How to Paint Over a Brick Wall

Written by rosemary rugnetta
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Brick walls are very, beautiful architectural elements but tend to get dreary with age. However, It is possible and easy to bring an old brick wall back to life by painting it. It can be painted to the same original colour or painted a totally new colour. With the right preparation, this is a very easy project to complete and will last for years to come. Read the following instructions on how to paint over a brick wall in order to undertake this satisfying and successful project.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Scraper
  • Soap and water
  • Towels
  • Vacuum or leaf blower
  • Paint brushes
  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Clear spray sealer

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  1. 1

    Preparing the wall for painting is very important. Begin by scraping off any loose paint from the brick wall if it was previously painted. This will result in a smoother surface when completed.

  2. 2

    Since brick is porous, it can absorb a lot of dirt. Using soap and water, wash down the entire brick wall including the grout. Go over it a second time with plain water to remove any soap that was left behind. If the wall is outdoors, it can be washed with a garden hose. Allow this to dry.

  3. 3

    Vacuum the brick wall to remove any further dirt or grime that was left behind after cleaning. If the wall is outdoors, this can be done with a leaf blower.

  4. 4

    With the paint brush, apply the primer to the brick wall making sure to get into all of the grout lines. This primer coat is important because it will keep the original colour of the brick from bleeding through to the new paint colour. Allow this to thoroughly dry.

  5. 5

    Again using the paint brush, apply the desired colour of paint to the brick wall including the grout lines. Applying a good, thick coat may eliminate the need for a second coat. Let this completely dry.

  6. 6

    If necessary, apply a second coat of paint to the brick wall. When the wall is dry, spray on the clear sealer. Spraying this very lightly will protect the new paint without creating a glossy finish.

Tips and warnings

  • Fill in the grout lines with caulking to create a smooth wall with no evidence of brick.
  • Paint the grout lines a different colour for a new brick look.
  • To eliminate painting several coats of paint, have the primer tinted the same colour as the paint.
  • Use protective eye wear when spraying sealer.
  • Make sure to have enough ventilation when applying sealer.

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