Back Button

How to Fix Mistakes in Solid Color Deck Stain

Kristan Hart

Mistakes in solid color deck stain are difficult to fix. Wood stain doesn’t allow you to brush over the blotchy area to smooth it out. Instead, you have with a noticeable difference in color that, depending on its size and location, requires repair.

It may be necessary to fix mistakes in solid color deck stain by re-touching the blotchy area, or you may need to start from scratch to obtain the even coat of deck stain that you originally tried to accomplish.

  1. Work plank by plank. The wood on your deck comes in the form of planks. Each individual board, called a plank, sits next to another board. However, because they are separate boards, there is a natural dividing line between each plank. If you want to fix blotchy stain on one plank, you need to fix that entire plank so it looks even. Fixing only one spot has the potential to make the stain look even more uneven.

  2. Remove the blotchy stain area. You can try to sand away the blotchy area to remove the stain, but your best bet so you can get rid of all the blotchy area is to use a chemical stripper. Brush it on with a paintbrush, and then follow the manufacturer instructions about the duration is needs to sit on the deck to work. Chemical stripper not only removes the stain you have on your plank, it also leaves your wood clean to improve your chances of an even coat next time. Allow your deck to dry completely before you proceed.

  3. Condition your deck. Some woods absorb wood stain differently because of the density of the wood and the location of the grain. A piece of wood that unevenly absorbs wood stain will leave you with uneven wood stain marks. Brush a wood conditioner onto the plank you need to repair before you stain. Let it dry before you apply a coat of wood stain.

  4. Apply a new coat of stain to the area. Start at one end of your wood plank, and brush the stain onto the deck in the same direction as the wood grain. After your first coat, allow it to dry then determine if you need a second coat. Apply stain as necessary to match the rest of the planks on your outdoor deck.

  5. Start over if you fail to get the even coat you desire. Staining small areas to match the larger deck is a very difficult task. It may be necessary to strip all of your stain and start over, so you can achieve the smooth, even finish you want.

  6. Tip

    Choose a wood stain that comes with mildewcide (a mildew resistant component) and UV protection to help ensure your wood stain doesn’t fade and become uneven over time.