Top Pick – The Best Wood Primer
KILZ Premium Primer – a well-known and trusted brand. Its Premium Primer creates a smooth surface hiding unwanted stains. In addition, KILZ Premium got great adhesion and mildew protection.Check Price
If you don’t know much about painting, you might not know anything at all about primers. To be honest, you don’t necessarily have to use a primer for any painting job. However, priming should be a part of any serious painting job. It’s one of those things that doesn’t have to be done, but which will greatly improve the results.
I think KILZ Premium is the top overall primer for you, but you may continue reading to find a primer that meets your needs.
For those who are unfamiliar with these products, let’s begin your education by looking at ten of the best wood primers. After that, we will continue with some general information on the subject.
Best Wood Primers in March, 2023
|#||Wood primer||Coverage (quart)||Dry time (minutes)||Sheen|
|1||KILZ Premium |
|75 - 100 sq ft||30||matte||Check Price|
|2||Zinsser B-I-N||up to 100 sq ft||20||semi-gloss||Check Price|
|3||KILZ MAX||75 - 100 sq ft||30||matte||Check Price|
|4||Rust-Oleum Painter's Touch||up to 120 sq ft||30||gloss||Check Price|
|5||Zinsser Cover Stain||up to 100 sq ft||30||matte||Check Price|
|6||KILZ Original||75 - 100 sq ft||30||matte||Check Price|
|7||INSL-X Stix||75 - 100 sq ft||60||matte||Check Price|
|8||KILZ Odorless||75 sq ft||30||matte||Check Price|
|9||Rust-Oleum Zinsser 1-2-3||100 sq ft||60||satin||Check Price|
|10||Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Spray||up to 10 sq ft (1 can)||30||matte||Check Price|
1. KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Latex Primer – Great Interior and Exterior Anti Mold and Mildew Option
This is a great water-based option from KILZ’s premium line of primers. It will give you a super-smooth surface to paint and, like most water-based primers, it’s great at filling imperfections in porous surfaces. This makes it a really good choice for softwood surfaces. It is also less likely to raise the grain of the wood.
It’s slightly better than most water-based options at hiding stains. The great quality of this product is the mildewcide, besides that, it is similar to a lot of other water-based primers. You can also consider this option for color changes since it has excellent adhesion properties and will adhere well to old paint.
- Great for areas exposed to constant moisture
- No VOCs
- Made in the USA
- Protects from mildew and mold
- Interior and exterior
- A bit more expensive than other products
2. Zinsser B-I-N Primer Sealer – Great Interior Primer Both for Bare and Painted Wood
Zinsser is a brand that is a part of the Rust-Oleum family of paints and primers. This particular product is one of the oldest and most trusted shellac-based primers and sealers on the market. Shellac-based primer can be thought of as heavy-duty stuff. If your main concern is covering up stains and sealing odors on new or painted wood surfaces, then shellac is the way to go.
Keep in mind that shellac-based primers have a high odor and the most amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Your room has to be well ventilated if you are going to be in an enclosed space.
- Excellent for sealing odors
- Can write on it with dry-erase markers
- Gives you great results over other kinds of options
- Interior and spot exterior
- Has a lot of VOCs
3. KILZ Restoration Interior Latex Primer/Sealer – The Anti-Stink Heavy Duty Primer
This is an excellent primer that has a lot of good reviews. While no product is perfect, this one does offer plenty of advantages. It is not available in small cans, but this isn’t a big problem. When you need some primer, you usually need a lot, and so we won’t deduct any points for that.
Fights Stain And Odor
The most distinctive feature of this product is its ability to lock out stains and odors (or to lock them in, if you prefer). This can be a definite advantage for some projects, such as those that involve pets or small children.
In some cases, people use this product as a sub-coat underneath their flooring. This does a great job of keeping odors and stains from getting through the paint. For rooms that have a lot of traffic, that’s a nice little option to add.
This is a water-based product, but it performs more like an oil-based product in some ways. This gives it some of the advantages of both products. It is tough like an oil finish but offers the easy cleanup of a water finish. Of course, this stuff won’t be as hard as an actual oil-based primer, but it does offer a little more durability.
Needs Many Coats
There are a few little problems with this product, even though it is very good overall. Most of the negative reviews focus on two problems: A short shelf life and a tendency to be too thin. Many people say that they have to use more coats than normal to get the same results.
To be honest, the short shelf life is the only serious problem. Because this product is meant for high-durability use, you should probably be using multiple coats anyway. It’s more work, but the result will be much tougher.
- Made to block stain and odor
- Water based for easy cleanup
- Works on many different surfaces
- Easy to sand
- Performs like an oil-based primer
- Relatively short shelf life
- Usually requires multiple coats
4. Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch Latex Primer – Best Primer for Wood Furniture
The primer comes in two color choices: flat white or flat grey. This product has a good consistency and excellent quality, so you could use it as a standalone color for your wooden projects. It is also really good to use on trim and furniture since it has rich color and dries quickly. For trim, you may have to add an additional coat.
It also has a very low odor, a common quality of latex paint, so you won’t be exposed to harmful fumes. It’s pretty thick, so it provides good coverage in one coat. This means you can get your project done even faster with less effort. The disadvantage of it being thick is that it may not be the best choice if you want to spray it.
It is worth mentioning that the Rust-Oleum brand is known for its high-quality paints that are part of great paints for wood on the market. So this brand is a good choice for both priming and painting your wooden project.
- Provides excellent coverage
- Great for porous surfaces
- Too much brushing can leave streaks
- Doesn’t work well with glossy surfaces
5. Zinsser Cover Stain Interior/Exterior Oil Primer – Maximum Shine Primer
This is an oil-based primer, and it’s a good example with which to begin.
Shines Like The Sun
As you might guess from the heading, this is probably the shiniest product on my list. Oil-based primers have a high shine anyway, so the addition of a polyurethane sealer will only add to that quality.
Even though you are going to paint over this stuff, that extra shine will affect the look of the paint. If you really want your wooden surfaces to glisten in the sun, this is the product to get.
Tough But Flexible
Between the oil and the poly, it provides an exceptionally tough finish that should hold up for a long time. Flexibility is very important for a wood primer because wooden objects will always flex and swell with time.
We are talking about a very small amount of movement here, but it can be enough to make your paint flake away. If your primer begins to flake away, you can bet that the topcoat will soon follow. The only way to prevent this problem is to use a flexible finish like this one.
It would be nice if this product were available in larger sizes, as it is currently available in quart-size only. Large jobs will require quite a few cans, and that’s usually more expensive in the end. It would also be nice if this product were a little less toxic and flammable.
- Delivers deep protection against moisture
- Produces a very tough and shiny finish
- Requires no sanding for adhesion
- Dries fairly quick
- Provides a flexible finish
- A little bit toxic and flammable
- Only available in quarts
6. KILZ Original Stain Blocking Oil-Based Primer – Great For Interior Wood Doors and Cabinets
This is a primer that has been around for a long time, and which has established a good reputation. It’s one of the more cost-effective options, and it’s even cheaper when buying the five-gallon size. It offers a lot of versatility, as it is not specialized for any one kind of job.
Very Versatile Product
This product provides a durable finish, dries within an hour (often less), and works with just about any kind of topcoat. The label says that it works with alkyd, oil, and water-based primers, which cover just about everything.
Most people have remarked on the good coverage provided by this product, giving 75-100 square feet per quart. That is a handy thing, no matter what task you’re doing.
Trusted And Affordable
This one has earned its reputation, and that is not something to ignore. It may not be anything fancy, but you can be pretty sure that this product will do its job. The cost per gallon is reasonable, as well.
This stuff does smell a little strong, so make sure you open a window before you open that can. Some people have claimed that it’s a little too thick, leaving brush marks and streaks. However, they might have simply bought a can that was past its expiration date. It should be noted that this is an interior-only primer. It will not work for outdoor jobs, so don’t try to use it that way.
- The tried and true option
- Relatively low cost
- Works with any sort of topcoat
- Not difficult to sand
- Very good coverage
- Some have complained of strong fumes
- Might be a little too thick
- Interior primer only
7. INSL-X Stix Waterborne – The Hard-Boiled Primer
This is an acrylic primer that is meant for the most difficult situations. Rather than being a general-use product, this one is specialized for hard jobs. It adheres to smooth and glossy surfaces like tile with incredible strength and provides a great seal against moisture.
Meant For Hard Use
This one is meant to be a sealer as well as a primer, but it should be noted that there are limits to its ability. The label clearly says that it’s not meant for constant wetness or underwater use. Since only marine paint is suitable for these things, we shouldn’t be too surprised.
That being said, this product is the next step down from marine paint. It should be suitable for indoor or outdoor use and will lock out the humidity that can normally cause wood to rot.
Good For The Cold
A lot of primers don’t work well in cold temperatures. This can be a problem because work still needs to be done in the winter. This primer is a good choice for those who live in cold climates because it will work in temperatures as low as 35 degrees.
I do see a few problems with this product. For one thing, it’s one of the most expensive items on today’s list. Thus, I wouldn’t recommend this one for very large projects. It’s only available in quart cans anyway, so this product is obviously intended for smaller projects.
This stuff also takes longer to dry than most of our other options, needing 3-4 hours where most products require only 1-2. Also, there are some discouraging precautions when we look at the products’ advertising. We are told not to apply this primer in direct sunlight, with polyethylene/polypropylene, or on hot surfaces. It also has to be kept away from all moisture for 24 hours after drying.
- Works on even the glossiest surfaces
- Does a great job of locking out moisture
- Odor isn’t very strong, easy to clean up
- Cures in fairly low temperatures
- Extremely hard and tough
- Several limits and precautions
- Takes 3-4 hours to dry fully
- Quite expensive
8. KILZ Odorless Interior Oil-Base Primer – Great Odorless Option
This primer is an indoor oil-based. While it isn’t a maximum performance option, if you don’t need special or maximum performance then this is a product that will do what you need at a fair price range. In other words, it is an average option.
Despite the fact that it has a mid-range performance, it is still a really good primer. It’s great for covering up stains and good at covering up odors on many types of surfaces including wood. It’s also fast drying, unlike many other oil-based options. It dries to the touch in about half an hour. The downside is that it isn’t great for mildew and mold-prone areas, so you shouldn’t use it in kitchens, bathrooms, or other areas that are constantly exposed to moisture.
- Extremely low odor
- Excellent at blocking odors
- Fast drying
- Made in the USA
- Not good for kitchens or bathrooms
- Not good for floors
9. Rust-Oleum Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Primer – Color Enhancing Option
This is a bright white primer with a water-based formula. It gets its name from the ease of use, as there is nothing complex about this product at all. It works for just about any surface, its bright color brings out the paint nicely, and it hides stains like a champ.
Very Easy To Use
This one does a great job of adhering to most surfaces without sanding. This saves time, and also saves money on sandpaper. Its consistency is neither too thick nor too thin, making it quick and easy to apply without leaving marks. You also don’t have to worry about the topcoat, as this primer will work with just about anything.
The main problem with this product is its high cost. This is the most expensive item on the list, although option number four is a close second. I don’t really see any special features or advantages to justify this cost, even though this is a good all-around product.
This one also doesn’t provide a great deal of moisture resistance. The advertising says that it should not be used on certain types of particle boards without first applying a sealer. From this, we can see that it will require many coats for this one to achieve good moisture resistance.
- Excellent stain-blocker/color enhancer
- Good for high-pH surfaces
- Works with any kind of paint and most surfaces
- Requires no sanding for adhesion
- Tends to go on nice and smooth
- Most expensive on our list
- Not great for particle board
10. Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Spray Primer – Top Spray Primer for Wood
This one may be small, but it does its job very effectively. Like its larger cousin (option number nine) this is a bright white primer. That brightness helps to bring out the color of the topcoat, though it may not be helpful for darker colors. More importantly, it helps to mask any stains that might be on the surface.
Quick And Easy
If you want a convenient way to do a small job, this product is probably the one to get. It can be applied to smooth and rough surfaces, so you won’t need to waste any time sanding. You should clean the surface to remove dust and debris, but that’s all you need to do before spraying the primer in place.
Not for Large Jobs
This is a great small-scale product, but it’s still a small-scale product. Each can will only cover about ten square feet. Thus, this product is not a cost-effective option for medium-sized or large jobs.
- Great for small jobs
- Dries in only 5 minutes
- Sticks regardless of the texture
- Usually does the job in one coat
- Not cost-effective for large or medium-sized jobs
- Only covers ten square feet
When you are choosing a product of this type, there are several factors that should drive your choice. Let’s look at them one by one.
Oil-Based vs. Water-Based
Oil-based paints are usually more expensive, but they offer a tougher finish that is still flexible enough to resist flaking. They also offer a higher degree of shine, which many people find appealing. Of course, there are some problems.
Oil-based shines will usually take much longer to dry, and they are just not necessary for some projects. In the case of a primer, the sheen won’t make that much difference, so you would mainly choose an oil-based primer for strength.
Water-based primers are a lot quicker to dry, and they usually don’t have the same kinds of toxic fumes that you get from oil-based products. This makes them safer to use and much easier to clean up in the event of an accident. Water-based primers are very hard, but they suffer from a relative lack of flexibility.
How Much To Get?
Primers, like many other paints, have a short shelf life once opened. Thus, you don’t want to go crazy and buy a huge can unless you need one. As a general rule, we would advise you to buy a little bit more than you think you need…but only a little bit more!
Interior Vs. Exterior
Some primers are not suited for exterior use, whereas all primers can be used indoors. Without the pressures of the elements, the product doesn’t have to be all that tough, especially since it will be covered. Thankfully, this is not a complex choice, either.
Many primer products will offer special advantages that are meant to be used as selling points. While many of these advantages are legitimate, we would advise you to read carefully and make sure they aren’t trying to pass off a standard feature as a bonus.
For instance, the first product on our list is made to lock out odors. Since this was one of the slightly more expensive choices, you have to ask yourself if that feature is worth the money for your particular task.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can make your own primer, but it will not be as effective as a standard primer. You can make primer by adding glue to the paint color of your choice; add 25% glue, 75% paint, and you are ready to go.
No, although most types of primers will work with most types of paint. To be sure, consult the labels of both your paint can and your primer can. If your paint is oil-based, make sure your primer is compatible with oil paints, etc.
Yes, you can apply emulsion as a primer if it is necessary. I do not recommend using emulsion as a primer.
Yes, you must prime bare wood before painting. The purpose of primer is to make the wood less porous. It is the layer that adheres the paint to the wood. I recommend priming wood before painting it as it provides a smooth and clean area for the paint to adhere to.
You can directly paint over the primer. A sealer is not required but if you want to increase the life of your paint job you will need to use a sealer. You don’t have to use a sealer if you’re just trying to get by and save money.
This 2K Primer-Sealer is a two-component acrylic urethane primer-sealer designed to be used as a non-sanding low-build sealer.
If you want to keep the cost down you can use a 2k primer-sealer, but you need to be prepared to use more paint to provide an even uniformed surface.
No primers do not need to be applied perfectly you can always sand the excess and imperfections of primer application after it dries out.
You begin by thoroughly cleaning the surface to be primed. Make sure you remove any dust, dirt, or grime that may be present, as these may affect the adhesion of the primer. After that, you simply brush it onto the surface as evenly as possible. After that, just allow your work to dry. Before you apply the topcoat, you should inspect the primer coat for any marks or streaks that need to be sanded.
It depends on layer thickness but, generally, water-based primers take 4 hrs- 5 hrs hours to dry, and oil-based need at least 18 hrs to 24 hrs to dry.
Generally, 2-3 Coates of primer is applied to make a good bond between new paint and wood. It also helps cover up any imperfections in the wood.
Paint and primer are chemically different. They have different compositions.
Primer is gluey and adheres to surfaces easily whereas normal paint does not stick to surfaces easily. Primers’ primary purpose is to act as a bonder for the finish coat so the finish coat won’t peel.
No, all undercoat is a primer but not all primers are undercoat.
No, Primer is not waterproof. It can be made water-resistant to a certain degree but not waterproof.
If you are applying primer for high traffic areas then go for an oil-based primer.
If your surface is not in a high traffic area then you can go with a water-based primer. Generally, oil-based primers are more durable than water-based primers.
Yes if the old paint is not peeling you can apply primer over old paint after a little sanding.
It depends on the type and condition of wood that we are using. There is no one answer to what comes first, but it is good to sand and cleans the surface before starting with anything else.
If you don’t prime wood before painting, depending on the wood the first coat of paint will be blotchy because wood absorbs paint (and other finishes) very unevenly.
Furthermore, the paint’s water will raise the grain, around knots. The second layer may somewhat fix these faults, but without a binding undercoat, the paint will most likely peel in a year or two.
A wood primer is a primary coating added to the wood. There are different reasons to use primer, the most important ones are :
- Primer creates a layer that paint can better adhere to.
- A primer is required for substantial color changes. If you want to change the color of dark wood to lighter color you need to apply primer.
- Prior to painting, unfinished wood should always be primed.
The high-solids content of primer aids in filling in the wood grain and provides a smooth surface for the final coat.
PVA primer is used for drywall priming and is not recommended for wood. it is used for the drywall because it is cheaper than a standard primer.
A sealer is a liquid coat that is usually a clear/transparent finish that coats the outside surface of the wood. A sealer’s main purpose is to keep moisture out. if makes wood water-resistant which is quite helpful, as moisture may cause fungal development and wood decay.
A primer is the first complete coat of paint applied to the wood. Primer creates a layer that paint can better adhere to. A primer is required if you want substantial color changes or if you are using bare wood.
You can usually use normal brushes to apply primer, but most people report better results when using brushes made of synthetic materials. Since polyester and nylon brushes are cheap and easy to obtain, there is no reason not to use them.
You probably didn’t think that primers would be this complicated. That sentiment is common, but you should remember that it isn’t true. There is a lot of variety here, so you need to consider the task at hand and choose carefully. I hope that I have given you a good start on that process and that you will return to read more of my work.
Do you have a recommendation for a primer/sealer for reclaimed wood? I found some great, sturdy boards from what looks like a bed that was being thrown out, but I want to make sure I get rid of, and block from returning, whatever might have gotten into the lumber between the tossing and when I found it!
I would recommend using this finish by Minwax, it will protect interior wood surfaces from light moisture.
This product produces a low odor, resists chips, and provides long-lasting protection. Remember to clean your wood before working on it.
Really interesting article. I’m doing an outdoor silhouette for my wife’s birthday. I cut it out of plywood, and now comes the priming, painting and sealing. What combination do you suggest to provide the most protection for my Sasquatch? Any information will be greatly appreciated.
Your wife is lucky to have you! It’s great when you do something with your hands for someone else, congratulations!
When sealing plywood pay attention to the edges, they are the most vulnerable part. Water can easily penetrate and then stick between the layers.
Yes, this is not an easy task, but it will prolong the life of your creation. Just make sure they are well sanded and smooth and have a thick layer of coating. Edges usually absorb more primer.
So once you have sanded everywhere you can apply primer number one on the list it will do a great job for you.
Apply one or two coats to be thick enough.
Once dry, sand with P220 for more smoothness and remove imperfections.
Then apply an exterior paint like this one by Rust-Oleum.
Finally, you can seal with a wood sealant like this one by Thompson.
It will give you really good protection from water and the sun and will protect the paint. Just renew the sealant every few years or when needed without having to paint.
Insl-x stix is available in gallons.
Thanks for the info, this is quite helpful.
I will correct the article as soon as possible.
Hi. Thank you for the interesting review and buyer’s guide. I am trying to select the best undercoat/primer and top coat for re-painting wood that has been powder-coated. There seems to be little definitive advice for this and so I would really appreciate your expert view and recommendation for undercoat/primer and top coat paint for touching up and re-painting powder coated wood (windows and sun-room – indoors and outdoors). Many thanks in advance.
Congratulations on your professional approach to repainting wood 🙂
Powder-coated wood is not common and therefore there is not much information on repair and repainting.
I have not used a primer on powder coating, but I see no reason why this primer by KILZ1 should not work.
It adheres well to latex and oil paints, as well as many other surfaces. It is also suitable for indoor and outdoor use as in your case.
To be completely sure that the primer will work, you can apply it on a small surface and after drying you can see the result. Does the primer react with the paint under it? Holds tight without falling.
Before applying the primer, it is good to lightly sand the old coating, this will certainly increase the adhesion (the connection between the paint and the primer).
I have a newly installed, pressure-treated fence that I would like to have painted with a beach mural. I live in Florida so humidity and sun are big factors. Any thoughts for a white primer/sealer and durable topcoat?
This primer/sealer by Kilz is a good product to use. This paint by Kilz for fences is also really good paint to use. For a topcoat, since the fence wood will be getting a lot of direct sunlight and humidity I would suggest using spar urethane by Minwax or a Marine spar varnish by Rust-Oleum or Totalboat. For the topcoat make sure not to get gloss if you don’t want your fence to be shiny.
I am interested in your opinion about my exterior wood siding painting project. It is weathered plywood in board and batten style. The front was painted with Zinsser cover stain and 2 coats aura Benjamin Moore 4 years ago. Some of it is cracked and peeling paint. Should it last longer than that?
The back was not painted yet and needs it. It is 25 years old Dulux paint that has held up better than the 4 year old paint job.
Any ideas about getting a more durable paint job?
The weather is southern Ontario( extremes from + 40 summer to -40 winter)
It all depends on the conditions of the wood, the weather, and whether or not the wood was primed before painting to say how long it should have lasted. I would recommend stripping the paint that is peeling and start over. I would recommend this paint stripper by Dumond or Citristrip on Amazon. To get the best durability for the new paint job I would definitely recommend priming before painting and even seal it when done if desired. A good sealer for the Ontario weather I would recommend this finish by Behr on Amazon. If you decide to use a sealer make sure not to get an oil-based paint for the best adherence. If you don’t use sealant oil-based paint would be your best bet.
Thanks for the article!
I am building a house and got some exterior doors from menard’s that have been installed for 8 months, with just the factory primer on the wood jams.
We are ready to paint the jams and I was thinking that we should sand and reprime with a top quality primer, then paint with a top quality paint.
I don’t want to have to repaint for as long as possible, many years.
What primer and paint would you recommend to achieve the longest durability of all?
I did get a gallon of Behr Premium semi gloss exterior paint for the project, but if that is not as good as another ext. paint, I can return it.
Thanks in advance!
I think the Behr paint you have will work really well. Behr is a great brand and you shouldn’t have to repaint and prime it for a while. You can always use a sealer over the paint to help protect it as well. If you decide to use a sealer, I would recommend this exterior sealer by Behr, it helps protect the wood from all weather. Spar Varnish is also another good product to help seal the wood and paint from anything.
Hi! What is the “thickest” primer to best hide blemishes? I pulled the carpet off my indoor stairs hoping I could paint the sides and place a runner. I had a handyman sand and apply STIX primer. It is still very irregular, especially at the seams. Before I give up and just recarpet wall to wall, is there anything you recommend? Zinsser Triple Coat??
Zinsser Triple Coat is a real good option. I don’t know the exact condition of your stairs but by what you are telling me Zinsser Triple Coat sounds like it would get the job done, I think it is a great product. If there are chips in the wood you can always use wood filler to help with the appearance.
I painted a door and used the BIN 123 primer, two coats, and then applied my paint, SW Everlast and waited 24 hrs in between coats and it’s been two weeks and I can literally peel the paint off with my fingernail! I was thinking it was the paint and I either applied too thick or some other issue but when I peel it off the primer is coming with it (black paint and the underside is white when it comes off). I obviously have to repaint it but now what!
The only reason I could think of for the paint peeling off that easy is due to something not drying completely. I would sand the door to get the paint and primer off and make sure everything is off and try again. Make sure that everything is dry including the atmosphere around you as well. You can always get something like Zinsser’s Peel Stop primer to help stop the peeling as well.
I am going to paint an antique wood bed with Stong nicotine of ours. Would prefer to use latex based primer and paint. What do you suggest and can I get the primer tinted? Thanks
Yes, you can get the primer tinted. I would recommend something like this tintable primer. For the paint, I would get something like this.
I’m really disappointed in the finished look of my painted fascia board trim. I have pre treated wood that was painted but the finish shows the wood grain. Can I prime over the paint and repaint?
Yes, you can. Sand the paint before applying a primer.
If i use the Zinsser cover stain primer on my outside arch windows will i need to undercoat or can i go straight to the top coat.
Thanks for your time
You can apply topcoat right over the primer.
I used the Sherwin Williams Premium Wood Primer and Pro Classic Latex paint for my bathroom cabinets. There’s some wood stain starting to show through almost immediately. Should I light sand and use one of these primers on those spots and paint over?
I think you better sand and repaint all the cabinets rather than certain areas to keep the color the same but you can try to repaint only the problematic areas. This time try KILZ Restoration Primer, it designed to hide tough stains.
I’m trying to find a good primer to paint onto FRTW plywood. The Fire retardant salts that are impregnated into the panel seem to be causing issues with the waterborne polyurethane topcoat. I’m thinking a sealer such as Zinner B.I.N but that’s shellac based. It would seem better to stick to a waterbased primer sealer. any recommendations?
Most of the primers on the list are water-based. For you, I recommend KILZ Restoration which is a water-based primer and sealer in one.
We purchased a high quality teak garden bench last year and on the advise of the supplier had it professionally painted using an acrylic primer and an oil based top coat as advised….
Whilst the majority of the paint has remained intact there are several places where it has cracked and peeled (mainly on joints) , to the bare wood underneath…
I appreciate we have probably now got an on-going problem but would like your advise as to the best primer /paint to apply …
Choose Kilz Premium as a primer and Rust-Oleum Latex as a paint. I think those will work.
I am building a bookshelf for kids to be used in the basement. I have used furniture grade plywood and some pine wood. We plan to paint these off white. What primer would you recommend ?
I recommend Rust-Oleum as a low-odor primer which is great for indoor projects like yours.
Hi I am trying to paint some pine wood doors, these have at some point in the past been dipped and stripped and then been oiled, I am not sure with what but linseed or teak oil maybe, the problem I’m having is getting a primer which will adhere to the surface, it has been sanded and wiped down with methylated spirit and had primer applied.
We have based on advice from paint retailers tried Dulux 1 step prep, White Knight Grip-lock primer, Zinsser Cover Stain, none of these have proved successful.
Any Ideas ?
Best Regards Paul
The oil is a problem here. Try to use paint thinner to remove it, then sand thoroughly again. Also you can try KILZ Adhesion primer which is designed especially for tough-to-paint surfaces.
Thanks for this very informative article. I have two new unfinished nightstands I want to paint a light blue. I’m guessing the wood is pine, certainly not cedar. I bought a sprayer and want to use a water based primer. I’m leaning towards the Kilz Max (now Kilz Restoration) or Kilz Premium. I’m hoping the store will tint either of these gray for me. Any thoughts or guidance? Thanks again.
You can pick any of them. Don’t forget to sand your nightstands before priming, that’s all I can recommend here.
I want to paint over a glossy cherry coloured desk with out sanding what type of primer should I use?
I think its compressed wood or what ever it’s called it’s not like oak or anything
Zinsser B-I-N Primer needs no sanding.
I am trying to find primers for pressure treated wood. I see one is not good for PTW, but none that specifically say that it is good for PTW. Any help would be appreciated.
Actually, there is no ‘standalone’ primer on the list which is perfectly suitable for ptw/floors. That means that you must paint over your primer using paint designed for decks/floors. So I recommend that you use KILZ Premium but only if you’re going to apply paint over it.
First of all, thanks William, for all of your valuable information & expertise. I’ve just spent over an hour reading thru your information & am feeling much more confident in my decision making process for my project.
I am getting ready to stain a deck that was built 2 years ago with PTW. I’m constantly hearing others complain that it’s impossible to get stain to stick to a deck for more than a few years which results in having to re-stain it often.
As of now, & unless you bring some other stain to my attention, I’m going to use Behr Premium, Solid Color, Waterproofing Stain & Sealer. I was also thinking of using a good primer & found (as noted above which may not have been the case a few years ago) that Zinsser® Cover Stain® Oil-Based Primer can be used on PTW. However, it also states that it “not intended for application to floors, decks, roof surfaces or any surface subject to immersion or prolonged contact with water.” When I saw that it’s not recommended for deck floors, I disappointedly tossed that idea. But now that I
read your comment, “Actually, there is no ‘standalone’ primer on the list which is perfectly suitable for ptw/floors. That means that you must paint over your primer using paint designed for decks/floors”, I’m revisiting this idea. I just want to confirm that I’m understanding your statement correctly. Are you saying that using a primer such as Zinsser® Cover Stain® Oil-Based Primer, or KILZ Premium, on a deck floor will not be a problem as long as it’s covered with a deck/floor stain?
If this is true, my plan will be to clean the deck with Behr All-in-One Wood Cleaner to remove the mill glaze & clean/prepare the wood, then prime with the Zinsser Cover-Stain since it’s recommended for PTW (unless you think another product is better), then top coat with Behr Premium Waterproofing Stain & Sealer. Is that a good plan?
Hi Jeana. I’m glad you find the articles I publish helpful.
In your query, you don’t mention the type of wood, but I’d only be using a primer if the wood type is one that bleeds and discolors light stain. Redwood, cypress, and cedar are three kinds of wood that bleed. If your PTW is one of these, I’d use a primer from the same stable as your stain to be sure it’s optimized for the best results. Behr do a PREMIUM PLUS® NO. 436 Exterior Multi-Surface Primer & Sealer, which is designed to work well with their solid waterproofing stain and sealer. If your PTW does not bleed, I’d go straight from the cleaner to the stain once the wood is properly dry.
Most people have trouble with staining PTW because the wood is at the wrong moisture content or still wet from the treatment. If the wood is at 12% moisture content and is properly cleaned, you shouldn’t have trouble with stain longevity.
Zinsser® Cover Stain® Oil-Based Primer can be used on PTW.
This is a statement from the Technical Data sheet (under the heading “DESCRIPTION AND USES”) for Zinsser® Cover Stain® Oil-Based Primer —
“Zinsser® Cover Stain® Oil-Based Primer is an all purpose oil-based primer designed for interior or exterior applications where an oil-base primer is desired. CoverStain provides excellent penetration and flexibility and has excellent adhesion and stain blocking properties. CoverStain has excellent adhesion to dense, glossy surfaces such as enamel paints and varnishes, paneling, laminates, and ceramic tile without the need for sanding or deglossing. Cover-Stain is recommended for application on interior and exterior surfaces that have been damaged by fire, smoke or water. Interior surfaces include new or previously painted drywall, cured plaster and cementbased coatings, wood (including pine fir, cedar, redwood, and plywood), metal (including aluminum, iron, steel, and cooper), vinyl, PVC, masonry (including stucco, concrete block, poured concrete, and brick). Exterior surfaces include new or previously painted wood (including pine, fir, cedar, redwood, and pressure-treated wood), hardboard, metal (including aluminum, iron, steel, and copper), vinyl and PVC.”
Hey Jeana, see my answer to the original question above.
I saw the ones that said were not considered for floors, but which ones are suitable for floors ?
Not sure. If you point out mistakes I wrote I would be glad to fix them.