We just finished sanding off the old stain on our cedar siding. The wood looks almost new, even though it's maybe 15 years old. We had no choice but to sand over all of the nail heads. When I hosed down a few boards to see how badly it'll raise the surface texture, I discovered gray stains around all of the nails.
We were going to clear coat the cedar, but have changed to a color to help mask this problem. I haven't started staining yet and was wondering if there's something I can do to prevent any bleeding on the pristine boards. They look amazing, but that will quickly change within 24 hours of hosing everything down to remove all the dust.
The house is 1200 square feet, so it's not a big deal if I were to use a leaf blower to remove dust and then wipe everything down with damp cloths. But do you have any suggestions on what we can do to protect those nail heads from staining the wood? We're using an excellent stain product, but it's not designed to permanently coat nail heads; just wood.
I'm guessing invisible shavings were embedded in the wood around each nail and that's why they turned gray when I watered the boards. I'm going to do some testing and wipe down a few boards with a cloth and see if they react to the moisture. But at some point they probably will darken the wood anway, so I'd welcome some feedback on what I can do.
Also, I noticed a lot of staining just from the water on the wood in another area on the house where I did some hosing. It undoes all of the hard work. I need to get the staining done before it rains.