No matter what type of wood you use for the wood carving patterns, they are all subject to deterioration from exposure to the environmental elements. Also, the ones that stay outdoors are more prone to that deterioration as they are directly exposed to the sun, wind, rain, and other factors.
And though there are plenty of solutions that you can follow to slow down the deterioration rate, only the best outdoor wood sealer will offer you the capability to protect them while still allowing the natural beauty of the wood to shine through. The protection level that they can offer is quite praiseworthy
Because of offering this ability, they are chosen over stains by many of the wood enthusiasts. And we think you should do the same as well.
Table of Contents
- 10 Best Outdoor Wood Sealer Reviews
- What to Look for Before Buying?
- Frequently Asked Questions
10 Best Outdoor Wood Sealer Reviews
There are countless options out there. They are enough to get you baffled when you are trying to choose one for your outdoor wooden structures.
To make things a bit manageable for you, we have handpicked the ones that we believe offers a fair amount of protection and has the capability to retain the natural beauty of the grains. They are:
1. Thompsons TH.A21711-16
Among all of the options that are out there, the one that most wood enthusiasts opt for the outdoor structure is the one that has a natural formula. And this one is one of them.
To start with, Thompsons has utilized a water-based formula instead of opting for the solvent-based one. Because of the formula's nature, it does not contain any sort of chemicals, which makes it natural.
For that reason, you would not have to worry about harming the environment if you apply this to your deck and other outdoor structures.
Aside from being all-natural, the formula has a high strength of waterproofing the surface. After drying up completely, it should be able to repel water exceptionally well. As a result, the chances of water and moisture damages occurring over time would be exceptionally low.
Other than that, the layer that it creates on the top is long-lasting as well. It has a high capacity to resist UV lights, eliminating the chances of it fading over time. Also, it is capable of resisting mold and mildew growth. You can expect it to last for a long amount of time.
Apart from that, as the formula is water-based, you would not have to go through that much trouble cleaning it up. You can easily clean the misplaced applications using water and mild soap.
2. Minwax 630510444
UV lights from the sun are one of the mortal enemies of wooden structures that remains outdoors. However, if you apply this one on the surface, you would not have to worry about that anymore.
First of all, the formula that it implements integrates UV blockers. Those will resist the damages that the UV rays tend to make over time. As a result, the chances of graying effects and discoloration of the surface will be substantially low.
Aside from that, the unit has the capability of creating a protective layer on the surface. That layer will offer protection from moisture and rain. It does a decent job in inhibiting the growth of mildews. So the possibilities of the wooden structure getting damaged for water and moisture would be pretty low too.
Alongside that, the formula is crystal clear. It will not turn yellow over time, which some of the other units tend to do. That means you will not have to worry about it messing up with the looks of your wooden structures as well. It blends pretty well with the stains that the surface might have on it.
Apart from that, it does not take that much time to dry up. There would be no need for you to wait that long after applying this. Also, cleaning it up will not be an issue for you either. You can easily clean it up using water and soap.
3. TriCoPolymer Lumber-Seal
If you were on the lookout for something that does not contain any toxic elements inside the formula, then you can stop your search right here because TriCoPolymer has got the thing that you were looking for all this time.
To start with, TriCoPolymer has utilized a fully water-based formula. It does not contain any sort of chemicals or toxic ingredients inside it. For that reason, you would not have to worry about harming the environment around you if you use this to seal your outdoor deck.
Apart from being non-toxic, the formula is clear in color too. This color profile will enable you to properly seal the surface without messing with the looks. And it does not turn yellow over time either. So the looks of your beautiful wooden structure are going to stay the same after it cures up.
On that note, it does not take that long to dry up either. You will not have to put that much time and effort into the sealing projects if you have this in your arsenal. Also, the layer that it creates after curing up is exceptionally durable as well. That layer is not going to fade or come off that easily.
Lastly, the layer is water-resistant too. As a result, the chances of water and moisture damages occurring over time will be reasonably low. It inhibits mold and mildew growth as well.
4. Ready Seal 112
Even though most of the sealants that are out there will offer you size options, only a few will offer you the color option. And this one that is from Ready Seal is one of those few.
Unlike some of the other options, Ready seal is going to offer you nine different color options. Also, they are going to provide you options regarding the size too. Depending on the scale of your project, you can choose the one-gallon tub or five gallons tub.
Other than the options that they are offering, the application process for the sealant is pretty straightforward. You would not require any primer or any other sort of solution. Also, you will have the full freedom of applying it the way you want. You can either apply it using a roller, brush, or a sprayer.
Alongside that, it does not require diluting. You will not even have to do any sort of thinning prior to the application process. And as the viscosity of the formula is not that thick and not that thin, worrying about it running, streaking, and lapping is something that you will not have to do.
Besides that, it blends exceptionally well with the surface. The formula has a high capability of withstanding high temperatures as well. So you can expect it to last for a prolonged amount of time.
5. SaverSystems #1 Deck Premium Semi-Transparent
Protection from color fading and graying is something most of the brands are going to boast about. But only a few are capable of delivering that. And SaverSystems is one of them.
First of all, this one is also available in a few different colors. You will have the freedom to choose any one of the five color options that it comes in. Also, you will find that there are two different size options available, which will enable you to get the exact amount that you require for the project.
Aside from the options, the protection that it is capable of providing is quite praiseworthy. It creates a strong layer on the top that will offer surface protection from the environmental elements. As a result, the chances of graying and fading occurring would be extremely low.
Alongside that, it works in most of the woods. Whether you have pressure treated or a regular wooden structure, you will have no trouble in applying this on the surface. Also, it is quite versatile too. The formula that it implements does not only seal the surface but offers a stained look.
On that note, the formula has a reasonably low amount of VOC. For that reason, the odor amount is low, and you can have peace of mind that you are not causing any harm to the environment that is around you.
6. Tall Earth ECO-Safe Wood Guard – Prevention
On the lookout for something that will not only seal the surface but also will provide protection from the termites and carpenter ants? Then you should check what Tall Earth is offering here.
To begin with, the formula that Tall Earth has implemented does not contain one bit of VOC. It is totally non-toxic and ECO-safe. That means you will not have to feel guilty if you use this on the deck and the wooden structures that are near the environment because it will cause no harm to it.
Alongside that, the formula is capable of offering a good amount of protection. As we have mentioned, it does not only seal the wood but creates a protective layer that will keep the insects and termites away from the wooden structure. Eventually, it should enhance the lifespan of the structures.
Aside from that, it has a high capability of penetrating the surface of the wood. That means you would not have to put that much effort into applying it. A single coat should do the trick. And it will not flake or chip that easily either, thanks to the strong layer that it is able to create.
Other than that, the formula is compatible with most of the woods. Starting from new wood to the pressure treated ones to the old and weathered ones, you should be able to apply this on the surface pretty easily.
7. THOMPSONS WATERSEAL 21802
The manufacturer Thompsons has quite an amount of reliable sealants to offer to the market. And this one that we are going to take a look at is not an exception in that regard.
First of all, the amount of sealant that you are going to get is 1.2 gallons. That amount of sealant should be more than enough for you to carry out a medium to large sealing project. And if you do need more, you can choose the two-pack, three-pack, and four-pack options.
Aside from the quantity, the formula that Thompsons has decided to go with is clear in color. Because of being clear in color, it will not mess with any sort of finish or stain that you might have applied on the surface of the wooden surface beforehand. It can also make the natural color of the grains pop a bit more.
Apart from the outlooks, the formula is capable of offering a good amount of protection. It contains UV-resistant ingredients that will lower the chances of graying and fading occurring because of UV lights. Also, it can create a water repellent surface, which will inhibit the growth of mildew and molds.
Other than that, it has a reasonably low amount of VOC in the formula. For having such a low amount of VOC, it should be environmentally safe. Also, the non-toxic nature of the formula will make sure that the odor is considerably low.
8. Rust-Oleum 01901
Another manufacturer that has been offering quality solutions for wooden surfaces is Rust-Oleum. And this one that we are taking a look at is worth getting for the performance that it offers.
Unlike some of the other sealants, the formula is not that clear. It tends to have a green tint on it. However, it does fade away over time, and the surface should look clean and clear after some time. And if you want to, you can paint and stain the upper coating with wood floor paint after it dries up. It will receive those reasonably well.
Apart from that, the layer that it creates has a high capability to resist water. As a result, the possibilities of mildews and molds growing over time will be pretty slim. And the number of fungi on the surface will also be considered low because of that property.
Besides that, the formula has a special ingredient that can keep the bugs, insects, and termites away from the surface. The carpenter ants are also going to stay away from the upper side. It will also prevent rotting and decaying, which is going to enhance the overall lifespan of the wooden surface eventually.
Alongside that, the application process should be pretty easy for you. It can penetrate the grains pretty easily, and you would not have to use any sort of special applicators to coat the surface with this.
9. Defy Extreme
Not having to deal with any sort of intricate application process can make the sealant's application process to the surface hassle-free. And that is exactly what this one is going to offer to you.
First of all, the application process is pretty straightforward. There will be no need to sand or strip the surface. You would be able to apply this straight on the wooden structures. As the formula has a perfect consistency, you will not even have to apply multiple coats. One coat should be more than enough.
Talking of which, it has a water-based formula. There is no toxic element induced to it, which makes it safe for all wooden structures. It is also clear in color, which means it will not mess up the color coating that the wooden surfaces might have. So, it would be pretty easy for you to apply this to all sorts of wooden structures.
Aside from the compatibility, the formula contains zinc nano-particles. Those are going to disperse all over the upper portion. And those particles can offer the wooden structure a high level of UV-resisting capability. As a result, the chances of premature graying and fading would be considerably low.
Other than that, the unit contains a low amount of VOC. For that reason, the odor level is going to be considerably low as well. And it will not cause any harm to the environment too.
10. Star Brite Premium Golden Teak Oil
Sunlight damages can make the wooden surfaces look old and weathered pretty quickly. Well, Star Brite acknowledged that, and this is why they have implemented a special formula for this unit.
To start with, you are going to have a few options in the case of quantity. By considering the amount you would need for the project you are carrying, you can choose the 32 ounces, 16 ounces, or 128 oz bottle. There will be no need to buy more than the quantity that you are going to require.
Aside from the size options, the formula they have implemented offers a maximum amount of protection from sunlight and UV rays. It contains UV absorbers that will create a protective layer on the top. As a result, graying, fading, and weathering will not occur quickly. And the coating lasts for a long amount of time as well.
Alongside that, it works with most of the woods. So whether you have teak wood, finished wood, or pressure-treated ones, you would not have to worry about the compatibility that much. And the application process is pretty easy too. You would not have to follow any sort of complicated process for coating the structures.
Besides that, it dries up reasonably fast. And it is capable of bringing out the natural beauty of the grains. So you might not have to use any sort of stains after applying this.
What to Look for Before Buying?
Whether you're looking for an outdoor wood sealer or the best wood sealers for cedar, browsing through the listing by only reading the reviews will not get you far in getting one of the well-performing sealants. You would also have to keep some of the factors in your mind.
Those will let you efficiently scrutinize each of the offerings. So, without further ado, these are the things that you would have to consider before making a purchase:
First and foremost, you need to factor in how much amount of sealant do you actually require.
Factoring in quantity is important because if you end up with something that contains a comparatively low amount of sealant than what you are going to require, you might have to finish your projects in two halves, which would not offer a consistent result.
However, if you are shooting for something that contains more than what you are going to require, you need to consider whether it has a good shelf life or not. If the shelf life is short, you would not be able to use it after storing it for a couple of months.
Type of Formula
The manufacturers are going to utilize two types of formula. One is going to water-based, and the other one is solvent-based. The water-based ones tend to have a low amount of viscosity compared to the solvent-based ones.
As a result, some of them are a bit too hard to work with. However, they can penetrate the grains faster than the solvent-based ones.
On the other hand, solvent-based ones tend to have a high level of odor in them. As a result, you might have to expose the wooden structures to the air for a bit to make the odor fade away. Nevertheless, the water-based ones are generally toxin-free and environmentally safe.
Color of the Formula
Aside from the type of formula, you should also factor in the formula's color nature. Make sure the one that you are purchasing has a clear color, or else it will have a yellow tint once it dries up. Having a yellow or other sorts of tint on the surface will make the natural color look a bit odd, and you would not want that, would you?
For that reason, we would highly recommend shooting for the ones that are clear in color and do not leave any sort of tint on the upper level after drying. And you can always opt for the best clear cedar finish for outdoors to finish the job.
You will not have to factor in the working time for these. Instead, you should factor in the drying time. The faster the formula is going to dry, the less time you would have to isolate it and restrict the wooden structure from usage. Also, faster drying times mean you can finish off your sealing project reasonably fast as well.
For that reason, you would highly suggest going for the ones that take a short amount of time to cure.
Last but not least, you would have to consider the level of protection that the sealant is capable of offering. The higher the amount of protection, the longer your wooden structure is going to stay protected from the environmental elements. Also, make sure that the coating is long-lasting, so the protection it can offer lasts long as well.
Stain vs. Seal
A lot of beginners might mix up a sealant with a stain. And even though they have a lot of common, they are not the same thing. The common things they have are that they can both be applied to wooden structures that are finished and not finished.
Also, some of the stains are capable of offering a water-resistant coating on the top.
On the other hand, sealants are mainly clear in color. However, some will be able to offer some sort of tint that will enable you to bring out the beauty of natural wood and coated wood a bit more. But the main purpose of the stains is to make the wood achieve a stained look. This capability is something that sealants can not provide.
Aside from that, the level of protection that a good sealant can offer is far higher than what a well-performing stain can offer. The sealants usually pack UV-absorbents to prevent the graying and fading from occurring, which the stains cannot provide.
Overall, both of them are not the same. While one is good at protecting the surface, the other is better at making the surface look good.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do sealants make the wood waterproof?
Yes, most of the sealants are capable of making the top layer resistant to water. As a result, the possibilities of water and moisture damages occurring drops down too.
2. Are all of the sealants environmentally-safe?
It depends on the formula that they are utilizing. If the formula contains a low VOC level or does not contain any sort of harmful ingredients in it, it should be environmentally-safe.
3. Can sealants inhibit the growth of molds and mildews?
Most of the sealants create a protective layer that repels water. As water can not stay on the top, the chances of these growing remain slim. So, it should be able to inhibit the growth of mold and mildews.
4. Are all of the sealants colorless?
There are some that will have a yellowing coloring to them because of the formula that they implement. However, most of them should be clear in color.
5. Do all of the sealants have too much odor in them?
Not really. The ones that have a low amount of VOC will have a considerably low amount of odor. On the other hand, the ones with a high level of VOC will have a high level of odor.
If you want the outdoor wooden structure to last for a long amount of time, you would have to apply the best outdoor wood sealer on them. And we would like to assure you that all of the ones that we have included in our review section will offer up to the mark protection that will enable the structures to achieve a higher lifespan.
We would like to end this article by inviting you to give this updated blog post on river table epoxy a read.