Best Fence Stains and Sealers to Buy in 2020

As a carpenter, it is only natural for me to fall in love with anything constructed with wood. You have all the reasons to love it as everything made from this material looks naturally beautiful. It is comparable to have a lawn with a well-maintained grass as opposed to a concrete option.

On the other hand, products made from wood will take up minimal capital to construct. Those of us with wooden fences will tell you how much they have saved. It is far much of a savings compared to an individual who has constructed a perimeter fence. 

It also offers you the option of designing your project to your desirable and emerging needs. What I mean is that you can easily deconstruct and reconstruct a wooden structure at minimal costs.

While this may be the case, maintaining the overall appeal of your wooden fence requires some form of maintenance. From a professional point of view, applying stains and sealants is a good way to take care of your wooden structures. 

When determining what is right for maintaining your wood, you should begin with understanding what causes it to deteriorate. The main factors of this include excessive water and UV light rays. Mold, mildew, and algae also contribute to the destruction of your wooden structures.

Product
Top Pick
#1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood...
Premium
ECO-Safe Wood Treatment - Stain by Tall...
Ready Seal 112 1-Gallon Can Natural...
KILZ L832211 Exterior Waterproofing Wood...
Prime
Pros
Does not have an irritating smell.
The stain does not fade easily.
It does not easily wear out.
It will help to prevent mildew growth on your fence.
Top Pick
Product
#1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood...
Price
Prime
Pros
Does not have an irritating smell.
Premium
Product
ECO-Safe Wood Treatment - Stain by Tall...
Price
Prime
Pros
The stain does not fade easily.
Product
Ready Seal 112 1-Gallon Can Natural...
Price
Prime
Pros
It does not easily wear out.
Product
KILZ L832211 Exterior Waterproofing Wood...
Price
Prime
Pros
It will help to prevent mildew growth on your fence.

As you will come to see later in the article, the different brands of stains and sealers effectively help to prevent the damage caused by these elements. In this respect, join me as I go through some of the best wood fence protection options you can explore.

Best Wood Fence Sealer Reviews

In this section, I will focus on the different brands of sealers and stains. The idea is to help you know what options are available on the market and the difference that exists between them. I will also highlight the strengths and weaknesses associated with each of them.

1. Ready Seal 112 – Top Rated Fence Stain

By description, Ready Seal is an oil-based multipurpose semi-transparent sealer and stain. It is made from a distinctive mix of high-quality resins, completely grounded pigments and oils that deeply insert themselves into any wood, hence preserving and protecting from destructive elements. Its semi-transparent nature allows the product to interact with the natural attributes of the wood, thereby allowing its grain and texture to remain visible. Therefore, among the benefits you can count on this seal, is the retention of the natural beauty of your wood. Instead of changing how your wood looks, its role is to help extend its life.


You may be wondering what I mean when I talk about preserving and extending the life of your wood. On this front, Ready Seal will not change the general outlook of your wood. The brand has color variants to match those associated with the different wood types. For example, they have colors such as mahogany, redwood, light oak, natural cedar, pecan, and dark walnut.

On the other hand, its deep penetration ensures that it will be harder for the product to peel off. Unlike paint that appears as a coat, this seal integrates itself into the grains of the wood, hence it is hard to come off. Another protection that this seal offers is from mold and algae. What you ought to know about the Ready Seal is that it contains paraffin oil as one of the active ingredients. This helps to minimize the growth of mold in areas where you apply this product.

Positives:
  • The product is easy to apply on wood as you can use brushes, sprayers or rollers
  • It does not easily wear out
  • A lot of color variants
  • It is a biodegradable product, hence it cannot be considered as a soil or water pollutant
Negatives:
  • The stain remains vibrant after application for a long time
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2. Flood Series FLD520-01 – Best Stain for Cedar Fence

If you have chosen cedar for your fencing or deck, then you are probably thinking of how to maintain the natural beauty that comes with it. Luckily for you, the solution for this has been in existence for years. The Flood CWF-UV Cedar is the best fence stain brand you need to get the job done.

When I say that the answer has been available for long, I mean exactly that. Flood is a company that has been on the market since 1841. This is far before any of us was even born. What you will love about them is that over the years, their objective has remained the same. This brand aim is to help you take care of your wood by providing you with the right products for this job.

One area that this product has gained ground over its competitors is UV and water protection. I have heard many of my clients complained that the last stain they used quickly faded away, hence leaving their fences exposed to various weather elements. Relying on my years of experience, I can certainly tell you that this product from Flood will stick and guard your wood for long.

Their secret is quite simple. The company uses transparent iron oxides as part of the ingredients. This helps in absorption and obstruction of direct sunlight rays from your wood. Moreover, the product has been galvanized with Penetrol, a chemical additive that facilitates its maximum penetration and protection from beneath the wood surface.

Positives:
  • The stain is impervious to water, hence it offers the protection for your wood from damage during the rainy and snowy seasons
  • It can easily be cleaned from surfaces with some soap and water
  • The product helps to repel the growth of mildew and mold on your wooden fence
Negatives:
  • It has a smell that can seem irritating to certain people
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3. Tall Earth Eco-Safe Wood Treatment – Eco-Friendly Wood Fence Protection

How about an eco-friendly option for protecting your wood? Is environmental conservation a part of your product purchase decision-making? If it is, then you are better served by using this stain from Tall Earth. The amazing fact is that you do not have to take the manufacturer’s word for it. A test conducted by independent parties and government authorities has confirmed these claims as well.

What more does this product offer? This stain effectively integrates itself into the fibers of wood, thereby permanently altering the wood composition at a molecular level. This is beneficial in the sense that it minimizes the possibility of the stain ever fading away. This specific attribute also makes this product a rational choice if you are looking to repair and renovate your aging fence.

A part of the feature I love about this stain is how well it blends with any wood. The product offers an excellent brown aged or silver finish to achieve this effect. This aspect also makes it a very good choice for indoor projects like that on furniture.

Positives:
  • Penetrates deeper into the wood, thereby becomes a part of its internal composition
  • It a good choice for rejuvenating and repairing aging wood
  • The stain does not fade easily
  • Friendly to the environment and pets
Negatives:
  • Does not work well with certain kind of wood such as white pine
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4. Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain – Best Fence Stain and Sealer for Soft Wood

 

It is normal to hope for a longer lifespan on your outdoor fence or deck even though you are sure that the weather elements can sometimes be unforgiving. Rather than just sit there and remain hopeful, sometimes it is better to be proactive. 

One way you can do this is by searching for a reliable stain that doubles up as a seal too. When shopping in these lines, you will be better served by having Deck Premium semi-transparent wood stain as your pick.

There are several reasons for this claim. The first is the way this liquid formula easily penetrates into the interior of any wood. This is a good thing because you are sure its impact can be felt both from within and outside. In particular, the Deck Premium stain has been known to work better in pressure treated wood. It will help them to remain firm and vibrant even in harsh sunny and winter conditions.

Another reason you ought to love this stain is because of the application solutions it offers you. Many other stains may not be a good choice on wood that is old and has never been stained. If you have a plan to rejuvenate your fence or deck, then Deck Premium is your best option. For the excellent results, clean the old wood, leave it to dry, and then apply this stain.

Positives:
  • Can be applied even on damp wood
  • Suitable option for those looking to rejuvenate their old fences or decks 
  • The stain has proven to offer good value for the money spent
  • Does not have an irritating smell
Negatives:
  • Is not a viable option on hardwood
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5. KILZ L832211 Waterproofing Wood Stain – Best Stain for Wood Fence in Damp Conditions

What is your main concern when erecting an outdoor fence? If you are living in areas experiencing high amounts of rainfall and snowfall, you will be worried whether the damp conditions will become a problem to the fence. Since my role is to offer you solutions, I have the right one for this challenge.

Undoubtedly, KILZ L832211 is the solution you need. This stain contains an Acrylic formula that will effectively protect your wood from any damage that may be caused by snow or rain. The manufacturer is very confident about this issue that they have offered a warranty on the same. This entails coverage of five years on fences and three years for decks.

This stain will also offer you protection against parasitic growth on your wood. By this, I mean the mold, mildew, or algae that attach themselves to your fence. This protection also extends to extremely sunny conditions that may cause deterioration of your fence.

Positives:
  • The product is a good choice for those living in areas experiencing high snowfall and rainfall
  • It will help to prevent mildew growth on your fence
  • Provides a warranty on the protection offered by this item on your wood
Negatives:
  • Several customers have complained that it leaves a coat once applied
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6. Wood Defender Transparent Fence Stain – Best Transparent Wood Fence Stain

One thing I have to admit is that this company could not have found a better name for its product. A winning strategy in branding is the use of a name that matches the product description and the work it is expected to perform. But how well does it live up to this hype?

If you would follow up on all the other stains I have discussed here, and they have mainly been transparent. However, this product is made in such a way that it will maintain the natural beauty of your wood while still preserving it. The trans-oxide pigments that make a large portion of this product will stain your surface but still leave the wood grain visible for all to see. Therefore, I would rank it higher on the list of my redwood fence stain.

This is why the Wood Defender transparent stain is an excellent choice if you are looking to retain the natural style of your redwood or cedar fences. The pigmentation also plays a fine role in protecting the wood from excessive harmful sunlight rays. This is made possible by the fact that the chemical itself repels UV rays produced by the sun.

Positives:
  • Two-year warranty for the product
  • It has one of the best penetration of all stains
  • The stain is transparent, hence it allows you to maintain the natural look of your wood
  • Relatively easy to apply
Negatives:
  • The stain is not eco-friendly
  • Has one of those irritating smells
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7. Thompsons WaterSeal – Multipurpose Best Wood Fence Treatment

With the tough times only getting harder, we all are looking for ways to save on costs. However, you want to do it in a way that does not compromise the overall quality of your work. Therefore, an alternative way of saving on costs is by searching for products that can perform more than one role.

Thompson WaterSeal does exactly this. It can easily be used on other surfaces such as brick, concrete, and wood. This should tell you a lot about its ability to blend with different surfaces. The clear nature of this solution makes the work easier for you when it comes to applying it. Another reason that this product is famous amongst its users is the cost of purchase.

Positives:
  • Very fairly priced
  • Can be used on several surfaces such as concrete, wood, and bricks
  • Good at eliminating rust or dirt stains that may have formed on your wood
  • Very easy to apply
Negatives:
  • The product peels off and fades very quickly
  • Not an environmentally friendly option
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What Should I Take Note of When Buying Fence Stains – Fence Stain Reviews

fence stain applying

Now that we have discussed different brands of fence stains, you have a clue about how to distinguish them. The thing you need to note is that this review has just sampled some brands out there. But how do you go about buying any other product not discussed in this article? What should you look for?

Related Post: Best Garage Door Seals Reviewed

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Understand the Different Types of Stains

Similar to paints, there are different categories of stains. This differentiation exists as a result of the manufacturing process and the ingredients used in producing them. The various types include:

  • Semi-transparent

As you may have noticed, this is a pretty common form of stains. The reason for this is down to how it performs when applied on the wood surface. In a nutshell, the best semi transparent fence stain will greatly protect your wooden fences and still allow it to retain its natural look. With this stain, the grain of your wood can still be seen. This effectively enables the wood to retain its original color.

  • Solid

This is the closest you get to the original paints. They are similar in the respect that once used, and these products will form a coat over the surface they are applied to. This will cause them to conceal the grains of your wooden structures.

While this may be worse when you have naturally beautiful wood such as redwood, it is a good idea for the cases when you want to hide defects. Another weakness associated with this stain is that it is vulnerable to peeling off or flaking, especially when exposed to high amounts of sunlight.

  • Clear stain

The composition of these stains is designed in a way that they have no pigmentation at all. This does not imply that they do not perform the job these products are intended to do. They will protect your wood from damage by water and other extreme conditions without hiding the natural appeal of your wooden structures. However, the greatest weaknesses associated with this type of stain is that prolonged exposure to UV rays will cause a discoloration of the wood’s grain.

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How to Choose Your Fence Stain Colors?

Another factor to have in mind when buying stains is the color that suits your needs. Different brands offer varying color options. As for this factor, this is not an area I can give personal recommendations. This is related to what your fence looks like and also the kind of wood you use in its construction.

However, I would say that it is wise to go with a color that matches with the general tone of your homestead. For example, what does your house look like, and what can help to complement this appearance?

Related Post: Best Roof Sealants and Coatings

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The Environmental Considerations

This is a factor that many people choose to ignore, but it is an important one. In the current times, environmental consciousness has become a thing that we, as consumers, should take seriously. In line with the changing market demands, most manufacturers are modifying the way they do things by introducing environmentally friendly products.

In the case of stains, those with VOCs as active ingredients pose a huge threat to the environment. These substances are known to cause all kinds of pollution and even pose a danger to the applicant’s health. However, water based fence stains are a good option as they have a minimal negative impact on the environment.

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Common Questions on Best Fence Stain

wooden ence

The topic of stains and sealers is an expansive one. There is so much to be discussed in this area. How about summarizing some other issues in the form of questions?

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How Much Stain Do I Need for My Fence?

Before beginning any project, there is a need to engage in advance planning for the same. This is where you set out the design of the structure you need to erect, the materials required, and the overall budget the project will incur. Part of the costing process for this project involves determining the volume or amount of stain required for your fence.

The first step to establishing is by measuring the area that the fence will occupy. Try to measure this in terms of square feet. In most cases, while estimating the area to be covered by stain or sealant, manufacturers usually utilize square feet as the standard measure. For example, based on estimates provided online, a gallon is enough to cover an area of two fifty to three hundred square feet. Using these estimates, you can easily assess how many gallons of stains and sealers you require for this fencing project.

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How to Apply Fence Stains?

The first step to applying stain to your fence is getting the right equipment for the job. Ensure that you have the right tools such as enough stain, brush, roller, or sprayer, depending on your mode of application. Also, it is important to wear protective gear when applying the stain.

The next step is cleaning the wooden surface you are about to apply the stain. Use water and brush to clean any dirt and debris that may have settled on your fence. Also, remove any loose nails or broken wood.

Once dry, carefully apply a layer of the stain using a brush, roller, or sprayer. Ensure you do it evenly. It is important to reapply another layer where possible. Once through, allow the stain to dry naturally. In the meantime, you can be cleaning the stain off the surfaces that you never wanted stained.

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Time to Stain Your Fence – Best Wood Fence Sealer

Having a wooden fence is another way to improve the appearance of your homestead. It also presents itself as the least expensive option to maintain a natural taste around your home. However, to keep this fence appealing for long, there is a need to perform some maintenance practices.

Applying a layer of stain and sealant is a good step to prolong its life. Luckily for you, this article has discussed some stains you can use to maintain or rejuvenate your wooden fence. I have also extended my discussion to highlight the application process you should follow. Therefore, which of the stains will help to complement the look of your homestead? Do you mind using stains that pollute the environment? Please, share your thoughts on the subject in the comment section below.

Sean Chapman

My ultimate goal is to provide insights that will help you effectively determine whether this or that tool or product suits your needs/budget or not. I test out home improvement tools at work on a daily basis and enjoy sharing my knowledge with D.I.Y-ers who have similar questions to the ones I used to have. I realize how important choosing the right tools is, that’s why my approach to every review I publish is very responsible.

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