The Best Fence Stain: Everything You Need to Know

Choosing the best fence stain can be a daunting task. With so many different strains available, it can be hard to know which one is right for your needs. This blog post will discuss the different types of fence stains available and help you choose the best one for you!

Table of Contents

Best Fence Stains

We'll concentrate on the many sealers and stains on the market. The goal is to understand the various options available and how they differ.

1. Ready Seal 112 Fence stain

Ready Seal is a sealant and stain made from high-quality resins, pigments, and oils. It deeply inserts itself into any wood, preserving and protecting it from destructive elements.

It is a semi-transparent stain, so it will let the natural features of the wood show through. That means the wood's grain and texture will stay looking good. Another advantage of this sealer is that it preserves the natural appearance of the wood rather than altering it. Its role is to help the wood last longer.

You may be wondering how to keep your wood looking new. Ready Seal will help you do this without making it look different.

The brand has color variants to match the colors of the different wood types. For example, they have mahogany, redwood, light oak, natural cedar, pecan, and dark walnut.

This product is very strong and will not peel off. It does not look like paint and instead becomes a wood part. This means it will be hard for this to come off.

Another way this seal protects your home is from mold and algae. It contains paraffin oil. This helps you keep the mold away by minimizing it.


The product is simple to use on wood, as you may apply it with brushes, sprayers, or rollers.

It does not easily wear out

A lot of color variants

It's a biodegradable substance, so it isn't considered a soil or water contamination.


The stain remains bright after several applications for quite a long time.

2. Thompsons WaterSeal – Best Multipurpose Wood Fence Treatment

In tough times, we want to save money. But it is important to not do anything that will make our work lower quality. So think of ways to save money that also do not affect the quality of your work. One way is by finding products that can serve more than one purpose.

Thompson WaterSeal can be easily used on different surfaces such as brick, wood, and concrete. This tells you that it can blend in well with different surfaces. The clear nature of this solution makes it easy for you to apply it. Another reason that people like this product is the low price.


Very fairly priced

It may be applied to various surfaces, such as concrete, wood, and bricks.

Great at resurfacing and removing rust or grime stains from your wood.

Very easy to apply


Not an environmentally friendly option

3. Flood Series FLD520-01 – Clear Stain for Cedar Fence

If you have cedar fencing or a deck, you are definitely thinking about maintaining it looking beautiful. Cedar is a lovely wood, but it requires maintenance. The Flood CWF-UV Cedar fence stain is the best choice for protecting your cedar from the elements. You should also use a cedar deck cleaner to maintain the wood in the long run.

There is a company called Flood that was started in 1841. This was before any of us were even born. You will love them because they have the same objective as always: to help you take care of your wood by providing you with the right products for this job.

This product from Flood is better than other brands because it protects wood from UV rays and water. Clients have told me that other brands fade quickly, but this will stick around for a long time.

The company's secret is quite simple. They use transparent iron oxides as part of the ingredients. This helps your wood absorb and block sunlight from coming through the surface of your wood. The product has also been galvanized with Penetrol. This chemical helps it penetrate deeper into the wood and protect it from beneath its surface.


The stain protects your wood from damage during the rainy and snowy seasons.

It may simply be wiped away with some soap and water from surfaces.

This product will help to stop mold from growing on your fence.


It has a smell that some people find irritating.

4. Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain – The Best Soft Wood Fence Stain and Sealer

It is normal to hope that your outdoor fence or deck lasts a long time. But it can be hard because the weather can sometimes be tough. You can try being proactive and buy a stain that also seals the wood. One good stain to buy is Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain for this reason.

The Deck Premium stain is a good choice for wood because it easily penetrates the surface and goes inside the wood. This is significant because it implies the stain will impact both the outside and inside the wood. In particular, this type of stain works better on pressure-treated wood. It helps keep the wood looking firm and vibrant in harsh sunny or winter conditions.


It can be applied even on damp wood

This is an excellent choice if you're attempting to revitalize your old fences or decks.

The stain has shown to be a good value for the money invested.

Does not have an irritating smell


It is not a viable option on the hardwood.

5. Waterproofing Wood Stain (KILZ L832211) - Best Wood Fence Stain for Damp Environments

When it comes to installing an outdoor fence, what is your primary concern? If you live in a location where it rains or snows a lot, you might be concerned that the fence would deteriorate.

The KILZ L832211 is the solution you need. This stain will protect your wood from damage caused by snow or rain. The manufacturer is very confident about this product, so they are offering a warranty - you can get coverage for up to five years on fences and three years on decks.

This stain will help protect your fence from mold, mildew, or algae. It also helps with the extremely sunny conditions that may cause damage to your fence.


The product is a good choice for people who live in areas with a lot of snow or rain.

It will aid in the prevention of mildew on your fence.

This item provides you with a guarantee that the protection it offers will not fade or wear off on your wood.


Some customers have claimed that the lotion, once applied, leaves a layer.

6. The Best Transparent Wood Fence Stain is Wood Defender Transparent Fence Stain

This product is designed to maintain the natural beauty of your wood while preserving it. The trans-oxide pigments in this product will stain your surface but still leave the wood grain visible. This distinguishes it from other redwood fence stains.

The Wood Defender transparent stain is a good choice if you want to keep the natural look of your redwood or cedar fence. The color also protects the wood from harmful sunlight. This happens because the chemical in the stain repels UV rays from the sun.


Two-year warranty for the product

It has one of the best penetration of all stains

The stain is transparent, which means that you can keep the natural look of your wood.

Relatively easy to apply


The stain is not eco-friendly

Has one of those irritating smells

7. Tall Earth Eco-Safe Wood Treatment – Eco-Friendly Wood Fence Protection

Tall Earth's Stain is a good choice if you care about the environment. The best part is that you don't have to trust the manufacturer's word. These assertions were confirmed by a test done by independent parties and government bodies.

This stain will permanently change the molecular composition of the wood, so it is less likely to fade over time. If you want to repair and renovate your aging fence, this is a good choice.

The product has a brown-aged or silver finish to give your furniture that antique look. This also makes it a good choice for indoor projects.


It penetrates deeper into the wood and becomes a component of its internal structure.

It's an excellent option for rejuvenating and restoring old wood.

The stain does not fade easily

Friendly to the environment and pets


It does not work well on certain woods, such as white pine.

What Should I Consider When Purchasing Fence Stains – Fence Stain Reviews

Now that we have talked about different fence stains, you know what to look for when choosing one. Keep in mind that this is just a small sample of the available brands. What should you look for when looking for a stain not listed here?

Understand the Different Types of Stains

There are several different types of stains, much like paints. This distinction is due to the manufacturing process and the substances used in their creation. The following are some examples:

  • Semi-transparent

Semi-transparent fence stain is a type of stain often used on wooden fences. It protects the wood while still allowing it to keep its natural look. The wood grain will be apparent, and the color of the wood will remain unchanged.

  • Solid

These paints are similar to the original ones. Once they are used, they will form a coat over the surface. This will make it harder to see the wood's grains.

This is a bad thing when you have beautiful wood, like redwood. It's useful in situations where you wish to conceal flaws. A weakness of this stain is that it can peel off or flake, especially when in the sun.

  • Clear Stain

Stains are made in a way that they do not have any color. This does not mean that these stains cannot do what these products are made for.

They will protect your wood from damage by water and other extreme conditions. However, the greatest weakness of this type of stain is that prolonged exposure to UV rays will cause a discoloration of the wood's grain.

How to Choose Your Fence Stain Colors?

Different brands of stains have different colors. I cannot recommend it, but you might want to think about your fence's color or what kind of wood you are using in its construction when deciding on a stain for your fence.

However, I would say that it is wise to go with a color that matches the general tone of your house. For example, what does your house look like, and what can help to complement this appearance?

The Environmental Considerations

This is an important factor that many people ignore. Nowadays, we as consumers should take environmental consciousness seriously. Most manufacturers are changing how they do things by introducing environmentally-friendly products in line with market demands.

Water-based fence stains are a good option because they have a minimal negative impact on the environment. They don't have harmful chemicals that can damage the environment.

For more information about how to choose a stain color for a fence, click here.

Reviews Of The Top 10 Stains For Your Fence

As a home grows, it can be good to add fences. And they come in a lot of different styles. However, most fences are made of wood, which is not very durable. Wood fences can damage the sun, rain, snow, and humidity. This can cause the fence to dry out, crack, and weather.

Stains can help protect your wood fence from the weather and make it look nicer. Different types of colors have various benefits. Some stains have pigments that help reflect harmful UV rays. Others have sealant blends or natural oil blends to protect against moisture damage.

There are many different types of fence stains with different colors. They are all designed to protect your fence from being damaged. The best stains for fences are listed below.

1. STORM System Penetrating Sealer & Stain Protector

This is a good stain to use on a wooden fence. It is one of the best strains, and it is affordable.

The wood stain comes in many different colors. It can be used on both softwoods and hardwoods.

This exterior wood stain is perfect for homeowners or DIY fans who want to get a new wood look for their fence without a lot of hassle.

If you want to protect your wood fence from weathering and keep it looking new, this will help. It will also protect the grain of the wood from becoming gray.


Oil-based wood deck protector

Compatible with all wood species

It can be applied with any tool


This only comes with six colors that are lighter than the other colors in the set.

Oil-based, so it has more VOCs and is less eco-friendly.

2. DEFY Extreme Exterior Semi-Transparent Wood Stain

This is a great wood stain for the exterior of your house. It is UV-resistant, water-based, and easy to apply. It is more eco-friendly because it is water-based and has low-VOC content.

The paint not only resists weathering and graying, but it is fortified with zinc-nano-particle technology to make it even more durable. These things make it suitable for people who live in places with a lot of sunlight.

If you are looking for a great stain to protect your wood fence, DEFY Extreme is a perfect choice. It will keep your fence looking new for years to come.


A water-based product that is eco-friendly and does not have a lot of VOCs.


Only one item is available in six colors and a clear finish.

A little pricey.

3. Cabot Australian Timber Oil Stain

Suppose you are looking for a fence stain that is highly durable and oil-based. In that case, the Cabot Premium Australian Timber Oil Stain is a great option for you!

This stuff is a great deal because it costs around $40, and it will protect your wood from getting damaged.

No matter what kind of wood you are using, this stuff will protect and defend it from weathering, UV-rays, and more.

In addition, Cabot is known for its high-quality wood care products that are both powerful and easy to use. This is an excellent option if you consider using an oil-based stain on your fence!


It comes in five different colors.


It has better penetration for wood protection.


Only comes in a quart or gallon size

Harder to dispose of because it's oil-based

Higher VOC content due to being oil-based

4. Valspar Pre-Tinted Cedar Semi-transparent Exterior Wood Stain and Sealer


You can use two types of products on your wood fence: stain and sealer. Stain changes the color of the wood, while sealer protects it from damage caused by moisture or UV rays. If you want to use two separate products, ensure that the stain you choose includes a sealer.

The Valspar Semi-Transparent Exterior Wood Stain and Sealer is a fence stain with a sealer that provides color and long-lasting protection. This two-in-one formula saves you time because you only need to apply it once. It is also water-based, which means that you can clean up any brushes, spray equipment, or other tools with soap and water.

This fence stain and sealer will help make your fence look better. It is easy to apply, and the manufacturer guarantees that it will last for six years if you follow the instructions.


Single application coat

Cleans up with just soap and water

6-year guarantee for fences


Longer drying time of 4 hours

5. Seal-Once Marine Premium Wood Sealer Marine Premium Wood Sealer

If you are worried about damp conditions, you should look for a fence stain that offers extra protection against moisture damage. Seal-Once Marine Premium Wood Sealer uses nanoparticle technology to penetrate the wood and protect it from within. This means that the fence stain won't merely act as a top-layer barrier, cracking and splitting when moisture evaporates. This fence stain was created for high-moisture areas near freshwater or saltwater, like streams, rivers, and oceans.

Seal-Once protects vertical surfaces like fencing for up to 10 years. You will need to check the moisture barrier every year to see if it reapplied. Seal-Once is a water-based formula that requires two coats for effective sealing. Apply the second coat within an hour of the first coat.


Fences can be protected for up to ten years with this low VOC compound.



A thin formula can be difficult to apply evenly

6. Thompson’s WaterSeal Signature Series Clear Exterior Stain and Sealer

Thompson's WaterSeal Signature Series transparent fence stain is a solid, economical option. Each gallon of this oil-based stain covers 200 to 400 square feet of fencing and only requires one coat. It penetrates to protect the wood from UV rays, water, and mildew, but mold and algae may not be as well protected. Nevertheless, it's good to know that this low-cost fence stain meets the ASTM D-4446 specifications for wood waterproofing treatments.

The temperature must be between 50 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. When you apply. Thompson's WaterSeal is a thick formula, so you should not thin it. It is important to test the water absorbency of the wood every year. The stain protects the wood even if the water does not bead up on the surface.


Single-coat application



Requires mineral spirits for cleanup

Long drying times

Limited protection against mildew, algae

7. Roxil Wood Protection Cream Fence Stain

This is a waterproof wood stain that is white when you put it on the fence. But once it dries, the white cream disappears, and it looks like you never put anything on the fence.

The colorless cream makes the fence breathable and protects it from staining after using the primary layer of the stain. After you apply the primary layer, there will be no drip on it.

A roller or brush is the most refined technique to apply fence stain. On the other hand, Roxie wood cream can be used with these instruments. The roller is the most convenient way to quickly stain your deck. Here are the easy steps for using a roller to stain your deck.

Wood stains like Roxil protection cream can help reduce molds on wood fences and stop further growth. The application of the stain creates an invisible barrier that lasts more than 10 years.


Seeps deep into the wood.

Application is completely easy and effortless.

Highlights wood grain and beauty.

Prevents mildew and mold.


Need to get adjusted to the odor.

Not eco-friendly.

8. Armor AR350 Solvent Based Acrylic Sealer

The Armor AR350 wood fence Sealer, a non-yellowing acrylic sealant, can be used to darken pavers and concrete to give them a glossy and wet appearance. It is the best fence and deck stain sprayer for any wooden surface.

Suppose you look for a sealer that will give your paver driveway or patio a shiny, natural look. In that case, this product is perfect for the job. It can be used on other surfaces too.

The fence stain and sealer are very easy to apply. You can use it on the warehouse floor, garage floor, and pool deck. It will make your fences look shiny and beautiful.

You don't need any help from professionals to prepare or apply the sealer. This makes it ideal for amateurs. It also has many great features, so the price is quite affordable.

The sealer will act as a primer. This means you can apply it to the unsealed paver and concrete surfaces. The sealer will also work on surfaces that have already been sealed with solvent.

The sealer will help reduce deterioration and damage, often caused by pitting, cracking, and spalling. The sealer has high durability and will last you long before you need to apply it again.


It can be easily applied with a sprayer or a roller.

Able to withstand all types of harsh weather.

The sealer dries out pretty quickly after application.

Ultraviolet-resistant and breathable.


The odor is stronger than one might think.

Vague instruction manual.

9. Olympic Stain 421037 Smartguard Concentrated Multi-Surface Sealant

Consider the Olympic stain 421037 if you're seeking a good wood fence sealer. This sealant will protect your fence from water and make it last a long time.

The Smartguard wood fence stain dries quickly, so you can spend time outside without any hassle.

The Olympic fence stain is easy and fast to apply. You just spray it on the wood. Plus, it will help keep the deck from needing a sealant. That way, you won't have to spend as much time brushing it on.

The fence stain works well on the concrete patios, masonry, and wooden deck. Most of the fence stains only work on the wood deck.


A well-trusted brand. Easy to apply.

Advanced durability protection.

High water repellent.

Quick-dry within an hour.

Affordable price.

Multi-surface use.


Needs the fence applications nearly every year.

10. Sashco 67575 Transformation Deck and Fence Stain

When staining cedar fences, the Sashco Transformation stain is better than most other stains. It also works well on decks and siding wood, both inside and outside.

Semi-transparent wood stains are a good choice because they give your fence or deck a natural look while also adding extra protection. This specific stain provides a luxurious, deep finish that will impress.

This fence stain does not peel, and that is why your fence stays beautiful year after year. It is pricier than others, but you will agree that it is well worth the money once you see the rich finish. This is the best fence stain to use on wooden fences.

You should wait 24-48 hours before the Sashco transformation deck, and fence stains are completely dry. The time for drying will depend on the temperature and humidity.


No peel formula.

Exquisite and rich color portfolio.

Available long-lasting color.

Protection from oil with easy cleanup.

Ideal dry time- neither too fast nor too slow.


A bit expensive.

Absent of fence sealer.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Fence Stain

Before buying a wood stain for your fence, ensure that the product you choose has these benefits: it should be easy to use and have a neat finish. It's also important that the stain doesn't have too many drawbacks, like being difficult to apply or leaving streaks.

Types of Wood

Before you buy any wood stains, you need to know what kind of wood you will be using for your fence. For example, the redwood and cedar fences contain natural oils, which must be adjusted.

They can easily dry out and accept the particular stain as they adjust. You should also be aware when staining treated wood fences, find out what kind of treatment the wood has been given, and choose the appropriate wood stain.

Pressure-treated wood takes a few months to fully dry. Once it has dried, it is suitable for most fence stains.

Water-Based or Oil Based?

There are two kinds of fence stains: water-based and oil-based. Water-based stains dry quickly, and some also have zinc nanoparticles to make them resistant to mildew and mold.

There have been advancements in water-based fence stains. Some of them can even outlast oil-based ones. You don't have to worry about fumes or flames with water-based fence stains. We discussed oil-based vs. water-based stains in another article.

However, you need to prepare the fences correctly before applying a water-based wood stain. If you do it correctly, the fence stains will last for a long time and give your wood surface a beautiful finish.

Oil-based stains can go deep into the wood. They are also easy to apply. You are more likely to get a leveled finish without visible lap marks.

However, oil-based fence stains need to be applied more often because they are not as durable as other stains. But this is not a big issue because they are easy to apply. The downside to using them is that it takes 48 hours for the stain to dry out after application.

Oil-based wood stains are a good way to protect your wood. They can last a long time if you use them correctly. Be careful, though, because they contain flammable solvents and noxious flames.

Gel and Dye Stains

Two more stains may be found on fences, including gel and dye stains.

Gel-based stains are a lot like oil-based products. The main difference is that gel stains are thicker. This makes them harder to apply, but the results look much smoother.

Lacquer finish fence stains dry quickly, which is both good and bad. It will help you finish your projects faster, but you will have a very small window to fix your errors while staining.

They come in two forms: dye and powder. The powder type needs to be mixed with water before it can be used, while the dye type comes ready to use. Both types give good results, depending on how you apply them.

The downside to these stains is that they don't have UV protection. This means they fade quickly. However, you can use a metalized dye fence stain that doesn't fade quickly.

Previous Treatment

If you have stained your fence with a solid color, you need to be careful when switching to a different color. It is difficult to strip off the old stain, so it might be hard to apply the new one.

If you wish to modify the color of your stain, you should use a darker shade than the previous color. You can look up how to do this online or in a book. If you don't, there is a high chance that you will mess it up!

Exposure to The Sun

The sun can be harmful to fences. The sun's UV radiation can damage the wood's cellular structure, causing it to deteriorate.

If you don't protect your wood fence from moisture, it will decay. This will cause moss, mold, mildew, and other parasites to grow on it. You can protect your fence with wood stains.

Weather Condition

Before choosing a wood stain for your fence, you need to think about the weather. Not every wood stain works in all kinds of weather.

Stains take a long time to dry on wooden decks during rain and winter. Some stains work worse when it rains or shines too much. So those stains are used only inside.

When choosing an exterior stain, consider the ones that can handle any type of weather. The best stains are those that use toxic chemicals. This is because they work well against the natural environment.

Health Safety

Consider an environmentally friendly wood stain when choosing a stain for indoor use. That's because you will be spending a lot of time inside.

If you use a toxic stain for indoor decoration, it might harm you and other people.


The sealant in the stain helps protect your deck for a longer time than the non-sealant stain. If you use a sealant-based stain, you don't have to apply sealant separately.

The sealant-based stain will protect your wood against UV rays, pests, and moisture. You should consider using it on the exterior of your home, even if you do not use it on the interior.

Before you purchase a stain, you should look for quality reviews.

If you choose to put a fence around your house, it will not need more sealant. The fence will be protected from bad weather.


The opacity of a stain is how well it covers the wood. You need to think about this when you are choosing a fence stain.

How to Apply Fence Stain

Depending on the type of finish you want, staining your fence might be a lengthy or short procedure. Let's look at some of the quickest and most straightforward methods for staining your wood fence.

1. Inspect the Fence

First, you need to make sure the wooden fence is even. You might find nails, screws, or staples on the surface of the wood. If you do, you will need to remove them.

You may also see that the wood is broken or uneven. You must sand it well to be smooth before you stain it.

2. Cleaning the Fence

After you have sold your home, you will need to clean your wooden fence. This is a simple process if you have a deck cleaner; however, there are multiple ways to clean your fence. The wood cleaner must be applied in a uniform and even manner.

You should remove all the debris, grime, and dust away with a mop or soft bristle brush. Once you do that, wait for a good time for the wood to dry.

3. Stain the Fence

Now it is time to stain your fence. This can be done by yourself, but it is not difficult. You can use a brush, hand-pumped sprayer, or roller.

Make sure you put a coat of paint on the wooden fence. If you see blotchy spots, use a roller or brush to make them go away.

4. Wait for the Stain to Dry

You have almost finished staining your deck. What you have to do is wait. Between 24 and 48 hours, the stain will be dry, depending on the weather and humidity in your area. This time will vary based on where you live.

Applying stain to a fence can be a long process that takes time and effort, but it is worth it to have a beautiful fence. We suggest using the extension method for the best results.

What Supplies Will You Need to Stain A Fence?

There are some supplies you will need to stain a fence well.

Choosing the right stain for your project is important, but don't forget the other needed supplies. You don't want to have to keep running back to the hardware store every time you need something new. Before you start, double-check that you have everything you need.

Supplies You’ll Need

  • Drop cloths
  • Paint roller (if rolling)
  • Paintbrush (for detailing)
  • Paint sprayer (if desired)
  • Paint tray or cup
  • Stain
  • Pre-conditioning treatment
  • Sealer (optional, some stains have sealant included)

Now that you know what you need to do to get the job done, let's go over the best stains for staining a fence.

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