Deck painting guide for beginners

A deck can become your home’s best outside feature but only if it is well cared for. Being outside, the deck is prone to becoming damaged due to the various weather conditions.

The surest way to maintaining your deck’s condition is to regularly repair any new imperfections. You can do that by applying a new coat of paint on top of the deck’s wooden surface.

Deck painting is not too difficult but it takes a lot of time. Depending on your situation, you might have to dedicate the whole week to this project. Nevertheless, you should seriously consider it if you want your deck to look beautiful for years to come.

Deck painting process


First, you need to choose the right time to paint your deck. You should avoid rain and moisture, as well as very high temperatures. For most people, the perfect time would be sometime between spring and summer – it’s sunny but not too hot yet. But this depends on the climate where you live so you will need to choose the right time by yourself.

Clean your deck and get rid of any moss or wild plants growing in between the planks. Sweep it with a broom to completely remove any dirt. If there are any old paint stains that you want removed, go at them with a paint scraper. Use sandpaper to lightly smooth the wood surface so that it is easier to apply new paint later. But don’t overdo it and remove the wood texture completely – it should be even to touch but not completely sanded. If there are any cracks you can fill them out with putty.

Primer application

Use a paint primer for wood to improve the end result. It will help out with achieving a smooth layer of paint later. Check out paint primer reviews to find the best one for your deck. After application, let it dry overnight.

Paint application

Now your deck is ready to be painted. It is best to do it when in the shade because sunlight can make the paint dry out even before you are finished with painting the whole surface, resulting in a patchy-looking application. To get the best results, purchase quality deck paint. We recommend you read this list of best deck paint reviews.

Start painting your deck section at a time. If you are also painting railings, start with those. First, use a paintbrush and apply paint to the corners and edges of your deck. Then get a paint roller to cover the largest surfaces quickly. Use a paintbrush again to ensure there is paint in between the planks and also to smooth out any paint clumps or roller marks. Another option is to use a paint sprayer if you have one – it will get the job done the quickest.

Applying multiple coats of paint will make it more durable. It will also conceal any remaining imperfections. You can apply up to three coats of paint, depending on the desired result. More coats also means stronger and richer color. If you decide to apply more than one coat of paint, let each layer dry overnight before applying the next one.