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How to Paint Vinyl Shutters

Bidisha Mukherjee
When your vinyl shutters look dull and ugly, it's time to apply some paint to give them an attractive, new look. So, you start wondering how you can manage this task on your own.
Vinyl shutters cannot be painted with any regular, exterior paint. This is because, the material has high thermal expansion and contraction coefficients. These coefficients are much higher, as compared to any other material, like metal or wood.
As a result, when it is heated up during the day, it expands a lot and with the drop in temperatures at night, it begins to contract. Therefore, it requires a paint which can undergo this kind of stretching and shrinking.
The task of painting should be carried out in a shaded area where it is not exposed to direct sunlight. This will ensure that the applied paint does not dry up fast. If it dries quickly, then the paint may not bond well with the underlying vinyl surface. The step-by-step instructions are given here:


To clean and paint the shutter properly, you must remove it from the fasteners. Most of the shutters are hung with clips and can be taken out quite easily. You have to simply lift the shutters up in order to take them out of the clips.
There are some which are installed with screws. In these shutters, you will find screws in between the slats. So, you have to locate those screws, remove them one by one and then you can bring the shutter down.


Cleaning is required for the removal of dirt, grime, spray residues, vinyl pigments and other such small particles stuck on the vinyl surface. These materials prevent the paint from spreading evenly.
Clean the shutters thoroughly using a good quality soap, scrub brushes and sponges. Wash off the soap with the help of a garden hose. Then, allow it to dry up completely.

Choosing the Right Type of Paint

The paint that works best for the vinyls is the one that has a mix of acrylic and urethane resins. The sticky characteristics of urethane resin helps it to adhere to any kind of surface. While selecting paints, do not opt for expensive ones.
This is because, expensive paints often have a very thick consistency and cannot be applied by the means of spraying. Moreover, vinyls do not need such thick protection as it will not get damaged by sunlight or moisture.

Choose the Right Paint Color

When it comes to choosing the right color for vinyl shutter, select a shade which is quite similar to its existing color. If its original color is dark, then you must opt for a paint with dark hue only. It is the same for light-colored shutters as well.
Changing the color from a light shade to a darker one is not advisable as the vinyl will then absorb more heat that may distort the shape of the shutter.

Apply Paint on Vinyl Shutters

Place the shutter to be painted, on a set of sawhorses so that they do not get knocked off during the paint job. Now, apply the paint in thin layers with the help of a spray painting gun, using even strokes.
In order to paint the slat cavity, hold the gun at 45° and spray the paint. If you wish to use a brush, then take a small brush for this purpose. Make sure you cover the sides of the slat and the edges of the shutters with paint.
These are the areas which are often neglected. Let the first coat of paint dry up properly before applying the second coat. You can put a third coat as well, but make sure that it is sprayed only after the second coat has dried up. Once the painted surface dries up, apply a top coat of clear sealant to the shutters as a final touch.
The paint applied on vinyl does not take much time to dry up. However, newly painted shutters should always be kept in covered condition for a week to make them chip-resistant. This will ensure that the paint lasts on them for a longer duration of time.