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As we begin to venture outside into the milder weather, the changing seasons offer the ideal time to draw up a list and tackle your garden maintenance jobs including timber care. Not just concerning your shed, decking and fencing, it’s likely that after several months of intense weather, exterior woods including your window frames, doors, garage door and porch will also need some TLC.

Whether you want to protect your timber against the elements for a longer life against rot, wear and decay, or spruce up a tired surface to have it looking its best all year round; there are many different ways to treat your timber.

From exterior coatings to penetrative treatments, we’ve rounded up 5 great ways to treat outdoor wood.

Wood oil

Penetrating deep into the wood grain to replace the essential oils lost through weathering, wood oils nourish and seal the surface protecting the timber from the inside out.

Helping to prevent drying, warping and splitting, wood oils provide a tough, durable and waterproofing low-lustre finish. Choose a blend of oil and resin for improved water repellence, or enhanced UV filters for an increased shield and protection against sun damage.

Oils are best applied in thin and even coats with a brush or cloth, allowing each to absorb and dry before re-applying. With shades and finishes available for both softwoods and hardwoods, wood oils are a great choice for decking and garden furniture.

Wood stain and dye

Applying wood stain and wood dyes to your exterior wood is a great way to assure it’s protected from weathering and heavy foot traffic while adding rich colour.

Offering great coverage and long-lasting durability, wood stains help to enhance the natural wood grain for a hardwearing and scuff resistant finish. Choose from a variety of colours including those with a wax enriched formula for enhanced water repellence and a non-slip finish, which is ideal for decking.

Resistant to cracking, blistering and peeling, wood stain saturates the surface, while wood dye penetrates deep into the timber for a rich depth of colour. Re-coat every two to three years depending on the wear or find brands with guaranteed long-life protection.

Wood preserver

Available in both clear and coloured options, wood preservers work similarly to stains, dyes and oils, providing waterproofing and as well as protection against rot and decay. Resistant to mould, algae growth and woodworm attacks, wood preserver also has UV protectors that resist fading and the natural greying process.

Penetrating the timber for deep protection from within, wood preserver should be applied liberally with an exterior brush, soaking the timber for the best results.

A great choice for raised beds, fencing and sheds, a fresh topcoat can be re-applied without sanding back the surface and once dry can be finished with an exterior coat of paint for a considered garden scheme.

Wood varnish

Ideal for woodwork including external doors, door frames, timber windows and gates, varnish provides high-performance protection against UV light and water penetration.

A great choice for previously stained or treated wood, exterior varnish resists the cracking, peeling and blistering that is common to weathering. For year-round continuous protection, flexible formulas will stretch and shrink with your timber whatever the weather.

Available in clear matt, satin and gloss finishes, varnish helps to enhance the grain of your wood, darkening the surface slightly for a rich colour. For the best finish, the surface should be thoroughly prepared, filling any cracks and sanding back for the smoothest application.

Wood paint

Whether you want to freshen up your timber or inject colour with a new scheme, exterior wood paints are the fastest and easiest way to transform your surfaces. Offering protection against fading, peeling and weather-related wear, wood paints enhance your timber with rich pigmented colour.

Available in a wealth of colours from garden hues and soft pastels to bold statement shades, experiment with colour to rejuvenate your spaces. Ideal for old garden furniture, tired fence panels, planters, unloved sheds, bird boxes, trellis and timber structures.

Best applied with a brush, pump or paint sprayer, choose non-drip varieties that are wax enriched for water repellence and child and pet-friendly once dry. For the richest and most vibrant colour that still allows the natural wood grain to shine through, we recommend applying two or three even coats.