The Best Time of Year to Stain Your Fence or Deck

As with many outdoor projects, the wrong weather and excessive natural elements can wreak havoc on your results. Staining your deck or fence is no different. Before you, or a team of professionals, embark on this project, it’s important to plan appropriately. The best time of year for staining is dependent on where you live, as natural elements vary from location to location. In this blog post, we will focus on the specific weather conditions that you should pay attention to and provide our general seasonal recommendation for fence staining. 


The first thing on our list of weather conditions to avoid when staining your fence or deck is obvious. Not only does rain make for an uncomfortable working experience, but it will actually ruin the results of your stain. Unlike paint, stain actually soaks into the wood and literally stains the top layers of the planks. This means not only should you avoid staining while it’s raining, but you should also be aware of the weather forecast for at least 48 hours after the project’s completion.

If rain (or any water) hits your newly stained fence or deck within 48 hours, the water will soak into the deck and try to displace the stain. This will either result in your deck looking splotchy, or the stain will peel and flake off. The longer your deck stays dry, the safer your results will be! 


Although many of us hate humidity because it can be uncomfortable, its presence can actually be a major roadblock for staining projects. The ideal humidity level is between 40 and 70 percent, so for most areas this won’t be a problem. Humidity plays a huge role in drying time, and if it’s too humid, your deck or fence won’t dry properly. Similar to the issues the moisture from rain brings to your staining project, the moisture from humidity can also soak into your wood. This will leave you with the same blotchy and uneven look that rain can cause.


Most manufactures recommend applying stain when the temperature is around 70 degrees. While this is the optimal temperature, you can go up to about 90 degrees with no problems. Of course professionals have their own tips and tricks to work with various temperatures, but 70 degrees is the general rule. If the temperature is too cold when you attempt to apply the stain, the curing process will be affected. On the other hand, if the temperature is too hot, the stain can evaporate and dry too quickly, so you won’t notice any results. 

While staining is typically a fairly quick project that brings lasting results, it is only worth doing when the conditions are right. As excited as you may be to get the project done, you don’t want to waste your money and time, and excessive rain, humidity or temperatures can ruin your results. Taking all the elements into account, late spring is typically the best time of year to stain your fence or deck. That being said, it’s time to book your fence or deck staining with the professionals at New Vision Exteriors. Setup your complimentary consultation today!