When someone visits your home, your porch is the first thing they see, and therefore, you want to make a good first impression.
A peeling or faded porch makes your home look neglected or unkempt, so a fresh lick of paint is one of the easiest ways to keep your home’s exterior looking neat and tidy.
Different porches require different types of paint, but there are two main types of porch and floor paints: oil-based enamel and latex enamel.
The former delivers a high gloss finish, while the latter comes in a choice of low-sheen or gloss finish.
Choosing the best paint for your porch depends on the material you’re painting on. If it’s a traditional wood porch that is covered by a roof, it can be coated with either latex or oil-based porch and floor paints.
Exterior concrete porches should only be painted with latex porch and floor paint, while other materials like composite lumber and PVC may need to be coated with special products beforehand to provide better adhesion.
You can also get anti-skid porch paints that offer added traction. These are great if your porch is used by children or senior citizens, as it reduces the risk of them falling or slipping.
Does porch paint need a primer?
Most porches will not require priming before you paint them, as usually porch and floor paint products contain a high binder content and many are considered self-priming.
If your current coating is oil-based, you can apply a latex porch and floor paint but you should sand the surface beforehand, using 120-grit sandpaper.
You’ll also want to thoroughly clean it with trisodium phosphate (TSP) or a substitute, to dull the shine of the oil slightly and enable the paint to grip the surface more easily.
However, some people also opt to apply two coats of exterior primer prior to applying their paint to provide a smooth, even surface to work on. We’ll explain how to do this later on in this article.
Can I spray paint my porch?
Most people use paint rollers (and extension poles in some cases) to achieve a smooth, even finish when painting their porch. They also use a brush to paint hard-to-reach spots.
There’s nothing stopping you from spray painting your porch, but the most important thing is that you use the right kind of paint.
How do you prep a porch for painting?
To ensure your porch is in its best condition for painting, you’ll need to do the following:
1. First of all, remove any furniture, plant pots, or floor coverings from your porch – you don’t want any of them to get splattered with paint.
2. Sweep away any dust and debris with a broom. If your porch is wooden, try to get as much dirt out of the cracks between the boards as possible.
3. Hose down the surface using a high-pressure garden hose or power washer. This should remove any remaining dirt and debris and provide you with a clean surface to paint on.
If your porch is concrete, scrub it thoroughly with a brush, water, and a specific chemical cleaner for concrete. Take safety precautions and wear protective gloves and eyewear.
4. Allow the porch to dry thoroughly, particularly if it’s wood. Wood is a porous surface, so it will take up to 24 hours to dry.
5. Once the porch is dry, you can sand and scrape it to remove any existing paint. If your porch is covered with old paint, you’ll need to remove this before repainting.
An orbital sander will work best, but you can also use paint scrapers to get some of the old paint off. Don’t forget to wear a respirator when operating a sander to protect your lungs from debris.
6. After the sanding is complete, use a broom or vacuum to clean up the dust and residue.
7. You can also tape any areas of the porch that you don’t want the paint to touch.
8. If working on concrete, you’ll need to apply a 5-10% Muriatic acid and water solution to help the primer and the paint adhere to the concrete.
9. You’ll then need to thoroughly wash the acid solution off the concrete with a pressure washer. Once it has dried, you can vacuum up any remaining powder.
How do you paint a porch floor?
Now that you’ve prepared your porch floor by cleaning and sanding it, you’ll need to prime and paint it.
- Prime the porch
Use an exterior primer and paint rollers to prime your porch. Remember to start on the far end of the porch so that you won’t have to walk on the wet paint and risk ruining it.
Work from one end of the porch to the other until the primer has been applied in a smooth, even coat. You can also use a paintbrush to prime cracks or tight spaces. Don’t forget to watch out for falling leaves or bugs that can get stuck in the primer while it’s wet.
The drying time of the primer will depend on the brand, but it’s usually between 1 and 8 hours. Once it’s fully dry, you can apply a second coat of exterior primer, following the same method as to how you applied the first coat.
- Apply your paint
Once your primer is fully dry, you can apply your first coat of paint.
Be sure to use paint specifically designed for outdoor porches or floors, and use paint rollers on extension poles to apply an even coat as well as a brush to paint hard-to-reach spots.
As with the primer, ensure your paint has dried for the amount of time specified by the manufacturer before you apply the second coat.
- Apply a sealant
If your porch is concrete, you should apply sealant once your second coat of paint is completely dry.
This will act as a barrier and will prevent water from seeping through the paint and ruining the paint job, and will also protect it from sun damage.
- Wait for your porch to dry
While it can be tempting to set your new porch up straight away, it’s best to wait 2 days before walking on it, as the paint will still be tacky at first.
Once the paint (and sealant) is fully dry, you can replace your outdoor furniture and enjoy your new porch.