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Can You Paint Vinyl Windows?

Can You Paint Vinyl Windows?

Vinyl windows are an economical choice that can last around a decade without fading in color. It is easier to clean and maintain a vinyl window. However, you may find yourself wondering if it’s even possible to paint a vinyl window.

Vinyl windows can be painted by using special paint that adheres to vinyl. They should be cleaned, sanded, and primed before painting to ensure optimal results. 

Now the question is: how can you start the process? Is it worth the effort? Painting a vinyl window could be more than you bargained for.

Read ahead to find out the pros, cons, and alternatives to painting a vinyl window!

Understanding Vinyl Windows 

Before you begin painting your vinyl windows, it’s important to know the basics about them. A vinyl window is technically plastic and often is made out of PVC (polyvinyl chloride). 

There’s no difference between the two materials, but it comes with an array of problems when you have to paint it.

The surface of the vinyl windows is slippery and can compromise paint adherence. That’s also why it is easier for you to clean and maintain vinyl windows rather than paint over them!

Temperature resistance is also a problem. Vinyl windows will bend, mold, or break in higher temperatures. As such, using dark tones on vinyl windows won’t be appropriate.

Here are some other points to consider:

1. It Will Void Your Warranty

Most contractors that provide vinyl window installation will offer a warranty. This warranty comes with certain perks.

However, you will void it the moment you paint on vinyl. That’s because certain paints can damage the material’s integrity. 

You will have to be careful and consult with the vinyl windows contractor before proceeding. 

2. The Paint Might Not Look The Best

Using a suitable primer and proper sanding would be critical for the paint to adhere to a vinyl window.

If you don’t use high-quality paints and primer, it will end up chipping away. Vinyl doesn’t absorb the material, making it not a good material to paint on. 

So, while you can technically paint vinyl windows, it would be ideal not to do so. 

3. Limited Colour Palette

You will have to find the matching color palette to the tint of the vinyl you’re using. If you go with too much of a contrasting color, it won’t bear excellent results.

Usually, vinyl windows come in brighter colors or neutral tones. 

Try to stick to lighter colors if you want the best results.  

4. Replacement Would Be Better 

Now, as you can see, painting vinyl is going to be a tolling task. It can cost you more money and time than you would expect.

Therefore, it is better to replace the vinyl windows entirely rather than painting them. That would be more feasible and also look better. 

Couple painting house exterior

Can Vinyl Windows Be Painted?

If you follow the proper procedure, it wouldn’t be challenging to paint the vinyl windows. However, it will be an exhaustive DIY project.

Here are the instructions to paint it: 

  • Make sure to wash and clean the windows thoroughly. There shouldn’t be a speck of dust remaining. Let them dry completely before proceeding.
  • Next, you will have to sand it, but not the glass portion. Just sand the vinyl slightly to provide it with a cleaner, more even surface. A medium grit sand sponge will do the job for you. This will make applying the primer easier for you. 
  • You can use anything to apply the primer to the windows. Make sure to cover the real “glass” surface by using tape or something similar. 
  • Once the primer settles, you can begin painting the vinyl window. 

The best way to apply the primer and paint is by using smaller brushes and tools. If not, you can always go for the spray paints, as long as you cover the required area. 

What Kind Of Paint Do You Use On Vinyl Windows?

You will have to use special paint and primer for the vinyl windows. 

Usually, manufacturers tag it as “vinyl-safe” paint or primer. If you can’t find them, look for the alkyd-based primer. Next, it would also depend on the color of the paint.

Typically, lighter tones are more acceptable. If you don’t want to void the warranty, consult with the company that installed the vinyl windows.

They can better tell you about the kind of paint and primer their vinyl windows can handle.

After all, some companies have strict policies and will void the warranty if you use any kind of paint. Others provide you with limited options of light or neutral colors. 

How Long Does Paint Last On Vinyl Windows?

The paint will last you around a decade, at best. This matches the standard warranty and replacement requirements of the vinyl windows. The vinyl windows last around ten years for most people. 

It would also depend on the quality of the paint and the maintenance that you provide. If you didn’t use the proper methods, as provided in the instructions above, the paint could come off faster. 

The paint will chip and shed if you don’t use vinyl-safe alternatives.

Can You Use Spray Paints For Vinyl Windows? 

Yes, you can, as you cover the area you don’t want to paint. There are vinyl-safe spray paints and spray primers available in the market. It will make things easier for you. 

Does Painting Vinyl Windows Affect Property’s Value? 

Yes, but mostly negatively. You might be looking for a way to enhance the value. But, the poor paint job can lead to a less appealing look. It is better just to clean them and leave them be. 

Conclusion on painting vinyl windows

So, unless you’re really tempted to paint the vinyl windows, as you can see, it is not the best option. 

With proper care, you can get it done, but you have to ask yourself if it is worth it. 

After all, calling a contractor and getting them replaced with infinite color options sounds way better.

Lindsay Reed

Hi, I'm the founder of! I created this website to be a resource for everyone who wants to make the best home possible.