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2023 Best Log Home and Cabin Stains

2023 Best Log Home and Cabin Stains

If you are renovating an older Log cabin or perhaps you have built a new Log cabin home. Picking the right sealant is important for the most gorgeous renovations and lasting finishes on new construction. When searching for the proper sealant here are some brands and products to consider for the best results when finishing your log cabin or log siding to its finest quality.

Through rigorous testing and year of customer feedback we have put together our list of the best stains for log homes and cabins in 2023.

Outlast Q8 Log Oil Outlast Q8 Log Oil

Outlast® Q8 Log Oil is one coat oil based product that is a EPA registered wood preservative designed to protect against mold, mildew,rot and insects (termites, powder post beetles) on log homes and on wood siding. It provides maximum water repellency and sheer trans-oxide color with one coat coverage. Outlast Q8 Log Oil is a totally non-film forming EXTERIOR treatment that will never crack or peel. The solution penetrates into the wood to provide protection, not just on the surface, but also deep into the wood cell structure.

  • Wood Preservative Registered with the EPA
  • Penetrates deep into the wood and will never crack or peel
  • Protect against insect infestation and wood rot
  • Highly effective water repellent
  • Provides effective UV protection
  • Works great on log homes and log siding
  • Prevent wood boring insects including carpenter bees with the NBS30 Stain Additive
  • When additional protection is required to control mold, mildew, and algae growth add MoldBuster additive
Type: Deep Penetrating Coats: 1 Flood Coat
Coverage: 150-300 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

Seal Once Nano Guard Stain Seal-Once Eco Friendly Premium Wood Sealer

Seal-Once Nano Guard Premium Wood Sealer is one of the only green stain/sealers on the market formulated for exterior/interior. Seal-Once seals and protect for up to 10 years!

Seal-Once Nano Guard Premium Wood Sealer deeply penetrates the surface to protect and stabilize wood against weather. This formula uses proprietary nano-polymers to create a long-lasting flexible breathable barrier by coating the wood fibers at the cellular level to provide protection from the inside out.

This non-film forming NANO GUARD Premium Wood Sealer allows the wood to age naturally without decay, morphing to a rich silver-gray over time. A full range of Semi-Transparent Tints that can be added to the clear formula. These tints operate as UV blockers to prevent the wood from graying while enhancing the natural grain and texture.

This wood stain is great for log homes, log siding, decks, fences, outdoor furniture, and shake roofs.

  • Non-toxic, Zero VOC’s, Safe for the Environment
  • Long Lasting, Deep Penetrating Bond Protects Against Mold & Mildew Stains
  • For All Exterior and Interior Wood Surfaces
  • Outperforms All Other Sealers and Stains
  • UV Stable
  • Water-Based, Odorless, Non-Flammable, Non-Combustible and Will Not Burn Skin
  • Will Not Harm Pets, Plants or Livestock
  • Paintable, Stainable, Breathable
  • Penetrates and Absorbs to Form a Flexible Polymer Becoming Part of the Cellular Structure of the Wood
  • Helps Prevent Wood from Cracking, Splitting and Warping
  • Clear Formula and Semi-Transparent Tints Add Color Without Hiding Wood Grain
  • Easy Soap & Water Clean Up
Type: Deep Penetrating Coats: 2 Coats
Coverage: 200-300 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

Capture Log Stain Capture Log Stain

Capture is a great log stain and true to its name it captures the essence of the natural wood. With this sealant the design of the wood comes through. Capture is also made to compress and stretch with your logs as they naturally move. This finish creates a light sealant and prevents moisture and sun damage. Like all Sashco stains the Capture contains a mildewcide. Capture even covers tiny cracks that happen over time, this is a great sealant for lodges and the like that are tested in the elements. With stains coverage depends on the porosity of the wood so these are estimates on coverage. For the first coat you will get 150-250 square feet per gallon and for the second coat it will be 250-350 square foot per gallon. Capture is a water based stain so it is easily cleaned up with water.

Type: Surface Coating Coats: 2 Coats
Coverage: 150-350 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

Cascade Clear Top Coat Cascade Clear Top Coat

Cascade is a clear top coat and made to be the second part of Capture. These two work as a team to stain and seal your logs perfectly to protect against sun damage and weather. Cascade applied over the top of Capture will help keep the color vibrant for years to come. The beauty of the Capture and Cascade Stain system is you just need to maintain the Cascade to keep your home looking great. Cascade is now available in a gloss or matte finish and the coverage depends of course upon the coarseness of your wood. With one gallon you will get about 300-600 per coat. Cascade is water based so it is easily cleaned up with water.

Type: Top Coat Coats: 1 Coat
Coverage: 300-600Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

Transformation Log and Timber stain Transformation Log and Timber Stain

This is a great product for restoration of your log cabin or even new wood. Transformation Log and Timber is a great choice for those that are looking for a glossy appearance. The name stands true as it transforms old cabins into the beautiful wood beneath time and weathering. This stain is compatible with most stains, so if you have an existing coat of stain still present this is most likely a good option for you. Transformation Log and Timber also works well on new wood. This product covers 200 square feet for the first coat and 400 for the second coat.

Type: Shallow Penetrating Coats: 2
Coverage: 200-400 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Mineral Spirits

Transformation Siding and Trim stain Transformation Stain Siding and Trim

Formerly call High Sierra Stain, the Transformation Stain for siding and trim is designed for log cabins but perfect for wood siding and surfaces. It has the durability but is perfected for wood siding. This stain flexes and moves with the wood and does not peel or crack. As with all the Transformation products it is a oil and water product and covers about 150-250 square feet per gallon and the second coat is 250-350 square feet per gallon.

Type: Shallow Penetrating Coats: 2
Coverage: 150-350 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

X-100 Natural Seal Stain X-100 Natural Seal

X-100 is a wood preservative that actually works to protect the wood you are working with. It has wood protecting ingredients. This stain is made so it penetrates the wood and it protects against cracking splitting and sap stains. This stain also protects against mold and mildew which is excellent. This natural seal wood preservative is also environment friendly and registered with the EPA as environment friendly. This stain can be used on any exterior wood surface. This exterior stain protects against Mother Nature’s intrusion as well such as wind, rain, snow and even ice. This is an oil based stain.

Type: Deep Penetrating Coats: 1-2 Coats
Coverage: 100-200 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Mineral Spirits

Organiclear Log Stain Organiclear Log Stain

Organiclear has a blend of deep penetrating oils which preserve the natural beauty of your logs. It also has resins and wax to create a moisture barrier for your log cabin. This stain will also prevent cracking and peeling. The WR-5 formula will give a finish that allows the wood to breathe naturally. Provides maximum protection against UV deterioration. Organiclear is an oil based stain great for log homes, wood siding, fences, and decks.

Type: Deep Penetrating Coats: 1
Coverage: 200-400 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Mineral Spirits

WeatherSeal Exterior Wood Finish WeatherSeal Exterior Wood Finish

Unlike typical thin & runny stains, WEATHERSEAL is thick and rich making this stain easy to apply without your typical mess. Formulated especially for log homes, cabins, decks, or any wood surface, WEATHERSEAL can even by used on pressure-treated wood. Use WEATHERSEAL if you desire a transparent finish that provides a beautiful natural wood appearance. WEATHERSEAL coverage is 250-400 sq. ft. per gal.

Type: Shallow Penetrating Coats: 2
Coverage: 175-325 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Mineral Spirits

UV Guard Log Stain UV Guard Log Stain

UV Guard is one of the original log home stains that has been used for years and is an acrylic wood finish for your logs. It contains UV absorbers and stabilizers which are designed to give greater protection and make the wood last longer if it is continuously exposed to harmful UV rays. UV guard exterior wood finish is also safe for interior use as well as exterior as an added bonus. UV Guard covers about 200-300 Square feet on the first coat and about 400-500 Square feet on the second coat. The coverage does depend on the porosity of the wood.

Type: Surface Coating Coats: 2 Coats
Coverage: 200-500 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

UV Guard II UV Guard II

Weatherall UV Guard II- Two Coat Exterior Wood Finish is a true two-coat system. Use one coat of UV Guard II—one color saturation coat goes on, followed by a clear top coat of UV Guard Advance. UV GUARD II's unique blend of resins and pigments provide far greater UV protection than most other stain products on the market while offering a beautiful natural looking finish. Available in ten standard colors, and custom colors upon request, this log home finish will keep your log home or wood siding looking great for years to come. Coverage rates for and-peeled logs and planed lumber 200-300 sq. ft./gallon for milled logs and rough sawn lumber 150-250 sq. ft./gallon.

  • Shields and protects from weather and UV rays
  • Easy to apply with brush or sprayer
  • May be applied over existing water-based wood finishes
  • Mold and mildew resistant formula
  • For use on fences, shingles, and other vertical wood surfaces in addition to logs
  • Safe for interior use
Type: Shallow Penetrating Coats: 1 Coat
Coverage: 150-300 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

UV Guard Advance UV Guard Advance

This eco friendly and water based, crystal clear coating will surely add deepness and a sheen to your stained wood. Made to be consumed as the topcoat for the UV Guard Wood Finish stain. It creates a breathable layer yet deters moistures which give an additional protection from damaging UV rays. Also suitable for use with other water based stains on the market today. Coverage rates 200-400 square feet per gallon

  • Easy to apply
  • Crystal clear finish
  • Long stain protection
  • Easy to maintain
  • Natural looking or modest sheen
  • Water repellent
  • Eco friendly
  • Low VOC formula
  • Water and soap clean up
  • No odor
  • Mildew and mold protection
  • Suitable with most other finishing products
Type: Top Coat Coats: 1 Coat
Coverage: 150-300 Sq Ft per Gal Clean Up: Soap and Water

Log-Gevity Log Stain & Stabilizer Log-Gevity Log Stain & Stabilizer

Logevity is another great stain and it is a stabilizer as well. For protection against mold and mildew and water intrusion Logevity is one of the best log cabin stains available. This log cabin stain and stabilizer also protects the wood from degradation because it has metallic UV inhibitors, zinc borates with water repellents right in the formula. This will protect your future finishes from cracking, or chipping and peeling. This great product also extends color and protects against the elements. This part one of the system also bonds with the sealant to protect and work together staining and sealing the perfect finish. Logevity is an oil based finish and it is based on rejuvenating wood. The coverage is about 300-400 square feet per gallon based on the porosity of the wood.

Log-Gevity Finish Coat Log-Gevity Finish Coat

The Log-Gevity Log Finish Coat is designed as the second step in a two-step process for use on horizontal and vertical wood surfaces.

Log-Gevity Log Finish Coat consists of several essential wood protecting ingredients blended specifically to generate a strong adhesive bond with the Log-Gevity™ Log Stain & Stabilizer and reinforce the UV and moisture inhibiting attributes which maintain and protect the life of the finish, while providing the aesthetically appealing, natural looking, rich warm glow commonly associated with natural wood finishes.

Unlike many film forming finishes, Log-Gevity Log Finish Coat is breathable and will not crack or peel. Log-Gevity Log Finish Coat is completes the solution to your log home care needs. Additional additives are not needed. Four U.V. inhibiting ingredients, including reflective metals, provide a resilient barrier that protects against damage caused by exposure to harsh climate conditions, wind and moisture erosion, and UV radiation. This product is available in the recommended clear. If desired, color toner may be added to the Log-Gevity Log Finish Coat as well.

Coverage: 200 sq. ft. per gallon.

Lovitts Natural Gold Log Stain

Lovvit's Natural Gold

If you own a cabin in the woods Lovvits Natural Gold is definitely the stain you should choose. While it does enhance the natural wood surfaces this particular stain bonds inside the grain of the wood surface. This particular stain is perfect for other surfaces as well such as decks and siding. This finish is made for taking on the elements and is specifically made to do so. Professional contractors use this particular stain for their work so if you need a durable oil based stain that will take on mother nature this is the sealant to choose. This is an oil based stain and has a coverage of 150-300 square feet per gallon.

These are some of the best stains available for a professional finish to your log cabin restoration or for a new look to your siding and railings. Some of these are great for providing an acrylic finish but with natural oils that will penetrate the wood for a beautiful stain. Stain is the most important part of refinishing wood to its most brilliant quality. There is nothing more stunning than a stain that is done perfectly with good products and expertise especially for a Log Cabin.

Stain Types

Deep Penetrating Stains

Provides deep penetrating protection penetrating as much as ½ inch or more (3-4 cells deep). Natural, non-glossy appearance. Provides good water repellency and UV protection. Often contains a preservative to prevent rot and insect infestation. Deep penetrating stains do not form a film that can lead to cracking and peeling. Recoating is easy with minimal prep needed. Due to the deep penetration there is less tendency for lap marks. Can be sprayed or brushed on. Best applied to bare wood, does not perform well over the top of existing stains. Must be fully cured prior to caulking or chinking.

Shallow Penetrating Stains

Shallow penetrating stains are most commonly your more traditional oil based stains. Penetration is normally 1-4 cells deep into the structure of the wood depending on several variables. If optimum penetration is not achieved then a film is deposited on the surface that can peel overtime. If applied properly these stains perform well with good water repellent and UV surface protection. Shallow penetrating stains often have have a sheen or glossy appearance.

Surface Stains

These types of coatings are usually water-based and achieve relatively little in the way of penetration. Surface Stains adhere to the cellulose created a protective film. These products perform well if high quality resins are used and the product is properly applied. Soap and water clean up can be expected.