How to Protect Cedar Wood for Outdoors (Explained)

Cedar is a wood for which everyone is on the line. Almost everyone wants their outdoor wood items to be made of cedarwood.

There are several reasons why people go after cedar wood, especially for outdoor and I will be listing the advantages of it after this section.

Mother weather is always harsh for woods. The UV-ray, rain, mold, mildew, are the things that cause the most damage to the wood. Not only cedar, and wood.

And you cannot stop these from happening, you cannot stop rain or UV-ray, doesn’t make sense, right?

But what can you do is, protecting the wood from these. How? That is exactly what I will be showing in this particular article.

Go through the article and you will know enough about how to protect cedar wood for outdoors.

Here you go!

How to Protect Cedar Wood for Outdoors:

Why should you choose cedar wood? 

As I said above I am going to list down the advantages of cedarwood and here I am. There are a bunch of reasons why you should opt for cedar wood but here we will be looking at the major ones.

Durability and Strength

Cedarwood is highly durable, especially Western red cedar. This wood is pretty lightweight yet very stable. If cared for properly, this wood will last 20 or more years effortlessly.

Western red cedar wood contains oil which makes the wood strong. Not only that, the oil prevents insects from damaging the wood as well.

Low heat observation

Compared to other woods, cedarwood absorbs less heat. Under heated sun when outdoor furniture gets heated up, sitting there becomes super irritating. Fortunately, cedarwood will remain cooler than other woods.


Cedarwood looks extremely well. Doesn’t matter where you use the wood whether it is furniture, fence, railing, door, deck, siding, etc. It will look good. Especially, the grains of this wood is extremely aesthetic.

How to Protect Cedar Wood? 

how to protect cedar wood

There are different ways of protecting cedarwood. But you will want to do everything I show below, in that way I can assure you that you will be able to protect the cedar wood from outdoor threats pretty easily.

Seal the wood

This is the very first thing you want to do, sealing the cedarwood. You will have to get a sealer and apply that over the wood surface and then let it dry. A sealer is a liquid solution that gets as hard as wood when dries completely.

And what sealers do is, they penetrate inside and seal the entire surface so well that, water, UV-ray, nothing can penetrate inside and damage the wood.

Not any sealer, you will have to pick a sealer that is compatible with cedar wood and is highly long-lasting. How would you know if the sealer is good or not? Simple, go through the user feedback, that should tell you enough.

seal the outdoor wood

The sealer you pick needs to be water-resistant and ultraviolet ray-resistant, otherwise, there isn’t any point in using the sealer as protection. Good sealers will protect the wood from mold and mildew as well.

Since cedarwood looks beautiful in its natural form, you would want to use a transparent sealer. There wouldn’t be any added tone but the sealer will improve the wood grain color which will make the outdoor wood items look classy.

Sealing the wood at an early stage will give you assurance that the wood isn’t going to get damaged anytime soon.

Doesn’t matter how harsh the weather is, if you apply the right sealer in the right way, then you don’t need to worry about anything.

Regularly inspect the wood

You would want to inspect the wood items such as fences, decks, siding, furniture, railing, etc. at least once a week.

Take close look and make sure there aren’t any cracks or nails and screws popping up. If you see anything like that, treat them immediately.

inspect the outdoor wood items

If the nails and screws need replacement then do that. And then fill the holes. Otherwise, water will accumulate there and will cause the wood to rot.

Clean the wood

This step is for old cedar woods. Brush or sweep off all the dirt, debris from the wood. If the amount of dirt and debris is high, it will require time and good effort, and you will have to do that.

Then you will need an exterior wood wash. Mix the wood wash into water, make sure to mix that well. Pick a scrub or cloth or rag and then start rubbing.

If the area is big you might want to use a buffer. Clean the wood thoroughly, there shouldn’t be any dirt left behind.

clean the exterior wood

Once you are done cleaning all the dirt, now it is time to clean the mixture off. You can use a garden hose or power washer.

A power washer would be a wise choice since that will require less effort. But the garden hose will also work. Clean the wood with water, there shouldn’t be any soapy bubble left on the wood.

Now you will have to leave the wood for drying. If the wood item is small like a table or chair, then you can use a table fan or something like that to boost up the drying process.

Otherwise, leave the wood for 24 to 48 hours and it will get dried completely.

Apply the sealer

Once the wood has dried completely, you will want to sweep that again to get rid of any remaining dirt or debris. You won’t have to go hard like before, light sweeping should work.

Pick the sealer you used before on the wood. And apply the sealer on the wood. If the sealer is can be applied by sprayer you can use that. Otherwise use a paintbrush or roller.

Apply the sealer in wood

When applying sealer make sure you are in an area that isn’t dusty. No dirt or debris or anything can be on the wood surface when you are sealing.

After the sealing is dry, leave the wood for more than 48 hours and then you can expect the wood to remain protected for the next 6 months at least.

Final Words

Hope now you know how to protect cedar wood for outdoor. Do not hesitate to invest in a high-quality sealer, you will thank me later.

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