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Are you tired of seeing the dull and boring appearance of a wood fence? If so, then your property deserves a better look. A beautiful fence increases the value of a home and makes it appear more appealing. For this purpose, if you only use a paintbrush, it’s nearly impossible to apply a perfectly even coating across each panel since it takes so long.

However, staining a fence with a pump sprayer can save a great deal of time. It may be difficult to select the right pump-sprayer since a hundred options are available with different features. Thus, we aim to provide a complete guide on How to stain a fence with a pump sprayer. 

Steps to guide on How to stain a fence with a pump sprayer? 

1. The preparation required for staining a fence with a pump sprayer 

To clear your fence, follow these steps: 

pump sprayer for staining fence
  • You can’t begin spraying sealant or stain on your deck or fence before cleaning it or removing anything in its way. 
  • If you have vegetation near a fence, you should cover it before spraying wood stain. 
  • In addition, you should remove any items close to the fence, including patio stones, lawn furniture, flower pots, vehicle yard, or yard decorations. 
  • Now, the first thing you should do is put on old clothes and wear safety gloves and goggles to protect yourself.
  • In the case of a damaged fence board, replace the boards. 
  • If you notice any loose screws, fix them with a screwdriver. Additionally, you can use a hammer to fix protruding nails.
  • Also, sand the wood’s surface to remove splinters. 
  • You should use a 25-degree tip pressure washer to start cleaning from one another end of your fence. As you spray the wooden fence surface, you will observe its color brighten.
  • Now continue cleaning the fence until the entire fence is cleaned. 
  • After cleaning, let the fence dry for a minimum of 24 hours. 
staining a fence with a pump sprayer

2. Pick the right stain

There are different stain options available in the market. However, the composition of wood stains differs from brand to brand. Some stains require brushing and rolling, while others can be applied with a pump sprayer. Therefore, you should pick up the appropriate stain for your pump sprayer. 

Various fence staining products are available on the market, including semi-transparent stains, solid stains, semi-solid stains, and wood preservatives. It is common to label sealers and stains as wood preservers. 

Important Tip:

  • Stir the stain every time you refill the sprayer, and only apply the stain when the temperature in the area are 50 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Do not stain if rain is forecast within 24 hours.
  • Stains usually specify to apply no more than two coats.

Useful Resource: Do you know that gel stain can be applied over paint to create a unique and attractive finish.

3. Best way to spraying stain with pump sprayer

Sprayed stains are the most effective. They offer some notable benefits, such as: 

  • Over time, they do not start to crack, flake or peel, but their color tends to fade. 
  • One coat of wood preserver is usually sufficient. Also, you can buy them in different shades, from dark to clear.
  • You can conveniently apply the stain with the pump sprayer. 
  • Semi-transparent stains make your wood fence beautiful and look elegant. 
  • A stain can be oil- or water-based

4. Spray stain a fence with a pump sprayer 

Best way to stain a fence
  • You should wear a respiratory mask or respirator when exposed to vapour. 
  • Next, you should use the paint stirrer to stir the stain thoroughly. 
  • If you’re using a sprayer for staining a fence, you need to pump it. Now, open the fence stain sprayer and pour the stain of your choice. 
  • After that, turn the lid clockwise and seal it. In this way, you can build up a vacuum within the sprayer, which allows you to spray it as necessary.
  • The upper handle will be present near the hose of the sprayer. Once you have your lid sealed and the sprayer is ready, you must pump the handle to build up the inside pressure of the sprayer. 
  • In addition, you should press the hose trigger so that the pressure is released and the fence stain will be forced out of the nozzle.
  • Next, you should apply the spray stain from a distance of around 10 inches and avoid placing the nozzle anywhere you do not wish to stain. 
  • In case the spray pattern is too broad or narrow. You can adjust it by twisting the sprayer’s nozzle until you get the desired spray pattern. 
  • If you feel that the spray is weak, then press down harder on the canister for a stronger spray. 
  • Also, you can use your brush to paint in places the sprayer could not reach, such as corners. 
  • Follow the same process to stain the next fence section as you did the first and make sure to complete the process on both sides of the fence.
  • Clean-up after spraying may be a bit difficult. Still, the stain is highly durable and long-lasting.

Pros and Cons of staining a fence


  • You can choose from a variety of stains to keep your fence looking brand new.
  • Wood stains protects your fence from weathering.
  • A stain does not peel or crack.


  • It takes more time to set up.
  • There is a shorter time frame for applications that means wood stains will need to be reapplied after two or three years.
  • They require a certain temperature.

Why pump sprayer won’t spray stain?

Following are the steps to troubleshoot a spray system if the pump sprayer won’t spray. But first, lets take a look at the components of pump sprayers. So that you will be able to identify the problem easily.

pump sprayer parts
Pump sprayer parts

  • When your sprayer builds pressure but there’s no or very little flow from the nozzle, then you should look for plugs in the nozzle, spray wand, and suction hose screens.
  • In the spray tank, make sure there is enough liquid to spray. If liquid is near the bottom of the spray tank, air may enter the suction tube. This will cause the pressure to fluctuate. So you should fill the tank with the appropriate amount of liquid before proceeding.
  • An outlet check valve can also cause pump failures. Therefore, check valve needs to seal tight against the tube bottom. It can be prevented by residue or damage.
  • Suction hoses supply liquid to pumps. In general, this line does not contain a suction strainer to protect the pump. So make sure the suction line is clear. If there is any blockage in the suction line, the pump suffers.
  • Another tip to keep in mind is that the hose clamps between the spray tank and pump are in good condition. Also, make sure the hoses between the pump and sprayer have no cracks or holes.


  • It is also possible to staining fence with garden sprayer because fence stains have a thin consistency so they can be applied more quickly than by hand.
  • Semi-transparent stains adds delicate color to the surface of wood.

My staining fence project using the Graco cordless sprayer – It’s time for using an Airless sprayer

Over the last weekend, my friend and I have been working on a project close to our hearts – re-staining our backyard fence. We built it in 2021 and stained it, but time had taken its toll on the stain’s efficacy and appearance.

Before staining backyard fence

I have also used the Wagner HVLP 0417005 sprayer for staining fences on previous projects. However, this time, we tried a different approach and used a trusty Graco airless sprayer, ensuring a consistent, quick and thick coat. Seriously, we love this Graco sprayer because it can spray in any direction without thinning. I would also encourage you to give it a try.

used graco airless  sprayer for staining fence

The end result was truly satisfying, the fence looked absolutely stunning, and our backyard began to look like a magical place. It’s a place where we can now relax and unwind, surrounded by our well-restored fence. You can check the result as well.

After staining backyard fence

The bottom line on stain a fence with a pump sprayer 

Staining fences with a pump sprayer can provide privacy, protection, and stunning results in just minutes. A fence must be stained to prevent all the elements that affect its long-term durability. You can also purchase the best stain sprayer for fences today as mentioned above for a flawless quick finish! 

FAQs (Stain fence with sprayer) 

Can you stain the fence with a pump sprayer?

Yes, the high flow rate of pump sprayers makes them great for staining fences in large areas. However, you can also consider the Graco airless paint sprayer or the Flexio series from Wagner HVLP sprayers as an alternative. 

Can I spray the staining fence with a garden sprayer?

Staining fences with a garden sprayer is more accessible than using a paintbrush because it is more convenient. Also, fence stains come in many colors and effectively protect fence boards from ultraviolet light, water, humidity, and mildew. 

Can I stain a deck with a pump sprayer?

Pump sprayers can be an excellent way to apply deck stain because they’re easy to use, and you can finish it in a couple of hours. 

How do you use the hand pump sprayer for stain?

Your starting point should be the top of your fence. You should stain the boards by holding the sprayer up to 10 inches away from the fence, squeezing the trigger, and going down and up each board as you spray. 

If the pattern is too narrow or too wide, turn the nozzle at the end of the wand until you get the desired spray pattern. 

Can I use a sprayer to seal my fence?

Cleaning and clearing your fence is an essential step. Sealants and stains can’t be sprayed on a fence until you’ve removed anything up against it. So, it’s best to cover any bushes and flowers against the fence before applying a wood stain.

Do you recommend spraying or brushing fence stain?

An airless sprayer is best for applying wood fence stain. This project requires a lot of time and effort using only a brush and roller. However, if you rent an airless sprayer from your local paint store, you can easily stain an entire fence in one weekend.

Is it better to paint or stain a fence?

Painting vs. Staining a Fence

Staining fences are more effective than painting. Stains don’t peel or crack, so there is little preparation involved in staining. Simply stain the fence after power washing to ensure a smooth, clean surface. However, over time, the stain fades and must be reapplied, usually after one to two years.

Jennifer Marie-Holapaints writer

Jennifer Marie

Jennifer Marie is a general contractor with over the years of experience in home remodeling, DIY projects, and commercial painting projects. Her experience includes working with paint sprayers, painting tools, and other painting supplies. You can follow her on Facebook.

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