How To Refinish a Wood Deck in Orange County

Wood decks such as Teak, Redwood and Ipe are a charming and rustic addition to any landscape. They are a great place to unwind in the evening, have patio get-togethers and cook outdoor meals. As well, the outdoor area typically gets a lot of traffic, especially in Orange County. Therefore, if you live in Orange County, you want to make sure that your wood deck is well maintained.

In truth, your wood deck needs to be properly maintained in order to keep it looking beautiful and to prevent injuries such as splinters. This includes refinishing your deck every couple of years. Refinishing a deck will add new life to the surface and protect it from the elements. What is more, you can refinish your deck in a few hours over a span of a couple of days. The process is simple and consist of cleaning, preparing for the finish applying a new coat of stain and waterproofing.

Needed Supplies

Before you start refinishing your deck, it is recommended that you have the right supplies for the project. Here is a simplified list for cleaning the deck, fixing issues and refinishing:

  • A broom
  • A hose or power washer
  • Cleaning solution
  • A bucket
  • A stiff-bristle brush designed for desks
  • Sandpaper
  • A paint brush, tray and roller
  • Painter’s tape
  • Waterproof deck finish
  • Protective clothing such as rubber gloves

Selecting the Right Finish

Generally the recommended finish and sealer is transparent or clear in color unless you have a new deck that is less than a year old. Choose a semi-transparent stain for wood that hides the grains and knots. Select a solid stain if you want to hide the woods natural color or grain. Also, select a waterproof finish to protect the wood from the elements particularly from the constant sun exposure. Refinishing a wood deck in Orange county (link to ) requires you to look at each element in the process and address accordingly.

Deck Inspection

Before you begin cleaning the surface, check for possible issues such as areas that may need sanded or dinks in the wood.


Sand down any area where the wood is splintered. Also replace boards that are broken or split. In addition, hammer down protruding nails and tighten all loose screws.

Cleaning the Deck

Prior to cleaning the deck, tape off all areas that need protected from water, stain and sealer such as plants, furniture, the adjoining house and concrete. Also move all furniture away from the project.

Scrubbing the deck is the least expensive method of cleaning. Use a stiff bristle push broom or brush and some mild soap and water of a recommended cleaning agent. Just make sure to follow the instructions carefully.

Power Washing is a great solution for decks that are extra dirty. Just make sure you do not get the nozzle closer than 12 inches from your deck.


Sometimes stripping is needed to spot treat areas where there are stains or high trafficked areas. Simply apply the stripper as recommended in the instructions. Keep in mind that more than one application may be needed, especially decks that have a thick coat.

Staining Preparation

It is imperative that your deck is fully prepared before you stain it. For one, make sure your deck is clean and also dry before you apply any stain. Generally, it is best to wait three days after you have washed it.


The best time to stain is in the spring when temperatures are above 50 F (10 C) and below 95 F (35 C). However, Orange County can have temperate climate in the winter. Also, never refinish the deck on a sunny day. Direct sunlight will make it dry too quickly which can cause lap marks. Also, make sure that there is no rain in the forecast for the next few days.

Refinish the deck by starting with the railings. Soak your roller evenly with the stain. Next, start with the corner closest to the house and apply the stain in the direction of the wood grain. Use a brush for delicate areas such as tight corners. Also, never apply a thick coat.

If needed, apply a second coat. Make sure to follow the instructions concerning the wait time between applying coats.


Make sure that your deck is fully dry before you apply sealant. Check the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended drying days. Once the stain is dry, apply the sealant according to instructions.

Waste Disposal

It is highly important to dispose of waste properly. In fact, you may want to check with local authorities in Orange County. Since wood stains, sealant and some cleaners contain chemicals; their disposal is regulated by state and community laws. Generally a quick phone call will offer a solution in waste disposal.