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How To Finish a Redwood Table [7 Steps For The Beginners]

Finish protects the finished item from damage such as impact, water, ice, corrosion, abrasion, and more. But, doing it alone can be challenging for a novice.

I’m here to show you the steps of how to finish the redwood table.

Use sandpaper to smooth the table’s top and bottom surfaces. With a lint-free cloth wipe all of the dust residues. After that, pick the appropriate stain, put it on the table, and subsequently scrape off the excess. Lastly, apply your desired finish and wait 24 hours before utilizing the table.

It is merely a concise summary of the complete finishing procedure. You could take better care of your table if you read the entire thing.

Keep reading!

7 Steps for the Finishing of Redwood Table

Redwood tables are distinguished by their smooth surface and natural edges. This demonstrates the lovely qualities of hardwood. The most flame-resistant decking material available is redwood.

Under ideal conditions, a well-maintained redwood table can last up to 30 years. Depending on how it’s finished, you’ll want to maintain your furniture to keep it appearing brand new.

Although it may appear challenging to finish the redwood table. But compared to other types, it is rather simplistic due to the table’s inherently sharp edges. Following the mentioned steps would assist you in finishing the redwood table

Step 1: Using 120-grit and 220-grit Sandpaper

Apply 120-grit and 220-grit sandpaper to the table’s surface to smooth it out. To make the table’s surface stainable, remove any splinters. Additionally, remove all surface flaws by polishing them.

Any corners or wood details on the table don’t need to be sanded down. Since this surface typically has a roughness, it has texture.

Step 2: Removing Dust Residue

To get rid of any remaining dust, wipe down the table’s surface using a lint-free cloth. It is crucial to remove all dust from the surface before staining. Because it can leave lumps and defects in the finished product.

Step 3: Choosing The Right Stain

Your redwood table can look great for years by selecting the correct treatment. Utilize a deck stain that has been suggested especially for redwood. 

When used on surfaces, polyurethane and varnish break, and peel. Applying and removing them is expensive and complex.

The ideal is a penetrating deck stain that is semi-transparent. The natural beauty of the redwood will be enhanced and weathering prevented by this kind of stain. 

The best defense is provided by water-repellent coatings with UV protection as well as a mildewcide. Stains with a hint of color will outlast entirely clear finishes.

Additionally, you must choose between a water-based finish and an oil-based finish. Each option has advantages and disadvantages.

For your convenience, I have suggested a few of the highest-rated stains for you:

Product NamePrice
Ready Seal Exterior$$$
DEFY Extreme Semi-Transparent$$
Flood FLD521$

Step 4: Applying Stain

Put on gloves and wipe the stain with the stained cloth. In a circular motion, apply the stain to the tabletop. Work the stain thoroughly into the table’s surface grooves. Depending on the shade of the redwood, let the stain sit for five to fifteen minutes.

You can see that staining redwood is similar to how someone stains basswood. For a table to look fresh, refinishing should be done every two to three years. 

Step 5: Wiping Away Excess Stain

Use old rags to remove the extra stains. Up until there’s just a small amount of stain left on the table, keep soaking it up. It would enable the stain to be seen through the wood. 

Before continuing, the stain is given four to six hours to dry.

Step 6: Choosing The Right Finish

Selecting the appropriate one is necessary before brushing the finish. It would protect the outer layer from getting damaged. 

One of the most flexible, spotless, and easily repairable finishes available is lacquer. Additionally, it preserves the wood’s natural color and grain without fading. It also aids in preventing undesirable movement and cracking in redwood.

Both Danish oil and polyurethane are reasonably priced, long-lasting, and repairable. The disadvantage is that they may take a significant amount of time to totally cure.

Other common redwood finishes include Envirotex, beeswax, linseed oil, tung oil, conversion varnish, and shellac. They are used mostly for interior finishes of redwood.

It’s best to use lacquer, Danish oil, or polyurethane, in my opinion. To make things easier for you, they are listed below:

Product NamePrice
Danish Oil$$

Step 7: Brushing Finishes On The Surface

Dip the foam paintbrush’s tip into your desired finish after stirring it. Apply a thin, even coating with a brush to the entire tabletop. 

Run the brush consistently in a single direction. Usually, brushing against the wood’s grain would stop any bubbling. After the finish has had six hours to dry, add another layer. 

Before placing anything on the table, give it 24 hours to dry off.

You can easily maintain a piece of a redwood table in good condition for many years. All it needs is the right care and maintenance with proper finishing. 

Cleaning Finished Redwood Table

The table’s completion is merely the start. To maintain the table brand new, maintenance tasks like cleaning are necessary.

On any wood surfaces, you should avoid utilizing aggressive cleaning agents. Most smudges and dirt can be eliminated by routine wiping with just a soft, dry cloth. 

The table can look brand new by being cleaned thoroughly with a citrus-based cleaner for wood. Envirotex is typically more durable, but be careful not to use anything with alcohol or acetone. Because they can harm the resin. 

To ensure a cleaning product won’t harm the finish, try it in a tiny, discrete area first. Be sure to also read the manufacturer’s instructions.

Protecting Finished Redwood Table From Damage

Over time, wood can become damaged by a variety of factors. To preserve their longevity, it is crucial to protect them from getting damaged.

On frequently used tables, in particular, minor tear and wear should be anticipated. By protecting the wood’s surface with coasters, and felt pads, you can reduce this risk. 

When possible, keep finished wood furniture away from direct sunlight. Because temperature affects the wood’s density and moisture.

Additionally, try to steer clear of extremes in humidity and temperature. When left outside, redwood that hasn’t been completed will eventually turn gray. 

In order to prevent sunlight and water damage, keep outdoor tables covered when not in use. Additionally, make sure the cover you use has adequate insulation against hot or cold weather.

Retaining the right temperature and humidity levels for burl wood furniture is necessary to maintain good shape. Maximum and minimum humidity levels should both be no higher than 50%. 

Ideal room temperatures range from 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The wood may slide or crack if the moisture or temperature is too high or low. 

Things To Keep In Mind For Maintaining Redwood Table

It is essential to use the aforementioned cleaning and protection techniques on the table. But there are a few other considerations you should make. They would assist you in extending both the functionality and aesthetic span of your table.

  • Your table should be pressure washed rather than sanded.
  • Every two years, clean and apply a preservative to your table.
  • Power washing it extensively will get rid of any mildew.
  • Make use of a pressure washer that delivers at least 1,500 psi.
  • To avoid a ripple effect, set the nozzle’s fan setting to “fan” and keep it moving.
  • If your table is genuinely awful, use a chemical cleaner.
  • Apply a stain or sealant.

There is no need to be concerned if one can follow all of these. Their redwood table will be able to serve them for ages while looking completely brand new.


How do you finish an outdoor redwood table?

To keep out moisture and avoid mold, it is advisable to seal it using a light-penetrating sealer. This function is carried out by a paraffin-based outdoor deck sealer dissolved in a solvent. The wood wouldn’t appear finished if it did that.

What oil do you use on redwood?

Natural tung oil, in my opinion, is the perfect finish for redwood furniture. While not as glossy or resilient as just a resin or epoxy finish. It enhances both color and character of the redwood and is simple to maintain. 

Do you have to seal redwood?

A redwood structure can be finished without the use of sealants, paints, or other finishes. Redwood’s beautiful color changes into a delicate, gray patina when left unpainted. After that, it flawlessly blends with the surrounding natural settings.

What’s the best stain for redwood?

Utilize a deck stain that is designed for redwood. The best option is a penetrating deck stain that is semi-transparent. The natural beauty of the redwood will be enhanced and weathering prevented by this stain. 


That’s the whole process of how to finish the redwood table.

The redwood table will last for years if it has a high-quality finish. Many finishes will change color or turn yellow with time. 

Additionally, they are not strong enough to prevent minor dings and scratches on the wood.

Good day!