Looking for the best exterior wood paint to update your outside space? Whether you want to add a splash of colour to your fences, give old garden furniture a fresh new look, protect exterior woodwork or even turn a garden shed from drab to fab, the best exterior wood paint is essential if you want a professional finish.
Available in a wide range of shades, these days there's really no limit to what you can do in terms of adding colour to your outside space. Painting exterior surfaces is also an easy DIY project that anyone can achieve once you have the right tools for the job.
Feeling inspired to add refresh your outside space? Take your pick from our round-up of the best exterior wood paints and find out what they can do to make your outdoors look great.
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The best exterior wood paint
Special pigments in Cuprinol Garden Shades ensure a rich colour on sheds, fences, summerhouses, garden furniture and planters while enhancing the grain. Add a fresh feel with a bright Beach Blue or an ice cream flavour with Sweet Sundae. Brush on for greater coverage or spray for a smoother look. Coats must be applied no more than eight hours apart. There is a wide choice of ready mixed colours while a colour-mix service offers even greater options.
If you want to completely cover weathering on old wood, change a colour you’ve grown tired of or hide stains from spills at garden parties, Sadolin Superdec has an opaque finish that will do the job. Highly durable, it is perfect for cladding and exterior joinery. It erodes by weathering, so the coating stays flexible and doesn’t crack, peel or flake. Self priming and undercoating, it will protect for 10 years. Available in more than 300 shades, your wood can be as colourful as your flower beds.
Add some polish to your wood or metal trim with this Valspar Exterior Wood & Metal Paint, available in gloss or satin, which will cover every kind of surface, from hardboard and vinyl to rusty galvanised metal. It has exceptional elasticity to protect it from cracking, flaking and peeling for up to 15 years. Great coverage paired with a steady flow and leveling leaves a smooth finish in half the time, while its UV resistance will keep it looking good. As for colours, well, there are 2.2million, so you are sure to find one you like.
A paint brand that’s used on lighthouses certainly has the skills to make products that can withstand blustery and wet weather in the back garden. A Sandtex trade paint was used to decorate the red and white stripes on the Happisburgh Lighthouse in East Anglia. Not surprisingly, it is confident enough in the durability of its low sheen Exterior Satin (and Gloss) to offer a 10-year guarantee. The paint will give exterior wood a sleek, sophisticated finish, and is tough, waterproof and flexible enough not to crack. It is available in nine colours, including Soothing Green and Gentle Blue.
If you like colour in the garden but also want to appreciate the natural look of wood, Johnstone’s Woodcare Garden Colours offer both. Paint the fade-resistant smooth colour on your garden buildings, fences, arbours, dining sets or planters and you’ll still be able to see the texture and grain of the wood underneath. There are 20 colours to choose, so add a cheerful splash by painting your patio furniture with Merry Berry, or create a backdrop for plants to pop against with Steel Smoke.
Rust-Oleum is a favourite of DIYers and crafters; their go-to if they want to upcycle battered old furniture or bling up a plain new piece. Take a tin of Garden Furniture Paint, and you can transform a shabby garden bench, table or chairs in the press of a finger. The result is a soft-touch matt finish that is mould, algae and water resistant. With no need to wax or lacquer it, It is durable enough to be scrubbed clean. The paint can be directly applied to wood (bare or painted) but also brick, stone, plaster or even metal and plastic, if suitably primed and rigid.
When painting outside, it's important not to forget the front of the house. Kerb appeal is crucial as visitors can form an instant opinion right on the doorstep. Make sure your front door is smooth, glossy and colourful, not dull and peeling with Dulux Weathershield Quick-Dry Exterior Gloss. The paint has a water-based gloss finish and guarantees six-year weather protection for exterior wood and metal. Its weatherproof paint film is mould resistant to minimise staining and flexible to resist cracking, keeping the paint looking better for longer compared to conventional gloss paints.
Timber fences and sheds can look nice and natural, but try putting on colour to make the rest of your garden really pop. Ronseal Fence Life Plus Matt Shed & Fence Treatment can take your panels to the next level, creating a wonderful backdrop for flowers and uncovering your shed's potential for other uses. It gives five-year protection on rough sawn and smooth planed wood, and protects it from rain, frost and snow, and even fading in the sun. It can be brushed or sprayed on, and even be applied to damp wood – useful given our often showery summers – and will be rainproof in one hour.
How to buy the best exterior wood paint
Where to buy the best exterior wood paint
The paints and treatments often offer guarantees of several years for their long-lasting protective qualities. The details are easy to find on the side of the paint tin.
Mould, mildew and algae resistant
This will counteract the effects of our damp weather or storage in outside spaces that can leave surfaces looking mottled.
UV protection and fade resistant
When we do get some sunshine, you don't want your freshly painted woodwork to look dull or the colours fade because of it.
Paint and primer in one
The fewer the preparative undercoats needed, the quicker the job gets done, so if you're trying to complete a quick weekend makeover project, this could be the product for you.