Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood – How to Preserve the Wood

by James Antony | Last Updated: 29th May 2020

Have you recently done pressure treating for your wooden flooring or fence? Painting wood that is pressure treated is a task that needs special care. Although the pressure treatment is good for making the wood last longer outdoors, it can also pose problems when you want to paint it and preserve the wood.

With proper drying and primer application, you will not have much difficulty in dealing with pressure-treated wood. And selection ofprimer is also an essential factor you should consider while working on pressure-treated wood.

If you are looking at a proper painting job, the right primer can do wonders to your wood. Here is a guide on the best primer products for pressure treated wood and a short guide on important factors you should know before you buy a primer.

Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood: Top 3 Primers for Wood

Ready Seal 512 5-Gallon Pail Natural Cedar Exterior Stain and Sealer for WoodBest All-Weather Sealer

Ready Seal Pail Natural Cedar Exterior Stain and Sealer for Wood - Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood Review

Ready Seal Exterior Stain and Sealer for Wood


Ready Seal Wood Stain and Sealer is a good product I would recommend for exterior wood projects, as it a premium product that enhances wood finish in the best way possible. The primer acts as a unique blend that can seal and stain wood effectively.

Design and Materials

Ready Seal is a special blend sealer for wood that is oil-based.

The product has superior quality resins and meticulously chosen pigments in finely ground form added to it besides the oils used in it.

The carefully selected ingredients help in deep and effective penetration. They also help in protecting the wood from weather elements.

Ready Seal Pail Natural Cedar Exterior Stain and Sealer for Wood - Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood Review


The product is of semi-transparent type. This enhances the appearance of the wood as the Stainer reacts with the natural properties of the wood. The product allows the wood grains and texture to be visible clearly.

It is effective on all major wood types namely Redwoods, Spruce, Douglas Fir, Cypress, and Western Red Cedar.

I tried it on my cedar wood patio deck and found that it really had a good finish. I really liked the fact that it can be applied to wood in direct sunlight. It dried quickly and can become waterproof in a few minutes of applying it.

Budge Benefits

Since Ready Seal has wood sealer and stain in a single base, it saves you the cost of buying two separate products.

While the stains help add color to wood, the sealer added prevents moisture from affecting the wood surface. Besides minimizing the applications needed, it also manages to give a top quality finish.

  • Protects wood from mildew, mold and UV rays of the sun
  • Does not peel or flake
  • Application and maintenance are easy with this adhesive, as you do not need stripping or sanding for reapplying the product
  • Is not sticky or tacky to use
  • Color fades in a few months
  • The product is light in weight and blows all over when sprayed
  • On storing, the product separated into a clear liquid on top and solid layer settled at the bottom

KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Exterior Latex SealerBest Water-based Primer

KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer - Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood Review

KILZ Premium Latex Primer


If you are in search of a water-based primer that works excellently on softwood surface, Kilz Premium Latex Primer is a good choice to consider. The product is ideal for both exterior and interior wood applications. The capability of preventing mildew and mold makes it more desirable.

Design and Materials

Kilz Premium sealer is made of a creamy and thick formula. The sealer contains very minimal VOC. This is because the sealer does not have any added VOC solvent. The amount of VOC present in it is under 5 g/L and this excludes the colorant.

The product also does not have an overpowering odor. And spilling the primer during application is not a worry as you can easily clean the spills using soap water. Thus, using Kilz Premium sealer in homes or at workspaces with people around is safe.

KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer - Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood Review


The strong ingredients used in this water-based sealer and primer ensures you can get a smooth finish. It is capable of hiding not only stains but the color of the wood present previously.

The powerful adhesive ingredients added ensures it stays on exteriors as well as interior surfaces for a long time.

The consistency is ideal for sealing porous wood surfaces. The product also acts as filler for minor imperfections. Mildewcide protection helps in dealing with mold and mildew effectively.

In addition to woodwork, the primer can be used on drywall, brick, masonry, plaster, and paneling too. It is also perfect for working in rooms that have high humidity such as laundry or bathrooms.

The primer and stain blocker action of the adhesive helps to seal medium and light stains and reduce imperfections in the surface due to differences in porosity and texture.

It can be used over oil or latex-based paints. You need to just ensure that the surface is well prepared and free of dust, chalk, grease, peeling paint, and rust.

Budget Benefits

The product is a bit on the expensive side. However, the premium quality product, color change option, and great adhesive properties make the expense you incur worth it.

  • Does not have VOCs
  • Is good for protecting wood surfaces from mold and mildew
  • Can be used for interior and exterior wood surfaces
  • Good choice for surfaces that are exposed to moisture constantly
  • Good sealing property
  • The consistency is too thick and is messy to use
  • Does not work that well on bold colors
  • Needs multiple coats to seal and hide the color

Zinsser 03504 Cover Stain Exterior Oil Primer SealerBest Oil Based Primer

Zinsser 03504 Cover Stain Interior/Exterior Oil Primer Sealer - Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood Review

Zinsser Cover Stain Oil Primer Sealer


As an oil-based primer, Zinsser is a good choice to consider for your exterior and interior surfaces for a hassle-free sealer or primer coat. The product is easy and effective to use.

Design and Materials

The oil-based Zinsser 03504 is formulated with care to act as a sealer, stain blocker, and effective bond coat. The ingredients can be used safely on redwood or cedarwood.

The primer dries in an hour, after which you can apply the paint. The polyurethane sealer gives an added shine to your wood surfaces, so you need to consider how this will affect the appearance after a paint coat.


Whether you want a sealer and primer for indoor or outdoor woodwork, Zinsser helps in creating a perfect cover. It is best for sealing exterior wood.

The ingredients added to make it ideal for hiding even dark colors, preventing tannin bleed and for blocking stains.

Zinsser can act effectively on nicotine stains, smoke as well as water stains too. And you need not sand the surface due to the strong adhesive property of the primer.

More technical details could be found here.

Budget Benefits

As it is available in Quart-sized packs only, using Zinsser for large projects can turn to be very expensive. Furthermore, you have to consider the inflammability and toxic nature of the product.

  • Does not need sanding for proper adhesion
  • The finish is shiny and robust
  • Sealing action is very good for moisture protection
  • Dries quickly
  • Gives a flexible primer finish
  • Consistency is too thick
  • Is difficult and messy to use
  • Odor stays for a day or more so requires proper ventilation until it dries

Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood – Buying Guide/FAQs

Now that you have gone through my top three primers for pressure treated wood, here are a few frequently asked questions that will help you make an informed decision on the right product to buy.

1. How do you prepare pressure treated wood for painting?

Pressure treated wood requires proper care before it can take on a paint coating. You need to clean the wood surface, allow it to dry properly, and apply primer, before you can use your paint coats.

2. What happens if you paint treated wood too soon?

If you apply paint on pressure treated wood before the wood is ready, the paint will peel off and make your entire effort futile.

3. Do you need to seal pressure treated wood?

Although the pressure treatment protects the wood from termite and decay, a sealer is necessary to control cracks or splitting of the wood surface. And the sealer enhances the appearance of the wood.

Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood – Final Takeaway

As you can see, choosing a primer with care is a crucial part of taking care of your wooden surfaces. Using a top-quality primer can go a long way in ensuring all your efforts towards caring for your wood are not wasted.

The choice of the product you want to buy is based mainly on your specific needs and particularly the budget.

For instance, if you are doing an exterior job you would need multiple coats and a thicker product will need fewer coats. If you are in search of an oil-based primer with great adhesive qualities, Kilz Premium is a good choice.

For good mold and mildew protection, and when you prefer a water-based sealant, using a product like Ready seal is favorable.

Did you like our Best Primer for Pressure Treated Wood Review? Please comment!
And don’t forget to check our other reviews – Best Clear Coat Over Latex Paint could be interesting for you!

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