Partially stained timber decking highlighting the difference before and after applying timber decking stain. Text overlay asks 'Does Timber Decking Require Frequent Staining?'

Does Timber Decking Require Frequent Staining?

Just score an awesome timber deck? High five! It’s perfect for holding gatherings for your loved ones and friends, having weekend chill sessions, or just soaking up some sun. But with this newfound deck-lovin’ life comes a question that pops up for newbies and deck veterans alike: how often do you have to stain your timber deck?

How long does timber decking typically last?

If you have a timber deck at home, it is important to consider its proper maintenance. As long as you keep it maintained well, then it will be your outdoor mate for a long time. For a hardwood deck, it’s expected to last for 15 to 30 years. But if the material is made from soft timbers, it will be around 10 to 15 years. Not bad, right? But that number depends on a few things: the type of wood you’ve got, the Aussie weather it has to face, and how well you look after it (staining plays a big part here).

How does weather affect timber decks?

Aussie climate can be a bit of a double-edged sword for your deck. Here’s how:

  • Sunburn for your deck: Harsh sunlight dries the timber out, which can lead to cracks and that faded look. Not ideal.
  • Rain, rain, go away (sometimes): Heaps of rain can cause warping, rot, and even mould growth – not the kind of party you want on your deck.
  • Temperature tantrums: Those hot and cold swings can make the timber expand and contract, putting stress on the boards.

This is where timber deck stain comes to the rescue – ready to protect your deck from these weather woes.

How often should you stain your timber deck? 

There’s no magic number, unfortunately. The staining frequency depends on a few things:

Open can of timber decking stain with brush on wooden deck, showing a comparison between stained and unstained timber decking.

  • The timber type: Denser hardwoods like Merbau are stain champs, needing less frequent applications than softer timbers like pine.
  • Climate chaos: Decks in sunbaked areas or drenched by rain will need more TLC (staining) than those in sheltered spots.
  • Stain quality: High-quality stains are like little suits of armour for your deck, lasting longer between applications.
  • Foot traffic: Decks with heaps of people walking all over them will wear down the stain faster, needing touch-ups more often.

Generally, expect to restain your deck every 2-3 years. But keep an eye on it! Regularly check for signs it needs a refresh – think fading, cracking, or that just-not-right look.

Does timber deck stain offer more than just looks?

Timber deck stain isn’t just about making your deck look like a million bucks (though it can do that too). It offers a bunch of benefits:

  • Weather warrior: Stain acts as a barrier, shielding your deck from the harsh sun, sneaky moisture, and creepy crawlies.
  • Crack preventer: By keeping the timber hydrated, stain helps prevent cracks and keeps that natural timber beauty shining through.
  • Colour and grain champion: Timber stain comes in different colours, so you can customise your deck’s look and highlight the wood’s natural grain.

Which timber deck stain is right for you?

There are so many stains for timber decks available on the market now. However, selecting the perfect one for you can be a difficult task. You may want to consider some of these tips to help:

  • Oil vs. water: Stains that are oil-based last longer and pass through deeper, but take longer to dry and need stronger cleaning products. If the stains are water-based, they dry faster and are easier to clean up. But they might not be as tough.
  • Colour you happy: Consider the natural colour of your timber and the overall feel you want to achieve. Pick a stain that complements your house and garden.
  • Transparent or solid: Transparent stains show the grain of the wood. On the other hand, solid stains give you a more opaque and colourful deck finish.

Should you stain your timber deck yourself or hire a professional?

If you like DIY or following instructions, then staining your timber deck yourself can be a satisfying project. But for perfect and long-lasting results, try hiring an expert deck staining service. They have the experience and professional training for timber decking to get the job done right, using the best products and techniques.

Comparison of timber decking before and after applying timber decking stain, illustrating the impact of staining on wood appearance.

How can you keep your timber deck looking great between stains?

Regular deck cleaning is important to keep it looking great and lasting many years. Listed below are some quick tips:

  • Sweep away the grubbies: Consistently sweep up leaves, dirt, and anything else that might want to make your deck its home. This helps prevent moisture from building up.
  • Give it a hose down: Occasionally, hose down your deck to remove dust and grime. For stubborn stains, use a specialised deck cleaning solution.
  • Ban the BBQ drippings: Everybody loves eating at gatherings, but those stray snags and burger juices can leave nasty marks. Clean them up straight away to avoid staining.
  • Furniture free-for-all: Don’t leave furniture sitting on your deck all the time. This can trap moisture and lead to mould growth.

Are there eco-friendly options for timber deck stains?

If you are looking for a stain that is kind to the environment, you are lucky! There are a lot of eco friendly timber deck options available now. They are most of the time made with natural components and are less harmful to the environment.


So, staining your timber deck isn’t about being too excessive with your deck. It’s about giving it the love it needs to last. Think of it as a protection for your deck. By staining it regularly, you’re protecting it from different harmful elements while keeping it looking awesome for a long time.

Don’t let your deck get sunburnt!

Feeling overwhelmed about staining your deck? No worries! Inspired Joinery & Maintenance’s professional timber decking services are here to help. We can suggest the best stain for your deck and even chat about options that are friendly to the environment.

So sit back, relax, and enjoy your stunning timber deck for years to come!

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