when is pressure-treated lumber ready to be painted or stained

We have let pressure-treated lumber sit for four or more weeks in 90-degree weather until it was dry enough to use without shrinking. It has already been prepared and all the moisture has been removed. Don't rush to paint until you test it or give it at least 3-4 days after rainfall. If you are not a fan of the natural look of pressure treated wood then don´t worry, there are ways to give it some color. There is no waiting period for today’s pressure treated wood to let chemicals leach out. The most important step to painting pressure treated wood is letting the wood dry appropriately. To be on the safe side, give yourself a month before attempting to paint the wood. So … Wet pressure treated wood contains moisture components, and it would be a wrong move to paint it when it is still wet. It doesn't look like it's been painted or stained in the past. You probably know that wood swells when it gets wet and shrinks when it dries. These types of paints are superior to oil-based paints for pressure treated wood. One of the biggest indicators of the state of pressure treated wood is its color. Sealing, Painting and Staining Pressure Treated Wood A project's not really done until it's finished. A good test is to pour water on the boards. Painting is an area where pressure treated wood definitely isn’t the same. Working with pressure treated wood can be a little different than using untreated wood, and it’s important to know what you should and shouldn’t do. After applying primer, you’ll have to give it some time to dry. If it beads up, it … The Clever Homeowner is reader-supported. It may be dry to the touch but a wood substrate (or surface) needs to be technically dry before applying a coating ----or it will eventually fail! It’s absolutely possible to paint pressure treated wood, but you need to make sure to follow the correct sequence to make sure the paint sticks and looks good. If the water soaks in, it’s ready for stain. Pro tip: “The bead test” is a simple way to check if your wood is ready to … It's very dark in some areas and light in other areas. Then, apply primer, followed by an initial coat and finally a top coat of paint like you would in any painting project. Splash some water on the deck boards. Dry treated wood is ideal because you can confidently stain it right away. This may take a few weeks up to as long as a month, depending on how ‘wet’ the wood was when you bought it. 2. In high humidity areas of the country, that time period … Splash a few beads of water on the boards. Painting is an area where pressure treated wood definitely isn’t the same. Wood is a product of nature, which means that even lumber that has been pressure treated is vulnerable to the fading power of sunlight. If you just bought the wood, let it weather for at least 60 days to allow the chemicals to evaporate and work their way out of the wood. Can You Burn Pressure Treated Lumber In a Wood Stove? Pressure treated wood is wet 99% of the time when it is installed. Pressure-treated lumber; Pressure-treated lumber should be allowed to dry for at least six months before stain or any wood treatment is applied. Paint & Stain — The recommendations are the same as above, but it may take longer for the wood to dry out. Allowing the wood to dry from its chemical treatment is essential, and the stain will similarly not stick if you apply it too soon. Patience is a crucial ingredient in this project. If the droplets are absorbed, the treated wood is ready to be painted or stained. Pressure treated wood is wood that has been injected with chemicals in order to make the wood resistant to rot, fungus, and insect damage. To minimize these concerns, it's important to finish your project as soon as possible after completion. Some premium pressure-treated wood becomes ready to stain after its pressure treatment. Let the Primer Dry. This product is waterproofing and will do an excellent job against water infiltration. And painting is able to fill in some of the imperfections and cracks on the surface of the wood in a way that staining doesn’t. If you recently purchased your wood or just had it installed, then you may need to wait a few weeks or months until the wood is ready. This lumber can be stained as soon as the deck is built. A semi-transparent exterior wood stain helps maintain the fresh appearance of a pressure-treated wood deck and provides added protection to the wood fibers. One of the first things you need to know is that not all pressure treated lumber is ready to accept a coat of primer and paint. Getting good results with pressure treated wood requires understanding the unique properties of this type of lumber. And an outdoor project's not finished until it's been stained, sealed or painted. Pressure-treated lumber can take weeks or even months to dry. Pressure treated wood is designed to repel moisture and insect damage in outdoor areas. Allow treated wood to dry thoroughly before staining or painting. The wood is blotchy. If the water beads on the surface, you should wait a few days before attempting to stain it the shade of your choice or brush on a coat of paint. On average, you’ll want to wait 4 weeks to 6 months to wait before staining the posts. Some pressure treated lumber is already dried and ready to stain. If you’re unfamiliar with pressure treated lumber here’s some information that will help determine how long it will take it to dry so you can stain your new fence. The main thing is that the wood needs to be clean and dry. Would priming and painting old, weathered pressure treated wood be feasible or would a solid stain be a better option? What is pressure treated wood and how is it made. You can stain those units as soon as possible. The downside to staining is that the color options are considerably more limited than painting, just like when dealing with untreated wood. A good power wash or washing with a deck cleaner will give you a clean slate to work with before re-staining, without all the scraping and peeling. Once you’ve dried out the pressure treated wood, the process is pretty similar to painting untreated wood, so make sure you heed that first step. Ordinary pressure-treated lumber … You probably know that wood swells when it gets wet and shrinks when it dries. In the past, people waited six months or so before finishing projects that use pressure treated wood. Using a pressurized vacuum sealed tank, a solution of chemicals (commonly including chromium, copper, and arsenic) is forced deep into the wood’s interior. Before you stain pressure-treated wood, you should clean it … If the water beads up, go back to playing the waiting game. If you have bought premium pressure treated lumber, it can be stained as soon as you get it. The truth is as soon as the wood is dry enough, it is ready to be stained. We may earn a commission on qualifying purchases after clicking on those links, at no additional cost to you. If you plan on staining pressure treated wood, make sure to follow the same initial sequence as if you were painting. We recommend waiting 30 days before applying an oil-based product to treated wood, and waiting a year before using a water-based stain. This means that the water component of the chemical solution is still active in the wood, and over time that water needs to leach out of the wood and dry. This is largely dependent on how humid your area is and how your wood was treated. For optimal results, wait until the wood is completely dry to paint and stain. After installation, treated wood takes 2-4 weeks to dry. If your wood is especially stained, consider getting a primer that is … If you paint pressure treated wood too soon, the paint is going to be rejected by the wood as traces of the chemicals and the water works its way out of the wood during the drying process. Every great backyard was once just an idea. Pressure treated wood is a great and cheap choice for outdoor applications but because of its treatment, it is kind of hard to color it. Before we dive into staining and sealing wood pergolas, an important point to mention up front about the timing of when to stain pine vs cedar pergolas: If you have a pressure treated pine pergola, you must wait until the pressure treatment is completely dry before it will accept stain or paint. After you buy new pressure treated lumber, build with it right away, or keep it stacked flat in a dry place and wait at least 60 days to four months before painting it. Your paint will peel off within weeks of your applying it. Perform the following test to determine if your project is ready to paint or stain: Place a few drops of water on the area to be coated. Before you read on, understand that staining or painting pressure treated lumber is just like staining untreated lumber. Note that for a time-sensitive project, it may be wise to … The chemicals used in the pressure treatment are water borne, and most pressurized wood is shipped and sold in a ‘wet’ condition. Next, if you do decide to paint or stain, you have to wait until the wood is dry. That's no longer the case with newer treatments like the micronized copper preservatives used to treat YellaWood® brand products. Ideally, you’ll use a latex paint, also referred to as a water based paint. To protect you non pressure treated wood from possible damages by water, you need to use an outdoor wood sealer like Ready Seal, Natural Cedar Exterior Stain, and Sealer for Wood. The chemicals used to treat the wood leave moisture behind, and depending on the climate, it can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months until it’s dry enough to seal. Find a Dealer of YellaWood® Brand Products Near You, © 2020 Great Southern Wood Preserving, Incorporated, Kiln-Dried (KDAT) Pressure Treated Decking, Sealing, Painting & Staining Pressure Treated Wood. Waiting too long to stain and protect your deck means the wood loses more of its ability let the stain adhere. If you prefer staining to painting, you’re able to stain pressure treated wood as well as painting it. Once the wood absorbs water on the surface, it’s ready for paint. You can either paint it, … Painting vs. Staining Pressure Treated Wood Read More » 1. Here are some guidelines for sealing, staining and painting. Some of the links on our website are affiliate links. Certain products, like our RainWood® brand products with a factory-applied water repellent, may take longer to dry out enough to accept a paint or stain. What Happens If You Stain Wet Pressure Treated Wood? To recognize it, look for a tag or stamp that says KDAT (kiln-dried after treatment) or ADAT (air-dried after treatment). Safety Tips > Painting, staining, and sealing PRESSURE TREATED WOOD Many people wonder why pressure treated wood changes appearance over time. To determine if pressure treated wood is dry enough to stain, try the “sprinkle” test. It should be completely dry before you even consider improving its appearance. And, the best way that I have read to explain the issue with painting or staining wet wood used a sponge analogy. I regularly get questions about staining pressure treated lumber so here are some answers to as many of those questions as I can think of now. With the right preparation, pressure-treated wood can be painted or stained, but the wood requires at least three to four months of weathering to allow the chemicals in the lumber to ooze and evaporate before preparation can begin. To minimize these concerns, it’s important to stain or seal your project as soon as possible… Now your project could be ready to be finished within 30 days of completion depending on a number of factors including your local weather conditions. Like with painting any wood, it’s a good idea to wash off the surface with soap and water and allow the water to dry on the wood surface before painting. Stain does not peel or crack, so it requires way less preparation than repainting. The best course of action is to test the surface yourself. Fortunately, this … If the water soaks in, then the wood can be painted. Pour a bit of water on the surface of the boards. This site is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. What is pressure treated wood and how is it made? A standard water test will let you know when the pressure-treated lumber is ready. Let the stain dry for at least 24 hours. If the water beads or pools on the wood surface, the wood needs more time to dry. Latex paint looks fresher and brighter on pressure-treated wood than oil-based paint does. When the water absorbs into the wood, it’s ready to seal or stain. In fact, staining can sometimes be a superior option to painting, as the stain is slightly easier to apply and soaks into the wood’s surface. Eventually the stain will fade and need to be redone, but not nearly as frequently as paint. If you try to paint pressure treated wood too soon, the paint will slough off the surface of the wood. Pressure treated wood is ready to stain when it is no longer retaining the excess moisture from the treatment process. Make sure the wood is dry. Our experts recommend priming with a latex primer and a compatible exterior latex paint, also known as water-based paint. Because it is not thoroughly dry, new pressure treated lumber can quickly warp and bend if you don’t handle it correctly. Sprinkle water on the wood: if the wood absorbs it within 10 minutes, plan to stain as soon as possible. Prepare the surface you plan to paint. Working with pressure treated wood can be a little different than using untreated wood, and it’s important to know what you should and shouldn’t do. For a natural pine appearance, apply a transparent or semi-transparent water repellent, Pick a sealant with UV stabilizers to help ease the impact of the sun, Follow manufacturer's recommendations for application, Apply when surface is dry and reapply as needed, Perform a "sprinkle test" to check for dryness (see below), Look for a stain that has the longest manufacturer's warranty, has a water repellent and a UV stabilizer, Finish with two coats of high-quality acrylic latex top coat paint. It’s important to use the correct type of paint and primer on pressure-treated wood. The susceptibility to weather cycles is hard on wood and can lead to splits, cracks, checks and other appearance issues. Kiln-dried lumber; Most lumber you buy at a hardwood store is kiln-dried. If it beads up, the wood isn’t quite ready to be sealed. Advertisement When the wood is … These chemicals make the wood inhospitable for the species of insects like termites and ants that frequently eat or burrow through wood, and also make the wood less susceptible to natural rot and decay. Let it set. Premium pressure-treated lumber has been dried after its pressure treatment to remove excess moisture. Conversely, some ordinary pressure-treated wood requires about 2-3 days, and you can use water-based stain over it. If the water absorbs into the wood, you're good to go. If it beads up, it’s still too wet. And as an Amazon Associate, we earn a commission on qualifying purchases after clicking on those links, at no additional cost to you. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you. Getting good results with pressure treated wood requires understanding the unique properties of this type of lumber. When the wood is wet, the color will be a dark, greenish hue, but over time it will soften to more of a light greenish-brown. Wait several days and test it again. If it beads up, you'll want to wait several days to test again. Ready seal is one good example of a stain that you can use for your pressure treated wood. Due to the weather cycles, pressure treated wood is susceptible to splits, cracks, checks and other appearance issues. When looking at non-structural applications, there are a number of synthetic products like composite decking available. Helps maintain the fresh appearance of a stain that you can stain those units as soon as possible completion! Minimize these concerns, it ’ s still too wet within weeks of your applying it available. Be feasible or would a solid stain be a better option loses more its! 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