Asked on Jul 17, 2016

Best porch floor protection from rain, sun and heavy foot traffic?

by Mar2080125
We have a porch previously stained w a good quality exterior porch stain. It's not holding up well. Should we completely sand and restain or us a good oil base porch paint? We want lower maintence.
best porch floor protection from rain sun and heavy foot traffic, Worn porch floor
Worn porch floor
best porch floor protection from rain sun and heavy foot traffic, I don t have a photo of how bad it actually looks Lots of hot west sun and heavy winter rains
I don't have a photo of how bad it actually looks. Lots of hot west sun and heavy winter rains
  16 answers
  • Jan1874383 Jan1874383 on Jul 18, 2016
    There really isn't one. The paint will peel just as the stain has worn. This is the nature if the beast with Mother Nature and wood. There will be maintence every few years with whatever you choose as even the best products aren't advertised as a lifetime product.
  • Debbie Stokes Cotter Debbie Stokes Cotter on Jul 18, 2016
    We installed vinyl plank flooring in the downstairs area of our house. Water proof and virtually scratch proof. It may not look like hard wood, but easily like laminate. We have 3 dogs, 3 cats and lots of traffic. No scratches in 3 years. You should look into it.
  • UpState UpState on Jul 18, 2016
    For pure functionality....plastic 'trex'. Kinda defeats the purpose of great looking wood floors, but will cut down on maintenance - after a significant up-front cost of this product. (...and assuming you do all the installation yourself)....Won't look as good; but will last.
  • Yukibar Yukibar on Jul 18, 2016
    I rented a house once that had slate throughout the high traffic areas. It was amazing. Easy to clean, no scratches.
  • Kathleen Kathleen on Jul 18, 2016
    The only thing is maybe restrain and then apply a product called Helmsman. It is a clear finish urethane designed for outdoors and will give you the best protection
    • Cheryl Cheryl on Mar 19, 2018

      As a former boat owner - do not use Helmsman or any other urethane/polyurethane/varnish. Maintenance nightmare! It will crack and peel from sun and weather within a few years and you'll have to completely sand it down to apply more. Use a sealer or stain (even a 'solid stain' - at least they wear instead of peel. You will still have to do it every few years, but only washing first - not scraping all the peeling stuff off, leaving an uneaven surface. Polyurethane is best for indoors ... even if marine. The only people that use varnish on boats are the wood boat purists (that keep it covered) and newbies without a clue.

  • Barbara Parsons Barbara Parsons on Jul 18, 2016
    Marine varnish. It can stand up to saltwater and the elements 24/7. If it's used on boats it will probably be fine for a porch floor.
  • Johnchip Johnchip on Jul 18, 2016
    Varathane, a marine poly used on boats that sit in water. Impenetrable. I would check a spot over what you have as a finish now to see if it is compatible, otherwise you got to strip the old off what that is peeling anyway to put anything over it. Likely will hold up 10 +years with just regular hose down cleaning. Do not use a product that needs redoing every year.. waste of money and time.
    • Cheryl Cheryl on Mar 19, 2018

      Sorry - but as a boat owner of 11 yrs, you have been misinformed. The BEST rated marine urethanes/varnishes will not last long if exposed to sun. They will peel, leaving you with a mess. No one does this anymore unless it's a nice wooden boat and, unless taken out, lives under cover. This deck gets sunlight - so a sealer/stain/penetrating substance is best. Just wash it and re-apply. No peeling, scraping and tons of work. But yes, every few years. A little wear can be touched up - not easily possible with a urethane/varnish.

  • Sophia,M.,McConnery Sophia,M.,McConnery on Jul 18, 2016
    If you go with refinish,it will have to be done again in a few years.Same with painting!You want a more permanent and durable solution you will have to go with another type of floor.Tile,linoleum,or some places sell off the linoleum squares that they use as samples.You could make an interesting patch work!
  • Marlene Haigh Marlene Haigh on Jul 18, 2016
    We used Behr outdoor natural stain and it really held up in the florida sun. It's been 4 years and still looks good.
  • Kathy Snyder Willette Kathy Snyder Willette on Jul 18, 2016
    I had the same thing, and I live in a condo. I cleaned the deck, but didn't soak it. Then I applied a Sherwin Williams paint/stain in a color close to my deck. It worked great, and I want to do more because I only did the deck floor and top of the railing. It blended in the slivers, etc., because it's kind of thick. It went on perfectly, and cleans with soap and water. Better reviews than Behr's Deckover. I'm a 61 year-old woman, and I did it by myself by rolling it on the surface. It's very nice to walk on and cleans easily.
  • Mar2080125 Mar2080125 on Jul 18, 2016
    We like the idea of the marine varathane. We have a very nice porch floor and we know all of the existing stain needs to be removed. Since it will be sanded, I really didn't want to have it painted. We live on a lake and I love the natural wood grain look. Thanks to all who responded. This is the first time I've ask a question on social media. My next question will be how to update a fire place that is highly used in the winter, then I'd like to update my built in china cabinet. Wow, don't get me started!
    • Cheryl Cheryl on Mar 19, 2018

      Do Not use varathane. See my above responses. Stick with a deck sealer please - or you'll be scraping peeling sealer every few years.

  • Tracy Tracy on Jul 18, 2016
    Sand and Marine varnish. Make sure you are well ventilated and the Natural Gas in your home is turned off when applying.
  • That looks like Ipe or Teak or African teak wood. Do not paint it!!! Do not use a Behr Stain or paint on it!!! That wood is super expensive! It's the best wood for outside (they use it for ships and yachts). Save the Behr stuff for redwood or pine. Call your lumberyard and get a price on each one of those boards. You will gasp when you find out how much they are. That wood is very dense and very 'oily'. Its naturally resistant to insects and water (which is why they used to use it for boats) Sand it down to get off the old finish. Get the wood to a 150 grit where it feels smooth. Wipe it clean. Now, go and get the best marine varnish you can afford. Do not scrimp and get Minwax or something! It has to be a MARINE/Spar Varnish. ( a spar lets the wood breathe and move with the weather) They have special UV filters in it. I just did mine with McCluskys marine varnish and also Epiphanes marine varnish. These are both top of the line. (Amazon) The thing to remember is you have to do at least 4-6 coats the first time you apply it, waiting about 20 hours between coats. Just follow the directions. The wood you have will look amazing! Here is a pic of my African Teak (looks like yours) that i did awhile back. I didn't keep up with it and the water damage from the sprinklers soaking it every day really got to it. This wood deck is something you have to stay on top of to keep it looking nice. Oh, and just so you know, there is no stain/or paint for wood decking that is non maintenance. Even the ones that guarantee 5 years have to be re-coated within a year. Especially with all of the sun you get.
  • Annie Doherty Annie Doherty on Jul 19, 2016
    I would re-sand and finish with a Yacht/Marine varnish as this will last for many years, as it contains UA/UB filters so no problem with the sunlight.
    • B. Enne B. Enne on Jul 21, 2016
      Where do you buy yours? I have trouble finding it in Canada. Thanks.
  • Annie Doherty Annie Doherty on Jul 21, 2016
    B Emneth hi sorry I don't live in Canada but living in London, Scotland and Spain I've always been able to source this from a yacht chandlers, who sell sails, rope and varnish etc. Or can you order on Amazon or EBAY, just as a suggestion? Sorry I couldn't be more helpful, i'm hoping that another Canadian poster reads this and can offer you a supplier in Canada, good luck with your floor it's beautiful.
  • Janet Law Janet Law on Jul 24, 2019

    Spar Varnish did not work for my outdoor lovely fir porch!! It peeled and cracked. I have had to sand the whole porch to begin again. A penetrating oil based stain-finish is best, and accept the fact that you will need to apply a new coat every year.