Top Pick – The Best Exterior Wood Paint
Rust-Oleum Latex Paint is a low odor paint both for your outdoor and indoor wood. Its formula resists peeling and creates long-lasting protection.Check Price
If you’ve never done it before, painting exterior wood seems like an incredibly easy task. Simply pick your favorite option and then brush it on, right? Wrong!
Before applying any paint to a piece of outdoor wooden furniture or deck, you’ll likely need to clean the surface, strip and sand it. After that, the priming is recommended. Much of the process described above depends on whether the wood is already primed and painted or raw.
If that seems like too much work, don’t worry. There are many exterior paints on the market that allow you to skip these steps by including them in one simple process. There are also so many styles and finishes you can choose from, from a matte or glossy finish! In this article, we’ll explore 8 best exterior paints for wood that are currently on the market.
Best Exterior Paints for Wood in May, 2023
|#||Paint for wood||Coverage (quart)||Dry time (minutes)||Colors|
|1||Rust-Oleum Latex |
|up to 120 sq ft||30||18||Check Price|
|2||Kilz Porch and Patio Floor||50-100 sq ft||60||2||Check Price|
|3||Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch Spray||up to 12 sq ft (1 can)||20||8||Check Price|
|4||Kilz Exterior||50-125 sq ft||120-180||2||Check Price|
|5||Rust-Oleum Satin||up to 120 sq ft||30||2||Check Price|
|6||Prestige||100 sq ft||60-120||7||Check Price|
|7||Montage Signature||up to 100 sq ft||30||20||Check Price|
|8||New York Botanical Gardens||100 sq ft||60-120||9||Check Price|
1. Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch Ultra Cover Latex Paint – Top Exterior Paint for Wood
Rust-Oleum’s Painter’s Touch latex-based paint is extremely versatile, with many possible uses. Going to refresh exterior furniture? The Rust-Oleum is for you. If you’re in the midst of a massive renovation or just working on multiple outdoor projects, Rust-Oleum makes painting much easier. Plus, the beautiful glossy finish can be used on much more than just wood. You can use it on glass, metal, ceramic, plaster and canvas (so long as they are not walking surfaces).
Painter’s Touch is made with “double cover” technology. This means you’ll deal with less wear and tear and chipping of the paint. It provides a fresh, clean look to worn-out surfaces and most projects are completed in one to two coats. It’s also a low-odor, safe product that’s easily cleaned up with soap and water should any messes occur during its application.
If you’re applying it to another hard surface, like metal, it does not need to be sanded down. Additionally, this formula is incredibly fast-drying. You can apply one coat and come back and repaint another in just 30 minutes!
- Can be used on interior and exterior surfaces
- Quick drying
- Easy application, easy clean-up of spills during the application process
- Lasts longer than most other products
- Sanding required before application on wood surfaces
- Cannot be used on walking surfaces
2. Kilz Porch and Patio Floor Paint – Best Deck and Wood Floor Paint
A great product by Kilz, specifically geared at painting decks, wooden porch and patio floors that easily get worn out. If you haven’t painted your porch or patio floor for fear of the incredible amount of maintenance, you’re missing out on the added style and protection that painting the floor can give you. If you have invested the money to make a beautiful outside extension of your home, you need to protect your investment with this product.
Kilz’ Porch and Patio Floor paint protects your wood flooring from scuffs, scratches, fading, cracking or peeling. While it can be applied to any hard surface like cement, metal or masonry, the true beauty of this product is seen when painted on wood.
This latex enamel product is really easy to apply. It dries within one hour (however, wait 4-6 hours to apply a second coat) and is available in the popular slate gray or silver gray colors. One gallon covers between 200-400 square feet and can be rolled, brushed or sprayed on to your porch or patio flooring.
- Specifically created to protect outdoor decks and flooring but can be used for furniture, siding and other projects
- Can be applied to other surfaces like cement and metal
- No priming necessary
- Lengthy application process takes 4-6 hours to apply two coats
3. Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch 2X Ultra Cover Spray – Top Outdoor Spray Paint for Wood
Rust-Oleum has a number of paints on this list, and it is for good reason. They put out such a high-quality product, and it’s not just limited to traditional paint. This Painter’s Touch Ultra Cover spray is a fantastic choice if you need quick, even application of color on items that would be difficult to evenly cover with paint due to their size or intricacies. It can be used on nearly all outdoor pieces, adhering to everything from wood, to metal, ceramic and even plastic!
The oil-based formula sprays on evenly and dries very quickly, within 20 minutes or less. This enables you to quickly see the level of coverage from one coat and finish your project quickly, anticipating how many more coats you will need within just minutes. Unlike other sprays, it is low odor and has a beautiful satin finish that will create a look similar to that of what a professional painter would create.
This product is also popular amongst car enthusiasts as the clear coat can repair headlights that have turned cloudy with age. If you are using the paint for that, you should also sand down the headlights somewhat before application.
- Can safely be used on a variety of surfaces
- Quick drying
- Perfect for small exterior projects
- The application can be uneven if a can is not prepped (shaken) before use
4. Kilz Exterior Siding, Fence & Barn Paint – Top Exterior Paint For Fence and Siding
If you’re looking for an exterior paint that will protect your outdoor wood project from the elements for a long time, then Kilz Exterior Siding, Fence & Barn paint is the right choice for you! Kilz brand has been a top producer of paints and primers for 40 years. They know what they’re doing, and they do it right!
This product is specifically formulated to protect against wear and tear, mold and mildew, rust and more. It resists cracking, drying, peeling and blisters caused by the sun on your outdoor painted wood. It is self-priming, which means you just have to clean and sand down the wood before you apply this product.
The water and oil-based formula sticks well to almost anything and lasts for long. You won’t have to reapply year after year, even in the toughest of conditions. Use this on stucco, cement, wood, metal or whatever surface you have outside that needs some protection.
- Extremely long-lasting once applied
- Protects surfaces from wear and tear in all weather conditions
- Self-priming formula
- Long application process
- Back-brush or back-roll application can lead to uneven coverage
5. Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch Satin – Satin Paint for Outdoor Wood Furniture
This multi-purpose latex paint has a ton of benefits, besides the trusted Rust-Oleum name behind it! It’s great for all of your exterior painting needs including painting outdoor wood furniture. It offers a beautiful satin finish that does not chip easily and works well in high traffic areas. The paint can be used on a wide variety of surfaces besides wood, like metal, ceramics or earthenware, plaster and cement. Unlike a lot of paints, the Painter’s Touch Satin is low-odor. It’s really easy to use and very easy to clean up. You just have to wipe it down with soap and wet washrag before it dries.
This one not only goes on thoroughly and evenly but because it is a satin finish it also hides any imperfections; you need not worry about being an expert when using this product! Prior to using this paint, you should sand down your wood project with a 180-200 grit piece of sandpaper and then apply a degreaser. After that, wait about 2 hours (or more) for the wood to be dry and then apply this paint. While it does take a bit more time and effort than other paints, the final result will stun you!
- Great value for the cost
- Can be used on a wide variety of surfaces
- Must sand, prime and de-gloss before applying this product to a piece of wood
6. Prestige LifeTime – Both Exterior Paint and Primer in One
This ultra-premium paint from Prestige Paints makes your wood project much easier to complete by combining paint and primer in one product. Prestige also offers a match to some Sherwin-Williams paints making it easy for you to touch-up old projects and give them new life! Application of this option is extremely easy. The formula’s smooth finish provides even coverage and hides blemishes or mistakes made by the most novice of painters. It also does a fantastic job on wood, cement, stone works, masonry, metal, and even vinyl siding!
The paint will look great when applied with a high-quality brush, and usually, at least two to three coats are needed to achieve the best look. It usually takes about 2-3 hours for one coat to dry, so this product might take longer to use than others.
Each color is intended for interior or exterior use only. Read carefully before purchase.
- Easy application
- Matches some Sherwin-William paints
- High-quality coverage masks blemishes
- Need to sand most projects before application
7. Montage Signature – Eco – Friendly Paint
Montage a very versatile water-based paint that comes in several versions. You can get a low-sheen version if you prefer a smooth, flat finish, or you can get the semi-gloss variety if you want the wood to shine a little. This paint is available in a bunch of different colors, but all of them are light pastel shades. This presents a slight problem for those who don’t like pastel colors, but their muted nature does make them an ideal choice for home decor. After all, you don’t want your home decked out in a loud color like neon green or hot pink.
After all, they are not under any legal obligation to produce eco-friendly paint, though there is an obvious marketability incentive to do so. Still, environmental protection is very important, and this also makes the paint much less vile on the senses.
I say that it is unusual because most paint doesn’t come with any kind of warranty, let alone a warranty with such a long term. This indicates that the company is very confident in the durability of their product.
This paint applies very smoothly, having no real tendency to chunk up and form clumps. If there’s one thing I cannot stand, it’s finding clumps in the paint. You will get pretty good coverage out of a single can of this stuff, and the thick consistency should do an excellent job of hiding whatever it is that you are painting over.
Protects mold and mildew
Another good thing is that this paint contains substances that are meant to fight mold and mildew. This makes it great for wood in wetter areas that would normally be quite prone to mold/mildew issues. If this paint resists mold and mildew as well as advertised, it wouldn’t be a bad choice for your next bathroom job.
- Available in semi-gloss or low-sheen
- Subtle, muted colors
- Ten-year warranty
- Applies smoothly with good coverage
- Fights mold and mildew
- Not good for those who hate pastel colors
- Not available in full gloss
- Water-based paints require more coats
8. New York Botanical Gardens – Warm Tropical Colors for Exterior Wood
This is a lovely pastel paint from the people at New York Botanical Gardens. This is not just one kind of paint, but an entire line of paints designed around a tropical theme. A wide variety of colors are offered, such as “Bird Of Paradise,” “Lagoon,” and “Caribbean Blue.” Obviously, this line of paint isn’t necessarily a good choice for those who don’t like a tropical theme, or for those who have chosen a dark-colored theme for their home or place of business.
Paint and Primer in One
Depending on the size of your painting job, this can save you quite a few hours of work. If you are hiring contractors to paint your home, paint like this will mean fewer work hours, which means a lower bill for you when it’s all said and done.
This paint is advertised as containing a new “high hide” formula. Upon doing a little more research, I see that this kind of paint is intended to do a better job of hiding whatever color or surface lies beneath.
This is a somewhat environmentally friendly paint and has very little odor. It is low in VOC’s (volatile organic compounds), and this makes it less unpleasant to use.
- Available in a wide variety of nice, appealing colors
- Great for those who live in Florida, where tropical colors are almost mandatory
- Does a good job of hiding old colors and finishes
- Low odor
- Primer and paint all in one
- Not suitable for those who don’t like tropical colors
- Might provide too much hide for some wood-painting applications
As seen in many of the options above, to achieve the best look, there is a process that must come before painting any exterior wood. Though some products include a primer, most advise that you sand and finish wood before it is painted. Why? Let’s walk through the process.
Wash the Wood
Hair, dust mildew and other particles can get mixed up in your paint. This will cause visible blemishes, bumps and imperfections. Washing down the wood with mild soap and water or tri-sodium phosphate (found at your local hardware store) will save you from future headaches.
Sand the Wood
Even if the wood came from a hardware store, sand it down with a 180-200 grit sandpaper and then wipe off the dust with a cloth. Sanding the wood gives the paint something to attach itself to.
Prime the Wood
Primer chemically bonds to problematic areas of the wood and gives the paint an even surface to rest on, so that the end result is more uniform. I’ve put together great primers for the wood so that you can pick up exactly what you need. After applying primer, lightly sand the wood one more time and wipe it down. Now, you are ready to start painting.
Seal the Wood
Remember if you’re painting wood which is going outside make sure the paint has a built-in sealer or add a sealer once the paint is dry.
While many paints say that they include a primer, be wary about skipping all of the steps above before applying, even if it is high quality. While washing, sanding and priming the wood can be time-consuming, each step gets you closer toward your goal of having a project that is painted in the most professional manner and ensures the longevity. Ultimately, decide what kind of paint to purchase based on what you are painting, where it will live (indoor or outdoor), how much time to have to complete the project and what color and finish you want the project to have. The great projects are those that keep their beauty with minimum maintenance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Never try to paint over an existing wood surface without first prepping it.
Applying a fresh coat of paint directly over the old one will not work and will ultimately peel. Stripping old paint before applying a new one will give you better results.
Yes, you can paint over stained wood. To paint over a stain, sand any shiny surfaces lightly until they are dull, then wash them down with a damp towel soaked in de-glosser.
Allow for drying time. To avoid bleed-through, use a quick-dry primer-sealer in equal strokes. Allow the sealer to dry before applying the final coat.
Yes, you can spray paint on wood. Spray paint dries much quicker than brushed on pain. Spray painting wood is a simple technique to get a smooth, uniform surface.
It is especially true with intricately designed products. Spray paint will give you a near-perfect finish, but painting with a brush might result in drips and brush marks.
If the wood isn’t bare, untreated wood, repair any cracks or holes with wood filler and sand the whole surface with different sandpaper grades ranging from medium to fine before applying the fresh paint.
If you’re painting raw, untreated wood, the answer is: no, you cannot paint directly on the wood.
If the wood is bare exterior wood, you need to prime it before painting. The high-solids content of primer aids in filling the wood grain and provides a smooth surface for the final coat.
Unfinished woods are prone to soaking up paint, and primer helps seal the surface to avoid this.
Yes, Exterior paints repel water. They create a stronger and more durable finish, making them an excellent choice for exterior wood projects.
For many years, oil-based paints were the preferred choice for exterior work, but recent technical improvements in water-based paints have made them superior. Acrylic paint is the most long-lasting. It’s flexible and resistant to fading from the sun and damage from rain and other environmental factors.
You can know if the wood is dry enough to paint by putting few drops of water on the surface of the wood. It is ready to be painted if the water soaks in.
To prepare exterior wood for painting you need to :
- Scrub away accumulated dirt, filth, mold, and other residue using a mild detergent. When you’re happy with the way the wood looks, rinse it down with a garden hose from top to bottom. Allow a full day for the surface to dry before proceeding.
- Use wood filler to repair big holes, nail holes, and gouges.
- Sand the surface to make it ready for new paint. To grind down sharper edges, start with low-grit sandpaper of approximately 60 grit.
- Prime surface for painting. Select a latex-based primer intended for outdoor usage. These materials are more resistant to the heat, dampness, rubbing, and swelling that outdoor wood surfaces are frequently exposed to.
They may bend a little, making them less prone to cracking than paints that harden into a rigid shell. Your paintwork will appear better and last longer as a result.
A clear polyurethane coating can help protect exterior paint on wood and extend its life.
Polyurethane is a synthetic, oil-based varnish that coats painted and bare wood surfaces with a durable and protective layer. It comes in liquid form, which you may apply with a brush or a spray can.
If the wood is simply wet on the surface, it generally only takes one sunny day or two to dry before painting. If the wood is moist, it will take many sunny or windy days to dry it out.
Depending on the size of the wood, you should let it cure for a week to a month.
Painting covers the surface of the wood, whereas a stain penetrates it. Unlike paint, which covers and hides the beauty of your wood, stain protects and maintains it.
Paint lasts longer on outdoor wood. whereas stain provides the natural look of wood. If you are looking for the best protection paint is better. If you are going for a natural look stain is the way to go.
With current advancements in paint technology, they adhere quite well to wood, even without priming. Good quality paint will stick to bare wood flawlessly.
The purpose of primer is to make the wood less porous. It is not the glue that adheres the paint to the wood. It is recommended to prime wood before painting it as it provides a smooth and clean area for the paint to adhere to.
There are two types of paints suitable and durable for outdoor wood: Oil-based paint Acrylic paint.
Oil-based paints dry harder, which provides excellent resistance to wear and tear. It tends to crack and turn yellow over time.
Water-based paints have recently achieved technological advances that make them a better overall choice. Acrylic paint is the most long-lasting between the two. It’s flexible and resistant to fading from the sun, as well as damage from rain and other environmental factors.
We built a wood pergola over an outdoor courtyard at my church. Some of the wood is exposed truss framing from the original roof, to which we scabbed on 2×10 extensions. All of the wood is untreated 2x framing material. We have coated it with Benjamin Moore solid color stain 3 times, most recently 3 years ago. It has not held up well in the brutal Colorado summer sun. The wood has once again started cracking and flaking, so we are looking for a better product to coat it with that will last longer than 3 years. We would have to match the stain color, or use a clear coat with a satin or matte finish. What would you recommend?
I would suggest a UV-resistant epoxy like this one: It is crystal clear epoxy, durable and impact-resistant, make a good seal, and primarily will make your wood UV and waterproof.
For a long-term solution, you can also add exterior varnish topcoats for very harsh conditions. Epoxy protects wood from moisture due to which wood doesn’t swell and shrink. This gives exterior varnish long life because it no longer has to stretch and shrink with the wood, varnish will protect your epoxy from UV rays and give it a longer life.
Both varnish and epoxy I have recommended are clear coat and will not cover your pre-applied colors. You can use varnish like this one by RTG.
Hi I am planning to paint an outdoor wooden swing. I wanted to have a pastel matte color for the base, then was planning to paint colorful flowers/nature all over the swing. The swing has a platform and wooden seats. What paint would you recommend for the base? Also, do the colorful designs have to be painted with special outdoor paint as well? Or would it be okay to use regular acrylic and then apply a varnish/sealer to the swing. Thank you!
Hi Christina, it’s great to have a painted swing in the yard, congratulations on that.
For both the seat and the rest of the swing, you can use exterior latex paint like this one by Rust-Oleum.
In case it is one color, you can just renew it when you need it again with paint.
In case you want to paint flowers and other things, it is good to protect what is painted with a transparent varnish like this one by Rust-Oleum as well.
It will adhere well to the latex and will have a transparent coating without yellowing (so as not to change the colors you have chosen). In this way, you will renew only the transparent cover when necessary without having to color the drawing.
Again, it is good to use paint for the exterior.
I’m painting Adirondack chairs that will live outside in Massachusetts. Looking for a white glossy finish. It’s going on bare wood. Best recommendation?
Good choice of color and surface for an outdoor chair. The white color will not absorb so much sunlight and the glossy surface will be easy to clean.
You can use paint № 1 in the list by Rust-Oleum, you will work easily and quickly with it and it will give you good protection.
Don’t forget to prepare the wood well, sand it with P180-220 sandpaper before applying the paint. The glossy surface shows the beauty of the product, but also reveals the imperfections.
Maintain the cover on time and you will enjoy your chairs for a long time.
I have a love seat and couch that my dad and grandpa hand built in the late 60’s that is made of wood that I want to redo and paint to use outside near our pool. I’m not really sure what product would be best to keep it from rotting or getting ruined. What are your thoughts? I can send pictures if that helps. Thank you!
Congratulations for wanting to protect and enjoy the handmade bench and seat, I would call them family values :)
First, inspect their condition at the moment, are there any fractures, injuries, punctures, rot… If there are, it is good to fix them.
It is good to know if they have any coverage at the moment and if so what it is and what it is like.
In case, there is a coating and it is in poor condition, it is better to remove it (paint lifting agent, spatula, paint removal disc, sandpaper).
In case there is no potion, you just have to sand until a light tree with grid P150 and then P220 appears.
Now you can apply the new paint.
Given that, will be located by the pool where people will sit wet sometimes, you can use exterior paint marine grade like this one by Rust-Oleum.
There will be an unpleasant odor when applied, but once it dries it will stop and you will have a strong coating.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use.
In case the bench and the seat have a coating that is strong and does not need to be removed (this saves a lot of time and effort) you can sand with Grid P220 and apply paint or clear marine oil-based varnish. In this version, you need to make sure that the old and the new cover will work well! . you can do a test on a small area of the bench where it is not very noticeable.
I would love it if you can help me. Many years ago in South Africa my Dad built be an eight food wood dining room table. He was somewhat of a perfectionist and this table has held up extremely well. Over the years it has gotten some dings and scratches (kids…) and I’d like to sand it down and refinish it. My Dad unfortunately passed away four years ago so I can’t ask him but I do believe he used Glatex 8 to paint it. You cannot destroy this paint. A wet water glass can sit on the table, leave a terrible white ring and the next day it is gone! Do you know of an equivalent in the United States? It would need to be black in color.
I’d really appreciate it if you could help.
Glatex 8 is an excellent product, and I advise you to use it again. There are equivalents in the United States, but they are all water-based (environmental requirements are higher today). Water-based products do not adhere well to old varnish even when treated with sandpaper; over time, the new varnish can peel off.
To use a water-based product, you have to remove the old varnish to the wood; this is usually a lot of work.
If you decide to use this method, you can use the following product. To remove the old varnish you can use this one by Sunnyside in combination with a spatula and sandpaper, which will ease the process.
A third option is to use epoxy resin for boats in combination with black dye, there are 2 products I recommend for this one by Marine Tex and this color pigment.
You remove scratches with sandpaper in case they are not deep and use putty if they are too deep.
Don’t forget to wear gloves and a mask. Good luck.
I have wooden garage door and what paint will you recommend that will prime and seal? Thank you!
I would recommend using this Kilz primer, sealer, and stain blocker with this Kilz exterior paint.
Hi I want to paint my bees hives which is exposed outside 24/7, I need my wood to protect from sun, rain , weather, mold etc … can u
I would recommend a spar varnish by Rust-Oleum or Minwax. Another good sealer to protect from all-weather is this sealer by Behr on Amazon.
Hi, what would you recommend to paint an outdoor bench which I am building? the wood is planed unprimed. I want the legs and rails to be dark grey or black and the seat tops just sealed wood all in a matte finish. Thanks
I would recommend something like this by Rust-Oleum in the color you want or something like this by Glidden in the color you want. For the matte finish, I would use something like this just make sure it is exterior paint.
Can Kilz exterior paint be color matched? I Want to sand down some peeling wood on our screened porch gazebo wall ledges and repaint with same color. I need it to be durable and water proof if possible. Also, would the Kilz work for repainting our deck railings as well?
Yes, you should be able to color match the paint or get something very close to it. For the durability and waterproofing of the wood, I would use a wood sealer or spar varnish which can be found online or at any hardware store. Yes, the Kilz paint will work to repaint your deck as long as you make sure its exterior paint.
Hello. Great article. I am doing a shiplap accent wall on a bathroom with pine boards. Could you recommend a white paint that could be water repellent from the shower and vanity splashes?
Thanks Best regards.
Go for Rust-Oleum Latex Paint, it can be used both for indoor and outdoor wood, got many colors including white you need.
Hi i a going to paint some outdoor muskoka chairs like the ones you see at Margaritaville with parrots, palm trees etc. On them ….. what do you suggest for the main colour? I need a paint that I can paint the birds, trees etc. On top of and then can it be sealed where the picture is? What do you recommend
Color? I ain’t really sure, maybe brown, it’s just my subjective view. I think choosing a color is up to you 🙂
Speaking of paint, choose Rust-Oleum Latex, it’s got plenty of colors. It’s better to use varnish or exterior urethane to protect painted wood.
Great article! I want to paint a wooden retainer wall in front of my mom’s house. It has never been painted but I’m sure was pressure treated when installed almost 50 years ago. Any suggestions?
If the white color is okay for you then KILZ Exterior will be just fine. It doesn’t require any sanding, priming etc. Just remove dirt from the retainer using a washer and you’re ready to paint. Or you can use Rust-Oleum Latex, but it requires sanding.
I walk with a cane or a walker. My house sets 35 inches off ground so I need to paint 35 foot long ramp. I cant afford to get it painted every
Year or even every five years. I walk on the inclined surface and have stairs for others. Help.
Is the ramp made of wood? If so, I can only recommend KILZ Porch, it’s the only paint I know that is suitable for walking surfaces.
I’m painting the shell of our hot tub, which is wood, and need something that will withstand lots of sun exposure as well as cold nights (we basically live in the desert), occasional water spillage and is easy to apply.
Do you have any recommendations?
I’ve used Sherwin Williams a lot in the past, but am open to any suggestions you have.
I think Rust-Oleum Painters Touch Latex is the best option from the list for you, but it requires sanding.
I am looking to repaint a wooden swing set. There isn’t a huge surface for walking as the stairs are metal and the base of the playhouse is not rather large. I’d like to find a paint that I can get in several fun colors (rather than brown). Are there any good suggestions?
Rust-Oleum Latex Paint has plenty of colors and it’s suitable both for exterior wood and metal in case you want to paint some metal parts.
Any suggestions for a heat resistant white paint for wood exterior garage doors exposed to strong sunlight in summer.
Rust-Oleum Latex can be used on metal (I suppose your garage doors are made of steel). But I can’t really say how Rust-Oleum or other paints on the list withstand heat.
Hi William could you tell me the best paint to use on a south facing shed all ones I’ve used have blistered
Kilz Exterior would be great, resists peeling and blistering.
Hi William, any recommendations for painting exposed Tannalith treated softwood beams inside a house?
Use Montage Signature, it can be used interior. I would also recommend using Rust-Oleum but it requires thorough sanding.
I am looking for a recommendation for paint to use for a horse drawn wooden cart. It has been previously painted, and I do not know what kind of paint. I want it to be shiny when finished 🙂
Hi there, Pamela.
I think Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch fits best here. But make sure you get rid of dust, dirt and old paint before applying Rust-Oleum. This paint has many sheens, you have to look for gloss.
Love your article, William. I want to paint my outdoor bare wood table, but the problem is I’m living in Mobile. It’s very rainy town so I think protecting the table against moisture is a good idea. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen any waterproof brands on your list. Can you please tell me if there are waterproof paints for wood I can use? Thank you in advance.
Thanks for your question, Mila. Actually, all paints designed for exterior use withstand moisture well. I can definitely say that chalk paints are not the best choice for waterproofing, therefore, they are used for painting interior furniture mostly. Exterior paint kind of seals the wood by itself so in most cases, you won’t need any additional wood finish to protect wood against humidity. But for you, I think using some top coat wouldn’t be a bad idea. I think using a sealer will be the best solution here.
Sealers are specially designed to protect wood against the moisture, mold and rotting particularly exterior wooden protects. So if the only thing you need is waterproofing then sealer is a ‘must have’ for you. Several months ago I wrote the article where I listed top sealers on the market in my opinion https://woodimprove.com/best-wood-sealers/. I think Agra-Life Lumber Seal will be a great choice for you. Remember that sealers work better when applied over water-based paints. Also, it’s worth mentioning that you will need to refinish your table each 6-12 month depending on weather and utilization conditions. Of course, you may apply something more durable like polyurethane but I think it will be redundant.
So, sand your table using a fine grid, then prime it (choose one of the water-based primers here https://woodimprove.com/best-wood-primers/). Then paint it preferably using water-based paint. Wait for it to fully dry and finally apply a couple of coats of wood sealer. Hope, you will be pleased with the results.
Hi there! Last October I painted my fence gates with Behr exterior. I liked the results, so far paint looks great, there are no peelings off or rives. I want to paint interior stair rails this spring. I have a half a gallon of Behr left over and I wonder if I could use it to paint the rails. Or maybe I need to buy another tin of paint, especially for the interior? Your answer will be very helpful.
Nice to see you on my blog, Chris.
Basically, you are right. Purely exterior paint should not be used for interior uses. I’ve never used Behr brand but if it says that it’s intended only for exterior then use it only for the exterior.
Exterior paints designed especially for outdoor to resist harsh weather conditions: aggressive sunbeams, wind, heat, cold, moisture etc. Exterior paint has to ‘soft’ so that it can enlarge/shrink depending on temperature outdoors so if you use it inside you will get a little bit tacky surface.
Furthermore, exterior paints have harsh chemicals and strong odor (since they have to deal with the weather as I mentioned) which will stay in your house for a long time, much longer than interior paints that often got no odor at all. And what I find the most important is that some exterior paints may outgas which means you will breathe polluted air on a daily basis.
So each paint’s recommended to be used for certain conditions whether exterior and interior or even both. If you want to break the rules then at least contact manufacturer to make sure you’re doing it in a safe manner.
We bought an outside cat shelter, we live in Pennsylvania where Winter is approaching fast. The original paint on the shelter is light n splotchy and there is no way it is waterproof. My question is, can you recommend a paint that would do well in Northern winters and also not be overwhelming to our cats nose. Thanks 🙂
Hi Laura, congratulations on taking good care of your cats 🙂
I think paint number one by Rust-Oleum on the list will do a great job.
It has good protection for external conditions and is mostly harmless. Rapid drying saves time.
Don’t forget to sand the old coating before applying the new one.
Hi good article. I need the best exterior wood paint, I read your article and now I’m choosing between kilz and rustoleum. What’s the better choice?..
Hi, Michael. First of all, there are Rust Oleum paints on the list that are not to be used outside. You could pick up multi-purpose latex paint or Premium latex paint but chalk paints are only for interior use. Furthermore, I need to know what you are trying to accomplish exactly to give you some advice. If it’s something like pressure treated wood, decks or patio that experience a lot of traffic then I definitely recommend KILZ porch. I’m afraid no other option on the list could provide such great protection for pressure treated wood as Kilz do.
If you’re going to refresh thing which got a large area such as siding, barn or fence then choose KILZ exterior siding. It’s made especially for these kinds of projects. By the way, if you haven’t known yet I will tell you that you need to prime the project before you paint it to hide spots and make the paint stick to the surface more evenly. But Kilz exterior is self-priming so you don’t need to waste money to buy a gallon of primer to prepare you siding.
Okay, KILZ options are great to paint large projects that require great durability and longevity. On the other hand, KILZ will be excessive if you’ve got something like an outdoor chair, table or some little piece made of wood. In this case, Rust-Oleums are much more appropriate options. Furthermore, KILZ goes with gallon sizes which I think you will find excessive for a moderate project. So Rust-Oleum latex paints are great for outdoor furniture. Bear in mind that all Rust-Oleum latex paints require wood to be sanded before painting using 180-200 grit.
Hope this helps.