Refinish Cedar Shutters!

Refinish Cedar Shutters…

Since the weather has been so nice lately, I thought this would be a great time to do some much needed maintenance on some outside items. At the top of that list is my board and batten cedar shutters. It has been 3 years since they were stained and installed, and they are really begging for some attention. So, I thought I would quickly go over how I refinish cedar shutters and keep them looking good.



So, this is a view of one of my faux windows. As, you can see it has a lot of fading and even more dirt caught in all the crevices. I have waited for a day when there has not been rain for several consecutive days.


To prep the shutters, I use just a few simple items. I have a few bristle brushes to clean the surface. Both brushes are very stiff. This allows me to really scrub into all the nooks and crannies.  I also use Oxy clean laundry detergent in place of the brighteners that are sold at the big box stores. I find that it works just as well, perhaps even better, and it is safer for my plants. Finally, I have an old bucket to mix the Oxy clean with water. (FYI: I also use my pressure washer to rinse with, but a regular hose will work just fine. However, if you decide to use a pressure washer, be aware that you can easily damage the shutters if you use too high a psi).


This is that same shutter after I have cleaned it. To get this result, I do a very thorough dry scrub with my stiffest bristle brush. Because it has been so dry lately, the dirt and even a lot  of the old stain just brushes right off. Next, I wash the shutters with the Oxy Clean and those same brushes. I follow this up with a good rinse down with my pressure washer. Once it has dried for 24 hours, it  will be nice and bright. Although, it certainly doesn’t look new, at least not yet.

refinish cedar shutters

And this is that same shutter after being finished. Now, I just need to touch up the paint.



The stain that I like to use is TWP stain. There are many products out there that work well, but this one I find to be long lasting and it gives me the look that I want. Keep in mind that shutters should be redone about every 2-3 years. Yep, that’s right. Sorry to disappoint, but nothing lasts forever on exterior surfaces, and shutters are one of those things that requires regular maintenance. However, I do not like to use any products that won’t make it at least 3 years, which is probably the longest time you can expect to get from any product.

My second favorite exterior stain is Sherwin Williams WoodScapes. But, TWP is probably the best that I have found so far. What I like about it the most is that I can re-coat right over the old with just a good cleaning. Some other products tend to settle on the surface and then later peel away in flakes. Refinishing something like that requires stripping, and who wants to have to do that every 3 years.

refinish cedar shutters

Here is my house with the left side finished – right side still waiting. (FYI – the stain color is called black walnut. It gives a nice dark chocolate result). To apply the stain to my shutters, I just use a good 2″ stain brush.


Finished results! And I am good for 3 years!


Alternative view.

Final Thoughts…

Although I do highly recommend TWP, it certainly isn’t the only good stain and protective product out there. I believe the best result depends a great deal on the geographical location. Some products may just work better with different areas. I have used many stains that performed well. I just happen to prefer this product because of the long lasting results and the ease of reapplication. (FYI: I am not receiving any compensation for recommending this product, just in case you were wondering.) 😉

Please feel free to share your preferred exterior stains in the comments section.