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When it comes to making your fencing or your pathways looking just the way you want it to, the first thing that comes into your mind is paint! Then you head to the local DIY store and see that right next to the painting isle is the staining isle.
You don’t want to buy a whole bucket of product and then release that the other option was better for your project. So what do you pick? Staining or painting?
Well, there are a couple of differences between the two, so you should learn what they are and how they can help or hinder your project before you get your cash out!
What is the difference between Staining and Painting?
Paint is a very common pick for making your furniture, walls and crafty objects look fresh and new. You can use paint on walls, on objects outside the house, on doors, on shutters, and on smaller projects like figurines, frames, and such.
One of the biggest differences between paint and stain is how the product interacts with the object. Paint, unlike stains, sits on top of the surface of the object. It doesn’t seep into the wood or material that you are using. For this reason, paint is a great option for people who have shared fencing and don’t want to upset their neighbors, or who want to “paint over” an unsightly section of their object.
Another difference between painting and staining is the variety of colors that are on offer. Paint can come in natural-looking colors, bright colors, matt colors, unusual colors, well any color you can think of. When it comes to paint and colors, the only thing that will hold you back from your wildest dreams of a rainbow explosion, is if the seller has your color in stock.
If you are really looking for a specific shade and your local DIY store doesn’t have it, try and find a store that can make colors just for you. Big DIY stores often have this ability, although it may cost more.
The tricky element with paint is that you need to have a primer laid down first. This is because, without the primer, the paint might soak into the material that you are painting. This means you will have to apply the paint a lot of times before it holds the color in the way you expected it to. If you are painting on wood, and you do so without primer, then you need to keep an eye on the knots along the panels.
Knots are known to have more constricted patterns and so your paint will likely bleed through these holes and materials very easily, without a primer there to block it. Primer is also a great tool to hide joints and seams on drywall. It acts as a concealer and gives your paint an extra bit of friction to stick on to.
Staining is usually only an option if you are working with wood or with concrete. Other materials won’t gain the full benefit of the staining process and might even be harmed by the stain. So if you are working with something other than wood or concrete, then you already have your answer. Pick Paint!
If you are using wood or concrete, then let’s dive into some more points for you to consider. Stain doesn’t come in a wide range of colors like paint does. The colors are normally the same natural colorings you would expect in nature. So if you want to stain your wood to keep it fresh, but you want it to stay the same natural color and not go crazy with the overall effect, then staining would be a great option.
With staining, you don’t need to apply primer, this is because you want the stain to seep into the wood so it protects all of it. This means you don’t have to buy extra products for this job, you can stain straight onto the surface you are working with.
Because you want it to seep in, you often don’t need to add more than one coat. Unlike paint, the effect isn’t to cover up the existing material, but to enhance it. One coat normally does the trick, although you can apply more if you want to be sure.
Like I said before, the staining process enhances the natural colors in the material you are using. For wood, it can bring out the natural grains and patterns that are so beautiful in their unobstructed form. If you want to keep that organic look but make the shading darker, then you can apply more coats to create that effect.
What is Cheaper, Staining or Painting?
Staining is often the cheapest option, as you don’t need to apply primer beforehand, and you don’t need to keep adding extra coats to the material.
That might make you think that painting is cheaper by itself, but the answer is still no. Stains are far cheaper at the store as well. This is what makes the question of expense so easy. Staining is cheaper than painting in every way.
What is Easier, Staining or Painting?
They are both easy processes and can be done by a novice DIY enthusiast. But if you really need an answer, then I would say that staining is easier than painting because staining can be done in one coat, whereas painting needs a few coats and also a primer coating before you even start.
The method of staining and painting and just the same, so this answer is just about the extra steps along the way.