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  1. #1
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Thompson\'s Water Seal

    There have been some posts in the past about the best finish to apply to decks, fences, and wood floors in trailers. I seem to recall some who didn't think too much of Thompson's Water Seal. Now many of you probably already know about the different types of Thompson's, but for those who don't (as I didn't) . . . .. I'd seen the stuff in the stores, but had not used it or paid much attention to the labels. However, when we bought this place, it had some cedar fence up beside that house that was in good condition, but as with most of them, it had turned gray, which I don't like. So one day at Walmart, I bought some Thompson's Water Seal, Rustic Red, and applied to the old fence; two coats, one day apart. It turned out pretty well, but of course, you're supposed to re-do it about once a year (some say about twice a year). And as with the clear stuff, it's an oil based sealer, so I had to clean up my spray gun with mineral spirits when I finished.

    Now there was also a cedar fence across the back of the lot (chain link down each side) and that fence was not in very good shape. So we recently replaced it. But then I started doing some checking and found Thompson's also has a water based sealer they call "Advanced". It's more expensive, but the clear is supposed to last 2 years instead of one, and the tinted ones are supposed to last 3 years. The instructions say to apply with a brush or paint pad; NOT to use a roller (I'm not sure yet why not a roller), but it also says if you spray it, to have a brush or paint pad handy to "even it out". It also says to NOT apply a second coat without explaining why not. Now being one who hates using brushes, I just had to find out for myself. So I applied the "Advanced Honey Gold" with my one quart air powered paint spray gun; works quite well. However, I learned the "why" of some of the instructions. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] I started at one end, finished at the other end, then went back and noticed some spots that were a bit thin, so I tried applying a little more. That does NOT work as it will with latex paint, or even the oil based Thompson's. Once the first coat has dried (which is pretty quickly), any more applied just beads up like water on a freshly waxed car. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]

    So the attached picture is what I ended up with, although it looks even brighter if I'd taken the picture earlier in the day when the sun was hitting it at an angle instead of straight overhead. Hope this helps if someone else, with no experience, tries it.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Thompson\'s Water Seal

    There have been some posts in the past about the best finish to apply to decks, fences, and wood floors in trailers. I seem to recall some who didn't think too much of Thompson's Water Seal. Now many of you probably already know about the different types of Thompson's, but for those who don't (as I didn't) . . . .. I'd seen the stuff in the stores, but had not used it or paid much attention to the labels. However, when we bought this place, it had some cedar fence up beside that house that was in good condition, but as with most of them, it had turned gray, which I don't like. So one day at Walmart, I bought some Thompson's Water Seal, Rustic Red, and applied to the old fence; two coats, one day apart. It turned out pretty well, but of course, you're supposed to re-do it about once a year (some say about twice a year). And as with the clear stuff, it's an oil based sealer, so I had to clean up my spray gun with mineral spirits when I finished.

    Now there was also a cedar fence across the back of the lot (chain link down each side) and that fence was not in very good shape. So we recently replaced it. But then I started doing some checking and found Thompson's also has a water based sealer they call "Advanced". It's more expensive, but the clear is supposed to last 2 years instead of one, and the tinted ones are supposed to last 3 years. The instructions say to apply with a brush or paint pad; NOT to use a roller (I'm not sure yet why not a roller), but it also says if you spray it, to have a brush or paint pad handy to "even it out". It also says to NOT apply a second coat without explaining why not. Now being one who hates using brushes, I just had to find out for myself. So I applied the "Advanced Honey Gold" with my one quart air powered paint spray gun; works quite well. However, I learned the "why" of some of the instructions. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img] I started at one end, finished at the other end, then went back and noticed some spots that were a bit thin, so I tried applying a little more. That does NOT work as it will with latex paint, or even the oil based Thompson's. Once the first coat has dried (which is pretty quickly), any more applied just beads up like water on a freshly waxed car. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]

    So the attached picture is what I ended up with, although it looks even brighter if I'd taken the picture earlier in the day when the sun was hitting it at an angle instead of straight overhead. Hope this helps if someone else, with no experience, tries it.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    That fence looks great, Bird.
    As far as Thompsons, Consumer Reports did a comparison of finishes several years ago and Thompsons was not very high rated. Finish and appearance was good if I recall, but it did not last as long as some of the others and I think that was the only mark against it. But that has been several years since I read that. May be completely different now.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    That fence looks great, Bird.
    As far as Thompsons, Consumer Reports did a comparison of finishes several years ago and Thompsons was not very high rated. Finish and appearance was good if I recall, but it did not last as long as some of the others and I think that was the only mark against it. But that has been several years since I read that. May be completely different now.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member GeneD14's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    We used to restain our deck every year using Thompsons. One day I was at my cousin's home and noticed how nice the finish looked on her deck and fence. She said the professional paint contractors used a product called Cetol and it was supposed to last several years between coats.
    After contacting the company we found a local dealer and ordered some. It was about twice the price of Thompsons but here in Michigan were we get some harsh weather extremes we can easily go 4 years between coats with Cetol and it looks great.
    The company that makes it is called Sikkens. Here is a link for more information:
    Sikkens - Cetol

  6. #6
    Veteran Member GeneD14's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    We used to restain our deck every year using Thompsons. One day I was at my cousin's home and noticed how nice the finish looked on her deck and fence. She said the professional paint contractors used a product called Cetol and it was supposed to last several years between coats.
    After contacting the company we found a local dealer and ordered some. It was about twice the price of Thompsons but here in Michigan were we get some harsh weather extremes we can easily go 4 years between coats with Cetol and it looks great.
    The company that makes it is called Sikkens. Here is a link for more information:
    Sikkens - Cetol

  7. #7
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    Yep, Gene, when I bought this place, I found a full unopened one gallon can of the Cetol Dek in the garage. That's obviously what had been used on the 12' x 21' deck between our back door and the front door of the shop building. We had some discussion about that product on TBN back then (September or October) and I found only one place in this area that sells it; about $50 a gallon, so I applied another coat of it to my deck; used about half of that gallon.

  8. #8
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    Yep, Gene, when I bought this place, I found a full unopened one gallon can of the Cetol Dek in the garage. That's obviously what had been used on the 12' x 21' deck between our back door and the front door of the shop building. We had some discussion about that product on TBN back then (September or October) and I found only one place in this area that sells it; about $50 a gallon, so I applied another coat of it to my deck; used about half of that gallon.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    The thing that I understand, with a good deck finish treatment, is to have it last and keep the deck wood from turning grey and/or black. The grey is from mold and mildew. Thompson's Water Seal doesn't have the fungicides in it to protect the wood against mold and mildew. This product was for applying a coating to concrete to seal the concrete, and unfortunately extended in their advertising to be used on wood. It does seal the wood and makes the water just bead up on it, and works for about a year. Look for Thompson's Wood Protector for a better Thompson product.
    The better deck finishes are those that have the mildewcide and fungicide's in them, so the mold and mildew cannot turn the wood dark. That mold is why bleach works so well to clean up the wood on a deck, is because it kills the mold and mildew. Good to clean the mold off before applying a new coat of either a clear water repellant preservative (with mildewcide) or a semi-transparent stain with mildewcide. Good to stay away from coatings that are not semi-transparent as they tend to peel off in a short time, and are real tough to refinish when that happens.

  10. #10
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Thompson\'s Water Seal

    The thing that I understand, with a good deck finish treatment, is to have it last and keep the deck wood from turning grey and/or black. The grey is from mold and mildew. Thompson's Water Seal doesn't have the fungicides in it to protect the wood against mold and mildew. This product was for applying a coating to concrete to seal the concrete, and unfortunately extended in their advertising to be used on wood. It does seal the wood and makes the water just bead up on it, and works for about a year. Look for Thompson's Wood Protector for a better Thompson product.
    The better deck finishes are those that have the mildewcide and fungicide's in them, so the mold and mildew cannot turn the wood dark. That mold is why bleach works so well to clean up the wood on a deck, is because it kills the mold and mildew. Good to clean the mold off before applying a new coat of either a clear water repellant preservative (with mildewcide) or a semi-transparent stain with mildewcide. Good to stay away from coatings that are not semi-transparent as they tend to peel off in a short time, and are real tough to refinish when that happens.

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