Painting My Porch

This is a project that I’ve been wanting to tackle since my house was painted last summer.  The brown porch floor was not doing my brand-new navy house any favors.  I think it had something to do with the warm brown and the cool navy.  Plus, the old paint job was starting to chip in places, mostly due to water getting under the paint.

I did my research online and decided to go with Sherwin Williams paint– if I’m going to paint the porch, I don’t want to have to repaint it next year.  This needs to last a few years.  And I just happened to get crazy l lucky because the paint I purchased was hugely discounted because SW only keeps paint for three years, so my usually $45 paint was $5.  Yeah, it was amazing.  It’s a Porch & Floor Enamel made for wood or concrete.

This is a fairly easy task, unless you’re current paint job is in terrible shape.

1. First off, clean the porch.  I swept it several times, then I washed it down (rag wasn’t dripping wet) with water and let it dry.

2. Then use a paint scraper and get all the loose chips up.  Everything you can scrape up must go.

3. Then I hand sanded (80 grit) to smooth out the ridges where the paint chipped up.

4.  It was recommended by SW that I use an oil-based primer over the bare wood parts.  Oil holds better.  But I only had water-based primers, so I just went with Zissner (because I love it and only needed it in a couple places).

5. I let the primer dry completely, then I applied wood filler to even out the ridges.

6. Let that dry for an hour or so and used a very fine sanding block to get the excess wood filler off.

7. Then I edged around the porch with the paint and went back and rolled the paint.  Roll each side of the porch and then roll the middle section (by the door/stairs) and essentially work yourself right off the porch.

As it started to dry I worried that I would need to apply a second coat, but after letting it fully dry it definitely only needed one coat.  It dried to the touch in an hour and after four hours I lightly walked over the surface and it seemed okay.  The paint recommends that you wait 24 hours to walk on it, but mine seemed to be fine with light foot traffic after about eight hours.

SO much better than the brown.

I didn’t know how I felt about painting the concrete porch steps along with the porch, but I think it will make a huge difference.  That’ll be a project for another weekend though because it rained here last week and there is too much moisture in the concrete for it to be painted right now.  But you can imagine it, right?


8 responses

      • Hi Rene,

        Yes, I did paint the house last summer. The navy is a custom color match, but here are the color codes: Behr Base: UL203 PP Ultra Flat Matte. CLRNT: 384th, B: 95, E: 72.5, KX: 44, R: 39.5. We bought it from Home Depot, I was inspired by this picture from a Martha Living lookbook someone gave me (Sorry, I can’t find a link to the actual lookbook online) My white trim paint is also a custom color match: Behr Base 9850 PP Ultra Exterior Satin. CLRNT: 384th, C: 20, E: 12, L: 88. And my door is Full Sun by Valspar’s Eddie Bauer Home collection from Lowes (Duramax in Semi Gloss). Hope that helps! I have pictures of the paint labels if those would be more helpful–I’d be happy to email them to you.

  1. have you ever heard of a plate rail? i have several plates that belonged to my daughter that i want to display in a room that i have fixed up for my granddaughter when she comes to visit. DON’T want to use the plate hangers and have a bunch of nails in the wall. i have seen pictures of plate rails in magazines but when i go to stores like lowes and home depot, they look at me like i’ve got two heads when i ask about plate rails. don’t really want to have to custom make them if i don’t have to. would appreciate any recommendations. cindy

    • Hi Cindy,

      I’ve never done much digging into Plate Rails, but I did a little searching online for you. Like you, I didn’t have a lot of luck in finding pre-made rails online, although I do think I know what you’re looking for. One option would be to buy (or reuse) a wood shelf and have a groove routed out (perhaps you know someone who has a router, or rent from Home Depot/Lowes?) and add decorative trim to it? Ron Hazelton has a great video on creating some of the shelves I think you’re talking about:

      OR, perhaps you could go another route entirely. If you’re just concerned about making holes in your walls with nails, you might check out this idea: She glued (be sure to read in the comments for a different glue suggestion) a hook to the plates. To get around creating nail holes, you could always use Command strips and then hook the plates to the strips.

      Hope that helps! Let me know if you need any other advice!

  2. Hi. I found your porch picture while searching for porch paint colors, and it turns out that your Sherwin Williams Porch paint is my ideal! I’m sad though, because the beautiful grey color is not listed, and I was wondering if you can dig up the color detail information, so I could try it on our Seattle home?!! Thank you! Susie V.

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