Cheapest Stainers for Pergolas


Taking the time to choose the right stain for your pergola could save you years of maintenance. But what are the most important features to look for in a pergola stain? And can a good one be found on a budget? 

Of the least expensive stainers suitable for pergolas, the best is the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain. Thompson’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain is the most budget-friendly pergola stain, and a great upgraded option is Thompson’s Waterseal Advanced Natural Wood Protector.

#1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain for Decks,...
THOMPSONS WATERSEAL TH.041831-16 Transparent Waterproofing...
#1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain for Decks,...
THOMPSONS WATERSEAL TH.041831-16 Transparent Waterproofing...
$39.99
$44.13
#1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain for Decks,...
#1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent Wood Stain for Decks,...
$39.99
THOMPSONS WATERSEAL TH.041831-16 Transparent Waterproofing...
THOMPSONS WATERSEAL TH.041831-16 Transparent Waterproofing...
$44.13

Last update on 2021-11-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This article will delve into the cheapest stainers suitable for pergolas, including our favourite. We’ll also address some of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to pergola staining, including how to choose the right stain colour for your pergola, and whether painting works as a substitute to staining. 

Pergola with excellent stainer covering backyard patio area.

Affordable Stainers Suitable for Pergolas

1. Deck Premium Wood Stain

Last update on 2021-11-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

We thoroughly believe that the best pergola stain for the money is the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain. It covers so many of the features offered by even the most advanced stainers, but unlike other advanced options out there, this one is much more reasonably priced.

Well-known as a great stain for decks, the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain also makes an ideal fit for other outdoor structures like pergolas. This is because its water-based formula soaks deep into all softwood types to repel wet weather and protect against damaging UV rays, allowing the wood to last as long as possible. 

Acting as both a stain and a sealer, the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain is also low in odour and low in VOC content, a toxic chemical compound found in higher amounts in oil-based stainers.

Another feature that helped make this our top pick is its ability to be applied to damp wood. After constructing a pergola, it can take months before the wood is dry enough for staining, especially in more humid climates. Luckily, it is not necessary to wait for the wood to be completely dry before applying the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain. 

Its semi-transparent formula is available in four finishes, Natural, Cedar, Light Walnut, and Dark Walnut–and each dry flat when applied to maintain the wood’s natural look.

The one-gallon can (3.8L) will cover 100-150 square feet (30-46m2), and will allow up to two full coats of use. Easy to apply, this stain also makes cleanup easy afterward, with just soap and water needed.

Depositphotos 49181519 l 2015

2. Thompson’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain

Last update on 2021-11-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Staining your pergola doesn’t have to be an overly expensive project, and the Thompson’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain is proof of this. While it doesn’t offer the same UV protection as the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain, it is still a great option suitable for most pergola staining jobs and stands as a top-quality stain for the money.

The one-gallon can (3.8L) will cover 100-400 square feet (30-122m2), and it only requires one coat to fully stain the wood. Like the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain, this stain also acts as a 2-in-1 stain and sealer option, soaking deep into wood thanks to its water-based formula. 0

In addition to preventing water damage and damage from UV rays, its advanced polymers also make Thompson’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain resistant to fading and mildew. Offering the most long-lasting protection for its price, the formula dries within just two hours.

In each of its transparency varieties, Thompson’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain is designed to enhance the natural colour of any softwood. Like the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain, this stainer can also be applied to damp wood if needed, a useful feature if you need to get your pergola stained during a season with less ideal weather.

Read More Customer Reviews on Amazon

3. Thompson’s Waterseal Advanced Natural Wood Protector

Thompson’s Waterseal Advanced Natural Wood Protector offers the perfect balance of affordability and strength. Building off of the original formula of the same brand’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain, this covers all the same features with one additional draw: Thompson’s Waterseal Advanced Natural Wood Protector makes it possible to complete an entire staining project in just one day. 

Thanks to the strength of this particular formula, only one coat needs to be applied, and one hour is all it takes for it to dry–even on damp wood. Because of this, Thompson’s Waterseal Advan0ced Natural Wood Protector boasts a one-day turnaround on use, from cleaning the wood before staining to the wood drying, and finally curing. 

The one-gallon can (3.8L) will cover 200 square feet (19m2), and it is known to bring out the natural colors of wood on application. In addition, this formula also includes ingredients that keep mold and mildew from forming on the wood, as well as extra-strength UV protection and fade-resistance.

This stainer does not need to be mixed before using, and soap and water are all it takes to clean the wood after it dries.

How Do You Choose a Pergola Stain Color?

The most important factor to consider when choosing a wood stain color is how much natural wood grain you want to see through the wood stain. 

Wood stainers come in different levels of transparency that range from clear to solid, and can sometimes include multiple degrees of transparency in between. For newer wood and wood with smoother grain, it is best to use a clear, transparent, or semi-transparent stain. 

However, older wood and wood with rougher grain is best suited to semi-solid or solid stains. For this reason, being familiar with the kind of wood your pergola is made of, and the condition it is in is the best way to determine the level of transparency needed in its wood stain.

Can I Paint My Pergola Instead of Staining It?

The main reason for using stain on a pergola is to protect its wood from the elements. Of course, wood stains can give a very attractive look to a pergola, as it brings out the natural colors and features of the wood it’s used on, but stain is more important as a means of ensuring the long term health of the wood a pergola is built with. 

Paint does not offer the same protection as stain since it does not absorb into the wood to the same degree. When the stain absorbs into the wood, it makes the entire piece stronger and more resistant to the elements. This is one reason that stain does not require as many coats as paint since, with just one or two coats of stain, the wood is already fully protected to its core.

After a good coating of stain is applied to a pergola and drying is complete, paint can be put over it. While some may want to keep the natural-looking colour the wood stain gives, others may want to decorate their pergolas even more by matching or contrasting their pergola with the colours around it, like the house or patio.

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Conclusion

Our favourite pergola stain for the money is the #1 Deck Premium Wood Stain. It has all the features of some of the most advanced stainers out there, but for a much more reasonable price.

The budget-friendly Thompson’s Waterseal Waterproofing Stain is a great affordable alternative. While it doesn’t offer the same UV protection as other wood stains, it still works well for most pergola staining jobs, and it is a favourite of pergola owners everywhere.

And as an upgrade, consider Thompson’s Waterseal Advanced Natural Wood Protector, which offers the perfect balance of affordability and strength. With its ability to stain a pergola from start to finish in just one day, it is also a clear winner for anyone needing to stain their pergola in a short timeframe.

Stuart

Stuart loves blogging about his hobbies and passions. Living the Outdoor Life is a place for him to share what he learns while creating his perfect outdoor space.

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