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Can you paint aluminum and vinyl siding?

A lot of homeowners are curious: Can I paint aluminum siding or can vinyl siding be painted? The answer to both of these questions is yes – you can paint these types of siding! Adding a fresh coat of paint can not only help your home’s curb appeal; it can also add an extra layer of protection to your siding in the right conditions.

Even though the answer to the question “can I paint siding?” is YES, it might not always be the best option for your home. Here are six things to consider before you start picking out paint colors.

Warranties for house siding


Can you paint house siding? Yes, but check your warranty first. Many manufacturers of vinyl siding void the warranty on the siding if you paint it. Here’s what you should find out about your warranty before deciding to paint:

  • Is your warranty still valid? Different manufacturers have different terms. If your warranty has expired, you can paint with no risk to your warranty.
  • Can siding be painted under your warranty? Many manufacturers do not allow painting if you want to keep your warranty.
  • Is the warranty transferable? If you bought your house from a previous owner who installed siding, the warranty may or may not have carried over.

Depending on how valuable your warranty is to you, you may still choose to paint your siding. The moral of the story? Make sure you’re able to make an informed decision by getting all of the details on your home’s siding warranty before painting.

Cost of painting house siding

Painting siding is significantly more affordable than replacing it, as long as your siding is in relatively good condition. According to Fixr.com, installing new siding can run between $7,500 and $22,500, and averages $13,500 for a 1,500 sq. ft. home. 

The cost of painting siding depends on the size of your home and paint and siding types but will run between $1,000 – $4,000 for a 1500 sq. ft. home for aluminum or vinyl siding. 

Type Of Siding Average Cost to Paint 1,500 sq.ft. Cost Per Square Foot
Aluminum  $1,250 – $3,700 $0.83 – $2.50
Vinyl $2,025 – $4,000 $1.35 – $2.75

Painting Aluminum Siding 

Can you paint aluminum siding? Yes, and it’s a great way to extend the life of your siding and keep it in the best condition.

If you have aluminum siding, it’s more than likely that with time, the original finish will start to wear and turn chalky from rain and sun exposure. Parts of the bare metal begin to peek through, and this is when painting becomes the perfect option for siding that is still intact but starting to look a little rough.

So not only can you paint aluminum siding, but you should when this starts to happen. Luckily for you, aluminum is one of the easier types of siding to paint. It takes paint better than most other siding types, making it more affordable.

Here’s what you’ll need to do before you paint.

Steps to Painting Aluminum Siding 

1. Inspect the siding

  • Look for damage. If you see structural holes or issues, consider fixing those parts of the siding before painting.
  • Check for powdery paint pigment and mildew by rubbing siding with a cloth.
  • Test old paint for lead with a lead testing kit. Since aluminum siding was commonly installed from the 1940s-1970s, you’ll want to check for lead in the previous paint used if you have an older home. If lead is present, you’ll need to contact a lead abatement specialist before proceeding.

2. Clean

  • Scrape off any peeling or flaking paint with a paint scraper.
  • Create your cleaning solution.
    • 1 cup chlorine bleach
    • 1 cup TSP (Trisodium Phosphate)
    • 1 gallon of water
  • Choose your method of cleaning. The most common are hand scrubbing or power washing.
  • Cover the ground with nearby shrubs with drop cloths.

Hand scrubbing or power washing?

To clean the siding by hand, soak an abrasive sponge in your cleaning solution and then scrub by hand. Afterward, rinse with a garden hose.

Pressure washing is faster than hand scrubbing and is our recommended method. Fill the power washer with your cleaning solution, and spray downward to avoid spraying in between the siding. Rinse with a hose when done.

3. Apply primer

Once your siding is dry after washing, apply one coat of oil-based primer meant for metal surfaces using a synthetic polyester paintbrush. Let dry for at least four hours. 

4. Paint

For painting aluminum siding, choose an acrylic exterior paint in the color and finish of your choosing. Most colors should work just fine after you apply your primer, but keep in mind that dark colors absorb more heat, so they are not recommended.  

Roll on your paint in the same direction as your siding, and use a brush to paint the edges. Apply two coats of paint for the most attractive and long-lasting result, letting the paint fully dry in between coats. 

Tools Needed to Prep and Paint Aluminum Siding

  • Gloves 
  • Abrasive sponge 
  • Pressure washer 
  • Bucket
  • Safety goggles
  • Ladder 
  • Oil-based, anti-rust primer 
  • Synthetic polyester paintbrush
  • Paint rollers 
  • Plastic paint buckets 
  • Plastic paint trays 
  • Drop cloths 
  • Acrylic paint

Painting Vinyl Siding

Can you paint vinyl siding? Yes, and it’s a much more affordable option than replacing your siding if you decide it’s right for you. 

If you have vinyl siding, you’ll want to make sure to follow these steps to prep and paint your siding. It’s a very different material than aluminum siding, so while the steps may look similar, the specifics are pretty different! 

Steps to Painting Vinyl siding

1. Check the weather 

Before starting any work, make sure to choose the right day. Vinyl siding is sensitive to changes in temperature. It expands in hotter weather and contracts when it’s cooler. The best day to paint should be a mild temperature, non-humid day with an overcast sky. Painting when it’s too hot or sunny can cause the paint to chip or flake later on.

2. Clean

  • Make your cleaning solution
    • 1/3 cup laundry detergent
    • 2/3 cup powdered household cleaner
    • 1 quart liquid laundry bleach
    • 1 gallon water
  • Use a cloth or soft-bristled brush to apply the cleaning solution
  • Rinse with a hose 
  • Cover the ground with nearby shrubs with drop cloths

3. Apply primer, if necessary 

Vinyl siding does not need primer unless the surface is porous or pitted. If the original color is very faded, this is a sign that you should prime before painting. If priming, select a bond primer and apply one coat. 

4. Paint

Choosing the right paint is critical when painting vinyl siding—both the color of your paint and the chemical composition matter. Pick a color that is the same shade as your current siding or lighter. Darker colors absorb more heat and cause your siding to warp and peel. Some paint brands have paint made specifically for vinyl that comes in vinyl-safe colors, making it easier to select an appropriate color. You’ll need latex urethane exterior paint for siding no matter what color you choose.

You’re ready to paint once you’ve cleaned and applied any primer! You can choose between a roller or a paint sprayer to apply and use a brush to paint any edges. Paint two coats for best results, and enjoy your new, refreshed look. 

Tools Needed to Prep and Paint Vinyl Siding

  • Gloves 
  • Cloth
  • Bucket
  • Safety goggles
  • Ladder 
  • Bond primer
  • Synthetic polyester paintbrush
  • Paint rollers 
  • Plastic paint buckets 
  • Plastic paint trays 
  • Drop cloths 
  • Latex urethane exterior paint

Long-Term Effects of Painting 

So can you paint vinyl siding? Yes! Can aluminum siding be painted? Also yes. Hopefully, us answering the question, “can you paint siding on a house?” gives you what you need to get started. But if it seems like too much to tackle alone, book a Tasker to get it done quickly and skillfully.

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