Painting Benches

Don't Be Shy, Bring Some Colors In Your Garden

It's not just about the colors. Painting protects your outdoor benches from aging. Wood rots quickly without protection, and metal rusts. While there are also various primers for wood or metal, they work best when combined with paint. And it's so much nicer for the eyes, so there are no reasons to avoid doing it.

Paint for benches
Photo by basykes

Before Painting...

Don't rush it unless you want the job half done. Before painting or re-painting most outdoor furniture must be cleaned. If there has been old paint or varnish on a wooden or steel bench you need to remove it. Here are good visual instructions how to do it the right way. Noone said it's going to be easy ;)

If there is no old paint to remove you need at least to clean the bench from dust and anything that might be adherent to the surface. Before painting the bench its surface should be clean and dry.

If you have planned to use some primer or other treatment it should be placed before the paint and be left to dry well too. Note that many modern paints and stains are mixed with primer so there is no need of other treatment.

Choosing Colors

Choosing colors is so individual that it makes no sense to give general advice. Some ideas however might be of use:

  • In a very green garden the green benches will be out of sight. Unless it's a sought effect, better choose other color.
  • Black benches will absorb sunlight. Black is epsecially bad idea for steel benches in sunny areas.
  • If you have several benches, you can paint them in the same color. But painting each one in a different color can also produce wonderful effect.
  • Benches don't need to be single-color painted. Feel free to draw figures on them or to have the legs and backs in different color than the seat.
  • Dull colors are good for pale colored gardens and sharp colors are good for colorful gardens with a lot of flowers.
  • It's a good idea to match the colors of your house - doors, windows etc.

Of course you can have completely different ideas and it's all fine. Just use your creativity and don't listen too much to advice about coloring.

Choose the Paint

There are a lot of paint types nowadays. The variety makes me dream about the old days when everything was just "paint". Just kidding, the current situation is much better because you can choose paint depending on your bench types, your budget and your willing to work hard or not.

Here is a nice article with table showing which paints are appropriate for different furniture types.

Don't forget to ask the seller at the store, just keep in mind that some sellers will prefer to sell you the most expensive paints.

And Paint Them!

This is actually the easy part. Mix the paint if needed and pour it into a pan. Then use a brush or roller and start paiting from the back and bottom parts. You can leave the bottom side of the seat unpainted, but it's better to paint there too. After painting let the bench dry for at least a day. Often one paint is not going to be enough - so after letting it dry you may decide to repeat the work again, up to your satisfaction.

Keep your benches clean and protect them from rain and strong sunlight to keep the paint fine longer time.

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