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Pretreat Cedar siding prior to staining

DoRight's picture

Does anyone pretreat raw cedar siding boards prior to staining to "deglaze wood for Mill Glaze issues"?

Just to clarify, I am not asking how to paint or stain plastic, steal, PVC, fiber cement ......

Please comment on your EXPERIENCE. 

Thank you.


Rough or Planed Siding? (post #210144, reply #1 of 3)

If you're working where oil-based exterior stains are still available, you shouldn't have any problems if you don't bother with some kind of 'de-glaze' process first on planed siding. If water-based stains are your only option (increasingly common due to VOC regulations in many areas now) I'd suggest testing your choice of stain on a representative sample of your siding to see what happens before doing a large amount of work. In some cases all that's needed is a good scrubbing down with bristle brush & a laundry detergent solution in water (1 tbs per gallon) followed by thorough water rinse & adequate drying time.

Rough siding's more forgiving, installed & slightly weathered siding most of all.

Sounds like you know a thing or two (post #210144, reply #2 of 3)

Thanks spclark.

I am looking at new construction and staining lap siding prior to installation.  so the board are all loose and not easily stained or washed or brushed and no water on sight.  So it would be nice to not do anything to pretreat.  Sounds like with a water based stain I might be ok or might be in trouble to not pretreat.

Thank you a bunch for your kind, thoughtful, and knowledgible reply.


You might look at the Behr Wood Prep 2-in-1 (post #210144, reply #3 of 3)

Home Depot carries a product called Behr Wood Prep #63 which is good for removing mill glaze and opening pours of wood for staining. We've used it on clear cedar 1x6 T&G veritical siding material with very good success. We usually prefinish our siding before installation. Here is the technical sheet on the #63:

BTW, I have found the water based stains seal and hold up better than the oil base stains. I used to use Cabot oil based stains, but would never go back (even if still available). As previous responder indicated, they are being phased out. However, the oil based pigmented stains were more forgiving in terms of brushed application and eveness of color. Because of this, we find spraying (airless or HVLP) water based finishes works best. It's also faster.