Cedar Fence Sealing.
Cedar is an inexpensive option for fencing and, when properly maintained, it can look great. But like all wood, cedar is prone to weathering and decay. That’s why sealing your fence is such a crucial part of keeping it looking great and functioning well.
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A sealer keeps out water and mold, mildew, rot, insect damage, and UV rays that can cause it to lose its beauty over time. Whether you choose to stain your fence or simply apply a clear coat sealer, ensuring it’s protected will ensure that it looks and functions like new for years to come.
First, you’ll want to clean the wood thoroughly. This is especially important if the fence has been painted or stained, since any paint or stain that remains on the wood will inhibit the sealer from attaching to it. Use a mild cleaner and a bristle brush to scrub the wood, paying attention to any cracks or imperfections. Using a pressure washer may be helpful in cleaning the more grittier areas, but it can also damage your fence and make it more difficult to seal.
Next, you’ll need to choose a wood stain or sealer that will work best for your fence. Some stains protect against moisture and rot while others focus on UV protection. You’ll also need to consider the number of coats you will need and how long the stain or sealer will last before it needs to be reapplied.
Some products are a 2-in-1, meaning that they will protect your fence against both water and rot as well as the sun’s UV rays. Often, you’ll need to apply more coats than the manufacturer recommends in order for the product to last.
A semitransparent oil-based stain can help preserve the natural color of your cedar fence while still blocking out the UV rays that can cause it to fade over time. These stains contain ultraviolet inhibitors that will keep bleaching from happening, and they may also include mildewcide to slow the growth of mold and mildew.
You should also use a sealer that is specially made to protect cedar. Thompson’s Eco Advance is a great option for protecting cedar fences against the elements, including rain, snow, and ice. It’s easy to apply, and it works with an airless sprayer or pump sprayer as well as a brush or roller.
Another good option is Varathane 269394, which will give you the look you want and the durability you need. It dries within an hour of applying it and is available in five colors, with a cedar option for the fences you’re working on.
Generally, you should reapply the stain or sealer every two to three years to maintain its protective qualities. If your fence has been stained with a semitransparent stain, you can check to see whether it’s still doing its job by sprinkling some water on the boards and seeing if the water beads up. If it doesn’t, you’ll probably need to reapply the product again before you’re ready for a full application.