5 Best Deck Resurfacers in 2020

best overall rating
  • Durable paint formula.
  • Works well on both smooth and rough wood.
  • Prevents cracks and peeling.
premium choice rating
  • Uses the special Rust-Oleum formula for a thicker coating.
  • Perfect for varied deck materials.
  • Adds a protective coating.
great value rating
  • Works well on varied surfaces.
  • Easy to apply formula.
  • More durable than most deck paint options.

Having a beautiful deck is always a good thing, especially in summer, when you’re most likely to use it, but using the best deck paint you can find won’t always be enough to keep it looking fresh and free of cracks. The longer your wood deck is exposed to the elements, the more wear and tear it’ll be enduring, and sometimes you’ll need to use a deck resurfacer to breathe some life into the wood and restore its classic color. But how do you actually choose a deck resurfacer from the hundreds of brands available online, and what should you be looking for in a particular formula or mixture?

View the Best Deck Resurfacer, Below.

best overall rating

1. KILZ Interior/Exterior Latex Floor Paint

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This high-quality deck acrylic resurfacer paint uses a special formula that lets it endure all kinds of poor weather conditions without flaking or starting to crumble, and applies a low-luster finish to whatever surface it's used on. You can apply it with either a standard paintbrush, a big roller, or a special spraying tool depending on the situation, getting similar results each way to make sure that the entire surface looks consistent. Once dry, it's surprisingly durable and resistant to cracks, fading, peeling, and scuffs, as well as naturally holding off mold and mildew. Each 1-gallon can is able to cover around 200-400 square feet depending on the smoothness of the surface underneath.

Why We Like It
  • Durable paint formula.
  • Works well on both smooth and rough wood.
  • Prevents cracks and peeling.
  • Low-luster finish.
  • Can restore most wood deck types.
Paint Covers
200-300 Square Feet (rough), 300-400 Square Feet (smooth).
Re-coat Time
4-6 Hours.
Our Verdict

This deck resurfacer is perfect for any deck restore projects you want to carry out, offering a consistent coating and great color restoration while also adding some more durability.

Editor Rating
premium choice rating

2. RUST-OLEUM 41100 Surface Coat

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This Rust-Oleum paint uses the same basic formula as a lot of their other wood paint and stain products, staying four times thicker than your average wood surface paint while also being able to outlast many other deck stain options. It provides long-lasting protection to any surfaces you apply it to, stopping direct damage and preventing quick wear and tear while also getting rid of hairline cracks. This makes it a great option for protecting and repairing a wood deck, but it can also be used on synthetic and concrete decks to restore them slightly if they're worn down as well, making it more than just another deck paint option.

Why We Like It
  • Uses the special Rust-Oleum formula for a thicker coating.
  • Perfect for varied deck materials.
  • Adds a protective coating.
  • Thicker than most paint products.
  • Can restore varied materials.
Paint Covers
80 Square Feet per Gallon (with 2 Coats).
Re-coat Time
4-6 Hours.
Our Verdict

Like most Rust-Oleum deck paints, this formula is great for handling a wide range of surfaces and situations, making it a very versatile product for more than just a standard wood deck.

Editor Rating
great value rating

3. KILZ Over Armor Wood & Concrete Resurfacer

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This wood and concrete resurfacer uses a special formula that can help cover up cracks on a variety of surfaces, ranging from wood decks to concrete sidewalks. There are multiple color options that all help it blend into a certain surface type and provide a subtle coat and finish, and the 100% acrylic resin formula means that it is surprisingly durable for a deck rescue paint. Coating it twice can boost this durability even further, and it only has a second coating drying time of around five hours on average, making it extremely easy to apply over the course of a single day if you need fast results. Each gallon of the product can cover up to 75 square feet under ideal conditions.

Why We Like It
  • Works well on varied surfaces.
  • Easy to apply formula.
  • More durable than most deck paint options.
  • Multiple color options for different material types.
  • Perfect for covering up cracks in decks.
Paint Covers
80 Square Feet per Gallon.
Re-coat Time
4-6 Hours.
Our Verdict

If you need a resurfacer that works well on wood, concrete, and other surfaces without any issues, this is one of the best options.

Editor Rating

4. Rust-Oleum 319383 RockSolid 20X Deck Resurfacer

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This deck resurfacer is designed for use in almost all outdoor conditions, offering a formula that's twenty times thicker than some of the best deck paint on the market. Unlike deck paints, it offers plenty of durability with each coating and can resist most weather types while still keeping a pleasant, well-balanced finish that can restore most surfaces to full health. Not only that, but it's easy to apply and clean, and can handle wet weather conditions just as well as the bright sun. The resulting texture from each coating is smooth and evenly-spread, adding some Rust-Oleum smoothness to the surface.

Why We Like It
  • Perfect for a range of surface types.
  • Relatively fast drying time.
  • Perfect for larger wood decks.
  • Made using a special Rust-Oleum formula.
  • Thick and easy to apply.
Paint Covers
40 Square Feet per Gallon.
Re-coat Time
6 Hours.
Our Verdict

This is one of the best deck resurfacer options for people who need thick, reliable coverage that can endure bad weather, water, cracks, and other kinds of damage or wear without being too difficult to use as a deck stain or alongside other deck paints.

Editor Rating

5. Ready Seal Wood Stain and Sealer

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This stain and sealer can be applied without any primer, letting you put up the first coating straight away and making the deck restore process much faster as a result. It'll give you the same experience and resulting coatings regardless of the ambient temperature, and doesn't need any special techniques like back brushing or wet-line application, meaning that you can start to use it straight away if you want to restore your deck quickly and efficiently. Not only that but it can work for dozens of project types and give you an advantage when trying to handle varied surfaces or deck types that all need the same finish style.

Why We Like It
  • Doesn't need any primer.
  • Simple, reliable formula.
  • Works in any temperature range.
  • Durable, nice-looking finish.
  • Very fast drying time between each coat.
Paint Covers
150 Square Feet per Gallon.
Re-coat Time
45 Minutes.
Our Verdict

This deck restore stain is definitely one of the best options for people who need a durable, reliable, and hassle-free product that they can use to restore their deck during any weather conditions.

Editor Rating

Deck Resurfacer Buyer’s Guide

Finding the best deck resurfacer for your current project can be a difficult task since it is just like looking for any other particular product in a sea of similar projects: you need to figure out the specifics, rather than just following a general idea. Even something as small as looking for the best ‘paint for decks’ rather than the best ‘decking paint’ can give you different results, so it can take a while to figure out what you’re actually looking for and where you can find it.

Thickness

A thicker formula can change the way a deck restore product works, and might also alter how you’re supposed to apply it or the finish it’ll give you once the restoration is finished. It usually depends on the state of the deck itself, since certain deck restore products are made for specific situations and types of damage or wear and tear.

If you have a lot of cracks and weathering on your deck, then a thicker deck restore stain is almost always better: the extra thickness provides a thicker coat and overall finish, which results in cracks and damage to your decks being filled in and covered up faster, as well helping speed up the restoration process.

On the other hand, if you’re only dealing with minor damage and don’t actually need to repair that much, a thinner formula that provides a thinner finish can sometimes be the better option, since there aren’t as many cracks and dents that need to be smoothed out. Make sure you choose an appropriate finish for the situation.

Drying Time

The longer it takes for your deck restoration products to dry, the longer it might take for you to properly apply another coat, which can be a problem if you only have so much time to restore it. Because of this, you’ll want to read up on the recommended drying time of each deck product before you actually buy it.

Remember that a deck product might have two drying time listings: one for the time before it’s fully dried on the deck, and the other when it’s ready for a second coat on the deck. Read carefully, because mixing these up can ruin the finish and make the deck stain look awful if it’s not handled properly.

Certain formulas will also have certain specific differences. Rust-Oleum has a custom formula and finish that’s specific to the Rust-Oleum brand, for example. This might dry faster or slower than another brand, so even if Rust-Oleum is the best option on paper, it might stretch out the restoration project longer than you were expecting.

Durability

Durability makes a big difference when it comes to deck restore stain products. The more durable the finish is, the better results it can give you over longer periods of time, which also means that you’re generally not going to have to use more restoration product on your deck for quite a while. Each deck restore stain will have its own specifications, so some will be better at protecting your deck from bad weather, whereas others might be more suited to offering physical deck protection.

For example, Rust-Oleum is a popular choice for deck restoration in places where you need a thick and tough coat, meaning that many people use Rust-Oleum for maximum durability above everything else. However, each product and brand has its own particular uses as a deck stain or restore product, so you need to figure out which specific benefits and features are useful to you.

Coverage

You only get so much product in each deck restore stain, and not all of it will deliver an equal amount of area coverage with each coat. Some will be better for helping you restore large areas, while others are meant more for offering extremely good protection and a faster restore process on smaller areas of deck (or smaller decks in general). Rust-Oleum is another good example here, as most Rust-Oleum deck restore stain products are made to cover a small area with multiple coats for an extremely good level of protection and a faster restore process.

Different surfaces will have different types of coverage, too. Rougher decks take more to cover since there are more dents and indents that can use up more of the product. The smoother a deck is, the more optimally the deck restore product can be applied. Remember this if you’re dealing with damaged or dented wood that has cracked sections since these can use up more of the deck restore stain than you were expecting.

What is the Best Deck Resurfacer?

The ideal deck resurfacer for each task, deck type, and material (even counting sub-types of wood) depends on what you’re actually attempting to do. No two deck restore product types are equally effective at everything, and some are simply better than others when it comes to specific tasks. One might have better deck coverage in square feet, while another might offer a higher level of durability: you can’t always fix that on your own, so you have to stick with whatever the product is capable of.

Always be sure to look for the ideal product in every situation. Use reviews (a range of independent and ‘official’ review posts), see what the professionals recommend, and make sure that you’re not just going for a brand or resurfacer stain because it’s popular. If it comes to it, you could find the company email address and ask them about details about their products that aren’t listed on their store pages.

Popularity doesn’t always lead to better results, and you don’t want to be paying a higher cost for a named brand that isn’t actually any more effective than generic stains you might find online.

What is the Best Deck Restoration Paint?

There are various names for a deck restoration product, ranging from “paint” to “stain,” and each of them might have slightly different formulas, compositions, and purposes. However, it still comes down to the individual attributes of the product itself: how well it can protect your deck, the kinds of deck restoration features it has, what sort of deck materials it can be used on, and the overall finish it gives you deck, among other things.

It’s easy to point to a brand such as Rust-Oleum and say that they’re the right option for you, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re what you actually need. Always look into the specifics of each product, and make sure you can identify a stain from a paint properly: they might be the same in general, but they can still have dramatically different properties, even if they’re both part of the Rust-Oleum brand and seem very similar on a surface level.

There isn’t usually a “wrong” product to use on your deck since all of them will provide some form of protection and restoration, but you still want to get it right on the first attempt. The results might only end up being slightly sub-par, but this can lead to you having to restore the deck again in the near future, essentially making it a waste of effort.

What Deck Stain Lasts the Longest?

Thicker and more durable formulas are much more likely to survive for the longest, protecting your deck for longer and making it much less likely that you’ll need to re-restore the deck again in the near future. Keep in mind that this still isn’t always the case, though: the thickness of the deck stain is only part of its composition, and the formula itself can also dramatically change the overall quality of the resulting coat you get.

You might be able to get an idea of the length of the deck stain’s coat lifespan by checking comments and reviews about the product, either on official shop sites or on message boards and forums. These can give you quite a good insight into how long they lasted and how often people had to re-coat their deck to keep up the same level of protection.

Is it Better to Paint or Stain an Old Deck?

Deciding whether to paint or stain your deck can be a difficult choice since both options lead to different results, but you can’t do them both at once. If your deck was already painted and the paint is just starting to scratch off slightly, re-painting it is often the easiest way since you just replace the original coat with a fresh one. If the damage is still obvious, you can cover the new coat of paint in a stain to get far better results overall.

However, choosing to stain a deck provides far better protection up front, and might even make the old paint look fresh and vibrant again. It can be a massive time-saver and offers far more physical durability against weather, physical damage, and general wear and tear, which removes the need to re-paint it as often.

Some people will prefer to use a restoration product that’s essentially like painting it, replacing the existing shade with a new one. Other people might want a transparent stain that lets the original surface through. It’s up to you which one is better.

Expert Tip

Always make sure the deck has dried and cured before walking on it. The re-coating period isn’t the same as the full drying period: the former is for applying the second coat, but the latter is how long you need to wait before you can safely step on it.

Did You Know?

The darker your deck color, the more UV resistance it’ll have. Because of this, a darker deck resurfacer painting formula can provide far better protection from sunlight damage.