How Long After Rain To Stain Deck? (Essential Explanation)

Getting a wood deck stained involves your money and effort, which, in other words, requires massive caution so as to do everything properly. 

In addition, it is better to take the timing of the stain application into account for desired results. So, before embarking on staining a wood deck, the very question you should ask yourself is how long after rain to stain deck.

How Long After Rain To Stain Deck? 


Different stains vary in their curing times. If you are about to apply a stain on your deck, make sure there is no rain forecast for at least 48 hours. 

From my experience, you should not have your deck stained for a minimum of 48 hours after it has rained. Forty-eight hours gives your structure enough time to dry, promoting stain adhesion to the surface.

Behr Corporation, a stain manufacturer, also recommends that you leave your deck to dry within 24-48 hours following the rain. As you may be aware, moisture in the wood inhibits the stain from properly adhering to the wood, causing a thinner final coat to wash off after several heavy rainstorms.

What Happens If You Stain Your Deck And It Rains?

Your stains must dry for several hours before they can adhere to and be appropriately set on the deck structure. Even after the stain has dried, leaving the stain alone for a few days is vital. By uninterrupted, it means that you should give it some time before bringing back your furniture on the deck. 

If it rains within 48 hours of applying the stain, the rainwater will seep into the wood pores and remove all the stains. It will produce a smudgy surface rather than an even tone. If you apply your formula right after it rains, you will notice the stained coat peeling and flaking off. If the stain has dried for at least 48 hours, your surface will be safe.

What If It Rains 12 Hours After Staining Deck?

Most painters, homeowners, and woodworkers will tell you that applying the stain on your deck within 12-24 hours of a forecasted rainstorm is a bad idea. Furthermore, most stain manufacturers recommend that you should not stain the exterior structures of your wooden deck if it is going to rain soon. 

While we strongly advise against staining when it is about to rain, we also understand that the weather is highly unpredictable. So, what should you do when it rains for 12 hours right after you have stained your deck?


When the rain comes, you need to be patient and wait until it stops. After the deck has dried, inspect it to see how heavy the rain was and anticipate what to do next.

Light rains or drizzles will most likely not affect your stained deck. However, bear in mind to inspect extensive damage in the event of a heavy downpour. 

Keep an eye out for blotches, white spots, and small pockets on the deck. Most, if not all, the spots on the wooden surface after it rained are the size of a dime. They denote rain damage. Examine the manufacturer’s instructions for the stain you used to determine how to proceed with the restaining.

A light recoat is another method for getting rid of the spots. If this does not solve the problem, you can try another method that involves using a pressure washer and a wood cleaner to make the surface clean without ruining the stain applied on the deck. 

You can also use sandpaper to remove the blemishes. Sand the spots with a wood sander before lightly recoating. To avoid issues like the finish peeling or flake off, ensure you don’t overapply the stain while recoating.


If none of the methods listed above successfully remove the marks from your deck, you should switch to one way: removing the entire structure and starting over. While this may be more expensive in terms of time and money, it is the last resort. Therefore, you should apply the stain when the sky is high and clear, and no rain is coming for at least 48 hours.

Further watching: What If It Rains After Applying Deck Oil? 

Final Thoughts

So, how long after rain to stain deck? As mentioned above, 48 hours is a recommended time to consider. 

If you want to discuss more questions related to staining the deck, drop a comment below. We are always here to help!