What’s your best memory of your deck?
Is it grilling hot dogs on the Fourth of July, surrounded by friends and family? Is it sitting in the summer sun, watching little ones splash around in the pool? Maybe it’s something simple, like watching birds eat from feeders.
And yet, decks require work, particularly if they utilize exotic wood types.
A crucial part of deck maintenance is sealing the wood. Wood sealant penetrates deep into the wood fibers. This causes a film to build on the topcoat of the wood. This helps to protect it from weathering.
However, different types of exotic woods can make this process a little more complicated.
If that makes you nervous, don’t be. We’ve compiled our favorite tricks and tips for sealing exotic woods so you can make your deck look better than ever!
Sand the Wood Thoroughly
The first step in sealing exotic wood is sanding it well. How much you need to sand it depends on how rough the wood is when you start. If it’s very rough, to begin with, use a grit of 100-120.
Eventually, to get the wood very smooth, you should use 400 grit sandpaper. Make sure you sand with the grain, following the lines of the wood.
After this, wipe down the wood with a tack cloth to remove sawdust. You want the wood smooth and clean before you seal it. Also, be sure to avoid using water on unsealed wood. This can create additional roughness on it.
Choosing Clear vs. Colored Sealants
When you’re sealing exotic woods, you have two options before you. You can have a clear sealant, or you can go with a pigmented sealant.
If you want to change the color of your wood in some way, then you may want to choose a pigmented sealant. However, while these can add a nice aesthetic, they may not be the best in terms of function.
Clear sealants often provide better functionality than their tinted counterparts. If all you are looking for is a deeply penetrating sealant without altering the wood’s color, clear sealants are a better choice for you.
DO NOT Use Oil-Based Sealants on Exotic Wood Types
Oil-based sealants do not dry well on exotic wood types. Such sealants include things like polyurethane.
These sealants don’t work because the chemical reaction that oil-based sealants induce in standard woods doesn’t occur in exotic wood types.
Instead of using oil-based sealants and finishes, use shellac. If you use a few coats of dewaxed shellacs, you can apply just about any topcoat on top of that.
Find the Best-Quality Sealant Out There
As you can see, exotic wood types require a lot of work. Fortunately, we’re here to help!
If you want top-quality sealants to suit your needs, check out our sealants today! Our products work on a wide variety of exotic woods. We are a leading name in this business and are glad to be of service.