Easy, Step-By-Step Guide On How To Oil A Deck

Discover how to oil a deck easily and quickly so you can enjoy a long-lasting and beautiful outdoor space. Oiling your deck is a breeze with Dryden’s woodcare products, used by both DIYers and professionals alike. Just follow our comprehensive step-by-step instructions and you’ll be all set.

How To Oil A Deck With A Clear Coat

What to know before oiling deck


‘Oiling a deck’ refers to coating the timber with a clear-based finish like Dryden OilStain, which enhances the natural grain of the timber and allows it to weather and eventually become a beautiful silver grey.

This is different to ‘staining a deck’, where a tint is mixed with the clear-base oil to add colour to the deck. Dryden Colourtone+ is added to OilStain to add colour and enhance the appearance of your deck, as well as provide an extra layer of UV protection. This stain or oil guide is geared towards helping you figure out which works best for you.


What you need


Dryden LiquidTimberClean

Dryden oilstain

Dryden OilStain – if you want a clear coat

Dryden Colourtone+

Dryden Colourtone+ – to add to OilStain if you want a stained effect


Tools and equipment:

  • Gloves
  • Bucket
  • High-pressure garden hose
  • Application tools: a bristle brush, speed pad, airless sprayer
  • Paint stirrer


Applying Dryden OilStain to a New Deck

Step 1: Prep and Clean Your Deck

Before applying Dryden OilStain, you need to first clean and prep the surface with Dryden LiquidTimberClean.

  • Dilute Dryden LiquidTimberClean with water – use a ratio of 50/50
  • Wet the deck and apply our cleaning solution using a stiff bristle brush. Scrub and work to remove damaged timber fibres.
  • Keep the area wet and active until stains and cosmetic marks are either acceptable or gone. You may need to apply it again to remove any stubborn stains.
  • Wash timbers down with lots of clean water and sponge until all the soapiness has gone, especially from the grooves and joints.
  • Allow to dry before coating
Step 2: Decking Oil Application

Dryden OilStain is applied on its own as a clear coat solution, making it the preferred choice for individuals who want to achieve and maintain the natural silvered/grey look.

How to apply deck oil:

  • Use any wide bristle brush, roller or speed pad – just avoid the lambswool types – to apply Dryden OilStain thoroughly while wearing gloves. An airless spray system can also be used to apply the oil to your decking.

Recoat. Dryden OilStain should not be thinned or altered in any way – you simply apply it to the timber surface, wait for about 30 to 60 minutes and remove any excess solution. Recoat after 24 hours – it’s as easy as that!

Everything You Wanted to Ask About Oiling Your Deck

How much decking oil do I need?

Simply put, the quantity of deck oil required is determined by the type of wood, its dryness, and texture. Below are some rules of thumb to figure out how many litres of deck oil you need to buy.

View timber type and coverage rate

  • Coverage on Dressed Timber (Low Density) is approximately 9 – 12 square metres per litre
  • Coverage on Hardwood Timber (High Density) is approximately 12 – 14 square metres per litre
  • Coverage on Bandsawn Plywood is approximately 6 – 8 square metres per litre
  • Coverage on Restored Timbers (Low Density) is approximately 6 – 8 square metres per litre


When do I need to oil new Kwila decking?

Usually, you need to leave Kwila decks to weather for at least six weeks so that the wood becomes porous and absorbs the oil better. But, with Dryden OilStain, you can skip the weathering stage and get straight into oiling because OilStain is designed to deeply penetrate the timber.

See here for more details: An All-Inclusive Guide To Protecting And Staining A New Kwila Deck.


How often do I need to oil the deck?

The frequency of oiling your deck for maintenance depends on the timber’s:

  • Age
  • Porosity
  • Species
  • Situation and exposure to weather

Dryden OilStain deck oil should be applied when the timber loses its water resistance and starts absorbing water. Check the condition of your deck every six months to make sure it’s still protected from water or as often as needed to maintain the look you prefer.

On top of this, you also need to give your deck an annual soft wash to keep it looking its best. But if you see any signs of the common issues that exterior timber suffers from – you should treat your deck or outdoor furniture sooner.


How long does decking oil take to dry?

Dryden OilStain decking oil typically takes 30 to 60 minutes to soak into the timber surface. Get rid of any excess product after application, and then wait 24 hours before recoating for best results.

Dryden OilStain is a deeply penetrating decking oil that nourishes and protects from within to help timber last longer. This time between coats allows the oil to penetrate deep into the wood, enhancing its natural beauty and weather resistance.


What types of timber are suitable for Dryden products?

Dryden OilStain is compatible with most native and imported timber species used in New Zealand for decking, including Radiata pine, Kwila and Jarrah. Our decking oil enhances the natural beauty of the wood, showing it’s natural grain.

If you apply OilStain on its own, your timber deck will naturally weather and turn a beautiful silvery grey. But if you want the deck to maintain colour, add Dryden Colourstone+ to OilStain – there are over 37 colours to choose from, so you may be able to find a shade that closely matches the timber’s original colour.

Dryden OilStain can also be used on outdoor wooden furniture; this guide to protecting timber exteriors, including furniture, will have detailed instructions on this.



Key Points To Remember About Oiling Your Deck With Dryden

  • Dryden OilStain deeply penetrates the wood, resisting water absorption and nourishing the timber from within. Follow the step-by-step process for application:
    1) Prep and clean the surface with Dryden LiquidTimberClean.
    2) Apply a clear coat of Dryden OilStain if a long-term silvered appearance is desired
    3) Recoat after 24 hours.
    4) For a stained effect, mix OilStain with Colourtone+.
  • The amount of decking oil you need depends on a few factors like the type of wood, its dryness, and the texture. Use our chart as a general guideline.
  • After applying our decking oil, wait 30 to 60 minutes to remove the excess solution, then wait 24 hours before applying a second coat.
  • Check the condition of your deck every six months and re-apply decking oil if the timber has lost its water resistance and has started to absorb water.
  • Lastly, Dryden OilStain is compatible with most decking timbers, including Jarrah, Kwila and Pine. You can also apply it to outdoor timber furniture.

Follow these instructions to apply decking oil and carry out regular timber maintenance, and your deck will continue to look beautiful and stay protected against the elements for years to come. Explore all our timber care products here and find them at your local Dryden reseller.