What is the Best IPE Deck Stain? Very good question as there are not many deck stains or sealers that work well for IPE or other exotic hardwoods. IPE is a Brazilian hardwood that is very difficult to penetrate. Many wood and deck stain will not properly penetrate into this wood type. This results in premature fading of the finish. In this article, we will look at what makes a great and long lasting IPE finish.

Use a Stain or Finish that is Designed for Exotic Hardwood

IPE is a very expensive a beautiful wood. Problem is that many stains are not able to penetrate well. Make sure when researching your IPE stain that you look for a brand that is specifically designed for exotic woods. Usually, you will see special formulas by major brands. Words to look for in the name are: Hardwood, Exotic, IPE, etc.

Ease of Reapplication when Faded

IPE and other exotic woods will require more maintenance and recoating than other softwoods such as cedar and pine. Since you will be re-coating your IPE deck annually (or sooner), it is best to choose stains that do not peel or darken in color. This makes a light cleaning and reapplication of the stains substantially easier.

Color of Pigment

Lighter pigmented stains will fade faster the darker stains. Make sure to choose an IPE finish that has a good amount of pigment. In addition "red" pigment will prevent UV fading longer than other pigments. For Example, Messmers UV Plus for Hardwoods in Red Mahogany will last longer than their Natural tint.

Here are our most popular IPE Stains:

Messmers Hardwood Stains
Defy Hardwood Stains
Armstrong Clark Mahogany Color
Penofin Exotic Hardwood Stain

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  • We will reply to your comment shortly
    malibusey · 10/21/2021
    Is there a good product to stain Ipe black? Does anyone have experience with this? Customer wants black. I would like to use Ipe for its durability. 
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    sandy · 03/16/2021
    My deck is 2 years old. Last summer it was stained. I had asked for messmers -but my painter (who works with Brazilian woods often) insisted that TWP pro was best. I have lots of markings now. He is going to redo it and I want to make sure I use the best stain to fix my issue. Any advice is welcome.

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    William McKee · 09/14/2019

    I have used the RAD prep products followed by ipe oil several consecutive times. I believe I do it all correctly. But lately, the result has not been as satisfying and the oil just doesn't seem to last. I live near Memphis so I know the sun plays a part. I am interested in trying something different regarding the oil/stain. What would you recommend?
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    Pete · 11/11/2018
    I am installing a New Epi deck in NY in November. Should I try to coat the wood now, ASAP, or wait until the spring?
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    Ann Doty · 05/11/2018
    Also, the roughly 6-in cut edges of the boards have started to turn white. Was the builder supposed to treat them with something?
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    Ann doty · 05/11/2018
    About 18 months ago, my husband and I had our homebuilder install an ipe deck that was stained with Ipe Oil by DeckWise. The deck is on the second floor of our home so you see the top and the bottom of the ipe wood. Now, every time it rains we have ipe stain running below the deck and down the steel deck framing. It looks like a mess and has to be scrubbed off of the framing with a brush and soapy water. It is soooo difficult to clean up the running stain, we have not reapplied the oil and the deck is starting to grey. We paid a ton of $$ for an elegant ipe deck. What did we do wrong and can we fix it so we can get the ipe back to looking like a hardwood floor? We are just too old to be spending hours and hours scrubbing stain off steel beams and the tile/grout laid on the floor below the ipe deck.
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    The Sealer Store · 05/20/2016
    Try the Defy Hardwood Stain or the Armstrong Clark in the amber color. Both will not blacken. Best to not spray stain on IPE. Use a stain pad like these:

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    Ken Cleaver · 05/19/2016
    I have been using Penofin on my IPE deck for years. It looks stunning once the old is stripped and new is applied. After 5-6 months though the finish starts to blacken. What causes this? There is sun from 11:00 AM until sunset. Also I have always applied with a brush. Can I use a Low pressure hi volume spray gun to apply? Also, is there another product that will give me the same freshly applied look without the blackening?
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    The Sealer Store · 07/08/2012
    Yes you should clean first before staining. No need to apply to all four side. Just exposed wood.
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    Ed Clark · 07/08/2012
    I will be installing a new ipe deck soon and plan to use either Ipe Oil or Messmers UV for hardwoods. I have two questions regarding the prep of the ipe wood:
    * Do I need to clean the new wood prior to applying either product?
    * May I apply either product to all four surfaces? This will be my only opportunity to apply to the underneath surface.