Anyone who has stained cedar on their home knows exactly what I’m talking about; those nasty black or gray stains that “magically” appear all over the place. If you are a do it yourselfer or asked an uninformed contractor, you may have heard this was mold, mildew, or dirt. Then the next rational step is to clean these stain with bleach or trisodium phosphate (TSP). That won’t work. All that you are going to do is hurt the cedar by hitting it too hard with a pressure washer. So, does this mean that you are sentenced to living with black stains on your once beautiful cedar shake?
These stains are not mold, mildew, or dirt. They are tannin stain. Cedar is a very resinous and tannic wood. That is why it smells so nice and repels insects. Tannin stains are not destructive or damaging to the wood; they are just ugly. But ugly is nearly just as bad as destructive when it affects where you live.
How do you remove these ugly tannin stains so that you can restain your cedar to restore its natural beauty?
Oxalic Acid. Our painters in Sandy Springs use Sherwin Williams’ DeckScapes Revive. While this product is easy to use, it must done correctly to avoid damaging the wood or causing problems with the staining process. Here’s how to do it:
- Apply the DeckScapes Revive directly to the stained areas of the wood. Do not thin it or cut it. You can apply it with a pump sprayer, brush or roller. Only apply it to an area that you can manage.
- After applying the Revive. What 10-15 minutes. DO NOT LET IT DRY! I don’t know what happens because I’ve never let it dry, but the manufacturer is adamant about it.
- Pressure wash the wood as you normally wood.
- Let the cedar dry for 24 hours before applying your stain. The picture above was stained using DeckScapes Alkyd Cedar Toner.
The results will be nothing short of amazing. The black stains will be gone and the cedar will be wood color again. After you let everything dry for 24 hours, you can stain your cedar. I like using oil-based toners for this application. Sherwin Williams and TWP make my favorite toners.
If your home has stained cedar shake and you want it to look new again, call GreenWave Solutions to get an estimate.
GreenWave Solutions is the best painter Sandy Springs has to offer. GreenWave Solutions offers painting in Alpharetta, Atlanta, Decatur, Sandy Springs, Roswell, Brookhaven, Duluth, Grant Park, Inman Park, Buckhead,Milton, Midtown, and more!
We also offer residential and commercial drywall contracting, wood flooring, and many other home improvement and remodeling services.
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This cedar shake was nearly black when we started. This is the result after cleaning it with Revive and staining it with DeckScapes Toner.