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How to Stain a Fence the Easy Way

One thing is for sure that I am not a city girl. I was born in the countryside, my heart yearns for the countryside, and one day I aim to be back there…hopefully soon. Until then, I’m trying to make the best of where we are planted and that includes dealing with unsavory issues with those around us. We decided to put up a privacy fence for obvious reasons, and thought we would share how to stain a fence the fast & easy way.

Backyard Before Privacy Fence with DIY Fire Pit by Prodigal Pieces |

What you see above is the left side of our back yard and the right side is below.

DIY Pergola in Back Yard |

If you’ve been following me for long, you know we have been working hard (maybe too hard) over the last few years to make major improvements to our outdoor spaces. Here is a list with links to all of our fun DIYs:

  1. DIY Pergola
  2. DIY Faux Fireplace
  3. Video tutorial for DIY Fire Pit
  4. Build plans for Concrete & Solar Lamp Tables
  5. Build plans for DIY Arbor
  6. DIY Cedar Bike Shed
  7. Shed Makeover

In this instance we felt the need to fulfill the age-old saying, “fences make good neighbors”. We’ve been dealt a hefty blow this past summer that was the last straw that broke the 16 year old camel’s proverbial back. So…with that up goes a nice BIG fence so we can carry on.


Per our usual, the entire family chips in to get the job done. Who could ask for better help? They’re eager and oh so fun workmates. Not all of our 8-person crew is shown, but believe me, they all helped tirelessly. Likewise, they couldn’t wait for this fence.

Family Working Together to Install a Privacy Fence with One-Man Post Hole Auger |

We rented a one-man post hole auger, and that tool is a lifesaver. Amazingly,it punched right through our clay soil and we had our posts up in a matter of a few hours. JC and our son worked the auger, while the rest of us cleaned up each post spot with shovels and wheelbarrow.

Father Son Team Working to Install a DIY Back Yard Privacy Fence |

Filling Privacy Fence Post Hole with Concrete |

*post sponsored by HomeRight and includes affiliate links so you can find the products I love to use too. (see full disclosure)

Instead of putting up a crack fence (a fence installed piece by piece), we chose to use pre-assembled panels. That made the job even easier for installation. Then, after all assembly, we waited a few weeks to let the pressure treated wood cure a bit. But thar she is! We all did the happiest of happy dances. Even our pets are stoked to have this space to ourselves.

Back Yard Privacy Fence Before Stain by Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #backyard #outdoor

During the time this fence was curing, we also began installation of a trellis with pergola and a stone path.

Building DIY Trellis with Pergola for Outdoor Decor |

In addition we also installed a cedar split rail to run the front of the property. So, like I said, our summer has been work, work, work.


Finally it is time to finish up our handiwork and have some play time. We’ve created a video tutorial of how to stain a fence for you below, but also outline the steps here. You know I adore my tools for obvious reasons (fast, easy, affordable), but also because they make the job fun.

One of my favorite tools is the HomeRightSuper Finish Max Extra Sprayer. I use it for paint, poly, and  stain. We chose to use a semi-transparent stain in a color called Boot Hill Gray. It’s the perfect match to our current color scheme. You can watch my video tutorial how to set it up over here on YouTube.

HomeRight Super Finish Max Sprayer for How to Stain a Fence Tutorial by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #tools #homeimprovement #diy

Truth be told, I wanted to use a solid stain because a solid offers more longevity than a semi-transparent. However, JC wanted to see the wood grain. This brand is the most highly rated at the present time. FYI: Painting a fence is completely different than a solid stain. Paint sits on the wood, whereas stain penetrates. Your best options for longevity in your fencing protection is solid stain, followed by semi-transparent, transparent, then paint.

You can see my video demo of what the 3 different tips are for and how to set it up HERE. First, I always suggest practicing setting your flow on a piece of scrap or cardboard. Get the feel of using your elbow and shoulder to promote even coverage (avoid bending your wrist).

How to Stain a Fence the Fast and Easy Way with the HomeRight Super Finish Max Sprayer | Video Tutorial by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #homeimprovement #home #homedecor #outdoor


Then, once the first coat is on in about 30 minutes, and it takes about an hour to cure before I add a second coat. Manufacturer instructions recommends two coats. It even says you can apply it to new wood. However, our panels were pretty wet with treatment. While you’re waiting you can cap off your canister and clean your sprayer so it’s ready for the next coat.

HomeRight Super Finish Max Canister to Store Extra Stain |

Having an extra canister is handy because I chose to work on other staining projects while the fence cured. Would you want to stain this lattice by hand? NO WAY.

How to Stain Lattice the Fast & Easy Way by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #home #tools #homeimprovement

Again, see the video demo below to watch how fast it works. Amazing!!


Like most instances, the second coat is faster and you can see the fruition of your work coming about. Here’s a look at the second coat against the first coat. That second coat is a necessity for the full effect of that color. Over time the stain will fade and need reapplied. Most likely in about 5 years or so.

Second Coat of Stain | How to Stain a Fence the Fast & Easy Way by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #tools #homeimprovement #home #homedecor #outdoor

In even less time, I have the second coat on the first side. Then, I tackle the back side. And we’re done!

DIY Privacy Fence Finished with Boot Hill Gray Semi-Transparent Stain by Behr | Video tutorial by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #home #homeimprovement #outdoor

DIY Patio Fence with Dining Area under Pergola by Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #home #homeimprovement #homedecor #outdoor

Subscribe to Prodigal Pieces on YouTube for DIY video tutorials and a whole lotta fun |

Even Lily came and made an appearance showing how she approves of the fence and a few other things.

Calico Cat on Fence |

We have since finished our trellis we were adding alongside the rest of the house. However, we still have a bit more we are adding to the front of the house too.

Patio with DIY Pergola and Privacy Fence by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | #prodigalpieces #diy #home #farmhouse #outdoor

Do pin and share this DIY project because I’m sure we’re not the only ones who would like a bit more privacy.

Adding a fence to your yard and want to protect your investment? Come see our video demonstration of how to stain a fence the easy way. Fast & affordable! | #prodigalpieces #diy #tools #outdoor #homeimprovement #home #homedecor

Up next, I’ll be sharing what I do with this thrifted find. Head here to see!

Wire Vanity Seat Before Makeover |


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More home improvement projects like this how to stain a fence:

Grab those curbside finds and give them a new look with your HomeRight Super Finish Max Paint Sprayer. This dining set makeover is one to see by Larissa of Prodigal Pieces | prodigalpieces.comWhat a fabulous update to this worn down garden shed. With a bit of DIY elbow grease and upcycled finds, it has a fresh new look. Details at Prodigal Pieces |

18 replies on “How to Stain a Fence the Easy Way”

Larissa –
Well done on the installation of your backyard fencing. I can’t wait to see what you’ve been doing to the front of your home.
I’m guessing that the fall weather is beginning to poke its nose around the corner of your area. Here, in Central Texas, we’re still dealing with 100 plus degree weather. The fall temps won’t arrive for another couple of months. However, I do think that winter will arrive early this year and stay a little longer than normal.
Have a great day!

Thank you, Sandra. Yes, we’ve been hanging in the mid 90’s for a bit now and can tell things are changing. I’m anticipating a rough winter for us as the nuts on our trees are huge and plentiful…a tell-tale sign. You have a great day too!

we love staining wood instead of painting. over time paint chips and flakes, stain just fades and is so much easier to refresh! the fence looks great! looking forward to seeing the front of the house at its reveal!

It sure is a big time-saver for sure. We just love the fence and are glad to have it as an addition to our efforts. We are hoping to be done soon as we need to get chopping at our firewood! 😀

Bravo! Now you all can enjoy your back yard again. Would you believe we used the same semi-transparent stain 15 years ago on our fence and it looked great until just a couple of years ago! On our to do list in a few weeks is staining it again. We definitely will be using a sprayer to get the job done faster. The first time, I brushed it on and it was grueling. That’s not happening again.

Hi Larissa, you and your family certainly have been busy working outside and your new fence looks great! I love the stain color you choose. I’m looking forward to seeing your front yard projects too.

I am sorry to read that you had to put up the fence out of necessity. Too bad we can’t choose our “neighbors” right? I pray you and your family will have the privacy and peace you so deserve. Hugs

Thank you, Kaycee. They sure are the best and know how to knuckle down and get a job done. If I had my way…no neighbors for a 2 days horseback ride (my dad’s words). Hugs!

Beautiful!!! Your crew is amazing! 😊 That sprayer is amazing too! So glad I won one from you!!! 1/2 and hour!!???! That is incredible! Great job, guys!
I’m eagerly waiting for your next post… I have an identical stool/base sitting in my storage room waiting for inspiration and making over. I’m waiting until I see what you did!

You’re so fun, Becky! We had the best crew to tackle it and get it done fast. The tools make all the difference in the world too. Those stools are so fun to find and redo.

I watched the video, and wow, that looks like a great way to get a bunch of squats in! Haha. Your fence looks great, and I’m with you on preferring distant neighbors! We are in town for now, but we are in a pretty good spot as far as neighbors go 😊 We’re hoping to someday move to the middle of nowhere 😁

Right?!? I could feel the burn…and it felt good! 😀 My dad says it like this…”I want to live where the closest neighbors is a two-day horseback ride away.” Amen to that.

I sure understand about bad neighbors! We put up with some for many years. They finally decided to put their house up for sale and we bought them out. The neighbor on their other side had put up a privacy fence and when the ‘bad’ neighbors moved out my husband helped him take it down. He ‘paid’ my husband with the weathered boards and I made signs and sold them at my booth at an antique mall. So take heart maybe your bad neighbors will move out, awesome neighbors will move in, and you can use the fence for projects!

Good on ya! At this point, I don’t think so on them moving because we live in his deceased relatives’ home…as he’s told us many times…and he in his home for many, many years. Ah well!

Wow! How can your lot line be so close to your house? You must feel very cramped in now after that lovely view before. Best of luck in dealing with your neighbors!

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