Sealing IPE decks

rocketdoctorSeptember 20, 2009

I am planning on sealing the cut ends of IPE with anchor seal, however I have mixed opinions of sealing the tops of the deck boards. I would like to maintain the rich dark color of ipe and rather not let it weather grey. I have heard stories of the IPE didn't absorb the seal and people having huge hassles sanding the deck afterwards.

I have also heard products like Penofin and Mesmers work great. any experience out there?

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* Make sure you use a stain made for Ipe. Ipe is a dense material that does not take regular stain well. Make sure the stain contains UV protection for maximum protection. Apply with a stain pad or brush. Make sure you remove excess material after 15 minutes (may show up as shiny pools of liquid)

* Sand with 50 or 60 grit rotary palm sander on any bad spots prior to staining

* If you have lots of plugs, consider using a multimaster to cut plugs before sanding (an excuse to buy a new tool) otherwise a belt sander/palm sander works fine

* If you need to clean up an old finish or want to restore the original color, you need to use a mild stripper followed up by an oxalic acid (sometimes called brightener). Woodrich and Sunbrite sell materials for this that are relatively inexpensive.

* Recommended stain manufactures by members of the Gardenweb forum include:
o Penofin (apply in the afternoon, hot sunny days can be challenging)
o similar to TWP Update: Woodrich now sells samples for $10.
o TWP (buy the 100 series version vs. 500 series if available) Note: TWP is apparently not recommended by the manufacture for Ipe but some of the Gardenweb pros swear by it
o Messeners UV

Here is a link that might be useful: Ipe Information

    Bookmark   September 20, 2009 at 8:09PM
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Way to go Sal!!! J.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2009 at 9:09PM
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I, too, am getting ready to seal my new Ipe deck. I want to use TWP, but am concerned about the night time temp here in MA dropping a little below 50. Daytime temps will be well above for the next few weeks. I've called the manufacturer, but am waiting for technical support to get back to me. Any thoughts on this?

Much thanks,


    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 9:55AM
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Not to threadjack, but I'm having IPE deck built and thought the responses would be relevant here as well. I am planning on using Woodrich (TWP like stuff) so here go teh questions:

1. WoodTux and Hardwood Wiping Stain are teh same thing, just different packaging?

2. Should the wood season for 3 to 6 months before sealing. I have read differing opinions on sealing right away or letting the IPE season so it opens up the pores and absorbs more.

3. Steps before staining. Does new wood need to be sanded, cleaned and brightened before staining and in what order?


    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 1:15PM
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The woodrich Folks modled their product on twp they are not the same, but close - the voc.

Do not wait for anything but good weather to put the finish on an outdoor project including ipe decking.

Clean the decking up and sand where needed there is no actuall need to use an oxalic wash on a new project. J.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 2:19PM
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Clarifying question - clean as in just water or leaf blower or deep clean with a percarbonate on new wood

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 2:40PM
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Statement being no need for prep work on new decking,just clean the thing, get the dirt off ya know things like that just use the sprit of a sound mind...J.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2009 at 5:36PM
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How should I apply the sealer on the deck if I apply it on the whole deck and wait 15 minutes to wipe it off I am going to have to walk over parts of the deck that I just wiped. Or do I do it sections at a time where I don't need to walk on it.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2009 at 10:48AM
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get a deck staining pad from your local hardware store and a little pole to connect it. stain the deck. follow up by starting at one side with a rag and work backwards. You will wipe where you were standing. Be careful with the residual rags. You can soak them in water and then toss them.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2009 at 1:07AM
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