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Do I Need to Stain/Seal my Cedar Fence?

It is highly recommended that you stain/seal your cedar fence as it is a great way to ensure it lasts for years to come!

Wood fences are traditionally beautiful and are a significant financial investment in the value of your home and property. However, it is normal for your cedar fence to fade over time. To alleviate this natural process, sealing and staining your fence will help preserve the beauty of the wood and keep your fence looking alive!

How often do I need to stain/seal my cedar fence?

It is recommended the seal/stain process repeat every 3-4 years to keep your fence strong and beautiful.

How long should I wait to stain/seal my new cedar fence?

It is not recommended to stain your new cedar fence right away, in fact, you should plan to wait at least 6-8 weeks here in Minnesota. Why Wait? Because new cedar has a high moisture content, and the stain/sealant cannot properly absorb into and protect the wood grain if the wood is too wet. Ultimately, it is recommended to wait until your fence is completely dry before applying any stain or seal.

What kind of stain is best for my cedar fence?

This can often be a difficult choice for consumers as there are many options of stain/sealant. However, we at Ridgeline Fence and Deck recommend an oil based sealant. Why? Many wood finishing products require a multi-step application process, often consisting of applying a wood stain to add color and a top coat of wood sealer for protection therefore, making a two-in-one stain/seal a much more efficient option. Why Oil Based? For one, oil based stain penetrates the wood more effectively, therefore, demanding less effort. Additionally, because oil based stains penetrate so well to the wood, it will resist peeling more than a water based stain will. You will notice when it needs another coat it will simply fade vs peel.

We hope this helps answer any questions regarding the care process for your cedar fence.

Thanks for reading!

1 Comment

Michael Neises
Michael Neises
Jun 24, 2023

If I want to preserve the natural look of cedar can I just use the sealant and not apply stain first? Will this keep the cedar from graying?

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