Cedar is renowned for its sophisticated looks and durable quality. If your siding is made of cedar, chances are that you make no compromise when it comes to elegance.
Despite cedar's robust quality, it can fall prey to mildew buildups, UV rays, water stains, extractive bleeds and other kinds of damages.
So, definitely, you cannot expect your cedar siding to take care of itself, right?
But are you clueless about how to preserve the refinement of your cedar in the long run? Well, if so, you are on the right platform.
To increase the expectancy of your cedar siding, you should apply exterior stains over its surface. After all, the poor thing has to stay rooted outside always and endure whatever nature throws at it!
Due to the commercial admiration of cedar sidings, currently, there are tons of exterior stains marketed to keep them from waning. But are all of the products true to their claims? Not really!
That is why we have come up with this elaborate article. It will introduce you to the best exterior stain for cedar siding suited to your needs.
Ready Seal 520
5 out of 5
DEFY Extreme 5 Gallon
5 out of 5
4.5 out of 5
Krylon Semi-Transparent Oil
4 out of 5
Penofin Red Label 5 Gallon
4.5 out of 5
Top 11 Best Exterior Stains For Cedar Siding Reviewed
1. Ready Seal 520 | Best Cedar Siding Sealer
Want to avail an affordable exterior stain that is also strong and independent? A stain that does not need to be backed by other products? Then get yourself Ready Seal 520 Exterior Stain and Sealer.
This wonderful sealer can give your decks a professional-like finish. That too with minimal steps!
This exterior stain magnifies the original color of your wooden surfaces. It is made of paraffin oil, trans-oxide pigments, resins and algaecides. The product acts as a shield for the woods against UV rays. As a result, their luster stays intact for a long time.
This is a semi-transparent exterior stain. It comes in a wide range of hues such as- Golden Pine, Redwood, Mahogany, Natural Cedar, Burnt Hickory, Dark Walnut, Light Oak and Pecan.
You may use it for any exterior wooden surfaces. So, if you are concerned about embellishing your fences, decks, arbors, wood siding, gazebos, log homes or roofs; count on Ready Seal 520.
You will not have to sweat over the application of this product. It does not need any primer. You will not even need to dilute it with water for the ease of use. Just grab a roller, brush or even sprayer. And you are good to go.
This "Goof Proof" product can be used at any temperature. The application will not be streaky or leave any lapse. The product will not drip or run during the application process. Hence, you can perform the task quite neatly.
Also, be mindful about your surroundings while you work with this stain. We should always take care of mother Earth. So, try to put covers on the nearby plants while you are at it.
This sealer does not demand you to back brush. Just two layers in the same direction are enough. But wait for at least 45 minutes before going with the second coating.
The stain takes 14 days to show the original color. Prior to that, it looks darker. So, do not worry. Patience is the key here.
Never use this 2-in-1 Stain and Sealer over newly tainted veneers. If you do, you will not get your desired result. Always apply the stain over dry and clean woods. So, if you have just cleaned your cedar, wait for 48 to 72 hours so that it can dry completely. This should not be so hard, right?
- Is an economical option because of being a 2-in-1 Stain and Sealer.
- Gives off a professional-like finish.
- Takes 14 days to show the original color.
- Does not need any primer.
- Protects your wooden goodies from harmful UV rays.
- Requires no primer. Ready Seal is darkest when first applied. It reaches its true color in approximately...
- May be applied using sprayer, roller or brush onto the woods surface.
- Requires no back brushing and will nerver leave runs, laps, or streaks.
- Requires no wet-line application, the product will blend itself and can be applied in any temperature...
2. DEFY Extreme 5 Gallon Semi-Transparent Exterior Wood Stain
Looking for a semi-transparent stain? Take into consideration DEFY Extreme Wood Stain. This exterior stain acts as a sunscreen for your wooden surfaces and makes them last longer.
But the question is ‘how?’
The product is made of topnotch resins to elevate its resistance. Moreover, it secures woods from harmful UV rays- thanks to its Zinc Nano-Particle Technology.
Also, are you worried about mildew buildup? Well, do not be for the Nano zinc particles will never let that happen. Consequently, the product is twice more effective and heavy-duty than its closest competitors. This is what makes it the best semi transparent stain for cedar siding.
This water-based stain can beautify your wooden decks, shake shingles, siding, fences, pressure-treated lumber, outdoor patio furniture, playsets etc. It does not totally conceal the natural color of your woods. Rather, it brings out the best in them.
This product is easy to work with. There is no need for dilution. Simply spray it or brush it over your target area. If you opt for spraying, use an airless or pump-up sprayer. For better results, use Defy Strain Stripper followed by Defy Wood Brightener before the application of the stain.
You do not have to be concerned about temperature parameters to work with it. Furthermore, the remarkable stain can defy any unpleasant weather.
Nevertheless, if you notice any signs of fading, you can bring back life to the surfaces just by coating another layer of stain. The product will show its magic within 24 hours. But make sure to clean the surface with soap and water before your maintenance work.
The eco-friendly stain gives a matte finish to wooden stuff. There is a versatile range of tints. So, choose your favorite shade from Crystal Clear, Butternut, Cedar Tone, Driftwood Gray, Light Walnut, Natural Pine & Redwood.
- Highly resistant to fading and darkening as it is made of synthetic epoxy resins.
- Protects your wooden surfaces or furniture from dangerous UV rays.
- Water-based stain and so easy to work with.
- Zinc Nano-Particle Technology hinders mildew buildup.
- Offers a versatile range of shades.
- WATER-BASED SEMI-TRANSPARENT WOOD STAIN – This environmentally friendly, water based deck stain allows...
- FORTIFIED WITH ZINC NANO-PARTICLE TECHNOLOGY– It’s like sunscreen for your wood. Tiny zinc particles...
- EXTREMELY DURABLE, QUALITY THAT LASTS – DEFY Extreme wood stains are made with the highest quality...
- EASY TO MAINTAIN – When it’s time to do a maintenance coat, there’s no need to sand or strip the...
3. THOMPSONS WATERSEAL Transparent Waterproofing Stain
Want to waterproof your cedar siding? Then get yourself THOMPSONS WATERSEAL Transparent Waterproofing Stain. I assure you that you will not regret it.
Originally designed for architectural and construction sites, this exterior stain can undergo all kinds of calamities and still stay true to its colors. It is comprised of Polymers. Ergo, fading is not something you need to fear from now on.
Apart from cedar sidings, you may use the transparent stain for any wooden surfaces as well. So, choose a suitable shade from Acorn Brown, Harvest Gold, Maple Brown, Sequoia Red or Woodland Cedar and amplify the looks of your wooden goodies.
You can use this product both on dry and wet surfaces. The application procedure is quite simple. Take a stain pad or pump sprayer and just go with it. You may even use a roller if you want.
A single coat is well enough. But if you want, you may opt for double coating. But before that, wait for 2 hours. Otherwise, the application will turn out patchy.
But how long does it take to dry? Not more than 48 hours. The result will be smooth and shiny. So, get ready to awe the world with the beautiful sheen of your siding.
It is recommended not to apply the stain under direct sun exposure or when the weather is hot. Hence, try to opt for a day when the temperature is somewhere between 50°F and 95°F if you want the product to perform its best.
Also, do not forget that freshly painted or stained woods are not suitable for this product. The stain cannot penetrate properly in this case. As a result, all of your hard works will go into vain.
This product stands strong against UV rays. It also withstands mildew buildups. So, on one hand, it is safeguarding your woods from water and on another, it fights strongly against mildew and UV rays.
- Waterproofs your cedar sidings or wooden veneers.
- Originally designed for architectural and construction sites.
- Made of Polymers.
- Recommended using when the temperature ranges from 50°F to 95°F.
- Acts as protection against mildew and UV rays.
- Prevents Water Damage
- Advanced Polymers Provide Fade Resistant Color
- Coating Resists Mildew and UV Damage
- Applies to Freshly Cleaned Damp or Dry Wood
4. Krylon Semi-Transparent Oil Based Exterior Stains
Want to revamp your wooden furniture or cedar siding with a semi-transparent stain? If so, Krylon Exterior Semi-Transparent Wood Stain could be the perfect match for you.
You may use the stain as a protective layer over any kind of wooden surfaces like a deck, birch, outdoor patio furniture, lumber wood or anything you may please!This water repellent exterior stain can make sure that rainwater cannot seep through the woods. Not only that, but it can also secure your exterior wooden pieces from direct sun exposure. As a result, it makes the woods long-lasting.
This is an oil-based stain. You need to apply the product with an aerosol spray can. You can work flexibly with it. Trust me, the application will not be messy if you be a little cautious. Rather, it will give a nice smooth finish to your wooden surfaces.
A single coating of Krylon Stain is enough to refurbish your cedar siding. It dries in just 15 minutes! But if you want to go with a second coating, you need to wait for at least 48 hours. You do not want the application to be patchy, do you?
You can cover up to 25 sq. ft. with this product. There is no temperature specification for this stain. So, you can apply it any time you want. But to be on the safer side, use it on dry and clean surfaces. Also, try to wear protective gear while working with it.
This remarkable stain comes in 4 shades. They are- Cedar, Rustic Brown, Olive Grove and Redwood.
- An oil-based semi-transparent stain.
- It has to be applied with an aerosol spray can.
- Takes 15 minutes to be dried.
- Can cover up to 25 sq. Ft.
- Fights against UV rays and also waterproofs your cedar siding.
5. Penofin Red Label 5 Gallon Outdoor Stain for Cedar Siding
What if I told you that a particular exterior stain can provide your cedar siding with 90% security from UV rays? Yes, you read it right. For Penofin Red, this is no big deal!
Perofin Red Label has elevated transoxide pigments. It ensures that the sheen of your woods does not wane quickly due to constant sunbathing.
This product is made of Brazilian Rosewood Oil. It seeps deep into the core of the woods and fights strongly against moisture invasion, which makes it the best finish for cedar.
You can adorn any wooden material with this product. To name a few- sidings, decks, fences, outdoor furniture, gazebos, docks etc.
Penofin Red Label gives mildew protection to your woods like no one other. If your demographic area falls under the abundance of rain or snow falls, this is an apt choice for you. The stain shields your woods from calamities and keeps them fresh as new for an extended period.
That being said, you can even use the product to stain your boats because of its water repellent properties. Amazing how a single product can serve so many purposes!
You can apply this stain in a breeze. For the best outcome, use a sprayer. No sanding is required prior to application. One gallon of Penofin Red Label stain can be used over 125-175 square feet.
This transparent stain comes in a wide array of hues. They are- Western Red Cedar, Cedar, Chestnut, Clear, Hickory, Mission Brown, Mission Brown, Redwood, Sable, Sierra. The tints will not overshadow the natural color of your woods. Rather, they will give it a nice glow.
- Provides 90% security from UV rays.
- Designed to tackle bizarre weathers.
- One gallon is able to cover 125-175 square feet area.
- Protects your cedar siding from unpleasant mildews.
- Comes in a wide array of shades.
- 90% ultraviolet protection from transoxide pigments virtually eliminates fading due to sunlight
- Brazilian Rosewood Oil that deeply penetrates to protect against moisture
- This product cannot be shipped to the following states: AK AZ CA CT DC DE HI IL IN MA MD ME NH NJ NY OH...
- Ten transparent tones
6. SaverSystems #1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain
Waiting is not one of your strongest suits? If so, no one can have your back better than SaverSystems #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain.
It lets you work with damp woods. So, you do not have to waste any time waiting for your woods to be completely dry after you clean them. However, it does not mean that you can apply the stain over completely wet woods. Their surfaces have to be at least visibly dry.
This is a 2-in-1 product. It not only stains your wooden materials but also acts as a sealer to prevent moisture. The water-based stain penetrates easily into the woods and locks the pores. Hence, it becomes resistant to water and serves for a prolonged period.
SaverSystems #1 Deck Premium can ensure the protection of your exterior wood against pernicious UV rays. As a result, their color will not fade any time soon.
You can apply the product in 3 simple steps. At first, you need to clean or strip your desired surface. Sand with thick grit sandpaper. Use #1 Deck Wood Stain Stripper for stripping the woods. After that, wash them with a pressure washer or garden hose.
At the second step, brighten up the surfaces with #1 Deck Wood Brightener. You will also need to rinse the woods properly for better outcomes.
Finally, stir the stain well. Once your cedar siding or whatever material you are working with is visibly dry, stain them using an airless sprayer. You can use a brush as well. For a more even application, always back-brush even if you are spraying.
The stain takes 1-2 hours to dry after its application. But it’s recommended to wait 12-14 hours before walking, depending on the temperature and humidity. Also, check out the weather forecast before the application of this product. 45ºF and 95ºF is the perfect temperature to work with it.
For the ease of perforation, never use the stain on a newly painted substance. This 50 VOC semi-transparent stain comes in 5 shades- Cedar, Dark Walnut, Driftwood Gray, Light Walnut or Natural.
- A 2-in-1 product that stains your wooden materials and acts as a sealer to prevent moisture.
- You can stain the substances when they are somewhat dry after cleaning.
- Makes your cedar sidings waterproof and resistant to sun exposure.
- 50 VOC semi-transparent stain comes in 5 shades.
- 1-2 hours is needed to dry after application.
- PROTECTS AGAINST COLOR FADE AND PREVENTS GRAYING - #1 Deck Protects Wood From Damage Caused By Exposure...
- BOTH A DECK STAIN & DECK SEALANT IN ONE - #1 Deck Stain Is a Dual-Purpose Stain & Sealer. It Adds Color...
- ALLOWS THE WOOD GRAIN TO SHOW THROUGH - Available in 5 Beautiful, Semi-Transparent Deck Stain Colors That...
- BETTER FOR THE PLANET, EASY SOAP & WATER CLEANUP - With Less Than 50 g/L VOC Content, #1 Deck Sealer Is a...
7. Olympic Stain 56500-04 Maximum Waterproofing Sealant
Next onto our list is a transparent exterior stain named Olympic Stain Maximum. This remarkable stain will waterproof your cedar siding. Hence, no need to lose your sleep worrying about what will happen if calamities befall on it.
Let us begin with the brightest side of this product. And that is you do not have to be wary about the weather alerts in order to apply this stain. Whether it is burning hot out there or a downpour, you can work with this product under any circumstances.
This product is suitable for any exterior wooden materials such as cedar sidings, fences, decks, lumber woods, outdoor furniture, shake shingles and what not! The stain is formulated with first-rate hybrid resin technology to seal the beauty and vigor of the woods.
This 250 VOC compliant stain blocks harmful UV rays so that the natural color your woods stay intact. It also gives mildew protection. So, bid adieu to unwanted darkening of woods.
Olympic Stain gives a nice matte finish to your woods. It comes in a pack of 5 gallons and each gallon can cover about 250 to 350 sq. Ft. It spreads well on your preferred wooden substances. Hence, it will not make you toil much.
So, just wipe out any dirt from your cedar siding. Then apply Olympic Premium Deck Cleaner over it to make sure that there is no unpleasant rubbish hiding anywhere on the surface.
After that, tape off any area you want to avoid staining. Finally, apply the stain all over your siding with a roller, brush or paint pad.
Double coating is necessary for even outcomes. Also, do not forget to back-brush if you thrive for perfection. Now, wait for 4 to 12 hours depending on the weather. And then your siding will be dry to touch.
Olympic Stain Maximum comes in 7 tones which are Clear, Cedar Natural tone, Cedar, Canyon Brown, Redwood Natural tone, Navajo Red, Oxford Brown.
- You can carry on with its application under any temperature maintaining some cautions.
- Available in 7 transparent tones.
- Comes in a pack of massive 5 gallons.
- Defends your cedar siding from mildew and UV rays.
- Works both as a stain and a sealer.
- Enhanced waterproofing protection to help make sure your wood is protected from cracking due to water
- 1 Quart
- delivers enhanced waterproofing and sunblock UV defense
- Item Package Weight: 2.59 pounds
8. KILZ L832211 Exterior Waterproofing Wood Stain
If you are on the lookout for a stain that has a 100% acrylic formula, KILZ Exterior Waterproofing Wood Stain will tick off that criteria. This powerful stain provides manifold facilities as well as intensifies the beauty of the cedars.
This affordable stain is compatible with any kind of wooden material, that includes- decks, railings, shingles, wood patio furniture, siding, shakes and fences. As for weathering, you should use new to moderately weathered woods or wooden substances that are not sealed.
If you are fascinated with red cedar sidings, this is the best exterior finish for western red cedar. The product is apt for outdoor settings as it can waterproof your woods. So, let there be inexhaustible rain or snowfall, there’s no fear of decaying woods anytime soon.
KILZ Stain provides your cedar siding or other materials with security against detrimental ultraviolet rays. To fight off untimely darkening, it also comes with mildew protection. Therefore, the vivacity of your woods stays pristine for longer than ever.
Although its application process involves several steps, you do not need to sweat a bucket. First of all, remove loose wood fibers and strip the wood using KILZ Wood Stain & Finish Stripper. Then neutralize the wood with KILZ Wood Cleaner & Brightener. Leave it for 24 hours to dry.
Now in the third and final step, start by sanding off the remainder of the wood fibers if you find any. Then take a pad applicator, high-quality pump sprayer or nylon/polyester brush and start staining your wood.
For the paramount outcome, you will need to layer the stain twice on the same surface. However, before going with the second layer, wait for the first coat to dry. Otherwise, it may get streaky.
- It has a 100% acrylic formula.
- Secures your cedar siding from mildew, water and UV rays.
- The semi-transparent stain comes in the shade Redwood.
- Magnifies the natural beauty of your woods.
- For the ideal result, it needs to be stripped and brightened before staining.
- A good exterior wood stain offers long-lasting protection, waterproofing and a mildew-resistant finish...
- Our 100% Acrylic formula protects wood from rain, snow and sun damage. This stain is warrantied up to 3...
- Use on properly prepared new to moderately weathered and unsealed exterior wood surfaces (0-10 years...
- This semi-transparent stain provides a mildew-resistant finish and UV protection. Coverage of up to 250...
9. SEAL-ONCE MARINE - 1 Gallon Penetrating Wood Sealer
Living in the coastal area?
Then every exterior stain is not for you. You need something special that can sustain ocean water and still keep your cedar siding or wooden deck as lively as ever.
Get yourself SEAL-ONCE MARINE Penetrating Wood Sealer for its nanotechnology gives your woods added protection against the saltiness of seawater. This stain is non-toxic and has low VOC. Therefore, it is safe for every living and non-living being.
This is the best clear cedar finish for outdoors. Being a water-based transparent stain, it is designed to use in the areas where there are ponds, rivers or other water bodies nearby. The product excellently prevents moisture and damages caused by water. So, your woods will not warp, split or crack any time soon.
Besides, this non-flammable stain accumulates every molecule of the wood and creates a lattice framework. Therefore, a durable layer is formed over the surface-all hail to the Nano-technology. As a result, the product successfully obstructs UV rays.
Additionally, it saves your woods from mildew attack. So, if you are thinking about staining your cedar siding, docks piers, railings, decks, retaining walls, planters, fences, boardwalks or outdoor furniture; you may consider purchasing this oil-based stain.
To get a flawless finish, double coating is necessary. Apply the second coat when the first coat is still damp, but has penetrated already. The perfect temperature to apply this product on wooden surfaces is above 35 °F. It works wonderfully on woods that are pressure treated and are minimum 6 months old.
If you prefer a bit of tint, you can buy them separately. They do not just give off added sheen, but they can provide extra UV protection.
There are 11 shades available such as- Natural, Brown, Light Brown, Mahogany, Bronze Cedar, Redwood, Cedar, Battleship Gray, Black, Shale Gray, Clear & Cape Cod Gray.
- Befitting for staining wooden surfaces nearby water bodies.
- Non-toxic and so does not jeopardize aquatic life.
- Available in 11 shades that give added benefits.
- Enabled with Nano-technology to keep your woods safe from UV rays.
- A gallon can cover 250 to 350 sq. Ft if coated once.
10. Storm Protector Penetrating Sealer & Stain Protector
Distraught over the vulnerability of your cedar siding? Resort to Storm Protector Penetrating Sealer & Stain. It will not only prolong the sustainability of your exterior woods but also call attention to their exuberance.
This stain does not discriminate between different types of woods and blends well with each of them- be it Cedar, Redwood, Pine, Spruce, Cypress, Douglas Fir, Mahogany or Pressure Treated. If you’re looking for the best finish for western red cedar, this one van be a serious contender.
This oil-based stain pierces right into the heart of your materials and makes them strong from within. Consequently, the woods can stay headstrong even under the most critical adversities.
Storm protector gives a Transoxide Pigmentation to your wooden substrates. It can fight off UV rays to minimize color distortion of the woods. Hence, it can be a great choice to stain your decks, cedar sidings, fences, or outdoor furniture.
You can easily apply this 2-in-1 stain and sealer with a roller, brush or spray to achieve a smooth texture. The stain takes about 24 hours to dry. After that, feel free to touch the surface or put another layer of Storm Protector.
With 1 gallon of this product, you can stain 125 - 175 square foot smooth surface. But if your wooden material is porous, it will cover 100 - 150 square feet.
You can find this remarkable semi-transparent stain in 4 colors. Those are- Cedartone, Pacific Redwood, Hickory, Sienna.
- Can cooperate with all types of woods.
- A 2-in-1 stain and sealer that fights off UV rays.
- Can withstand any haphazard circumstances.
- A semi-transparent stain that magnifies the elegance of your woods.
- Takes 24 hours to be dry.
- Wood deck protector - A true oil-based semi transparent stain and sealer meant to protect and highlight...
- Storm Wood Stain Protector is a semi transparent sealer that penetrates deep into the wood for added...
- Compatible with any wood species. Great for wood staining Mahogany, as a Mahogany sealer, Cedar sealer,...
- Great for Decks, Fences, Siding, and other Wood Substrates. Can be used as a wood fence protector or any...
11. Cabot Australian Timber Oil Stain
The last entry on our list is Cabot Australian Timber Oil Stain. This efficient stain is comprised of deeply penetrating properties. Owing to that, your woods can undergo any catastrophe and still come out being triumphant.
This oil-based stain that capitalizes on three kinds of oils to ensure the vitality of wooden materials. While the linseed oil facilitates deep penetration of the stain, the long-oil alkyds make the woods long-lasting. The South American tung oil contributes to the vibrancy of the wooden goods and also works as a water repellent.
This oil stain does not only save your woods from water caused damages but its translucent iron oxide pigments also offer protection from UV rays. So, augment the longevity of your cedar siding with this stain. After all, building a new siding is not an inexpensive task.
Other than cedar sidings, you may also use this product for hardwood decks, fences, lumber woods, shake shingles, railings and outdoor furniture. If you are anxious about darkening due to mildew, let me assure you that after staining these surfaces, it will be a far cry.
This product is made of minimal volatile organic compounds. As a result, it is nature as well as user-friendly.
The ideal temperature for applying this stain is 45 to 90 F. One-gallon stain can be stroked over 200 to 300 sq. Ft.
This partially clouded stain is available in 10 hues- Mahogany Flame, Amberwood, Jarrah Brown, Honey Teak, Low VOC Amberwood, Low VOC Jarrah Brown, Low VOC Honey Teak, Low VOC Mahogany Flame, Natural, Low VOC Natural.
- Comes with three kinds of rich oils for effective results.
- Makes your cedar siding enduring.
- This translucent oil-based amplifies the original texture and color of your wood.
- Secures your wooden materials from discoloration.
- It has water repellent properties.
- Penetrating, clear, exterior oil ~ Water-repellent and UV-resistant
- For hardwood decks and outdoor furniture ~ Protects against extreme weather exposure
- Dries to a flat, translucent-toned finish
- Oil-based, clean up with mineral spirits. Mahogany Flame - One Gallon
Exterior Stain for Cedar Siding Comparison Chart
Ready Seal 520 Exterior Stain and Sealer
Golden Pine, Redwood, Mahogany, Natural Cedar, Burnt Hickory, Dark Walnut, Light Oak and Pecan.
DEFY Extreme Exterior Wood Stain
Crystal Clear, Butternut, Cedar Tone, Driftwood Gray, Light Walnut, Natural Pine & Redwood.
THOMPSONS WATERSEAL Waterproofing Stain
Acorn Brown, Harvest Gold, Maple Brown, Sequoia Red & Woodland Cedar.
Krylon Exterior Wood Stain
Cedar, Rustic Brown, Olive Grove and Redwood
Penofin Red Label
Western Red Cedar, Cedar, Chestnut, Clear, Hickory, Mission Brown, Mission Brown, Redwood, Sable, Sierra.
SaverSystems #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain
Cedar, Dark Walnut, Driftwood Gray, Light Walnut, Natural.
Olympic Stain Maximum Waterproofing Sealant
Clear, Cedar Natural tone, Cedar, Canyon Brown, Redwood Naturaltone, Navajo Red, Oxford Brown.
KILZ Exterior Waterproofing Wood Stain
SEAL-ONCE MARINE Penetrating Wood Sealer
Natural, Brown, Light Brown, Mahogany, Bronze Cedar, Redwood, Cedar, Battleship Gray, Black, Shale Gray, Clear & Cape Cod Gray.
Storm Protector Penetrating Sealer & Stain Protector
Cedartone, Pacific Redwood, Hickory, Sienna.
Cabot Australian Timber Oil Stain
Mahogany Flame, Amberwood, Jarrah Brown, Honey Teak, Low VOC Amberwood, Low VOC Jarrah Brown, Low VOC Honey Teak, Low VOC Mahogany Flame, Natural, Low VOC Natural.
Exterior Finish for Western Red Cedar Buying Guide
What kind of finish do you prefer for your siding?
Transparent or translucent?
Opaque or acrylic?
You need to be sure about that first. While each of them comes with their distinct qualities, transparent and translucent stains trump all of them. Let us briefly discuss the traits of each type so that you can decide more clearly.
Love the natural color of your woods? Then you should go for transparent stains. They do not change the natural shade of the woods, rather highlight it.
They may be available in a wide range of hues. But since the amount of pigment is extremely low, it will not alter the color of your redwood siding at all.
Transparent stains come with different protective features to accelerate the endurance of the woods. In a consequence of that, they can stay in good condition for quite long.
It is just a fancy word for the term 'semi-transparent'. Semi-transparent stains enjoy the most popular among the people when it comes to western red cedar.
They contain more pigments than transparent stains. However, they do not completely alter the look of the woods. The original color can still be visible through it.
This type of stain provides maximum protection to your siding against waterborne damages, mildew and UV rays. Therefore, it is considered to be the best exterior stain for cedar siding.
If you are not fond of the real color of the woods you got and would like to modify it, you should go for stains that give an opaque finish.
Nevertheless, their penetration rate is not quite satisfactory. Besides, you must get a separate sun-blocking product to shield your sidings from disastrous UV rays.
You must take into consideration the climate of your region while shopping for a Western Red Cedar Siding. But why? Well, several factors are interconnected with climate.
You need a stain that is not susceptible to the hazardous extremities of your particular climate. Rather, it should dexterously rebuff them and work as the saving grace of your woods.
Moreover, it is also essential in determining whether the stain’s application temperature is on a par with the humidity and air temperature of your place. Also, do not forget to check out how long the stain takes to be dry.
Other than that, always go for a stain that has water-repelling and UV blocking properties. It should also save your cedar siding from mildews. The wisest option would be purchasing a 2-in-1 stain and sealer.
Water-Based or Oil-Based?
Water-based and oil-based stains are widely popular among people for various reasons.
Water-Based Stains: If you are concerned about the ease of operation, these are the best shot for you. They dry pretty fast after the application and are easy to clean up.
Moreover, they are generally odorless. Hence, you will not have to face any disagreeable situation while working with these. Furthermore, water-based stains have more variables when it comes to color.
Oil-Based Stains: If your prime concern is a deep perforation, oil-based stains will serve you well. They reach deep into the core of your woods and activate the protective properties for maximal protection. As a result, you will not have to replace your cedars in the near future.
Besides, they give you a hassle-free staining experience without any streaking or patchiness. Nevertheless, they take much longer to dry than water-based stains. But on the brighter side, this extended period gives you more time to mix the product that results in a lap-free application.
Do you know the measurement of your siding? Do you think one gallon of the particular stain you are eyeing on can be enough to cover that much of an area? If not, how many gallons will you require?
If you go through the specification of the stain, you will find its coverage area per gallon. This is given in proportion to a single coating. If you put a double layer of stain on your siding, you need to double the amount of it as well. So, keep this thing in mind before making your purchase.
How to Keep Cedar Looking Natural?
Durability is one of the very reasons why cedar is so widely loved. Moreover, its natural finish is elegant enough. So, you do not want to overshadow it, right?
However, to receive optimal protection, cedar needs staining and this process alters the natural color of it to some extent.
But how to minimize that? By being cautious about some simple factors, you may easily attain that.
1. Use A Transparent Stain:
To retain the maximum natural beauty of your cedar, you must use transparent stains. The grains and texture of cedar can be seen clearly even if it is masked by a transparent stain.
On the other hand, semi-transparent stains add some more hue over the natural color of cedar. Nevertheless, freshly stained cedar may appear to be a bit darker than its original tone. But do not fret. Everything will lighten up after some time.
2. A Stain With Protective Features:
The original color of your cedar is bound to decline with time. However, you can extend this period by choosing the right stain. A good stain can shelter your cedar from mildew, UV rays and damages caused by water. As a result, the natural color of your cedar will not fade or darken over the years.
Dirt is one of the most common reasons why you notice discoloration in your cedar. Besides, monstrous extractives bleed may also cause you headaches. If they are left untreated, the affected areas will appear darker over the time. So, start with a mild detergent for your cleaning ritual. If it does not work, you may have to go for a commercial cleaner.
Sometimes these obstinate mildew and extractive bleeds gang up and form water stains. To eradicate such marks, you may have to scrub the woods with oxalic acid. But be careful while handling the acid. Otherwise, you may face unpleasant experiences.
5. Level Up Your Maintenance Game:
Regardless of the type of stain you choose, you need to keep up with its maintenance from time to time.
Even though transparent stains help your cedar look more natural, they come with low protective features against moisture, mildew and UV rays. Hence, you may need to stain your cedar every two years unless you want it to decay.
As for semi-transparent stains, the protection features are relatively more impressive. As a result, you will not have to stain your cedar for 3 to 5 years.
Stain or Painting Cedar Siding: Which One is Better?
This is an overarching dilemma that cedar siding owners tend to face. Whether you should go for painting or staining depends on your purpose and preference.
Staining: If you want to preserve the natural look of your cedar, you should opt for staining. Transparent and semi-transparent stains are the hands-down finest choice for cedar sidings.
Oil-based stains penetrate deep into the roots of the cedars and lock them from within. As a result, moisture and UV rays cannot spoil them. Moreover, the grains and texture of the cedars can be visible beneath the stains. Hence, you can bask in the natural glory of your siding.
Painting: If you would like to alter the natural color of your cedar siding, painting is the apt choice for you. Painting is more durable than stains and demands less maintenance. Paints also come with protective elements. Hence, your cedar will be fine as new in the long run.
However, paints will conceal the wood grains and texture of your cedar. Often times, it may appear even artificial (because of course, it is!). They may also shut in moisture in your cedars.
You can check: How to choose a wood moisture meter?
Unlike paints, stains will not crack or peel due to change in the atmosphere. If you can manage time to re-stain your sidings after every two years, staining will prove to be pretty rewarding. And do not worry, they are not that expensive. So, all in all, staining seems to be the most effective option.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What Kind of Stain Gives the Perfect Finish for Cedar Siding?
Answer: If you want to retain the maximum natural look of the cedar, then the perfect choice would be a transparent stain.
However, they may not always provide topnotch security to your cedars and over time, your cedars may decay quite faster than your expectation. In this case, the best stain for cedar siding would be a semi-transparent stain.
Semi-transparent stains offer better protection against damages. They come with a bit of pigment and do not completely cover up the natural shade of your cedars.
2. How Long Should I Wait for the Stain to Dry After Application?
Answer: It depends from product to product. To know this precisely, you must check out the specification of the particular product you are buying.
Water-based stains do not take long to dry. It may range from 2 to 6 hours depending on the weather. However, as for oil-based stains, you may have to wait for at least 24 hours or sometimes even longer.
Remember, you should not put a second layer of the stain as long the first layer doesn’t dry completely. Otherwise, the output may get messy.
3. Do I Need to Apply Primer Over the Woods Before Staining?
Answer: Again, it varies from product to product. While most stains available in the market require a separate primer, some stains work just fine without primers. These stains come with preservatives that help them perform independently and so they can offer you the benefits of a primer as well.
So, check out the instruction manual to find out if the stain you are eyeing on needs a primer or not.
4. Can I Use Stain on Newly Painted Cedar Siding?
Answer: No, you should never do that. After painting your siding, leave it for a few months to weather. Then by following some simple measures, you need to put stain over it.
Some specific stains may even demand you to remove the paint before staining. So, there is no alternative to knowing your product properly. But how do you know that? Read the manual please.
5. May I Use The Same Stain for Both Exterior and Interior Materials?
Answer: You may, you may not. Some products are formulated with special ingredients and technology which are only suitable for outdoor substances. For the others, there is no such restriction.
So, if you want a multipurpose stain, you have to buy accordingly. Enquire your dealer prior to buying about that. If the Amazon page doesn’t contain that information, you can always mail them with additional queries.
6. Why is My Stain Not Clinging Properly to the Cedar?
Answer: It could be because you have not prepared the surface of your cedar correctly. There could be mildew, dust or other buildups on its surface that went unnoticed by you.
Therefore, you should always clean the surface with soap or a gentle detergent before staining your siding. It ensures deep penetration of your stains.
But some specific brands may recommend you to bleach the cedar or go through other processes before staining. Hence, as mentioned before, there is no alternative to reading manual guide attentively.
In winding up, a cedar siding is worth all the sweat you shed over it. After all, it makes your property look more vogue.
However, as the siding is constantly exposed to exterior threats, you may need to replace the cedars from time to time. It may prove to be wearisome as well as expensive for you. That is where stains come in handy because they prolong the lifespan of your cedar.
So, which one of these products do you think is the best exterior stain for cedar siding? Before finalizing your option, make sure that it is suitable for your environment and your needs.
We hope our article will help you to fast-track your staining journey. Choose the right product and have fun with your project!