It has been two years since I wrote my post "The Low-Down on Water Seal for Your Fence" and since then I have become a little wiser. My first bit of wisdom comes in the saying "If a guy offers to stain your fence for about the same amount of money it was going to cost you in materials, let the guy make a buck". I was fortunate this time around that the guy who stained the deck of our new house offered to do our fence as side work for $300. Three 5 gallon buckets of Thompson Water Seal Stain would cost about the same so I took him up on his offer.
Granted, he only stained the fence while I would have stained and protected it with Thompson’s. It was worth it to me though because I got see how he did it and that will save me time and money down the road.
The first and most significant difference between how he stained the fence and I how I did it were the tools that he used. I had used that goofy pesticide sprayer and he used an electric airless sprayer with a really long hose that connected to the 5 gallon jugs. I checked and one of these airless sprayers rents for $60 for 4 hours from Home Depot. It is well worth the money if you ask me.
The yard is quite a bit larger then the yard we had at the house that I stained the fence at but this guy finished in half of the time plus he did two coats! Granted he is a professional but having the right tools is guaranteed to get you done quicker with a better looking finish. The finish at our new house far better looking and even then the hack job I did at the other house.
My advise – Pony up and rent the airless sprayer. No matter how hard you think it is with the sprayer I guarantee it is twice as hard without it.