Whenever a new staircase is installed, one of the last finishing touches is to apply the right stain and varnish. Many homeowners choose to use a water-based stain and varnish to give their timber a polished finish and lustrous shine.
Before you jump into the varnishing project, you should take a few minutes to learn about the best way to go about it. Without the proper tools and techniques, you could have disappointing results.
Why Choose Water Based Products
Water-based stains and varnishes offer the same great results as oil-based products with added benefits. They dry faster, have less odor, offer more color options, and are easier to clean up than the oil-based options. Water-based varnish will shield your staircase from scratches, and the stain will give you exactly the look you want. The only major requirement is to have air circulation in the room where the stain and varnish is applied.
The Brush is as Important as the Artist
While it might be cost-effective to grab the brush that you already own, it may not be ideal for applying the water-based stain and varnish. The results will differ depending on whether your brush has a synthetic or natural bristle. A natural bristle will get soggy when you apply the water-based product. This will create inconsistent strokes that make it harder to give your staircase a smoother finish. A synthetic brush is not affected by the water; therefore, it provides the smooth finish needed to get the job done.
The Woes of Sanding
When it comes to sanding, it’s important to remember not to be too abrasive with the staircase. Otherwise, the stain and varnish will be heavily affected.
Supplies for the Task
1. Stain and Varnish
2. Synthetic Brush
3. 180 or 240 grit sandpaper
Application of Stain and Varnish
Step 1 – Before applying the stain and varnish, mix the contents well to create a uniform
mixture. This will improve the consistency of your product and create a smoother finish.
Step 2 – Use your synthetic brush and coat the timber with the stain and varnish.
*Note: Do not worry about the brush technique for this step. First make sure that you have a healthy coating on the timber.
Step 3 – After you have covered the timber, run your brush along the longer part of the timber with long strokes.
Note: Try not to lift your brush off the timber. We want to make sure the surface is as smooth as possible when it is finished.
Step 4 – Let the stain dry for two hours. We want to ensure it binds with the timber.
Step 5 – Use a 180 or 240 grit sandpaper on the applied surface of the timber.
Step 6 – Recoat the surface with an extra layer to finalize the desired smooth texture.