (a sprayer is used to apply the stain) and can damage neighbors property or cars.

Of course if it’s raining the job will have to be postponed until it stops and the wood has time to dry out.

It’s important to stain your fence at least once every three years. This will help prevent rust and other damage to the wood. If you notice any cracks or holes in the wood, you should also repair these before staining.

Need a Fence Staining

Why Do You Need To Stain A Fence?

Our favorite question is why. When the fence starts to look gray and dingy it is past time to stain a fence. Most homeowners have other things on the “To DO” list and the fence tends to be the last one that needs to be cared for.

When a homeowner maintains their fence staining it is recommended every three to four years. The oil based stains are made to handle the elements longer than the solid latex stains.

Solid latex stains tend to over time peel and make the fence look terrible. If this happens then the only alternative is to wire brush the old paint off. Doesn’t sound like fun does it?

need to stain a fence
Peeling Latex Stain 3

How Long Does It Take To Stain A Fence?

Staining a fence is the last step in the process to complete the makeover or update. Assuming all the process of repairing the fence, cleaning has been completed it is now time to stain a fence.

The hard part is over and the stain process should be quick and easy. That being said depending on how much of a wood fence there is to stain will dictate the time it takes.

Usually a smaller yard when its time to stain will take a few hours. The larger the project most of the time it will only take one day. In most residential neighborhoods the stain process is 1/2 day to a full day.  If the property is fenced with an acre or more space it could take up to two days.  This of course is being stained by using a spraying which will give a lot more coverage in a shorter amount of time.

Let’s say a homeowner is staining the fence on their own and don’t have a sprayer to complete the project. It would more than likely take a few days to complete.

I remember as a teenager painting our home in Michigan that had cedar siding on it. It took me one week (7 days) to finish the project because I was required to do it all by hand with a brush no rollers where allowed.  Back then the consumer didn’t have all the right equipment to perform the job. (Or so  I was told, (giggle))

At Fence Makeovers the job may take from beginning to end two days however on most jobs we do everything in one day as we have a repair/cleaning crew and then we have a staining crew.

If you need a graying fence to be stained and look like new again call for an appointment or send in the Free Estimate form and get on the schedule today!