Understanding Wood Stain Uses for a Home
- Caroline S. Logan
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There are so many wood projects around a home and each one offers a home a distinct special improvement. Wood provides a definitive feel of nature and luxury no matter where it is used. It has come to be known for offering a natural, rustic or luxurious aesthetic that can bring so much beauty to any area it is accented.
While wood can readily be painted, the best way to accent any wood is by using stains. Wood offers so much beauty within each piece’s unique grains. In fact, it is the beauty of wood grains that is usually the purpose of using a wood for any area of a home.
Stains are used for many things around a home including: finishing off furniture, trim, hardwood floors and cupboards. It is also used as well for a multitude of exterior uses including: decks, sheds, gazebos and the exterior of a home. By contrast to the use of paints, stains allow the wonderful natural look of wood to be exposed.
Choosing the color of a stain for a project is an important decision because it affects the long-lasting appearance of whatever it is used on. The final choice of stain often has a great deal to do with the usage, the type of natural wood that it is covering and the purpose of the accent of the stain. There are so many hues and colors of stains and each one can bring a special look and luster to any wood.
Exterior stains are different than interior stains. Exterior stains are comprised of special ingredients that protect the wood against solar radiation. They are designed to offer a front-line defense against the wood prematurely aging and becoming damaged. Because exterior wood is subjected to many elements, it is important to use only exterior stain for wood being used for exterior purposes.
Exterior wood stains protect wood against fungus, mildew and insect infestation. They also offer a protective layer against water penetration into the wood. Because exterior wood is subjected to many types of water related weather this is important. Wood that is not treated properly with an exterior stain or paint can prematurely age the wood. This may cause it to warp and buckle.
While most stains are designed to give wood an enhanced luster of color, there are some stain colors that have a hint of unnatural wood colors. This is like the types of coloring that was used in wood paneling from the 1960’s and 1970’s. The colors can be blue, green, charcoal, red, orange and many other primary color variations as well.
While many of the colored stains available are used for the exterior of a home or building, they are also often used for outside furniture, gazebos, outbuildings and sheds. The primary difference between a colored stain and colored paint, is that colored stains still allow the grains of the wood to show through. By contrast, paint is a thicker covering and rarely shows through any of the wood grains. That is why for buildings and homes that want to be in keeping with a more natural rustic look, stains are the primary coating of choice.