This is the type of paving stone I see most often. Breeding ground for moss buildup
These are steps obviously. These steps lead up to a front door. They are used fairly regularly though not everyday, all day. The steps get filtered afternoon sun. The steps were built in summer 2018, and a few months after being built, the client wanted them stained with a very dark tone that the stain manufacturer calls Butternut. It turned out beautiful. To die for actually.
Fast forward one year, and just one year and this is what the steps look like. Warn down in the middle of each and every step yet holding stain nicely on both sides of the middle. Could this have been prevented?
The answer is Yes and No.
Santa Cruz Aptos Soquel Seascape Scotts Valley Felton Live Oak Capitola
This is Batu Hardwood, AKA Mangaris This is the lower deck which for the great most part is completely sheltered from both rain and sun. That being said, I used a very neutral tone with significantly less pigment. The end result was(is) an extremely well protected deck with a very natural look. There’s that word again.
This brand new deck in Santa Cruz was a pleasure and challenge wrapped into one. Springtime proved to be way too consistently variable with heavy rains and winds during the three week span it took me to properly wash and stain this Clear Cedar Deck near Steamer Lane.
These pictures are both taken around 11am after one of the heavier springtime Santa Cruz storms in decades. I chose to showcase them side by side because they tell one of the more important stories regarding deck maintenance. For another time…..
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State-of-Art Custom Transparents
Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley, Felton, Boulder Creek
I know why water beading doesn’t get old even though it isn’t the “end all” indicator as to whether or not a wood deck is in need of maintenance. It is however safe to say that if water is beading on your deck, there is likely plenty of product protecting the boards.
These photos are of identical nature, taken one after the other, at 3pm in the shade. They help explain a thing or three which likely answers many questions. Hopefully yours too.
Where you see water beading means that those boards have been washed and stained AND the stain is dry. Where you see water that has penetrated the wood means that those boards have been washed only. It’s safe(enough) to say that the stained boards don’t look all that much different than the wet boards.(And for the record, the “wet” boards are really only damp, certainly not soaked.)
This photo lined up nicely to show some tone examples. The picnic table isn’t quite as new as the deck itself, the deck was newly constructed early in the summer 2019. The location is the Pleasure Point area of Live Oak.
We waited about three months before washing and applying the initial coat of stain. We chose a very neutral tone,(middle portion of deck) almost a base coat for the deck, and fattened the picnic table up with a much more aggressive, darker bit of pigment.
All shots worth sharing, especially if you have a cedar deck, in this case Clear Cedar. Again, each picture here can definitely tell its own story. This deck is under a year old with a horror story or two attached to it prior to me getting my hands on it. We decided on a very neutral transparent pigment. The client wanted to begin the process slowly, promising to maintain the deck as needed. The goal to begin this deck’s journey was to create a tone that would look like the deck looks when it gets wet. This beauty takes on eight hours of hot sun per day in the summer time.
Wood Siding Maintenance Project
West Side Santa Cruz
This was a new(ish) east-facing backyard deck up near UCSC. This redwood deck was built in the late summer 2016. This client happened to be an accomplished wood worker himself, and knew the importance of letting brand new redwood boards age in place. He and his wife happened to wait a couple years, which certainly was not too long given the fact that the deck only gets morning sun til about 2pm.
Naturally, the deck had opened up, and oxidized grey. Obviously it cleaned up very nicely. The clients wanted a dark, richer tone to match the modern look of their home. We used a Butternut Tone blend from Extreme by Defy. We washed and stained some of their Ipe’ furniture as well.
Another quality deck maintenance project completed in Santa Cruz County.
This mammoth shingled home on Rebecca Lane in Boulder Creek is officially underway. Thirty years of neglect. This is the north facing front of this beautiful mountain hideaway. As always, we decided on Extreme by Defy. We will use a cedar tone as a 3/5 base, and add redwood, driftwood grey, and butternut to complete the mix.
Beautiful Deck on The Peninsula. My second time out to this property, first time being 2014. This deck takes 6+ hours of hot afternoon sun daily.
Water Bead Test more to show just how natural the finished look of the Extreme Stain by Defy is when professionally applied. This combination is 1/4 Driftwood Grey, 1/4 Light Walnut, 1/4 Cedar, 1/8 Redwood, 1/8 Butternut.