Weatherproofing Exterior Swings with Olympic Stains and Sealants


Refreshing old wood furniture can seem like an overwhelming task, especially if it’s spent months, even years, outside slowing corroding. Check out the video and blog post below to see how Tyson Moore refreshed and weatherproofed some of his exterior furniture pieces with the help of Olympic stains and sealants.

Hello everyone! My name is Tyson Moore, and I’m excited to show you how my wife and I weatherproofed two porch swings using Olympic products from The Home Depot!

I recently built our family a brand-new cedar porch swing. As I was preparing for weatherproofing, I looked across the yard and noticed that my neighbor’s porch swing was in rough condition. My wife and I decided that it would also be a fun project to bring our neighbor’s old swing back to life!

Gather Your Supplies

First, we headed to our local Home Depot to gather the supplies we needed. We decided to finish both swings using different  Olympic products. For our swing, we chose #1-rated Olympic Maximum Clear Waterproofing Sealer. For my neighbor’s old swing, we picked up Olympic Premium Deck Cleaner and the Olympic Elite Transparent Advanced Exterior Stain and Sealant in One in the color Kona. We also picked up a pump sprayer, a drop cloth, a couple of good exterior paint brushes, and mineral spirits for clean up.

Using Olympic Maximum Clear on the New Swing

The entire process was simple. First, we laid out a drop cloth. Then, we set the swing on top of a couple of saw horses. Once the wood was clean and dry, we flipped it over to apply the finish to the back.

Olympic Maximum is a clear, durable, waterproofing sealer that offers protection against water damage and UV rays. It’s rated #1 among clear wood sealers and stains. It’s a clear sealer with a slight tint. Use it on any exterior wood like decks, fences, and siding. Apply it anywhere you want to protect against the weather while also bringing out the natural beauty of the wood.

Application was really easy. Applying a thin coat is all that is needed. If you choose to use a roller, you may need to back-brush for best results.

After the first stroke, we knew we had a winner! Just look at that cedar shine! 

I will say that cedar is already a naturally weather resistant type of wood in itself, but we have ease of mind knowing that this swing will have extra protection against water damage and mildew.

Cleaning up was also super easy. All I had to do was pour a few ounces of mineral spirits into a cup and then wash out my brush.

And that’s it! It’s really that simple! Check out this finish after a 24-hour dry time. We loved how this turned out!

Transparent vs. Solid Stains

When it came to staining my neighbor’s swing, I chose a stain based on the color that drew my attention rather than taking the time to understand the difference between a “transparent” stain and a “solid” stain. If you are like me and get confused by labels (or get distracted by all the options), let me explain what I later learned. “Transparent” wood stains add a hint of color while soaking into the wood and showing off the natural wood grain. They are recommended for  younger wood but offer less protection. “Solid” wood stains are recommended for older wood. They cover the wood grain while highlighting the natural textures. Solid stains show less wood grain but offer the most protection. In hindsight, I think Olympic Elite Solid  may have been a better choice for my neighbor’s swing due to the age and condition of the wood. 

Either way, I think you will agree that the transparent stain we chose still worked wonders on my neighbor’s swing! 

Using Olympic Elite Stain + Sealant on the Old Swing 

Now let’s focus our neighbor’s swing. As you can tell, this is still a beautiful swing, but the weather has definitely taken its toll on it.

First, we used Olympic Premium Deck Cleaner  to clean the swing and wash away mildew, dirt, and other contaminants that had accumulated from years of being outdoors.

We added it to a standard pump sprayer and prepared to spray it on the swing. No mixing and no diluting was required. When working with a powerful cleaner like this, it’s important to remember to put on some gloves, long sleeves, and goggles.

We waited 5-10 minutes for it to clean the wood. Since you can use this product to clean any exterior wood, we decided to use it on a little exterior side table while we were at it!

After spraying and letting it sit for a few minutes, we washed it off with water. You don’t need to use a pressure washer; a standard garden hose is just fine. The cleaner also requires no scrubbing!

Once the wood was completely dry, it was time to use the Olympic Elite Stain + Sealant. Olympic Elite is a stain plus sealer all-in-one, and it comes in a variety of colors. We chose a rich, beautiful brown tint called “Kona Brown.” We knew that it would bring some color back into the swing and help protect it from the weather.

All you need is a high quality brush to apply a thin layer directly to the wood. It was amazing seeing this old swing transform before our eyes! After applying stain to the side table and the entire swing, we let them both sit for 24 hours to completely dry.

Ready for the Weather!

A couple days after we applied the stain and sealants we had our first rain. The little side table and the porch swing are already resisting that water!

Before and After

So whether you are working with something old that you want to bring back to life like a weathered deck or an aged fence or yard swing…

… or whether you want to protect and bring out that natural color in something brand new, the Olympic products mentioned above are a great choice for making your projects look amazing while also preparing your exterior wood for spending years outdoors. 

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