How to Apply Cabot Deck Stain

A stained wooden deck can almost serve as a outdoor living room if it is comfortably furnished and properly maintained. Staining decks is not hard; in fact, the most difficult--and important--part is your prep work. You can't stain a deck that is marked with rust or oil stains or is already painted or stained. Once you have stripped off any old paint or varnish, you can restain your deck and enjoy its warm and lasting beauty for years. Cabot has been in business since 1877 and offers a wide variety of deck stains.

  1. Sweep your deck clear of all visible debris.

  2. Use a wire brush and wood cleaner (available at hardware and home improvement stores) to clean up any rust marks or other stains. Rinse thoroughly with water and let the deck dry completely.

  3. Sand any rough wood, gouges or deep splinters with a hand sander. Wipe away all of the dust with a clean shop cloth.

  4. Start in one corner and use a natural bristle brush to apply the stain in long, even strokes. Do one board at a time, working all the way to the end before moving on to the next board.

  5. Add new stain to the old batch before you run out. Mix them together for a more consistent color, and stir the stain often while working, to avoid settling.

  6. Let the deck dry overnight, then add another coat of stain or a good deck sealer.


  • Do not use Cabot deck stains on raw wood until the wood has weathered for at least three months.

About the Author

Emmy-award nominated screenwriter Brynne Chandler is a single mother of three who divides her time between professional research and varied cooking, fitness and home & gardening enterprises. A running enthusiast who regularly participates in San Francisco's Bay to Breakers run, Chandler works as an independent caterer, preparing healthy, nutritious meals for Phoenix area residents.