How to treat pine wood for outdoor use

By Mego Kimani •  Updated: 04/24/23 •  4 min read

Pine wood is often considered for outdoor projects such as that lovely patio you have been dreaming of adding to complete the desired look of your home or for the outdoor furniture to accompany the patio. Whatever the outdoor project, pine wood can be a risky and expensive option if the wood is not treated properly and with the right products. 

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Why Treat Pine Wood for Outdoor Use

Treating Pine Wood to protect from harsh weather

There are several reasons why you should treat pine for outdoor use. First, you should treat pine wood for exterior use to protect it from weather elements. Using untreated pine for your outdoor projects will get it exposed to strong ultraviolet rays from the sun. Strong UV rays from the sun are likely to destroy your wood as they suck the moisture out of it. This will cause the wood to lose color as the essential oils are sucked out.  

Treating pine wood to protect it from water

Secondly, water is another serious concern why you should treat your exterior pine wood. Water from the rain or the tap is usually the culprit for exterior pine wood. Water exposure on your external pine wood will result in water saturation that will damage your wood by mold and mildew.

Treating pine wood to protect it from humidity

Lastly, the humidity will also pose a huge risk to your outdoor pine wood project. The danger posed by humidity is that it causes the wood to form moisture. Water content moisture causes molds and mildew to form, which, with time, results in the rotting of your pine wood. As a result, it is essential to treat your exterior wooden project to protect it against mold and mildew.

How to Treat Pine Wood

Preparing the pine wood

Treating pine wood for exterior use means applying the appropriate finish and the right method to achieve the desired look and the needed protection from the mentioned elements that pose a significant risk of damage to the pine wood. Normally the process begins by sanding smooth pine wood in preparation for the treatment. 

Water-based sealers for treating pine wood

There are numerous ways of sealing pine wood for outdoor use. However, according to experts and DIYers, using an appropriate wood sealer is the best way to treat pine wood for outdoor use. Wood sealers come in different forms, such as oil-based and water-based sealers.

The choice between these varieties depends on the qualities of each product and personal considerations. For instance, water-based oil sealers offer the best protection, have the fastest drying times, have less odor, are easy to clean, and have a clear finish that maintains the natural look of the wood.

Oil-based sealers for treating pine wood

On the other hand, oil-based sealers will be more suitable when you want to add that glossy finish to your pine wood. Moreover, these sealers offer better protection from stains and weather elements. The downside of oil-based sealers when treating pine wood is that they cost you more.

To achieve a maximum protection for your exterior pine wood, use a Minwax Water-Based Spar Urethane. Experts and DIYers recommend this product due to its superior qualities.

Steps of applying Sealer

Other Methods of Treating Pine Wood

Pressure Treatment: This method involves keeping the pine wood in a preservative liquid and then placing the wood in a pressure chamber where the preservative chemicals are forced into the core of the wood. Therefore, this is the ideal method of achieving ultimate protection for your pine. However, this is rarely ideal for DIY projects. For this reason, we recommend using the appropriate sealant.

Use of other chemical products such as varnishes and stain-sealer combinations: These elements are often formulated to offer protection for either interior or exterior use. The product is often indicated for appropriate use. The method of application is similar to that of a wood sealer. 

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Mego Kimani

Hi there, my name is Mego Kimani, and I am the owner of Woodmeter, a website dedicated to wood finishing. At Woodmeter, we offer a comprehensive resource for woodworkers and DIY enthusiasts, providing information on everything from achieving the perfect finish to product recommendations and technique guides. Our goal is to empower our community with the knowledge they need to create beautiful, long-lasting finishes on their projects, no matter their skill level or experience.