Can You Paint Brick? Here’s What You Need To Know Before Doing It!

Can you paint brick

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I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with brick. On the one hand, I see brick homes and think it’s beautiful and timeless. On the other hand, it can be dark and dreary.

So what do you do when you want to brighten up your space without ripping out all that gorgeous brickwork? One option is to paint it! But wait – can you actually paint brick?

It turns out that yes, painting brick is completely possible! Whether you’re looking to modernize an old fireplace or update the exterior of your home, painting brick can be a great solution. However, there are some things you need to know before diving in with that brush.

In this article, we’ll cover everything from preparing the surface for painting to choosing the right type of paint, and more so by the end of it all – You’ll know how achievable (or not) this DIY project could become!

Can you paint brick? Key Takeaways

After reading this post, here are the key takeaways I think you should remember about painting brick:

  • Painting brick is possible, but it requires proper preparation and choosing the right materials.
  • Before starting to paint, make sure to clean and repair any damaged areas on the brick surface.
  • Using a specialty primer and paint will ensure that your paint adheres properly to the brick surface. 
  • When selecting a color for your painted brick, choose something that complements your home’s exterior or interior design. 
  • Applying paint to new bricks is not advisable as they need time to cure and settle before painting.
  • Knowing when to stop applying paint can be just as important as knowing how much paint to apply; too many layers of paint can lead to cracking or peeling over time.
  • Start painting from the bottom up so any drips or excess can be caught before hitting unpainted surfaces. 

Remember these tips and tricks! And don’t forget that although painting brick may seem daunting at first glance, it’s definitely doable with patience and care.

Can you paint brick

Is Painting Brick Advisable?

As someone who has painted brick before, I can say that painting brick is definitely possible. However, it’s important to consider whether or not painting bricks on your specific brick surface is advisable.

The first thing to consider is the type of brick you’re dealing with. If your brick is already painted, you’ll need to remove the existing paint before applying a new coat. Additionally, if you have historic or antique bricks that are highly porous or in poor condition, it may not be advisable to paint them as this could damage the underlying structure.

Another thing to keep in mind is that once you paint your bricks, there’s no going back – at least not easily! Painted bricks require ongoing maintenance and upkeep which includes regular cleaning and touch-ups if chipping or peeling occurs.

So before deciding whether or not to paint your home’s brick exterior surface, take some time to research and consult with a professional if needed.

Preparing To Paint Brick

Before you start painting brick, it’s essential to prepare the surface properly. This will ensure the paint adheres correctly and provides a long-lasting finish.

Here are some steps to follow when preparing to paint brick:

  1. Clean The Brick: Use a stiff-bristled brush and warm soapy water to clean the surface of any dirt, dust, or debris. Be sure to rinse thoroughly with clean water and allow ample time for drying before moving on.
  2. Repair The Brick: Inspect the surface for any cracks or damage that may need repairing before painting. You can use mortar repair products like polyurethane foam or patching compound for fixing minor damage.
  3. Apply Primer: Before painting brick, it’s crucial to apply a coat of primer specifically formulated for masonry surfaces such as concrete and brick. This helps improve adhesion and reduces the number of topcoats required.
  4. Make Sure Your Paint Adheres: When selecting your paint type, make sure it is designed explicitly for masonry surfaces like bricks because not every type of paint will adhere correctly.
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By following these steps closely while prepping your brick wall/surface, you’ll be setting yourself up for success when applying the actual paint later on!

Clean The Brick

Before you start painting your brick, it’s crucial to clean the surface thoroughly. Dirt, dust, and grime can prevent the paint from adhering properly and ruin your final outcome.

To clean the brick, you’ll need a wire brush or a pressure washer. Start by removing any loose dirt or debris with a dry brush. Then, use water and soap to scrub the surface of the brick thoroughly. Rinse with water until all suds are gone.

If there are any stubborn stains on your brick that won’t come off with soap and water alone, consider using a solution of trisodium phosphate (TSP) mixed with warm water. Be sure to wear gloves when handling TSP as it can irritate your skin.

Once you’ve finished cleaning the surface of your brick, allow it to dry completely before moving on to repairing any damage in preparation for priming and painting.

Repair The Brick

Before you start painting, make sure that your brick surface is in good condition. Any cracks or damage to the exterior brick should be repaired prior to painting. This will ensure that the paint adheres properly and doesn’t show any unsightly blemishes.

To repair damaged bricks, use a chisel and hammer to remove any loose mortar around the damaged area. Clean the area with a wire brush and then apply new mortar using a trowel. Let the mortar dry completely before proceeding with painting.

It’s also important to inspect your brick for efflorescence, which is a white powdery substance that can form on brick surfaces. If efflorescence is present, clean it off using a mixture of water and muriatic acid before proceeding with painting the exterior or interior brick again.

Once your brick surface has been repaired and cleaned, you’re ready to move on to applying primer and paint.

Apply Primer

Before painting brick, it’s important to apply primer to ensure that the paint adheres properly. You’ll want to use a high-quality masonry primer that is specifically designed for brick surfaces.

When applying the primer, make sure you cover all areas of the brick thoroughly. This will help prevent any spots from showing through once you start painting. It’s also important to let the primer dry completely before moving on to applying your paint.

Applying a primer may seem like an extra step, but it’s worth taking the time to do it right. It will help ensure your paint job lasts longer and looks better overall. Plus, using a high-quality primer can actually save you time and money in the long run by reducing the number of coats of paint you need to apply.

So don’t skip this crucial step when preparing to paint your brick surface!

Make Sure Your Paint Adheres

When painting brick, it’s important to choose a paint that will adhere properly. Brick is a porous surface, which means that some types of paint won’t stick well or may peel over time. Look for a paint specifically made for masonry surfaces, which will have better adhesion and durability.

When preparing to paint your brick surface, make sure that the bricks are clean and free from any dust or debris. This will ensure that the primer and paint can properly adhere to the surface.

If you’re dealing with any damaged or crumbling areas of the brick, it’s important to repair them before painting. You can use a patching compound designed for masonry surfaces to fill in any cracks or holes in the bricks.

Once your bricks are cleaned and repaired, apply a coat of high-quality latex primer, designed for masonry surfaces. This will help the paint adhere properly and provide an even base coat for your brick home’s final color.

When choosing a topcoat, look for an exterior-grade acrylic latex paint formulated specifically for masonry surfaces. These paints are designed to expand and contract with changes in temperature without cracking or peeling.

With the right tools, proper preparation, and selection of materials, painting brick can be a great way to update the look of your home’s exterior while maintaining its character.

Choosing The Right Paint

When it comes to choosing the right paint for your brick, you want to make sure you select breathable masonry paint. This type of paint is specifically designed for porous surfaces like brick and will allow moisture to escape instead of trapping it inside.

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Another important factor to consider is the color of the paint. Lighter colors tend to reflect sunlight, which can help keep your home cooler during the hot summer months. Darker colors absorb more heat, so they may not be the best choice if you live in a warmer climate.

Lastly, pay attention to the finish of the paint. Matte or flat finishes are great for hiding imperfections on older bricks while glossier finishes give off a modern feel and are easier to clean.

When selecting your paint, take into account these factors as well as any personal preferences you may have. After all, painting your brick should be a fun project that reflects your style and taste!

Applying The Paint

So you’ve prepped your brick and chosen the perfect paint, now it’s time to actually apply that paint! Here’s what you need to know about applying paint to brick:

  1. Use a roller or brush: Depending on the size of the area, you can use a large roller or a brush to apply the paint. A large roller is best for bigger areas, while a brush works well for smaller sections.
  2. Apply one coat at a time: It’s better to apply several thin coats than one thick layer of paint. This will help ensure even coverage and prevent drips.
  3. Consider using multiple colors: If you want to add some visual interest, consider using multiple colors on different sections of the brickwork.
  4. Be patient and let each coat dry completely before applying another: This will help prevent smudging or unevenness on your painted surface.

Overall, painting brick is definitely possible as long as it’s done correctly with proper prep work and quality materials. So go ahead and give your tired old bricks new life with some fresh color!

Tips For Painting Brick

Now that we know it’s possible to paint brick, let’s go over some tips that can help make the process of unpainted brick go smoothly.

Firstly, avoid painting new or recently repaired brick. New brick contains moisture and needs time to dry out completely before being painted. Similarly, if you’ve recently repaired your brickwork with mortar or other materials, allow them to cure for at least a month before attempting to paint.

Secondly, use specialty paint specifically made for masonry surfaces like brick. These paints are designed to resist water and weathering better than regular house paint.

Another important tip is knowing when to stop painting. It can be tempting to add another coat of paint in areas where the coverage looks uneven but adding too many coats can cause the surface of the brick to become clogged and lose its texture.

Finally, start painting from the bottom and work upwards as this will reduce any drips or runs down already painted areas.

By following these simple tips, you’ll be able to achieve a beautiful finish on your white-painted brick or bricks that will last for years!

Don’t Paint New Brick

Listen up, folks! This is an important one. I know it may be tempting to give your newly-laid brick a fresh coat of paint to match your home’s exterior, but don’t do it!

New brick needs time to breathe and cure, so painting over it too soon can trap moisture inside the bare brick, which can cause damage or even lead to mold growth. It’s best to wait at least a year before attempting to paint new brick.

If you’re unsure whether your brick has cured enough for painting, consult with a professional contractor or mason who can assess the condition of your brick and advise you on when it would be safe to proceed with painting.

Use Specialty Paint

When it comes to painting brick, using the right type of paint is crucial. Regular paint won’t adhere properly to brick and will likely peel or flake off quickly. That’s where specialty masonry paint comes in.

Masonry paint is specifically designed for use on rough surfaces like brick, concrete, and stucco. It contains binders that help the paint adhere to the surface and provides a durable finish that can withstand harsh weather conditions.

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When choosing your masonry paint, look for one labeled “breathable”. This means that it allows moisture to escape from the brick so that it doesn’t become trapped behind the paint and cause issues like mold or mildew growth.

You may also want to consider using a primer formulated for use on masonry surfaces before applying your topcoat of specialty masonry paint. This will help ensure an even application and improve adhesion between the surface and the new color.

Overall, investing in the highest quality paint and specialty masonry paint is essential when painting brick if you want long-lasting results.

Know When To Stop

When it comes to painting brick, you might be tempted to keep going until the entire surface is covered in paint. However, it’s important to know when to stop.

One of the key things you need to watch out for when painting brick is coverage. You want the paint to cover the surface evenly without leaving any spots or patches. But over-painting can lead to a buildup that hides the unique texture and character of your brick wall.

To avoid this, step back frequently from your work and examine your progress. Check for areas that still need attention and make sure you’re not applying too much paint in any one spot. Remember, less is often more with brick walls.

Another thing to consider when deciding when to stop is temperature. Keep an eye on the weather forecast and avoid painting if there’s a chance of rain or freezing temperatures within 24 hours after application.

In general, two coats should be enough for most brick surfaces. If you find that additional coats are needed, take a break between each layer so that the previous coat has time to dry completely before adding another layer of paint.

By knowing when to stop and taking care not to overdo it with multiple coats of paint, you can achieve a beautiful painted finish on your brick wall while still preserving its natural charm and texture.

Start From The Bottom

When painting brick, it’s important to start from the bottom and work your way up. This ensures that any drips or excess paint won’t ruin the work you’ve already done.

Another reason to start at the bottom is that brick tends to be porous, so if you don’t apply enough paint on the first coat, it may seep deeper into the brick. Starting from the top can lead to uneven coverage and a lot of frustration.

To begin, use a brush or roller to apply paint along the bottom edge of your wall. Work in small sections and make sure you’re spreading out enough paint for good coverage. As you move up, overlap with your previous section slightly to ensure even distribution of paint color.

Remember not to overload your brush or roller or paint sprayer with too much paint as this can cause drips and streaks which are tough to fix once they dry.

Starting from the bottom also prevents debris like dust or dirt from settling onto wet surfaces further down while applying fresh coats. So remember: always start at the bottom when painting brick!


After reviewing the process of painting a brick house, it’s clear that yes, you can paint brick! However, there are some important things to keep in mind before starting this project.

Firstly, be sure to prepare your painted brick homes and surfaces properly by cleaning them and repairing any damage. Additionally, choosing the right primer and paint is crucial to ensure good adhesion and longevity of your finish.

When applying your paint, make sure to start from the bottom and work your way up. Don’t forget to use specialty masonry paints designed for porous materials like brick.

While painting brick can be a great way to update an old or unsightly surface, it’s important not to paint new bricks as they need time to cure fully before being painted. And always remember: know when to stop! Overpainting can lead to a less-than-desirable finish.

By following these tips and taking care in your preparation and execution of painting brick, you’ll end up with a beautiful finished product that will last for years to come.

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