How can I tell if it's paint or stain on deck railings?
Bought a rather neglected house last fall and we're restaining the deck now. Stained the floor of the deck a natural color, but we cannot figure out what's on the railings. The professional painter who painted the inside of the house didn't know. I took a sample of a peeled-off bit into Sherwin-Williams and the guy there wasn't sure but thought stain, and said either way, stain it. DH doesn't believe me, thinks it's paint, went and talked to another Sherwin-Williams person, and came home with paint, lol. How can I tell once and for all?
Whatever it is IS peeling in some sections -- sometimes just the pain/stain but often a thin layer of wood WITH the pain/stain. DH thinks it's paint because there are some signs of it bubbling.
I'm planning to sand off the peeling and chipped parts, wash it with a bleach solution if necessary, and then get to work. Not going to use a chemical stripper since DH already stained the floor of the deck (probably not a good idea to do it in that order ...), and I don't want it to drip down and ruin that. Any other thoughts for prep are welcome.
But most of all, stain or paint??