Yes, staining and refinishing are important for the deck’s durability. In fact, staining the decks can protect it from damaging elements. That being said, the temperature can play a huge role in the staining of your deck.

Therefore, what temperature can you stain wood?

Normally, it’s better to always work at moderate temperatures for staining the wood. I mean no one wants to work in cold and harsh weather, do they?

stain a deck in cold weather

Apart from that, many don’t even know whether staining in cold weather is damaging the desk or not.

So, can you stain a deck in cold weather?

Well, there’s an ideal temperature for staining the deck. But, if you live in a colder environment, you’ll need to make some preparations.

Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. We’ll guide you throughout the whole process in this article. Moreover, we’ve even discussed some of your common questions in the FAQ session in the end.

So, without further ado, let’s begin.

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The Problem Of Staining Wood In Cold Weather

So, what kind of problems may arise if you want to stain on cold weather? I mean what can go wrong?

Well, staining in cold weather has problems. The biggest of those problems is the slow drying of the stains. That’s why the people living in colder areas prefer to stain on the day than on nights.

So, let’s check the problems below that arise due to staining in colder weathers:

â—    Staining Process Slows Down

Working on colder climates slows down the process of staining. But, why does this happen?

Well, it’s mainly because the stains depend on the process of evaporation to cure properly. And on colder climates, the evaporation takes place slower than warm climates.

As a result, the stains don’t cure properly. And even if they cure, they take a lot of time. Moreover, this doesn’t let the staining of the deck be as effective as you want it to.

â—    Slow Drying Process

The stains need to be completely dried and sealed in place to be effective. But, why is that an issue?

Well, if the stains aren’t dried enough, they won’t protect your deck from harsh external elements. So, it’s important if they’re dried completely and sealed through.

But, the colder climates don’t let them dry completely. At times, the drying process slows down a lot than usual in the colder climates. As a result, staining a deck becomes ineffective.

Apart from this, the wood remains wet all the time if you stain them on cold weather. As a result, it damages the wood’s quality too.

On the other hand, if the stains take a lot of time to dry, you’ll have to wait before coating that area again. Well, this can be time-consuming and annoying.

â—    Difficulties in Finishing

Finishing is important in painting and staining. And yes, it’s hard to apply any sort of finishing to the staining in the woods.

But, why is that?

Apart from the difficulties of working, the colder air causes water to become cloudy. And this causes the whole staining process to be difficult to finish.

Also, these cloudy or gloomy water-based stains don’t dry quickly. Moreover, they take even more time to set properly in place. So, you’ll need a lot of patience to apply the finishing in colder weather.

â—    The Stain’s Performance Deteriorates

Yes, you heard me right. It’s crucial that your stain is performing well in the woods. If you apply high-quality stains on your decks, it’ll last longer than usual. Moreover, other objects can’t harm them easily.

But, if you stain in cold weather, it’ll hinder the performance of the stain. This is because the stain needs to set properly in the woods. And the freezing climate can cause the stain to never set completely. As a result, proper staining can never happen.

How to Stain The Deck in Colder Climate?

Yes, we know that it’s not ideal to stain the deck in colder climates. But, if you live in a cold area and don’t have any other option left, you’ll have to continue with the work.

This is because you can’t give up on your deck and you’ll have to stain it for future protection. But, staining in high humidity isn’t an easy task.

Don’t worry. If you can follow our guidelines correctly, you’ll do the work in the right manner. So, let’s begin.


Yes, you’ll need a set of tools for the job. But these are ordinary tools and you won’t require much to purchase them. Let’s take a look at what you need:

After you’re done managing the tools and making all the necessary preparations, let’s begin:

Step BY Step Process:

It’s essential that you follow a guideline and have a plan on your own before starting to stain. Lucky for you, we’ve got you covered. In fact, we’ve prepared a whole step-step procedure for you. So, let’s start with the work:

Step 1: Use a Vacuum Cleaner & Normal Cleaner

Start by using the vacuum cleaner. It’ll remove all the dust and debris that you may have on the deck. Plus it’s essential that you work in a clean environment. After this, take your cleaner and apply it to a brush.

Following this, brush the surface of your deck to clean out any residue or debris.

Step 2: Use a Pressure Washer

When you’re working on a colder climate, it’s essential that you look out for ice-forming. And, why is that?

Well, if you wash the deck and ice forms in it then it would do the same when you’ll stain the deck. As a result, your work will be spoiled completely.

So, use an electric pressure washer on the deck and observe if ice is forming or not. If you find ice build ups on specific areas, use a hammer in those areas to break the ice. But, make sure you’re not causing any cracks in deck posts.

On the other hand, the pressure washer will rinse off the cleaner from the deck. After that, wipe it with a cloth.

Step 3: Check Weather Forecast

Keep an eye out for rain or extreme cold weathers ahead. Normally, it’s better to avoid rainy and frosty weather.

Step 4: Apply a Water-based Stain

Use a water-based stain when staining in colder climates. You can also use concrete stain as an alternative. They’re great with colder climates as they dry faster. Plus they speed up the process of evaporation. However, stay away from oil-based stains as they take a lot of time to try.

But, how to apply deck stain?

Firstly, apply the stain on the 4†stain brush. After that, start using it on the deck. However, you can also use a spray gun as an alternative.

On the other hand, if you need to coat the surface again, wait for some time. This is because the stains will take a longer time than usual to dry.

Things To Consider

Before ending this article, there’s one last thing we want you to know. If you can consider some things before staining, it’ll be great for your decks. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t matter if you’re staining in summer or winter, these factors are applicable for all.

So, let’s take a look:

1. Ideal Temperature

So, what is the temperature range to stain a deck? Well, the best temperature to stain the deck has to be around 50-80 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you’re going above or below this temperature range, you’ll face difficulties. So, it’s better to maintain this range before staining your deck.

2. Season

Summer is considered to be the best season for staining the deck. But, be careful about the temperature as it can be really hot. Otherwise, the sun and the less humidity causes a better drying process for the stains.

3. Rain

Before starting the staining process, always check the forecasts. This is mainly because rain can completely ruin your work.

As a matter of fact, the rain will never allow your stains to set on the deck. So, it’s essential that you avoid rainy days for working.

4. Part of the Day

Mornings are the best time of day to stain a deck. But, why is that you may ask? And is there a problem with staining at night?

Well, if you start working in the night, the following problems may occur.

  • The temperature drops at night.
  • Condensation occurs.
  • No sunlight for the drying of the stains.

This is why you should always choose the mornings. Also, the benefits of choosing the mornings are:

  • No direct sunlight.
  • Shade for the stains.
  • The sun provides a better drying process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you stain a wood at hot temperatures?

It’s better to follow an ideal temperature for staining the wood. The ideal temperature is 50-90 degrees Fahrenheit.

What’s the lowest temperature to stain the wood?

32-35 degrees Fahrenheit should be the lowest to go for staining the woods.

Can rain affect the staining in decks?

Yes, rain causes the stains to go away from the decks. Moreover, rain causes stains to peel away from the surface.

You may also like: how to stain a concrete floor?

Wrapping Up

That’s all we got for you. By now you’ll know why it isn’t good to stain a deck on extreme weathers.

In the end, we’d like to say that staining a deck is important and you’ll need to work on the maintenance of the stains as well. We’ve also tried to cover everything related to this topic in this article.

And the next time someone asks you- can you stain a deck in cold weather? You’ll know the answer to it. Good Luck.

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