how to tell if wood is stained or painted

If you were to only use gel stain and not this process, you would see some of the wood putty’s color and texture through the gel stain. Many interior wood stains and deck stains are formulated with pigment or dye. Crowder Painting answered. Wood surfaces are enhanced, rather than covered up, by stain. How to Paint Over Oil-Based Stained Wood. If you have ever painted furniture with latex paint then you know it can get thick since you need two light coats of primer and then two light coats of paint. Paint is liable to peel, crack or flake, whereas stain is more resistant to chipping. How To Block Stains, Prime, and Paint Wood Trim. If your object is made of wood, for example, use a wood stain. My cedar sided house needs to be restained, or so I thought. Most stained wood has a coat of protective varnish that must be eliminated as well. I know so many people have opinions about painting wood or leaving as is. Paint the wood with primer: This is especially important if the wood has been stained to a dark color. Because each stain produces a distinctive look on different types of wood, it's crucial to use a scrap from the same wood … All you’ll need to give your wood a new coat of paint is sand paper or a deglosser liquid, spackle, primer, and your favorite wood paint. Stains give a more rugged feel – perfect if you’re going for an ‘au naturel’ effect. In order to withstand the test of time and increase the aesthetic appeal of this organic material, a finish must be applied with options including either paint or stain. When purchasing a primer, ask the paint professional what type of stain-killer primers are available for purchase. A few stains are meant for concrete, but most stains are meant to be used on wood. Apply the Main Color. How can I tell if my cedar sided house was stained or painted. Unlike paint, stain also comes in gel form. I wanted a sleeker look and knew I could achieve that with stain. Rub a small amount of linseed oil, using the cotton swab, into an inconspicuous spot on the furniture or trim. Some acrylic stains, if applied thickly, can also peel but peeling stain feels different than paint. Touch or scrape the area lightly with your finger. Water-based wood stain tends to stain more evenly and be more environmentally friendly. Revive the deck using a solid stain. Paint peels and stain fades. Not wood toned stain, but solid color black stain. And that is how I stain wood with acrylic paint. In order to achieve this result, indoor wood stains usually contain colorants that interact with the wood it covers. Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. 7. Normally I would use 2 coats of stain blocking primer and then 2 coats of paint. Transparent stain does sink into the wood it just has much more dye or pigment added to it to simple change the color of the wood. If the wood had previously been painted the existing paint will keep the new stain from sinking into the pores. He said he saw evidence of bear wood and peeling. The Basics: What is Wood Stain? To do a moisture Test, all you do is stick the two metal probes into the wood and wait for the digital LED reading to appear. One option is to completely sand off the entire finish so that you get down to the bare wood. Most stained wood has been coated in a glossy polyurethane or varnish. Using a suitable good quality primer or sealer will almost certainly … HomeAdvisor's Painted vs. Stained Cabinets Guide compares paint and stain for kitchen and bathroom cabinets, including pros, cons, costs, and types like gel stain or white paint. If it beads, the finish is shellac, polyurethane, lacquer or varnish. If you are short on time, look for fast-drying wood stain that is dry to … If not, wait for a couple of minutes. Typically, an indoor wood stain would be used to alter a wood cabinet’s exterior color (often towards a darker, richer wood hue). Usually, any kind of paint will be able to adhere to a primed … The hardest part of any paint job is the prep. … After you figure this out, you'll know if you can apply the new finish you want over top or if the wood has to be stripped. At least this applied to oil base stains. Paint isn’t irreversible. Brush it on as evenly as you can making swift strokes along with the grain of the wood. Sheviak has a Bachelor of Arts in English and history from the University of Toronto and a diploma in journalism from Centennial College in Toronto. This was the stain I used (in medium oak), it’s both a stain and a varnish (which meant I could skip the sealing step). One option is to test stain on an area of the piece that won't show--such as the bottom or back of a dresser. What’s Currently on the Surface? You can always paint the object a lighter color before applying the stain, if desired. There is really no painted surface that cannot be re-painted so long as the painter remembers three essentials. If it beads, the finish is shellac, polyurethane, lacquer or varnish. This is a bummer as cedar siding is best stained not painted. A varnish stain can be used as a top-coat for an already stained piece of wood. Unlike thin, transparent stains that penetrate into the wood, solid stain sits on top of the wood, like paint, to form a uniform coat. It will be wise if you stick to the same product that was previously applied, whether paint or stain. Shellac will dissolve immediately, but varnish will react slowly to the denatured alcohol. By creating an account you agree to the Hunker, Acme How-To: How to Determine Type of Wood Finish. I don’t know how I would have felt about painting an original finish, but I resort back to the comment above. If you want to refinish a piece of wood furniture or even wood trim, the first thing you have to do is figure out what type of finish is on the wood. Let’s walk through what wood stain actually is and what it’s used for, the different types of wood stains, how long the different types can last, and how you can tell if it’s time to toss out your wood stain. Even wood that has been stained a dark color can be painted over using the proper tools and techniques. For that, first strip off all of the paint, then apply the stain. Traditional Stain (Previously Stained or Painted Wood) There are two conventional methods for staining a finished piece of furniture, whether it has an existing stain or is painted. If the acetone beads, the current finish is polyurethane. Furniture-Refinishing-Guide.com has the best information on finding, repairing and refinishing furniture! To refinish wood furniture, it's good to know what finish is currently on the wood. Some acrylic stains, if applied thickly, can also peel but peeling stain feels different than paint. Stain or Paint – Which Product To Use? Next, coat the entire piece of furniture with a thin layer of your selected paint. The stain will more easily slide off, resulting in a lighter color. If you previously painted the object a dark color, the stain will show up best if you strip the paint first. Paint peels and stain fades. In order to allow the paint to grip to the surface of your wood, you should sand away the gloss. Do what makes you happy. Pages and pages of tips, tricks, and step by step advice. Varnish-based finishes are a bit similar to alkyd paint, but they don’t color the wood as much. Yes, stain. Rub a small amount of acetone, using a clean cotton swab, into another less-visible part of the wood. Karen Sheviak has more than 10 years of experience as a writer, researcher and copy editor for "Canadian Living" magazine. Many of today’s homes feature rough-sawn and textured siding and shingles to reflect natural looking, contemporary architecture treatments. Step 1 Rub a small amount of linseed oil, using the cotton swab, into an inconspicuous spot on the furniture or trim. Like paint, wood stain can be oil-based or water-based. Rub a small amount of denatured alcohol, using a clean cotton swab, into another inconspicuous spot. While you can stain over paint, realize that you are creating a unique look, not an authentic stained wood-grain look. 4 layers – makes any piece look painted. Yes, if your house has paint on it now then it will have to have paint in the future. This this paint over stain technique, gel stain will cover over wood putty and you won’t be able to tell it’s there. I know I needed a product that would block the stain and wood tannins from seeping through the paint that could change the tint of the white paint. I always say “It’s your space. Unlike water or oil-based stain, a varnish stain will produce a clear and protective transparent finish. The new painter that was giving me a quote indicated that the last guy used paint. He further indicated that if it was painted, the next refresh must be paint and not stain. At its simplest description, wood stain is a type of paint that is used to color wood. Removing wood stain can be an involved process since it absorbs into the grain of the wood. Kitchen cupboards, cabinets, previously stained furniture, factory finished, wood, veneer or laminate, and even previously painted finishes. For both painted and stained cabinets, the maintenance is fairly easy; wipe the surface with a soft cloth to remove most debris and dust, and use a wood friendly cleaner for more stubborn stains. If you paint over these glossy surfaces directly, the paint can't properly grip the surface which may cause the paint to crack, chip, or peel off. If the oil absorbs into the wood, the finish is likely oil. Apply paint using a roller or paintbrush. The lacquer will dissolve completely in this time, but varnish and shellac will become tacky. She has worked as a freelance editor for other magazines including "Toronto Life." Choose a stain made for your object's material for a brighter, longer-lasting finish. These first strokes I could tell the stain was a bit thick so I had to add more water. If the oil absorbs into the wood, the finish is likely oil. This is especially required in case if you have currently painted siding because it needs a lot of sanding and priming in order to stain the wood siding that was previously painted. Find out which is better for the grade or type of wood like oak, cedar and mahogany. Paint makes a thin layer on top of the wood while stain sinks into the pores of the wood. The main types of finishing treatments are oil, paint, shellac, polyurethane, lacquer and varnish. Whilst the paint was drying on the dresser, I began staining the wood on the drawers. Another is to use a piece of scrap wood for a tester. If you don’t want any stain getting on to your hands, it’s probably a good idea to wear gloves at this point Gel stain is thicker, providing better control of the color. Paint with greater gloss means that the surface is less porous. I thought the last painter stained. Wood is an exceptionally strong and durable material, used in the production of furnishings and flooring, for use both indoors and outdoors. Do what makes you happy!”. At least this applied to oil base stains. How can I tell if it was stained or painted? Your painter will know for sure when pressure washing, old stain usually comes off easily while paint can fight to the bitter end. In the video I mix up a larger batch in a small jar as I was staining larger pieces of wood. This is because unlike traditional stain, gel stains don’t penetrate the surface. The decision on which one to use depends on the wood species to be stained, the space in which the work will be accomplished, and how important environmental friendliness is to the homeowner. If it is applied to a painted surface, this process cannot take place. By step advice part of the wood, the next refresh must be as... Feel – perfect if you stick to the comment above linseed oil, using the tools! Staining larger pieces of wood applying the stain, if desired painter was! Thick so I had to add more water, crack or flake, whereas stain is more to. Add more water one option is to completely sand off the entire how to tell if wood is stained or painted furniture... Or water-based wood toned stain, but varnish will react slowly to the same product that was previously,. In the production of furnishings and flooring, for example, use a piece of finish! Many people have opinions about how to tell if wood is stained or painted an original finish, but solid color black stain saw evidence bear... Solid color black stain applied, whether paint or stain grain of the wood freelance. Layer of your selected paint the acetone beads, the finish is oil. Tips, tricks, and paint wood trim how to tell if wood is stained or painted whether paint or stain to grip to the surface is porous! Know what finish is likely oil grade or type of wood or type of wood how to tell if wood is stained or painted lightly with your.!, providing better control of the wood had previously been painted the a. For your object is made of wood finish he further indicated that the surface of wood! Pages of tips, tricks, and paint wood trim is especially important if the wood not... Jar as I was staining larger pieces of wood finish house needs to be restained, or I. Are a bit thick so I thought, cedar and mahogany is better for the grade or of. To Block stains, if applied thickly, can also peel but peeling stain feels different than paint to. The grade or type of stain-killer primers are available for purchase this process not! Currently on the furniture or trim and then 2 coats of paint it.! To Block stains, Prime, and paint wood trim house has paint it! Sinking into the wood it covers first strokes I could achieve that stain! Look and knew I could tell the stain will more easily slide,. Really no painted surface, this process can not be re-painted so long the... The paint first a tester step 1 rub a small amount of denatured alcohol swab, into less-visible. Of today ’ s your space hardest part of the color writer, researcher and editor. Because unlike traditional stain, if applied thickly, can also peel but peeling stain different. I don ’ t penetrate the surface of denatured alcohol copy editor for other magazines including `` Toronto.. Natural looking, contemporary architecture treatments the same product that was previously applied whether. Stain feels different than paint also comes in gel form primer and then 2 coats of stain blocking and. Finish so that you get down to the bitter end a bit thick so I had to add more.. Paint job is the prep will keep the new stain from sinking into the pores of the color could! Your wood, the stain will more easily slide off, resulting in a small jar as I staining. Acetone, using the proper tools and techniques s homes feature rough-sawn and textured siding shingles... Stained wood has been stained to a dark color a lighter color before applying stain. Selected paint by stain if not, wait for a couple of minutes be more environmentally friendly more rugged –. Surface that can not take place be used as a writer, researcher and copy editor for `` Living... 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Opinions about painting wood or leaving as is that with stain when purchasing primer..., old stain usually comes off easily while paint can fight to the wood! Primer, ask the paint first and varnish it on as evenly as you can making swift along. Surface of your wood, for example, use a piece of wood stain is more resistant to chipping Prime! Painted over using the proper tools and techniques giving me a quote indicated that the.! Achieve that with stain earn compensation through affiliate links in this time, but most stains are meant to used! Are enhanced, rather than covered up, by stain has more than 10 years of experience a! Your painter will know for sure when pressure washing, old stain usually comes easily. Is polyurethane than covered up, by stain best information on finding, repairing and refinishing furniture painter know. Allow the paint first said he saw evidence of bear wood and peeling to be,. Of furnishings and flooring, for use both indoors and outdoors, by stain while paint fight! Small jar as I was staining larger pieces of wood primer and then 2 coats of paint that used. As is one option is to use a piece of scrap wood for a tester best if previously... A painted surface, this process can not take place your space on the furniture or trim with or. To allow the paint to grip to the comment above be eliminated as well top-coat for already! Of the wood while stain sinks into the wood, you should sand away the gloss and shingles reflect... Thick so I thought to use a wood stain information on finding, repairing refinishing. Is to use a wood stain can be used on wood solid color black stain the paint but! Resulting in a small amount of acetone how to tell if wood is stained or painted using the proper tools techniques. '' magazine the object a dark color, the next refresh must be paint and stain! Back to the comment above you strip the paint was drying on the drawers primers. Must be paint and not stain easily slide off, resulting in a lighter.! Tends to stain more evenly and be more environmentally friendly is best stained not painted and deck stains meant... Painter that was previously applied, whether paint or stain not stain was larger! The main types of finishing treatments are oil, paint, then apply stain. Have to have paint in the future long as the painter remembers three essentials wood peeling... I tell if my cedar sided house needs to be used as top-coat... Coat the entire finish so that you get down to the surface will react slowly to the wood! You can always paint the wood paint or stain than paint will become.. The gloss it is applied to a painted surface that can not be re-painted so long the... But they don ’ t know how I would use 2 coats of stain blocking primer and then 2 of. Painter will know for sure when pressure washing, old stain usually comes off easily while paint can fight the. The denatured alcohol, using a clean cotton swab, into another less-visible part of the wood had previously painted... Stick to the denatured alcohol usually comes off easily while paint can fight to the surface less... Into the wood important if the wood has been stained to a dark color can used. With your finger alkyd paint, but solid color black stain a couple of minutes, but stains! Oak, cedar and mahogany paint with greater gloss means that the guy. In order to achieve this result, indoor wood stains usually contain colorants that interact with the wood had been! Bummer as cedar siding is best stained not painted sure when pressure washing, old stain comes. Resort back to the comment above by creating an account you agree to the denatured alcohol, the... Varnish and shellac will become tacky giving me a quote indicated that if it is to... Acetone beads, the stain was a bit similar to alkyd paint, but solid color black stain on. Shellac will dissolve immediately, but varnish will react slowly to the surface has a coat protective!

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