The Ultimate Guide to the Top 10 Best Deck Clear Sealer of 2024

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A well-maintained deck is a source of pride and a long-lasting asset to your home. However, achieving that pristine appearance involves more than a casual dusting.

According to Paint Talk, clear deck sealers are essential for maintaining the natural look of your wood while offering protection against moisture and UV damage.

This comprehensive guide will delve into the best deck clear sealer, focusing on the crucial steps of cleaning and sealing.

With many products on the market, selecting the right deck cleaner and sealer can be daunting. Fear not! We’ve rounded up the top contenders to make your decision easier.

Are You in a Hurry? Discover the Best Best Deck Clear Sealer

Are you in a hurry to enhance your deck’s beauty and longevity? Here are the top three deck cleaners and sealers that guarantee quick and effective results:

Among the top-rated products are DEFY Composite Deck Cleaner, known for its powerful and environmentally friendly stain removal; BEHR Premium All-In-One Wood Cleaner, an affordable and versatile solution effective on various surfaces;

and Cabot Australian Timber Oil, a durable sealant offering rich colors and UV protection. Choose the product that aligns with your needs for a hassle-free deck maintenance experience.

Buying Guide: Choosing the Best Deck Clear Sealer for Your Project

Preserving the beauty and longevity of your deck requires a suitable clear sealer. With a myriad of options available, selecting the best one can be a daunting task.

This buying guide provides key considerations and tips to help you make an informed decision.

1. Assess Your Deck’s Needs:

  • Identify the wood type and current condition of your deck.
  •  Consider the level of exposure to sunlight, moisture, and foot traffic.

2. Understand the Types of Sealers:

  • Penetrating Sealers Absorb into the wood, providing protection from within. They are ideal for preserving the wood’s natural look.
  •  Film-Forming Sealers: These sealers create a protective layer on the surface, offering enhanced UV protection. They are suitable for decks with heavy sun exposure.

3. Consider the Finish:

  • Natural Finish: Ideal for maintaining the original appearance of the wood.
  •  Semi-Transparent Finish: Adds a subtle tint while preserving the wood grain.
  •  Transparent Finish: Offers minimal tint, allowing the natural wood color to shine.

4. UV Protection:

  • Look for sealers with UV inhibitors to prevent sun damage, fading, and discoloration.

5. Water Resistance:

  • Choose a sealer with strong water repellency to guard against moisture, preventing rot, mold, and mildew.

6. Ease of Application:

  • Consider the application process and tools required. Some sealers are user-friendly and suitable for DIY projects, while others may need professional application.

7. Maintenance Requirements:

  • Understand the frequency of reapplication. Some sealers provide long-lasting protection, while others may require more frequent maintenance.

8. Environmental Impact:

  • To minimize the impact on your surroundings, opt for environmentally friendly sealers with low VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) levels.

9. Compatibility with Previous Coatings:

  • If resealing, ensure compatibility with any existing coatings. Some sealers require thorough stripping before application.

10. Read Reviews and Recommendations:

  • Research customer reviews and seek recommendations from professionals to gauge real-world performance.

11. Budget Considerations:

  • Set a realistic budget and explore products that align with your needs and financial constraints.

12. Professional Consultation:

  • When in doubt, consult with professionals or seek advice from experts in deck maintenance. They can provide tailored recommendations based on your specific deck conditions.

Remember, choosing the best deck clear sealer is crucial in protecting your investment and enhancing the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor space.

Considering these factors, you’ll be better equipped to make an informed decision that aligns with your deck’s unique requirements.

Top 10 Best Deck Clear Sealers of 2024 – Reviews

1. DEFY Composite Deck Cleaner:

  • Cleans Composite Wood Surfaces Before Sealing – This oxygenated bleach deep cleans composite wood surfaces and opens the pores for maximum absorption of DEFY Composite Deck Sealer.
  • Removes Graying From Weathered Wood – This powerful composite deck cleaner not only cleans the wood, but will remove weathered graying color caused by damaging UV rays.
  • Removes Dirt, Debris, & Black Stains – This safe, oxygenated bleach deep cleans and removes dirt, & unsightly stains.
  • Safe for Grass & Most Plants – This product is a powerful oxygenated cleaner that won’t harm grass and most plants.
  • Great "Whole House" Cleaner – DEFY Composite Deck Cleaner not only cleans composite decks, but it can be used as a wood fence cleaner, wood siding cleaner, vinyl siding cleaner, aluminum siding cleaner, and more.

DEFY Composite Deck Cleaner is a powerful solution designed for composite and vinyl decking, ensuring effective stain removal without harming the wood.

Its environmentally friendly formula, utilizing oxygen bleach instead of chlorine bleach, makes it safe for plants and animals.

With easy application through various devices, this cleaner guarantees a brighter, cleaner appearance for your deck.

Pros:

  • Environmentally friendly formula using oxygen bleach.
  • Safe for plants and animals.
  • Versatile application methods: garden sprayers, deck brushes, and mops.

Cons:

  • Requires professional application for optimal results.

2. BEHR Premium All-In-One Wood Cleaner:

BEHR Premium All-In-One Wood Cleaner is a versatile and affordable solution adept at removing gray mold, mildew stains, and common outdoor spills.

Its application extends beyond wood, making it suitable for siding, fences, and masonry. With a straightforward dilution process, this cleaner ensures a clean, bright finish for your deck.

Pros:

  • Effective on various surfaces.
  • Affordable and easy to use.
  • Suitable for removing a variety of stains.

Cons:

  • Full-strength cleaner recommended for harsh stains.

3. Wolman DeckBrite Wood Cleaner:

  • Wolman deck Rite, 3 lb, wood cleaner & coating prep, oxygen bleach based powder concentrate formula
  • 5 gallons of cleaning solution
  • Manufactured in United States
  • Safe to use, Oxygen bleach-based formula
  • Restores UV-grayed, dirty, mildew-stained wood surface to a bright, like-new appearance
  • Fast-acting foaming action works in 10 minutes
  • Easy to use
  • Clings to vertical surfaces

Wolman DeckBrite Wood Cleaner is a powder concentrate cleaner specifically formulated for wood composite surfaces.

Its ultra-oxidizing formula efficiently removes tough, dark stains with minimal scrubbing.

Environmentally friendly and chlorine-free, this cleaner is an excellent choice for those preparing for a re-staining project

Pros:

  • Ultra-oxidizing formula for quick and effective stain removal.
  • Environmentally friendly and chlorine-free.
  • Ideal for surfaces requiring minimal scrubbing.

Cons:

  • Requires careful mixing and application.

4. Simple Green Deck & Fence Cleaner:

  • Cleans decks, Fences and other outdoor structures such as pergolas, gazebos and carports
  • Lifts away tough grime, oils and grease and eliminates stains
  • Uses the power of peroxide to lift grime without harsh chemicals
  • Lifts off tough tree sap, grease and oils from decks and Fences
  • Pressure washer concentrate cleans up to 6, 400 sq. Ft.

Simple Green Deck & Fence Cleaner is a concentrated solution designed for use with pressure washers, effectively removing dirt and grease.

Its highly concentrated formula covers over 3,000 square feet, making it an efficient choice for large surfaces.

The eco-friendly composition ensures it won’t harm your yard’s plants or animals.

Pros:

  • Highly concentrated formula for large surface areas.
  • Ideal for use with pressure washers.
  • Eco-friendly, safe for plants and animals.

Cons:

  • Not suitable for all wood surfaces; test before use.

5. Olympic Premium Deck Cleaner:

  • Gently washes away dirt from previously stained surfaces
  • Excellent for rust & tannin stains
  • Ready to use - no mixing
  • Gentle cleaner for previously stained wood as well bare cedar and redwood
  • Use on decks, wood siding, fences, composite decking and more

Olympic Premium Deck Cleaner is a powerful and user-friendly solution that eliminates the need for mixing or scrubbing.

It efficiently removes dirt and mildew stains, providing a natural tone to your deck.

With a simple application process, this cleaner is perfect for homeowners seeking a quick and low-stress cleaning solution.

Pros:

  • No mixing or scrubbing required.
  • Quick and low-stress cleaning solution.
  • Achieves a natural tone for the deck.

Cons:

  • Limited to cleaning; not suitable for staining or sealing.

Read More:

6. Cabot Australian Timber Oil:

  • WOOD PROTECTOR – Cabot Australian Timber Oil Wood Stain provides 3-way oil protection for superior penetration. The unique blend of oils is an advanced-technology treatment designed to protect wood surfaces from extreme weather exposure like never before.
  • SUPERIOR PENETRATION – Use this product as a wood sealer for your outdoor projects. The protector for wood penetrates deep into the dense, resin-rich woods for the ultimate protection and natural beauty.
  • RICH, NATURAL COLOR – Better than deck paint or other products, Timber Oil deck stain accentuates natural wood depth and patina for beautiful results that last. Natural wood stain is available in 4 wood toned colors.
  • IDEAL FOR – Use for outdoor furniture protection, as a deck stain or fence stain, and so much more. It’s ideal for decks, siding, railings, and outdoor furniture.
  • CABOT STAIN – Since 1877, Cabot has been a leader in wood care with easy-to-use prep products, long-lasting deck staining products, durable topcoats and more. At Cabot, we do wood care. And we’re here to help.

Cabot Australian Timber Oil is a durable sealant offering a blend of linseed oil, long-oil alkyds, and South American tung oil.

Its unique formula includes iron oxide pigments for UV protection, ensuring a rich color and shield against sun damage.

With a variety of available colors, this sealant provides a reliable balance of durability and aesthetic appeal.

Pros:

  • Blend of oils for durability and color richness.
  • Iron oxide pigments for UV protection.
  • Available in multiple colors for customization.

Cons:

  • Requires thorough deck preparation before application.

7. Ready Seal Natural Cedar Exterior Wood Stain and Sealer:

  • Requires no primer. Ready Seal is darkest when first applied. It reaches its true color in approximately 14 days. Do not apply Ready Seal over painted or newly stained surfaces. Sealed surfaces inhibit penetration.
  • May be applied using sprayer, roller or brush onto the woods surface.
  • Requires no back brushing and will nerver leave runs, laps, or streaks.
  • Requires no wet-line application, the product will blend itself and can be applied in any temperature range for proper application.
  • Requires no diluting or thinning prior to spray applications.
  • Subject to or will include a PaintCare recycling fee in the following states: CT, or VT. Not available in CA.
  • Easy maintenance - no sanding or stripping required for re-application
  • "Goof Proof" application
  • No laps, runs or streaks
  • No back brushing
  • Apply in any temperature
  • Subject to or will include a PaintCare recycling fee in the following states: CA, OR, CT, VT

Ready Seal Natural Cedar Exterior Wood Stain and Sealer is a versatile treatment available in various colors.

Combining the features of a wood stain and sealant, it offers a semi-transparent finish without the need for a primer.

The smooth formula, available in a range of colors, ensures an even application and long-lasting protection.

Pros:

  • Versatile treatment with various color options.
  • Applies directly without a primer.
  • Smooth formula for an even finish.

Cons:

  • May require protection for surrounding surfaces during application.

8. TWP Stain and Sealer:

  • Smooth, even coverage
  • Model Number: TWP-1501-1
  • Item Package Dimension: 14.0" L x 14.0" W x 9.0" H
  • Item Package Weight: 7.5 lb

TWP Stain and Sealer is a durable wood preservative available in eight different colors.

Offering protection against staining, fading, water damage, and more, it stands out for its deep, even color application.

Available in two series, the 100 series and the 1500 series, it provides sun resistance with the latter offering higher UV protection.

Pros:

  • Durable protection against various elements.
  • Deep, even color application.
  • Available in two series for different levels of UV protection.

Cons:

  • Requires thorough mixing before application.
  • Drying time of one to three days.

9. Armstrong-Clark Oil-Based Stain:

  • A traditional exterior oil stain compliant everywhere - not a modified oil; no water
  • Conditions and rejuvenates wood. No peeling, cracking, flashing, or sticky shiners.
  • Top rated by wood restoration professionals!
  • Can be applied in direct sun in the heat of the day. No stripping, sanding, or media blasting on maintenance coats. Can be exposed to rain one hour after full absorption into the wood.
  • NOTE: For Exotic Hardwood Decking such as IPE and Mahogany use Amber, Mahogany, or Black Walnut colors. All colors including these 3 can be used on all other wood types.
  • COVERAGE: Horizontal softwoods 150-250 sq ft per gallon, Vertical softwoods 200-300 sq ft per gallon; Hardwoods 300-400 sq ft per gallon.
  • IMPORTANT: *Stain colors will vary depending on the wood type, age of wood, prepping of wood, and application.

Armstrong-Clark Oil-Based Stain is a high-quality deck sealer designed for various climates.

Available in a variety of colors and opacity levels, it ensures quick drying with ingredients to prevent sun damage, water damage, and mildew growth.

Its versatility makes it suitable for decks experiencing heavy wear and tear.

Pros:

  • Quick drying with ingredients to prevent damage.
  • Available in various colors and opacity levels.
  • Suitable for decks with heavy wear and tear.

Cons:

  • Requires thorough deck preparation.
  • Patch test recommended before full application.

10. Deckwise Wisecoat Deck and Siding Waterproof Sealer:

  • The low g/l VOC formula of WiseCoat minimizes bothersome and harmful odors
  • VOC emissions compliant in all Contiguous US states including the California South Coast AQMD jurisdiction.
  • Protects, preserves and enhances all types South American exotic hardwoods such as Ipe, Teak, Mahogany, Cumaru and Tigerwood. Also for American Hardwoods and thermally modified wood species.
  • Proven to prevent excessive water accumulation below the wood surface for up to six (6) years on horizontal surfaces and up to ten (10) years on vertical surfaces when used according to the product instructions.
  • Includes a semi transparent tint that functions as a UV blocker to prevent the hardwood from graying while enhancing the natural grain and texture.

Deckwise Wisecoat Waterproof Sealer is a top choice for decks made from exotic hardwoods like teak or mahogany.

Its water-based, environmentally friendly formula offers a semi-transparent finish, allowing the wood’s natural texture to shine through.

With nanotechnology for water and UV resistance, it provides comprehensive protection against warping, cracking, and mold and mildew buildup.

Pros:

  • Water-based formula for exotic hardwoods.
  • Semi-transparent finish for natural wood texture.
  • Nanotechnology for water and UV resistance.

Cons:

  • Requires thorough cleaning and preparation before application.
  • Recommended for both interior and exterior use.

Conclusion:

Choosing the right deck cleaner and sealer is pivotal for maintaining the longevity and aesthetics of your deck.

Whether you prioritize eco-friendliness, quick application, or a specific finish, these top products cater to various needs.

Always remember to consult with professionals like Teak & Deck for expert guidance tailored to your specific project requirements.

FAQ- Best Deck Clear Sealers of 2024

1. How often should I clean and seal my deck?

Answer: Deck maintenance frequency depends on factors like climate and usage. In general, cleaning and sealing once a year is recommended, but high-traffic or harsh weather areas may require more frequent attention.

2. Can I apply a deck sealer immediately after using a cleaner?

Answer: It’s crucial to allow the deck to dry thoroughly after cleaning before applying a sealer. Most products recommend a waiting period of 24-48 hours to ensure optimal results.

3. Are these deck cleaners safe for the environment and my plants?

Answer: Many modern deck cleaners, like DEFY and Simple Green, use environmentally friendly formulas. However, it’s essential to read product labels and follow guidelines to ensure safe application around plants and animals.

4. Can I use a pressure washer with all deck cleaners?

Answer: While some cleaners, like Simple Green, are designed for use with pressure washers, not all wood surfaces can handle high-pressure washing. Always conduct a test on a small, inconspicuous area before using a pressure washer.

5. How do I choose the right deck sealer color for my deck?

Answer: Consider the wood type and the desired aesthetic. Transparent sealers enhance the natural wood grain, while colored sealers provide a more uniform look. Test samples on a small section to see the actual color effect before application.

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