If you’ve recently moved into a new house or need to resurface a deck or wooden surface, you’ve arrived at the right place!

A deck stripper, if used in the correct environment, can effectively remove unwanted stain or sealer. It’s a common thing to use, but the market for it can be quite diluted.

Since there are so many deck strippers for sale, it can be quite difficult to pinpoint which one will most effectively work with your deck.

Careful consideration must be given while deciding which deck stripper to use; otherwise, you may end up with an unfinished or poorly done job!

Things to Consider

If you want to find the best deck stripper for your desired use, take note of these items below.

  • Method of Dispersal. This may sound strange, but deck stripper is often more effective when dispersed a certain way.

    For instance, one brand of deck stripper may work better if scrubbed whereas another type may work better if you spray it across the surface of the deck. Make sure you astutely note details such as this.
  • Grime Removal. Some types of deck strippers will get rid of paint, varnish, and sealant, and that’s all they’ll do. Some deck strippers, on the other hand, will also remove dirt and mold from wooden surfaces.

    Depending on the job you need to have completed, you may have to purchase a deck stripper that does both. This all boils down to paying careful attention to the product before you decide to purchase it.

Top 9 Deck Strippers Comparison Table

PictureNameInterior/Exterior PriceRating (1-5)
Rating (1-5)
1. 3M Paint and Rust Stripper Brush Both$$4.5
2. Citristrip Paint & Varnish Stripping Gel Both$$4.3
3. Blue Bear 605 Pro Coating Remover Exterior$$$$4.1
4. Sunnyside 657G1A Multi-Strip ADVANCED Paint & Varnish Remover Both$$$$4
5. Dumond Chemicals Smart Strip by Peel Away One Quart Paint Remover Exterior$$$4.1
6. Citristrip QCSG801 Paint & Varnish Stripping Gel Both$4.3
7. Sunnyside Corporation 634G1 Paint & VarnishBoth$$$3.8
8. TotalBoat TotalStrip Fast-Acting Heavy Duty Gel Paint and Varnish RemoverBoth$$$$3.9
9. Max Strip Paint & Varnish Stripper 1 GallonBoth$$$3.8

Buying Information

Still not convinced that you know which type of deck stripper your deck needs? More clarification lies below. Hopefully, you’ll be able to deduce the best deck stripper for your porch, after reading.

  • Coverage per Square Foot. In order to avoid purchasing an excessive amount of product (or even worse; not enough), you’ll need to measure your deck and align them with the appropriate amount of deck stripper.

    If you don’t do this beforehand, there’s a chance you’ll badly estimate. You could end up with a smaller than needed supply.
  • Range of Stain Removal. Somewhat related to the category discussing grime removal, you’ll want to know what stains need to be removed from your deck.

    If your deck is a common area for social gatherings, for instance, there might be stains from drinks or food that have built up over time. It’s important to know the range of capabilities deck stripper has!

Top 4 Best Deck Stripper Reviews

1. 3M Paint and Rust Stripper Brush

Attachable to a variety of power tools, this varnish and paint remover is a potent force when it comes to deck stripping.

Forget paying large amounts of money for expensive varnish gels. This varnish and paint removal tool is quite cheap. It doesn’t require any supplemental supplies, apart from the drill or rotary tool it’s mounted on.

It’s great for a wide variety of uses and surfaces. You’ll be able to gently remove light layers of paint from furniture. You’ll be able to gently remove rust from metal surfaces. Most importantly, you’ll be able to strip your porch of old or decaying varnish and paint.

It can be used effectively in a wide variety of power settings. If your drill doesn’t have the most power in its tank, this tool will still function effectively.

The 3M Paint and Rust Stripper Brush is a great tool for paint and varnish removal. You’ll save money and save time with it.

2. Citristrip Paint & Varnish Stripping Gel

Just because it’s touted as industrial grade doesn’t mean it’s harsh! This superior deck stripping gel has all the components you’ll need to skin your deck bare.

For next to nothing, Citri-Strip’s Stripping Gel offers incredible performance. You can put it on a surface that needs to be stripped of paint and let it set. It’s delightfully water-resistant and will stay that way for almost a full day, after initial application.

It doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals that could damage the environment or your skin. It’s also delightfully biodegradable. You’ll be able to safely use it in the presence of plants and animals.

You’ll be able to do a lot more than just deck stripping! For an incredible value, this gel is a home run.

3. Blue Bear 605 Pro Coating Remover

Coming in a hefty one-gallon bottle, this deck stripper is effective and large. It’s potent, powerful, and easy to use.

Blue Bear 605 Pro Coating Remover is certainly on the expensive side of the deck stripper spectrum. It’s effective, however, and will get any job done.

The price your paying will mainly be for the size. One gallon of deck stripper is enough to remove the stain from the back of your neighbor’s porch as well.

The bottle is designed to protect its product and prevent overuse. Make sure the money you spend on this potent deck stripper isn’t thrown down the drain.

It’ll surely peel through layers of paint, regardless of whether it’s set on wood, metal, or plastic. Blue Bear 605 won’t let you down if you purchase and use it! It’s got the muscle to get the toughest jobs done.

4. Sunnyside 657G1A Multi-Strip Paint and Varnish Remover

Sunnyside 657G1A Multi-Strip Paint and Varnish Remover is nonflammable and noncombustible paint and varnish remover formulated with no methylene chloride or NMP. It is capable of removing up to 15 layers of paint, varnish, stain, lacquer and urethane and begins working in 30 minutes.

This paint remover can be sprayed on and removed with a stripping tool or applied as a wipe-on for surfaces covered with a light coat. A heavier coat will remove multiple layers.

Recommended for both wood and metal surfaces, it may be applied with a brush or heavy-duty pad. With fewer VOCs than comparable competitive products, you can feel good about choosing this CARB compliant version.

Sunnyside is suitable for many home improvement projects, including stripping paint from window frames, doors or walls.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is a Stain Stripper?

Over time, the natural features of the wood will begin to show. Without proper cleaning and protection, these features could end up being hidden or even damaged permanently.

But by using this wood deck stripper product, you can keep your wood looking its best without worrying about staining the surface too deeply or unevenly.

With the right wood deck stripper, you can easily restore any hard surface areas in your home that have become worn or damaged due to neglect or harsh weather conditions.

Is it Better to Sand or Strip Wood Deck?

Sanding gives a completely clean and smooth finish, but in practice it can be tough to be consistent. Stripping is far easier for people without experience in the process, but it will likely have to be done every few years as it wears down.

If the deck is only going to be redone every few years, you may want to consider stripping the wood deck. If it’s going to be completed in a day, however, you may want to consider sanding.

Can You Pressure Wash Stain Off a Deck?

The key to pressure washing a deck that has a wood finish is not so much the pressure as it is the material.

Pressure washing works wonders on a deck surface that has been sealed, but you probably don’t want to clean the surface off with high-pressure water if it hasn’t been sealed. To assume that your natural wood deck will look good after pressure washing it is unrealistic.

Hosing off your deck can remove dirt and grime, but it may not remove stains. Pressure-washing the deck can blur a finish but is necessary to remove some kinds of stains.

Is It Necessary to Strip the Deck Before Applying a New Stain?

Stripping the decking is an important step in the refinishing process, and simply not doing so can result in poor results. Both stripping the old finish and preparing the wood surface for fresh staining will ensure that your next application of deck stain will adhere more easily.

Stripping the deck is the most necessary step when preparing to apply a new coat of stain. Stripping exposes and prepares the wood surface for a new application of stain or paint. This process is necessary if you want your coating to look fresh and to last as long as possible.

Strip back your deck to bare wood, and you’ll be rewarded with a beautiful backdrop that will enable the currently available deck stains to achieve the best results possible.

Can I Sand After Staining?

Staining raw wood involves some sanding before the stain is applied in order to raise the grain for a nice finish in the end. A lot of people get confused when they go to stain afterwards and then sand it.

We recommend against doing this because when you sand your project after you’ve stained it, there’s a chance that you could sand through some of the stain. And let’s face it, nobody wants that.