Decking Oils are designed to preserve and protect your decking by soaking into the grain of bare wood. They protect from within the wood, unlike decking stains or paints which are surface coatings.
There are two types of decking oil available, either solvent based or water based.
The clear versions naturally darken the timber a little, similar to lightly wetting the wood with water. As the grain of hardwood timbers is so tight, solvent based oils are generally not suitable for this application, but they are probably the most popular finish for softwood decking.
The latest generation of water-bourne Decking Oils are available in a wider range of colours, they are quicker drying and can last up to twice as long as traditional oils. Ronseal Ultimate Decking Oil and Cuprinol UV Guard Decking Oil are excellent examples of this latest technology.
Quality of your preparation will dictate the durability and quality of the finish. A thorough clean using a decking cleaner is recommended, ensure all dirt and algae is removed and the decking allowed to thoroughly dry.
If a pressure washer is used the pores of the wood will be opened and as a consequence the decking will soak up a little more oil than expected.
Decking Oil cannot be used on previously stained decking unless the stain is completely removed with a stain remover or the wood sanded to clean bare wood.
A decking treated with Oil is easily maintained, after an annual clean, only a topping up coat or two is required to keep it looking its best and protected from the weather.