Q: I finished an exterior door two weeks ago, and it has already started to fade from the sun. What should I have done to prevent this from happening?
Kevin Hancock: Some coatings are more light resistant than others. Spar varnish, for instance, has resins that resist fading from the sun. Additionally, selecting a finish with UV blockers will protect not only the coating, but the colorants on the wood under the finish. When choosing a stain, be sure to use a pigmented stain for better sun resistance.
Greg Williams: Use a good quality pigmented stain for color and coat with a varnish containing ultraviolet inhibitors.
John Brock: Some clear finishes contain UV blockers that will help slow the fading, but nothing will stop the power of the sun over time. One approach is to use a grain filler tinted with a pigment. The UV light will still lighten the wood, but the pigment will be less affected and maintain the clarity of the grain. As it fades, a coat of finish tinted as a toner can be used to restore some of the color, but that, too, will fade. My front door faces south. It’s painted.