Wood stain or wood dye?


20 Jan 2013
Reaction score
United Kingdom

We have had a bit of nightmare trying to stain our stairs. We wanted to stain the stairs a dark natural wood colour that allowed the grain of the wood to show through.

The stairs have been stripped of old paint and sanded. We have already tried a water based dye (though did not like the effect as too thin) and an oil based varnish (that just peeled off exposing the original wood).

What is the best type of product to use that:
stains the wood and provides a deep enough stain to cover any inperfections (e.g. holes filled by wood filler), whilst allowing the natural beauty of the wood to come through?

There are different types of stains and dye and just do not know which one can provide the type of cover we want.....if anyone can advise that would be great
Sponsored Links
You need a wood dye, spirit based [some dyes are now water based] it soaks into timber where woodstain sits on the surface. You can add it to Danish oil which makes it easier to get an even finish but does dilute the colour, so for a light oak finish you would need to add dark oak dye to oil.
Practice on a scrap of timber, very difficult to remedy dye mistakes.
  • Thanks
Reactions: SBP
Thanks Foxhole

Harbourwoodwork: I am not 100% sure - the floor is pine and the stairs look very similiar to pine in terms of the grain and the knots in the wood, however a slightly more ash colour
Sponsored Links
Another alternatve is wax finish coloured wax range from clear to black through shades of brown , Method ;sanding sealer snot off with wire wool apply wax then buff up,done
  • Thanks
Reactions: SBP

DIYnot Local

Staff member

If you need to find a tradesperson to get your job done, please try our local search below, or if you are doing it yourself you can find suppliers local to you.

Select the supplier or trade you require, enter your location to begin your search.

Are you a trade or supplier? You can create your listing free at DIYnot Local