How to Paint a Fence with Old Paint on It

Lead Image
What You'll Need
Garden hose
Paint brush

Painting fences may sound like a boring and tedious task, and unfortunately, it is. However, an unpainted or roughly painted fence could ruin the look of your entire house, so you should really take fence painting seriously if you truly care about your home’s exterior. If your fence has already been painted for a long time, chances are that it has started to peel and look unsightly. In this case, you need to remove the old paint and repaint the fence from scratch if you want to make a good job of it.

Step 1 - Clean Your Fence

Start off by cleaning your fence using the garden hose and liberal amounts of soap. If you happen to have a power washer, you can use it instead of the garden hose, but the latter will work just fine. Make sure you get rid of any debris or dirt particles attached to the old paint of your fence, so that they do not get in your way while performing the later steps.

Step 2 - Remove the Old Paint

Once the fence is duly cleaned, you will need to start stripping off the old paint. This is bound to take some time, so be patient and keep going till all the fence is dealt with. To get rid of the old paint you can work with a scraper and sandpaper. Apart from stripping the old paint, you should also deal with any imperfections in the fence itself at this stage. Hammer in any nails which have started to loosen, and use the sandpaper on any evident splinters. If your fence has any broken or especially thin posts, you may need to replace them with new posts before moving on to the next step.

Step 3 - Smoothen Wood and Apply Primer

When your fence has been completely stripped of its old paint, smoothen the wood beneath by sanding it well. Once your fence is as smooth as it can get, give it a coat of primer.

Step 4 - Repaint the Fence

A white picket fence.

Make sure that the primer has totally dried, and then you can repaint your fence. You should ideally go for a coat of exterior house paint to better withstand the weather which your fence will have to deal with. In regards to color, you can decide to stick to the old one or go for something completely different—it’s up to you. Leave the paint to dry for a full 24 hours; put up a “Wet – Do Not Touch” sign if necessary.

Step 5 - Add Finishing Touches

Give your fence a second coat of house paint, leaving it to dry for 24 hours again. Then apply two coats of sealant, allowing enough time for the first to dry. Your fence should now look as though it has just been installed and painted for the first time.

If you follow these steps, repainting your fence should not be difficult. While it is true that the whole process takes quite a lot of time, the wait will be worth it since your fence will look as good as new.