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Best 10 Deck Stain

As Of May 2022

Are you looking to stain your wood decks to protect them against damage? Worry no more! Our guide will help you learn all you need to know about deck stains & what to consider while searching for the best deck stain for your home. Scroll through our favourite picks and find your perfect match without breaking the bank. Is it time to revamp your deck? Let us ease the process.
Check our guide!

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1 RONSEAL Decking Protector on white background

RONSEAL Decking Protector

4.8 /5

Best Deck Stain Overall

  • Gives you a natural matte finish with its scuff resistance feature
  • Keep water way as it is wax enriched
  • Enjoy maximum coverage with its consistency
  • Stick to your deck’s natural color with its translucent solution
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2 Cuprinol Anti Slip Decking Stain on white background

Cuprinol Anti Slip Decking Stain

4.7 /5

Top Choice for Versatility

  • No matter the timber deck you have, it’s specially formulated to fit any type
  • Enjoy the anti-slip microbeading with its unique double action formula
  • Stain the decks yourself with its easy to use solution
  • Waste no time tiptoeing with its super quick drying
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3 Ronseal Decking Oil Natural on white background

Ronseal Decking Oil Natural

4.6 /5

Ideal for Easy Application

  • No spills as you can pour the solution easily by its pour handle
  • Forget moulds and algae with its anti-fungal solution
  • Use it for any type of wood with its versatile formula
  • Maintains your deck in top-notch shape with its water & UV protection
4 Johnstone's Woodcare Stain for Decking on white background

Johnstone's Woodcare Stain for Decking

4.5 /5

Ideal for Long Lasting

  • Forget the last time you stained it with its 3 years guaranteed protection
  • Revamp your deck with its cracking, blistering & peeling fixing formula
  • Worry-free all-year-round with its all-weather defence
  • Increase its lifespan with its UV protection formula
5 Everbuild Quick Drying Wood Stain on white background

Everbuild Quick Drying Wood Stain

4.5 /5

Top Pick for Quick Dry

  • No time wasted with its under 4 hours drying formula
  • Not just for your deck with its versatile formula
  • Relax in any season with its weather & waterproof formula
  • Don’t worry about your costly decks since it gives them hard wearing protection
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6 Liberon Decking Oil on white background

Liberon Decking Oil

4.5 /5

Top Choice for Natural Look

  • Enhance your deck’s natural beauty by not covering up its natural colour
  • Use it on any wooden surface with its versatile solution fixer
  • Turn it into a new deck with its colour reviving & restoring strength
  • Hassle-free application with a sprayer
7 RONSEAL Ultimate Protection Decking Stain Country Oak on white background

RONSEAL Ultimate Protection Deck Stain Country Oak

4.5 /5

Ideal for Rainproofing

  • Stop re-staining regularly as it lasts twice as long as other decking stains
  • Get rid of excess moisture as it’s waterproofing
  • Add an enhanced colour to your deck with its rich formula
  • Enjoy rainy season without worrying with its 90 minutes rainproofing
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8 Sikkens Cetol HLS Plus Translucent Woodstain on white background

Sikkens Cetol HLS Plus Translucent Woodstain

4.5 /5

Ideal for Solid Base

  • Bring out the beauty of the wood grains with its translucent formula
  • No more moulds, algae, UV damage thanks to its repair solution
  • Get rid of excess moisture with its water repellent formula
  • Provide a quality base for your deck with an absorbable formula
9 Sadolin Decking Stain and Protector Red on white background

Sadolin Decking Stain and Protector Red

4.5 /5

Ideal for Minimum Product Waste

  • Get hard wearing finish with its UV active technology
  • Enjoy every weather with its weather protection & waterproof abilities
  • Protect decks against moulds with its fungicides
  • Stain your deck effortlessly with easy brush application & minimum wastage
10 Ronseal Ultimate Protection Decking Stain on white background

Ronseal Ultimate Protection Deck Stain

4.5 /5

Perfect for Weatherproofing

  • Give your deck a longer life by letting it penetrate deeper into the wood
  • Get foot traffic protection with the lightly tinted finish
  • Fight harsh weather with its weatherproof formula
  • Waterproof the deck quick & simple in a single step

Revamp Your Deck & Wooden Furniture With The Best Deck Stain

Staining a deck can be such a fun DIY project! It is easy to do and allows you to play around with different colours and textures for your ideal deck. Applying a stain on the wood does enhance its appearance. But doing it more than required can actually harm the wood’s quality and durability. It can also make it waterproof and protect it against elements that can result in warping. As a homeowner, this is definitely one of the important things to get done when needed.

Whether you are new to this or you have experience in staining your deck, this buying guide will help you learn all you need to know about finding the top deck stain for your patio! In addition, we want to help ease the selection and purchase process, so you can get right to it without waiting time and money! So keep scrolling to learn more about which one is the best for you

Why do you need a Deck Stain?

You might not know you need to stain your deck but let us change your mind. Any wooden furniture or patio needs the occasional revamp to look as good as new again. So let’s find out why you need it, too: 

1. It repels moisture.

These stains help your wood base deck form soaking excess moisture. It acts as a barrier between moisture and the deck’s surface. Wood absorbs water, and then the growth of mould and mildew begins. This deteriorates the wood’s quality. Also, it makes the wood expand and become softer until it’s not fit for use and needs replacement. 

2. It prevents sun damage.

These stains also protect your deck against sun damage. When wood is not stained or treated, the sun’s rays can change its colour, shape, and warps. It also dries faster than it otherwise would, increasing foot traffic. All these can also make it more susceptible to crack. Putting a top-quality stain prevents the sun rays from entering the exterior wood surface into the interior and ensures your deck’s longevity

3. It cracks less. 

Deck sealers do not solve the problem of cracking. Deck stains do! The wood's exterior becomes drier and cracks easier compared to the natural drying.  An oil-based stain moisturizes the wood and keeps it alive. The excess moisture is kept out, which prevents any warping, moisture build and cracks.

4. It prevents the deck from natural wear and tear and fading.

Staining your wooden decks increases their lifespan and minimizes natural wear and tear. It also slows down fading. Wood stains ensure that the deck remains in good condition and shape for a more extended period of time. If you want to keep your deck as good as new, we strongly suggest applying stain as it helps to resist rotting and weathering.

What to look for when buying Deck Stain?

Let’s look at some essential features you need to consider when you are in the market for deck stains. First, different deck materials need different stains. Some provide you with shine, some act as a brightener, and some are primary for waterproofing. Also, you need to choose the right colour for an exterior wood stain, for example, a lighter colour for the lighter deck and a darker one for the darker deck. Here is our list: 

1. Stain Colors

One of the most important things to consider while searching for deck paint is the colour. You need to try and test the stain on the wood before you buy it. The best way to do it is to try it on a spare piece of food from the deck if you have any. If not, you can also try colours on the spot on your deck which is not visible. Wait for the stain to completely dry before you decide because that makes a huge difference, especially in high-traffic areas. Choose the colour that is the closest fit to your deck for premium results.

3. Wood’s Colour & Constituents

The wood’s natural tint is also something to consider while buying deck stains. The undertones change the entire look of the deck once the stain is applied and dried. Let us consider pine as an example. Since pine wood has green undertones, you should pick a colour that will successfully cancel the green tones or enhance them further. A mid-way will only make your deck look weird. The next thing to consider is the amount of grain of the wood before you make a stain choice. Specific natural grain patterns are enhanced when the stain is applied. Again, this changes the overall look of the deck.

Also, think of your wood’s type. For example, redwood or cedar decks need a different stain. And pressurised or softwood needs a different one. Always colour before you make a decision. This will help you see how the final outcome would look like. 

The deck’s age and what wood it is made of: Newer decks go well with lighter tones. You can re-coat them with darker tones later. But, old decks require darker shades to go well with their dull appearance. The darker and opaque stains hide the imperfections that are caused due to excessive use.

4. Home Design

It is vital that the deck stain goes well with your home's look, feel, and design. After all, it is going to be a significant element of where you live and hang out. It will cover a lot of areas that will be visible to everyone. Hence, you should choose a stain that makes sense for your house design. The deck should highlight your home’s surrounding, landscape, vegetation, and location. 

5. Stain Opacity

While picking a stain, along with the colour, you also choose how opaque you want the stain to be. You can either choose a transparent stain if you are fond of the wood’s natural beauty. This is the best option to consider if your wood is new and high-end. But, semi-transparent stains last longer - for about 3 years- and change the final look of your deck. If you wish to protect the deck with just a hint of colour, this is the right choice. Wood and grain colours are visible through a semi-transparent wood stain, too. Semi-solid stains are best used for heavier colour application. This comes with a good level of opacity for old decks and has gone through wear and tear and hides imperfections. Aged decks should be washed with a pressure washer or a garden hose first, for a thorough clean up, before applying the stain. There are also patio cleaners to help you get rid of any excess dirt.  Sanding your deck before any application is also advisable.

Solid colour stains are the best stain option for old decks that have visible defects. This stain completely hides the wood grain, especially in the second coat of staining. It also has a higher level of UV protection resistance. Usually, the stain lasts for about 5 years. We will also discuss these types of stains in detail below. 

What are the types of Deck Stains?

There are three main stain types that help you protect your deck and increase its lifespan. All these stains go well with different kinds of woods and circumstances. Consider the wood’s age and how many imperfections it has to pick one of the following three: 

  • Solid and semi-solid 

These stains are like regular deck paint, solid and opaque. They hide the wood grains and last longer than any other type, for about 3 years to 5 years. This best suits decks that are super old and filled with imperfections. The paint-like quality of the solid stain and semi-solid stain only has one drawback. They might end up building a film after a few coats. Also, these coats are susceptible to peel, crack and chip, just like regular paint. Other than that, it is a good pick for anyone who wants to cover the natural look of the deck. The only difference between solid and semi-solid stains is that the last ones help you see the natural colour and texture of the wood. Whereas solid stains completely cover the deck. 

  • Semi-transparent 

Semi-transparent stain colours the wood type and coats them the right way. But, it also lets the grain peek through to keep the natural wood look. It is a good choice if your wood is expensive or you have a new deck, and you wish to show it off. Also, they can easily be applied with a sprayer. Western red cedar is one of the woods that goes best with semi-transparent stains. But, they are not as tough as the solid stains and only last for about 3 years

  • Clear sealer

Clear sealers or transparent stains are used by people who have high-end and new wood decks. This helps them flaunt the decks. It is like a clear coat that protects the deck but does not hide it at all. It contains water repellents and little to no pigment. This accentuates the wood grain’s beauty. Since it has no element to reflect the harmful UV rays from the sun, the wood ends up becoming grey over time. Eventually, you have to re-stain it again. It has the lowest lasting life of about a year or two. 

How long can it last?

On average, these stains only last from anywhere between three to five years and not more. Most stains need to be re-stained again after every alternate year. But, the high quality, oil-based, semi-transparent ones last for over 3 years. This happens because not all wood is easy to handle when it comes to holding up a stain well. Some of these woods are very dense. Even though they make gorgeous decks, they are not best friends with stains. It is also crucial to apply the stain to protect the wood from UV damage. This helps in protecting the deck from harsh weather conditions as well. Protecting against wear and tear is important and helps increase the deck's life.

How much should you spend on a Stain

There is a range of costs depending on the features, quality and nature of the stain. The cost also depends on how long the stain promises to last. So, a stain that will only last for a year or less would be cheaper than a stain that promises to last for 3 years or more. Here is what you expect to find: 

  • Affordable 

The affordable range of stains mainly comprises stains that last for a year or a maximum of 2 years. It costs anywhere from £300 to £700 in total, depending on your deck’s size.  Some stain dealers also quote prices according to per square meters area. This comes down to about £1-£2 when you hire someone to stain the deck. If you decide to do it yourself, the cost comes down in half!

  • High-end

The high-end range costs over £700 and can rise up to £1100, depending on the size of your deck. When estimating according to the per square foot price, it ranges anywhere between £2-£5. This is when you choose a high quality, oil-based stain which promises to last at least 3 years. Similarly, if you decide to stain the deck yourself, it becomes relatively cheaper. This happens as you save on the labour cost and only spend on the product cost. 


Wood is widely used in building decks, and why should it not! After all, it is the most excellent material with high durability. It also enhances the look of your living space. Unless the deck is made of either redwood or another naturally resisting element, the decks need proper staining. Staining the deck protects it from fading and weathering. Our guide will help you choose the top stain for your house and everything you should consider while searching. 

Give your decks a fresh look and hide all their imperfections starting today! You will not regret this purchase! Are you ready for the summer season? Host a BBQ or garden party and show off your beautiful patio!

About The Author

Amy is your go-to person for home-related stuff with closed eyes. Maybe it's her passion for perfection or maybe her strong character. Maybe both! With more than 10 years of experience in home improvement, maintenance, remodeling and decoration tips. Her skills are a combination of hard work and talent. No matter the issue, she knows how to tackle the problem and give you the solution with the least effort and elbow grease. After all, she herself loves to get the job done in simple steps. Her latest adventure? Crafts and gardening! She knows the deal and she will show you the ace that she has up her sleeve.
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