No wooden deck is complete without a good waterproofing sealant to protect it from the worst Mother Nature has to offer. What sealant goes onto a deck, however, can be a trickier proposition than just grabbing a can or bottle of the stuff and getting to work. The materials of a deck, its age, and the typical weather conditions of a region can make one sealant ineffective and another ideal, and vice versa.
Here’s three popular sealants that you might want to consider:
- Polyurethane sealants: Try not to get too caught up on the chemical-sounding name of this sealant. Typically made of acrylic or a synthetic resin, polyurethane sealants are known for their ability for customization. You can get a finish that ranges from a high gloss to a soft sheen to an almost-matte finish. Light woods are generally best suited for an application of polyurethane sealants, as other finishes could potentially change the color enough that it looks odd, especially as the years go on.
- Varnishes: When resin, oil, and specialized solvents are combined, the end result is a varnish suited for sealing wood decks and structures. Varnishes are well-known for drying into a hardened surface that can be likened to a shell, providing tough protection to decks that resists scarring and yellowing. For outdoor decks, a marine varnish will be your first choice, as it is particularly resistant against damage caused by the sun and can swallow UV rays.
- Lacquer: A traditional lacquer is made of dissolved tree resin, condensed down into an applicable material. Although lacquer can technically work on outdoor surfaces, it is really intended for indoor use and on darker woods due to its yellow color that can make lighter woods look unappealing. If you have a wooden chair or table that sometimes moves from inside to out, a lacquer might be the choice for that job. Keep in mind that lacquer smells quite strongly and the fumes could be dangerous if you breathe them in too heavily; work where there is plenty of fresh air or ventilation when applying lacquer sealants.
No matter what sealant you choose for your wooden deck, you might have to go quickly to ensure it looks uniform and correct by the time it dries. For some decks that are large or have unusual, nonrectangular layouts, moving fast and applying a sealant correctly are outright difficult for one person. If you need assistance and want to know the completed project is backed by an unbeatable warranty, you should contact Capital Deck & Stair Waterproofing. Our Los Angeles deck waterproofing specialists have been in the industry and making a great impression everywhere we go for more than 30 years.