To Paint or Not to Paint?

Don’t you just love paint?  The colors… the finishes… the quick transformation it can bring with just some time.  So do we! 

However, is painting your deck a smart idea when you are looking to spruce it up or just wanting a pop of color? 

We will not make that decision for you, but will give you some things to think about as you decide. 

Pros of Paint: 

  1. There are so many paint color options! And you don’t have to stick to just one – you can color the boards one color and your railing or trim can be another.
  2. Paint fills gaps and cracks. Paint is a thicker finish – it can be useful for repairing wood that has some elemental wear and tear. You can find specific paints that are used for that exact purpose.
  3. Depending on the color, paint can be easy to clean. We do not recommend white if you are looking for easy cleaning. If the paint is of good quality and is allowed to cure properly before put into use, it creates a hard shell. You can just sweep or wash that dirt right off. We do recommend being careful when it comes to power washing – make sure your paint is a high enough quality to withstand such powerful force.
  4. Paint can protect the wood. Generally speaking, paint resists rot, mold, and sun damage. However, other types of high-quality finishes can also do a great job of protecting wood.

Cons of Paint:

  1. Once you paint, you can’t go back. If you decide to paint your wood deck, you’ve pretty much decided to always paint your wood deck. While you can go from stain or sealer to paint, you can’t really go back the other way without going to extreme measures of stripping your deck. It can be done but it’s not fun.
  2. Paint is available in any color. While this is also in the “pros” list, it can be a challenge. What looks good on walls and trim doesn’t always look good on a huge surface like a deck. More choices means a more difficult decision and more opportunities to pick the wrong color. We recommend spending a little more money on samples and paint areas of your deck that are in different lighting so that you see what the paint will really look like.
  3. Paint can be slippery when wet. Depending on the sheen of your paint (gloss, semi-gloss, etc.), painted decks are sometimes as slick when wet.
  4. Paint hides the natural beauty of the woodgrain.
  5. Paint can help fix or hide basic weathering from being outside but it probably won’t extend the life of your wooden deck much longer. Wooden decks still have to be replaced more often than composite decking.

(Pros & Cons of painting an outside deck attributed to:

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