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How to spray paint wood?

Would you like to know How to spray paint wood?

If you’re looking to give your wood furniture, trim, or cabinetry a fresh new look, spray painting may be the perfect solution.

However, spraying paint can be tricky – if you don’t do it properly, you could end up with streaks and spots. In this blog post, we’ll teach you how to spray paint wood in a way that will give you great results every time. Let’s get started!

What is Spray Paint?

First of all, a little background on spray paint is in order. Spray paint is a type of coating that comes out of an aerosol can, and it’s propelled by gas under pressure. It consists of pigments suspended in a suspension agent or resin solution liquid.

Water was commonly used as the suspension agent for oil-based paints in the past. Still, most modern spray paints use butyl cellosolve acetate, Ethyl lactate, Isopropanol amine acetate, or styrene copolymers. Look closely at each label to see what kind of components are included in your particular can of spray paint!

how to spray paint wood furniture

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Applying Paint with a Spray Gun

Two popular devices can be used to apply spray paint: airbrush guns and aerosol cans. The results that you get from an airbrush gun will vary widely depending on the quality of your equipment, but they allow for precise control over the amount of paint that is applied.

On the other hand, an aerosol can (sometimes called a “spray can”) provides more coverage in less time. Keep in mind, though: with increased speed and convenience comes a loss of control.

An aerosol can does not give you as much control over where your paint lands; this is one of many reasons why spray painting wood is tricky!

Airbrushing vs. Spray Painting with an Aerosol Can Airbrushing and aerosol cans have advantages when applying paint. In the end, which you choose will largely depend on what kind of piece of furniture or trim you’re going to be spray painting!

How to spray paint wood?

Now that we’ve covered the basics of spray paint let’s look at how to use it on wood.

1. Clean the surface you’re going to paint

Before spraying, make sure that the surface you’re working on is clean and free of dust, dirt, and other debris. This will help ensure that your paint adheres properly, which means fewer chances for streaks and spots!

2. Shake the can well

This is an important step! Shaking the can ensures that the pigments are evenly distributed throughout the suspension agent, which will help produce a more consistent finish.

3. Test your spray paint on a piece of cardboard or scrap wood

It’s always a good idea to test your paint on a piece of scrap wood or cardboard before you begin painting the actual work. Different brands of spray paint can have slightly different formulas, so it’s essential to know how each one will look and behave.

If you’re using an airbrush gun, try out different patterns for your spray – you might want to use a vertical design, or perhaps a horizontal one would work best.

Don’t forget that aerosol cans don’t give you as much control over where the paint lands! For this reason, vertical patterns typically work better than horizontal ones when using an aerosol can. Vertical designs are more likely to produce even coverage across your surface.

4. Lightly mist the surface with your first coat

Because of their high surface tension, most spray paints are best applied in light layers. If you use too much paint at once, streaks will form on your surface. So take it slowly! Hover the can 8-12 inches away from the surface, and give it a few seconds before you move on to another spot.

Once you’ve covered an area with one layer of paint, let it dry for about 15 minutes – this is just enough time for the color to become touchable but not completely dry.

5. Apply several more coats until desired opacity is achieved

The more coats you apply, the more opaque or solid your finished product will be. Make sure that each coat dries completely before applying the next one – typically, waiting 15 minutes between coats is a good rule of thumb.

Don’t worry if your first few coats appear spotty and uneven because the following layers should cover these areas. Just keep going – eventually, you’ll achieve the opacity you desire!

6. Allow the paint to dry for several hours before moving on

Like latex paint, spray paint will not be fully cured until it has been allowed to dry for at least 12 hours. You can use this time to watch TV or run errands, but don’t return too soon because doing so may cause unsightly smudges due to condensation. This brings us to our final point

7. Let the surface completely cure overnight before reassembling!

Some people think that a quick once-over with a hairdryer will help speed up the drying process. This is not recommended, as it could damage your paint job. The best way to ensure that your new spray paint job is durable and long-lasting? Give it plenty of time to cure!

Is it safe to spray paint wood furniture?

Yes, it is safe to spray paint wood furniture. Spray painting is one of the easiest ways to refinish wooden furniture – and it’s a lot faster than sanding and staining! Just make sure that you follow the steps listed above, and your furniture will look new in no time.

When spray painting wood furniture, always start by cleaning the surface well. This will help ensure that the paint adheres properly and produces a smooth finish. Shake the can of spray paint well before using it, and test it out on a piece of scrap wood or cardboard to get an idea of how it will look.

Apply light coats of paint to the surface, allowing each one to thoroughly before applying the next. Be patient – it’s better to apply several thin coats than one heavy one.

Finally, give the surface enough time to cure before reassembling your piece of furniture – typically at least 12 hours. And remember: When in doubt, wait longer!

What kind of paint do you need for spray painting?

When spray painting an object, you can use any indoor/outdoor enamel, latex, or acrylic paint. Just keep in mind that while flat paint will create a more matte finish, glossier paints will produce a shinier effect on the object’s surface.

For this reason, many people opt for semi-gloss or high-gloss black paint when spray painting wood furniture. These types of paint inherently shine, so they’re perfect for objects with complex shapes.

What type of protective gear is required when using a spray gun?

When using a spray gun, you should always wear a respirator to protect your lungs from the fumes, as well as goggles to protect your eyesight. If you’re using an aerosol can of paint, it’s also essential to wear gloves to avoid skin contact with the chemicals in color.

And finally, make sure that you’re working in a well-ventilated area – preferably outside – to avoid breathing in any harmful fumes.

Which direction should I point my air nozzle to get a smooth finish?

Using a spray, you can always point your nozzle upwards with your finger on the button to get the best results. When you do this, the paint will flow from the nozzle without causing any splatter or drips.

As for using a spray gun, it’s recommended that you practice beforehand to get an idea of how it works. Different guns work in different ways, so you may need to experiment with yours before tackling your DIY project!

Tips for spraying the right way

If you’re using a spray can hold it at an angle of around 45 degrees away from the surface that you’re painting. Spray in smooth, even strokes back and forth across your object – do not go over each area more than twice or three times.

For the best results, apply two light coats to darker the color on your final skin. If your furniture has many grooves or nooks, use a small paintbrush to touch up any areas where the paint has collected between them.

Don’t spray too close to your furniture, or there may be unsightly overspray. Keep your hand moving while spreading to prevent discoloration caused by blocking parts of the nozzle with your fingers/thumbs.

If you’re using a spray gun, hold the gun at a distance of around 8-10 inches from the surface and move it back and forth in smooth, even strokes. Apply light pressure to the trigger and keep your finger on it for consistent spraying.

Avoid stopping in one place for too long, as this may cause drips or runs. If you need to reload your gun with more paint, do so between coats rather than in the middle of them – this will help avoid any streaks or inconsistencies in your finish.

When is the best time to start spray painting my furniture?

The best time to start spray painting your furniture is when the temperature is between 50-85 degrees Fahrenheit, and the humidity level is below 60%.

This ensures that the paint will dry evenly and smoothly without bumps or other imperfections. Temperatures outside of this range may cause the paint to dry too quickly and crack, resulting in an uneven finish.

It’s also best to start spray painting your object during a windy day, as you don’t want it to be exposed directly to the sun – otherwise, the paint may end up drying before it hits the surface!

While many people choose to do their spray painting at night, it’s also essential that the temperature has reached these optimum levels before starting; if not, there could be problems with your final coat.

When should I apply the second coat of spray paint?

The amount of time between coats is dependent on how long your first layer needs to dry. Generally, it would help to wait until the first coat was completely dry before applying a second one.

However, if you’re using a spray gun, it’s recommended that you apply two light coats so that the color is darker on your final skin.

Make sure to read the instructions on your can or gun carefully, as some paints may require more than two coats for full coverage. In any case, always let the first coat dry before applying a second one!

What type of paint should I use for spray painting?

There are three types of paint: enamel, acrylic, and latex when it comes to spray paint.

Enamel paints are oil-based and provide a high level of durability; they’re typically used on wooden objects and furniture, as well as on coaches and caravans. However, they’re not recommended for use inside the house due to their pungent smell and tendency to fade over time.

Acrylic paints are water-based and can be used indoors and outdoors; however, they tend to fade more quickly than enamel paints. Latex paint is also water-based, but it provides a less durable finish, so you should only use it for smaller DIY projects.

If you want your spray-painted object to last for years without fading or cracking, using enamel spray paint is the best way to go! Just remember that you’ll need a particular type of primer your piece has previously been painted using oil-based paints, as acrylic primers can damage it.

Things to keep in mind while painting wood with a sprayer

Spray painting wood with a sprayer is not as straightforward as spray painting other materials, so it’s essential to take certain precautions to ensure that your finished product looks as good as possible.

The first thing you need to do is clean the surface of your furniture using a deglosser, which will remove all traces of dirt and dust from the object.

After cleaning the wood, you need to apply a primer for wood surfaces to help seal and protect the finish; otherwise, there may be imperfections and cracks due to any exposed patches on the surface.

Once that’s done, follow up by applying two coats of enamel paint (or whichever paint type you prefer); however, don’t use too much paint at once! Excess paint can drip and damage nearby surfaces, so use a thin coat and build it up in layers until you’ve achieved the desired color.

When painting wood, don’t forget to cover the entire surface; otherwise, you may end up with an uneven finish in certain areas (known as “holidays”), and your final coat may not adhere properly to the surface.

To ensure that this doesn’t happen when using a sprayer, make sure to extend your arm outwards slightly while spraying – this way, you’ll be able to reach all regions of the object without having to move it around too much.


Can you spray paint directly on wood?

Unless you’ve used a primer for wood surfaces beforehand, it’s best not to spray paint directly onto bare wood. You’ll most likely end up with an uneven finish, and your final coat may not adhere correctly.

Do you need to prime wood before spray painting?

Yes, you should always prime wood before spray painting it. Applying a primer for wood surfaces will help seal and protect the finish, making the paint adhere better to the surface.

How many coats of paint should you apply when painting wood spray?

You should apply two coats of paint when spraying wood, but make sure to use thin coats so that you don’t end up with drips or excess paint on the surrounding surfaces.

How do I get a smooth finish with spray paint on wood?

One way to achieve a smooth finish with spray paint on wood is to use a primer for wood surfaces before applying your first coat of paint. You can also use a sanding block after the first coat has dried to help level out any bumps or irregularities in the surface.

Can you spray paint over varnished wood?

No, it’s not recommended to spray paint over varnished wood as the color may not adhere properly, and it’ll be challenging to get a smooth finish. If you want to repaint an existing piece of furniture, you’ll need to remove the varnish entirely before starting.

Should you spray paint wood?

There is no one definitive answer to this question – it depends on the specific project you’re working on and the type of paint you’re using.

However, if you want a durable finish that will last for years without fading or cracking, using enamel spray paint is the best way to go. Just make sure to take the necessary precautions, such as cleaning and priming the surface before painting.

Do I need to sand the wood before painting?

Yes, you should always sand the wood before painting it. Sanding will help remove any dirt or dust from the surface and any existing paint or varnish. It’ll also help to create a smooth finish for the new paint to adhere to.


When painting wood, it’s essential to take the necessary precautions, such as cleaning and priming the surface before painting.

It would help if you also used thin coats of paint to avoid drips or excess paint on the surrounding surfaces. By following these tips, you’ll be able to achieve a smooth, even finish when spray painting wood.