Redwood decks, furniture and fencing look beautiful whether left unfinished or painted/stained to match a home’s exterior or favorite color. Unfinished redwood may weather to a soft gray patina, but may be brought back to its natural red and cream tones. Here are a few tips to help you keep your Sacramento lumber looking its best.
The ideal time to apply finish is on windless days when the temperature is between 50 and 70 degrees. Before you begin any application, be sure all redwood surfaces are clean and dry. Unseasoned wood needs to air-dry for a month prior to attempting a finishing project.
When choosing a brush to finish redwood, do not use any metal wire brushes or steel wool as these may leave behind particles that can become embedded in the wood and cause metal stains. Instead, opt for a stiff bristle brush to clean the surfaces. Always use finish recommended for wood exteriors, and when you do so, be sure to follow the directions and read any warnings. Note that layering latex and oil-based paints over each other or mixing them together is not recommended.
One of the biggest causes of finish failures on your redwood lumber is moisture. Prevent this issue easily by using vapor barriers, air vents and flashing in new construction. For the best finish retention available, use redwood dimensional lumber or other products marketed as “Certified Kiln Dried.”
When you see the first bit of grime or dirt accumulating on your freshly finished redwood surface, cleaning is as easy as reaching for the garden hose. You may also remove stubborn build-up by scrubbing with a non-metallic bristle brush and a solution of warm water and a mild detergent. Remove splash lines by hosing down the entire structure, including the newly cleaned areas. This will even out the appearance of the wood.
Sacramento lumber, including redwood decks, redwood fences and redwood furniture will look good and last for many years with proper care.
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