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How to Waterproof Plywood

Updated February 21, 2017

If plywood is to be exposed to the elements, waterproofing is a neccessity. It is a material very vulnerable to nature, especially water, and if left outside, plywood will only survive with a good coat of waterproofing. Applying a waterproof top coat is easy and affordable, and can last from four to six years if applied properly.

Mix a can of sealant by shaking the can vigorously. Open the can and stir the contents with a stirring stick.

Pour some sealant in a painting tray and generously dip a brush or roller in the sealant. Apply the sealant in even strokes, covering the plywood with a thin, uniform layer. Let it dry for 35 to 45 minutes.

Apply a second layer in the same manner. Some sealants must be applied multiple times; consult the sealant's can for brand-specific instructions.

Tip

Many brands and types of waterproof sealant exist. Consult a paint store for an overview of your options. You can choose a sealant based on price, quality, durability or colour.

Warning

The wood surface must be dry when waterproofing is applied.

Things You'll Need

  • Waterproofing
  • Brush or roller
  • Gloves (optional)
  • Paint tray
  • Stirring stick
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About the Author

Kelly Berry began writing in 2008. Her work has appeared in Harvard University publications, "Southeast Ohio Magazine" and online at the CIMMYT website. Berry graduated from Ohio University's Scripps School of Journalism with a degree in magazine journalism and Spanish.