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I have powerwashed and scraped wooden fence on both sides. It is pretty bare. We have not had 3 days without rain since I did this. How dry does the fence have to be before I prime and paint it. Should I paint only one side or will dampness from the other side cause the paint to fail?

  • You need to check the product you're using, but in general it needs to be properly dry – Chris H Aug 14 '18 at 15:47
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A better approach would be to set up some sort of cover, (if feasible size wise). Make sure there is air flow, i.e. don't just drape a tarp or polythene over the fence. I've got loads of quick release clamps and often use them on top of things to create a wider support for a tarp to hang clear of the surface.

It may take a week or two for the fence to dry out if it's soaked through.

Otherwise I agree with Chris, it needs to be dry. Sure, a water based preservative might tolerate more moisture in the wood than say an oil based one but still, dry is best. If you have access to a moisture meter, give it a try. Between 10% and 15% is ideal (assuming normal weather/humidity), and never paint anything over around 20%.

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