Home>Discussions>YARD & GARDEN>Decks, Patios, & Porches>HOA Requiring Deck Refinishing - Need to Strip Solid Stain & Use Toner Stain
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MASTERNC
HOA Requiring Deck Refinishing - Need to Strip Solid Stain & Use Toner Stain
MASTERNC

I bought my house two years ago and I have a 180 sq ft deck out back. My deck finish is peeling and the HOA is requiring I refinish my deck this year.

The problem I have is when the last owner stained the deck, they used a solid stain. This was back when the HOA standards were vague as to the type of stain to use. Now a days, the standards clearly call for a wood toner (which is much more transparent) and ask homeowners not to use a solid or semi-solid. I know I can't just put a coat over the existing solid stain and have to remove the old finish. I thought about hiring someone to strip the deck but I have had three contractors decline to strip the deck, saying it is too time consuming and the chemicals too harsh. They also note they have been advocating to homeowners and HOAs to use semi-solid or solid stains, since stains in general don't last as long anymore.

Before I go trying to push through an exception with the board, I was going to try to strip the deck myself and to hopefully be able to then use the correct product. I bought Cabot's stripper product and tried it on a step by brushing it on, working it in with a deck brush, and then rinsing with a garden hose. It took some stain off and I could see some bare raised grain, but most of the stain did not come off. My next step was going to be to spray the stripper on and use a power washer (it also won't be as hot as the test day, which may help).

My question is does anyone have any advice as to what if something else might work better, or will I be fighting a losing battle?

ordjen
Re: HOA Requiring Deck Refinishing - Need to Strip Solid Stain & Use Toner Stain
ordjen

The chemical strippers are caustic and require that the product be applied liberally and kept wet with the product for at least 30 minutes. The old finish will not wrinkle up, as with typical wood strippers, but slowly dissolves the finish to where it should flush away with a good stream of water. It may not appear that anything is happening until you flush it. A scrubbing with and old fashioned scrub brush on the end of a broomstick will help loosen the old stain film.

This is a good job for a not too hot day and with no sunshine on the deck. Sunshine will make the stripper evaporate too quickly, requiring you to use more stripper.

After the stripper is flushed away, the deck then must be neutralized with an acid containing deck cleaner. The cleaner will help bring back the natural color of the wood.

This whole process is extremely labor intensive. messy and can be costly for materials. For the deck flooring itself, it is also possible to sand the old finish away. Also, not fun. The decking itself is the easy part, stripping or sanding rails and visible structural members would be a nightmare!

Personally, I would petition the HOA to have the old finish grandfathered, since it has obviously been there for some time and was not your doing. It sounds as if your HOA is on shaky ground as they have changed the rules mid-stream. Their are lawyers who specialize in HOA law. You might want to get a quick opinion.

Solid hide stain may not be a pretty as a newly transparent stained wood decks, but it is MUCH more durable and much easier to touch up if some failure occurs.

dj1
Re: HOA Requiring Deck Refinishing - Need to Strip Solid Stain & Use Toner Stain
dj1

It will be interesting to find out if you get an exemption from your HOA. Please report if you do.

Home owners associations usually suck. They have become a lucrative source of income to a few parasites, like the HOA President, his circle of friends, and the handful of close contractors who kickback on manufactured "improvement projects". Most members who pay huge monthly fees have no power to resist, are under daily "enforcement" from the association and have no say on "special assessments" (that should have been covered by normal dues, which was squandered away by the HOA).

MASTERNC
Re: HOA Requiring Deck Refinishing - Need to Strip Solid Stain & Use Toner Stain
MASTERNC

Quick update: I did try stripping the deck floor, some of the rails, and the boards of the privacy fence. The privacy fence and some of the rails stripped completely to bare wood. The floor, however, found mixed success, with some areas stripping and others looking barely touched (even on the same board).

My neighbor, who had spent days stripping her deck previously and feared I would face the same fate after seeing my results, believes we can push through a solid stain for approval by the board (she is on the board herself).

However, this brings up another question. I found a can of the old stain. It is a solid Cabot oil-based stain. Our goal would be to use a solid stain that is tinted similarly to one resident's privacy fence (where a contractor inadvertently used a solid stain but matched the color of the toned wood) and/or composite decking used elsewhere in the community.

Given most tintable solid stains are latex and the current finish is oil, am I going to have the same problem that occurs with latex over oil paint? I've contacted multiple paint stores and have received different answers (even within the same local chain) ranging from using an oil based primer to just putting the latex over oil (supposedly the same issue does not occur with stains, only paints?). Can anyone confirm if I need to prime or if I can just stain directly?

My plan is as follows:

- Apply wood brightener & cleaner to entire deck
- After drying for several days, sand with coarse grit pole sander
- Apply primer (if necessary)
- Apply solid stain

keith3267
Re: HOA Requiring Deck Refinishing - Need to Strip Solid Stain & Use Toner Stain
keith3267

Any place that you have stripped/sanded down to bare wood will have to be primed. I'd prime the whole thing with an oil based primer then use a latex solid stain over it.

They allow composite decking? If so, then there is no reason to not use a solid stain. Composite decks do not have a natural wood finish.

Consider using this product, the finished look is like a composite deck.

http://www.rustoleum.com/en/product-catalog/consumer-brands/restore/restore-10x-advanced-resurfacer

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