Choosing Armstrong Clark Oil Based Wood Stains will ensure lasting beauty and protection for all your exterior wood surfaces. Backed by five generations of experience in oil-based coatings and cutting edge technology, Armstrong Clark Wood Stains will not only meet your wood protection needs but far exceed them.

Determine the square footage area of the surface you plan to stain. On decks be sure not only to measure the floor but also railings, spindles, steps and all areas that you are planning to stain. Armstrong-Clark Deck and Siding Stains will cover approximately 150-200 sq. ft. per gallon depending on age and wood porosity.

The Armstrong Clark Staining Instructions

Armstrong Clark Deck and Siding Stains come in many different colors and tones. Keep in mind that the actual color results can vary depending on the type, age, condition, and porosity of the wood. Color samples are available if needed.

Prior to using any of the Armstrong Clark Wood Stains it is important to prepare the wood surface properly so the stain will perform as expected. See the RAD Wood Cleaner or Stain Stripper products for properly cleaning the wood surface prior to staining.

Allow the wood surface to dry 1-2 days after it has been cleaned and prepped. Be sure no rain is expected on the day of staining and for 3-4 hours after application so the stain can cure properly.

To apply Armstrong Clark Deck Stain you can use a roller, brush, stain pad, or airless sprayer. Mix the stain thoroughly prior to use. Unlike other stains, Armstrong Deck Stain can be applied in direct sunlight and on hot days. If the first application of stain penetrates within 30 minutes another coat can be applied for added protection.

If applying by sprayer, use a roller or brush to go over the sprayed areas for a more even appearance. After 24 hours use a dry rag to remove any remaining puddles or glossy areas.

Armstrong Clark Wood Stain is environmentally friendly and does not contain an offensive odor. It is easy to apply and very user-friendly. Enhancing the appearance of your deck and giving it lasting protection is the best investment you can make and Armstrong Clark Oil Based Wood Stains makes it easy.

Questions on Staining? Ask Below!

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  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Diane · 08/21/2019
    I was reading on line DIYs and experienced woodworker stating a cloth works best for applying stain. I bought a brush but now thinking I will use the cloths instead what is your recommendation.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 08/22/2019
      No, do not use a cloth. Use a brush or stain pad.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Vince B · 08/20/2019
    I installed a new cedar deck in October last year. Waited until June this year to stain it. I power washed, then used restore a deck cleaner and brightener. I applied one coat of AC Rustic Brown Semitransparent. Below are my photos. Turned out super blotchy with grain not absorbing the stain and an orange/cedar color. Two questions: 1. did I do something wrong ie powerwashing or staining too early and 2. how soon can I re-stain to get a more even and darker appearance? Assuming of course this is not how Rustic Brown should have turned out. How would you fix it?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 08/21/2019
      The random dark spot(s) is oxidation that was not removed fully during your prep and therefore stained darker. You would have to strip it off at this point and possibly even sand to remove this oxidation. The lighter color is the way it is supposed to look
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Vince B · 08/22/2019
        There was zero oxidation. Wood was brighter and cleaner than I have ever seen wood. After further research I learned that RAD changed the instructions on their brightener to include a disclaimer to rinse for 30 minutes! I certainly didn’t do that as it would have flooded my basement. My packaging does not have this disclaimer. I assume the brightener may have reacted with the stain to separate some of the pigments. If that is the case do I still need to strip or just clean it next year and reapply?
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          Armstrong · 08/23/2019
          All wood oxidizes afters sitting for many months like yours so yes, it is oxidation that was not removed fully and we have seen it before. It has nothng do to with rinsing the brightener or not and no, the brightener does not separate pigment. It is the grain of your wood causing the darker spots and the darker spots is where the oxidation as not removed. You would have to remove to get the wood even in porosity.
          • We will reply to your comment shortly
            Vince B · 08/23/2019
            Got it. Thanks. I was confusing oxidation with graying. Appreciate your expertise.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Steven Frazier · 08/02/2019
    I recently had my deck boards and railing replaced with treated wood. Total surface area I calculated around 815 sq ft. I was planning to stain and seal using a sprayer and wondered if this sprayer would qualify for your semi-transparent stains: REXBETI Ultimate-750 Paint Sprayer, 500 Watt High Power HVLP Home Electric Spray Gun.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 08/02/2019
      It should but we have never tried this sprayer before. The AC will work well with airless and most powered sprayers but does not work well with pump sprayers.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Richard · 07/21/2019
    Did one coat of semi-transparent Rustic Brown and it soaked in quite quickly in most places (dry in a few hours). Would you recommend a second coat? Or is it too late and will need to wait until next year?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 07/22/2019
      Wait until Fall or Spring to add a second coat. Lightly clean off any dirt first.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Dawn · 07/12/2019
    How long after rain do we have to wait to stain??
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 07/12/2019
      48 hours.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Dawn · 07/12/2019
        Thank you and how long after staining before rain... just in case
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Dawn · 07/11/2019
    We used Rad cleaner and brightener and the wood came up gorgeous. It rained a wee bit today, Thursday, can we start stain8g on saturday?
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    Donna Bruneau · 07/05/2019
    Just finished doing one coat but need to order more stain. Arriving only a week. Will this be ok ?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    john McIntosh · 07/04/2019
    Hi, Have new #1 5/4 deck boards. Been 4 weeks since installation. Getting worried as the sun on the deck is incredibly hot. We line on the beach in North Carolina and days that are not really hot and humid are rare. Should I continue to hold off staining the deck until fall?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Boogie · 07/03/2019
    What is the solid content percentage of the semi-transparent stains?
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    Andrew · 06/30/2019
    My deck is 5-6 years old and previous owners applied a semi solid or solid Behr stain. I have removed it with a Behr stripper, pressure washer, and lots of power sanding. I am planning to use the semi-transparent rustic brown stain. Several questions:
    1. I have already purchased the Behr cleaner/brightener that I am planning to use next - will this be an acceptable cleaner/brightener to neutralize the stripper and prep for the Armstrong stain?
    2. Due to the trim detail on my railings, some of the previous solid stain is very difficult to remove. I understand that it is best to remove all previous stain before applying the semi-transparent but what will be the result if I am not able to? Just some splotchy spots where the stain is still there?
    3. I am planning to apply with an airless sprayer - Should I plan to order/go through more stain?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 07/01/2019
      1. No on the Behr prep. Best to return it.
      2. It will not look good nor will it soak in and adhere.
      3. If you spray, make sure to back brush to ensure an even application. About the same amount of stain.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Tobelyn · 06/28/2019
    My deck is very dry and hasn’t had anything on it in years. I’ve pressure washed it and brightened it. I bought a sample of your semi-solid stain and I loved it. The problem is it took forever to completely dry. After four days, I could still wipe off color with a paper towel. After about a week, the paper towels finally wiped clean. Is this normal? I know I followed all the instructions correctly and I didn’t apply the stain too thick. I only used one coat on the spot I tested. When it did dry, it looked really nice. Im sending a picture of the bare deck.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 06/29/2019
      The semi-solids have a lot of pigment and the drying/curing can take time based on the wood age and the weather.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Bob · 06/26/2019
    What should I use for a light cleaning between years that I restain?
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    Jack Thompson · 06/19/2019
    I just installed a Tigerwood deck 2 1/2 weeks ago. I have just purchased the Armstrong Hardwood deck stain. Should I use a deck cleaner, and then a brightener with Oxalic Acid prior to staining? I have read different opinions stating that a deck brightener is not needed for new wood?
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    James Gepner · 06/15/2019
    I have about 300' of 6' high cedar fence that is about 2 years old. Last fall, a coat of Thompson's Waterproofer and Clear Wood Protector was put on the fence. This has kept the fence from graying so it still looks pretty good. I am ready to landscape in front of the fence but would like to stain the fence first with either a semi-transparent or semi-solid stain. Can any of Armstrong Clark stains go directly over the fence as is with reasonable results?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Matt Horwood · 06/13/2019
    Morning...

    I will be re-staining my cedar deck soon with the Natural Oak semi transparent and I just want some advice on the process as we have some dry weather coming up. Currently I have the same Natural Oak product on the all cedar deck (it was originally stained two years ago).

    So plan is to clean and brighten, let it dry for a couple days and then re-stain within the week. Correct? Missing anything?

    I do have a moisture meter for the wood and wonder if you have any guidance on what that should be?

    Many thanks and your products are fantastic!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Susan D · 06/10/2019
    Just finished the process of stripping, brightening, sanding, brightening and staining the deck. After the first brightening I needed to sand the deck because of fuzzies. I used 36 grit and then 60 grit. After the sanding I then brightened again with a slightly diluted solution. Very lucky to then have 2 days of sun and low humidity after the final brightening. Wood moisture was very low when started staining. Completed the staining this past Saturday and no rain yet.
    The first photo was taken after all preparation and the second photo is after stain applied.
    I used cedar semi-transparent. I’d like to know what is the difference between the cedar semi-transparent and the amber semi-transparent? Thank you.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 06/10/2019
      Looks great!

      Amber is a little lighter in color than the Cedar Semi.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Caro · 06/06/2019
    Hello: our old deck soaked up 10 gallons of semi transparent rustic brown and we ran out of stain before we finished two coats on the horizontal surfaces (it would have soaked it right up if we’d had enough). Is it okay to apply the second coat a few days later (when the wood is dry again after a big rain)? It will still be within the two week window after stripping and brightening. Thanks.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 06/06/2019
      Might want to leave as is for now and then do a light wash to remove dirt and a recoat in the Fall or the Spring.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    David · 06/05/2019
    Hello,
    I have a year old redwood deck that I sanded with 120 grit sandpaper and prepped with Armstrong Clark cleaning then brightening using a power washer. My first attempt at power washing got most but not get all the gray out so I then put more cleaner on and scrubbed with a stiff bristle brush and then brightened again. Oh so beautiful. I've now read that 60 or 80 grit sandpaper is preferred for deck prep. I'm staining with Armstrong Clark transparent stain cedar tone. Will the 120 grit sandpaper hurt things or am I good?
    Thanks for your help,
    David
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 06/05/2019
      The 120 is too smooth and could hinder proper absorption. Did you use a power sander?
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        David · 06/05/2019
        Also, I sanded first and power washed it twice then scrubbed thoroughly and briskly. I believe the scrubbing opened the pores up good as so much gunk was lifted from the wood.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        David · 06/05/2019
        I used a belt sander because there were a lot of cracks and I didn't want the little kids and cry baby adults to get splinters :) What happens if I try a first coat and it appears to soak in normally. Will the stain behave normally as it's supposed to or is there part of the formula that doesn't get soaked in? If it doesn't soak in normally what will I see in comparison to a 60-80 grit sanding soak in? If it means power washing and then sanding with an 80 grit, it's not a big deal.
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          Armstrong · 06/05/2019
          You cannot unsand 120 grit to 80. The issue is that if it cannot soak in fully, it could have rub off.
          • We will reply to your comment shortly
            David · 06/05/2019
            Well, staining on Monday and I'll keep you posted and I will pay special attention to see if there is any issue with rub off. This is my first deck project and am learning a lot. Thanks so much for the heads up. If there is anything else I can do to aid with full absorption please let me know. Thx.
            • We will reply to your comment shortly
              Armstrong · 06/05/2019
              If the stain does not fully soak in and still wet 24 hours later, wipe off the excess stain with rags. Saturate all oil rags in water when done and lay flat to dry outside.
              • We will reply to your comment shortly
                David · 06/11/2019
                The deck sucked in one coat of stain with complete absorption. So fortunately, my 120 grit mistake did not end badly and the deck is so beautiful. The attached pic was about 7 hours before I wiped it down and the stain was completely sucked in by that time so all I got on my rags was a little cedar color. Thanks so much for your help.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Kyle · 06/04/2019
    Does this semi-solid espresso need a second coat?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    JJ Stolz · 06/01/2019
    We stained our new deck last summer. Installed the yellow cedar deck in October and we stained in July, the moisture reader said we were good after using the 2-part cleaner/brighter. It looked beautiful with the amber semi-transparent.


    But look how dirty it got over the winter, the second pic is what it looked like after I pressure washed half of it today.
    Should we do some cleaning treatment before we restrain this year?
    is that just dirt? Is it mold or mildew?
    Should we treat for that as well with something?

    We live in Tacoma, WA so it’s very wet all winter long.

    Any help is appreciated!
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Anna · 08/19/2019
      We live in astoria, oregon and are fighting the same issues as you with our cedar deck and fence.
      We are trying armstrong clark product for the first time hoping for better results. Everyone I know with wood decks fights the same issues every year.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 06/02/2019
      That is dirt. Best to clean and brighten again and then reapply.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        JJ Stolz · 06/16/2019
        Thanks!

        Is there anything to be done to keep it from getting so dirty over the winter?
        Also, someone advised me to stain it again in the fall....but most of your responses seem to indicate that this should get us through the year.

        What’s your advice?
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          Armstrong · 06/17/2019
          No need to do another coat in the Fall. The only way to keep it dirt fee would be to cover it somehow.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    jeffk · 05/31/2019
    Want to flip over and reuse 5/4" PT pine on 280 sf lake dock in NC. Use semi solid or solid, oil base, light brown/tan. Removed, sanded with 40 grit belt sander, cleaned with Velspar Deck Cleaner, let dry for 2-3 days. Work in garage or shaded area. Use 1/4" x 4" roller, back brush, wipe if necessary. Dock has furniture and step off pontoon boat which adds to wear and tear. Do 5 or 6 boards per day, no rush. Any suggestions-much appreciated. Photos show dock condition and after sanding.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 06/01/2019
      No photos were attached. Make sure to apply one coat of the AC. Look at Mountain Cedar color.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Ravi · 05/31/2019
    Since you do not have an outlet in Ohio, I ordered online and have received the transparent cedar tone stain. In your instructions you mention we need to mix the stain thoroughly prior to use. When I buy paints from a nearby big box store, they use a machine which mixes the paint thoroughly. How should I mix the stain thoroughly at home?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Ed · 05/31/2019
      Yes, you would use a stir stick that you can get from a paint or big box store. The pigments in stains settle pretty quickly to the bottom of the can. So even if a store machine shakes the can for you, you still want to give it a good stir at home and before you pour more into your tray.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 05/31/2019
      Stir stick or paint mixer on your drill.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Theresa · 05/31/2019
    I will use AC transparent cedar tone when I stain the deck if it ever quits raining in the Northeast. I'm a "more is better type person" so, should I apply two coats instead of one on the horizontal face of the deck? Thanks.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 05/31/2019
      More is not always better. Only apply as much as the wood will absorb.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Fred · 05/30/2019
    My apologies, Restore-A-Deck, not Revive-A Deck
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Fred · 05/30/2019
    On 5/23 I applied the Revive-A-Deck to our deck that was completed August of last year. The Revive-A-Deck really did a good job of removing the weathering and the mill glaze on the deck boards. Two days later I applied the Deck Brightener which seemed to give the deck a softer or smooth feel. Two days after that my wife and I applied the Cedar Semi-Transparent Stain. We used a roller for the deck and brush & pads for the deck rails. About 30-35 hours after the stain was applied we started to get rain. My question is; Should the deck be beading water, like a car after a wax? I'm also wondering if I should apply another coat. The deck looks fantastic and the products are very easy to use.
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 05/30/2019
      No does not bead like a car wax as it breathes. No, do not apply another coat.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Carter · 05/27/2019
    Have a seven year old ipe deck. They sanded it down to remove the old Sikkens coats and then applied the mahogany stain. They did not prep or use brightener and applied the stain with a rag, not a brush or stain pad. The result is kind of uneven and splotchy. Would a second coat help? Can I apply brightener over the first coat or does it need to be stripped first?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 05/27/2019
      No, you cannot add a second coat at this time. You would have to strip and brighten.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        Carter · 05/27/2019
        Thanks. I guess we will just wait for next Spring to do a do-over.
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Steve Cross · 05/24/2019
    Do you recommend a natural bristle brush or polyester?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Caro · 05/23/2019
    Hi - we just moved into our house that has a 15yo deck that hasn’t been stained for awhile. I bought a stain and a prep kit from you last year but when I got it out I see it is the stripper kit, not the cleaner kit. I want to start today...will this work okay for what I have or do I need to order the cleaner instead and wait for it to get here? Thanks!
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    Scott · 05/22/2019
    I applied initial coat of semi-transparent stain on raw cedar dock planks a year ago. Looked great. I'd like to refresh it. What do you recommend?
  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    melanie philbrick · 05/10/2019
    I have been using the Armstrong Clark Stains for 6 years now & love this stuff. Currently prepping the deck for a new coat. I understand as with all stains like this, it feeds mold & mildew, it is what it is. I have 900 sq. feet to deal with & part of the deck is in the shade so I always have a problem in that area. I recently read about using “wet & forget” after the deck dries & plan on giving that a try this go around. Some where I read about adding a mildewcide to the A/C stain, but I can not find that reference again. I want to also give this a try this year. Do you have a ratio that I could use that would not compromise the structure of the stain?
    • We will reply to your comment shortly
      Armstrong · 05/10/2019
      There is already a lot of mildewcide in the AC. No need to add more nor would it help.
      • We will reply to your comment shortly
        melanie philbrick · 05/10/2019
        As I previously mentioned I have real issues with Mildew, etc. Since writing this I found the article that mentioned adding mildewcide into the stain. Now I am confused. This is an A/C article.
        • We will reply to your comment shortly
          Armstrong · 05/10/2019
          Best to ask them directly to confirm.