Painting over Stained Wood: The Ultimate Guide

Does your cabinet or kitchen island look worn and dull? You have to fix this eyesore soon by doing a makeover. However, painting over stained wood is not that easy. Read on this article as you will find the way how to get the best result of it.

Why Painting Over Stained Wood

painting over stained wood trim
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There are various reasons why painting over stained wood is necessary, one of which is to give old furniture a new life. Don’t you feel bored to see the same cabinet or table for decades?

To make old furniture look new without breaking a sweat and costing you a fortune, repainting it is your safe bet. Besides, paints are versatile because they come in a wide array of hues. You can apply any color of your choice to infuse good vibes into space.

Is It Hard to Paint over Stained Wood?

painting over stained wood furniture
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Painting over stained wood can be somewhat challenging due to polyurethane or any finish that has been applied. It gives a glossy look over the surface of the furniture while protecting it well.

It seems that polyurethane and varnish have worked like a charm because they have made the repainting task more daunting. But it is still manageable.

Check out the materials you need and the steps on how to paint over dark stained wood below.

Painting over Stained Wood: The Materials

painting over stained wood siding
Source: wikipedia.org

Before starting, you have to prepare all the materials needed to paint stained wood furniture.

You will need:

  • 150 grit sandpaper
  • Primer
  • Tack cloth
  • Newspaper, painter tape, or any other thing that can protect the wall and floor from splash
  • The paint of your choice
  • Brushes of multiple sizes
  • Screwdriver or multipurpose knife to remove the hardware and accessories

The Steps of Painting over Stained Wood

Once you have all the materials you need, you can proceed to do the first step.

1. Remove the Hardware and Accessories

painting over a stained wood ceiling
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Some furniture, such as drawers, closets, wardrobes, and cabinets, features hardware and accessories like knobs, pulls, L-brackets, and hinges.

Painting over stained wood cabinets and any other wooden furniture requires you to remove all the hardware and accessories so that you can work on it better.

You can use a screwdriver or a multipurpose knife to perform this task. You may also want to store the hardware in some special containers so that it will be much easier for you to replace it to where it belongs.

Mixing them up together will only take more time because you have to find the one that fits snugly into a certain piece.

2. Clean the Surface

painting over stained wood uk
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When it comes to makeover furniture, patio, or deck, you have to make sure that the surface is clean. It has to be free of a chip, debris, grease, and any other thing that may become an obstacle to this process.

If you have an air extractor, congratulations! You can blow the dirt and debris away in no time. After that, fix the imperfections by sanding them down with fine grain paper. You will find some dust after this process. Do not worry! You can use a damp cloth to remove it.

Painting over stained wood kitchen islands or countertops is another challenge that can be a nuisance. Their surface is prone to grease and spill that can be hard to remove. If you keep applying the paint without eradicating it, you will get an atrocious result.

To remove the grease, try using trisodium phosphate. This is how you apply it:

  1. Put your gloves on because it can be harmful if any contact happens to your skin.
  2. Immerse a sponge in it, and begin to rub the surface of the wood.
  3. Let it sit for one or two minutes before removing the excess compound with another sponge.
  4. Rinse the wood.

3. Remove the Varnish Finish from the Surface

painting over wood stain banisters
Source: owenhomedesign.com

The biggest challenge of painting over stained wood is the varnish that protects the surface. To get a top-notch result, you have to remove any finish before applying the paint.

You can remove the varnish or polyurethane by sanding it. This process can take a lot of time and entail a large amount of dust. Therefore, you had better bring the pieces outside is it is possible.

Do not forget to wear a proper mask that can protect you from the fine dust. It may look trivial, but it can be harmful to your respiratory system.

4. Can You Exempt Sanding When Painting over Stained Wood?

painting over black stained wood
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The answer to this question is yes!

Fortunately, you can use liquid sander deglosser to remove varnish or polyurethane from the wood. It works as well as the conventional sandpaper. What makes it wonderful is it will save much of your time and your back. Sanding the entire surface is exhausting, isn’t it?

To use this deglosser, you only need to apply it with a paintbrush. Allow it to sit for about 15 minutes before wiping it off with a cloth.

5. Repairing the Flaws

painting over stained wood ceiling
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If you happen to find cracks or holes, fix it with putty or wood filler. You just need to apply it over the flaws, let it dry, and then remove the excess with sandpaper. Clean it again.

6. Apply Primer

painting over varnished wood ceiling
Source: thespruce.com

Applying primer before painting over stained wood is crucial because it has high-solid content that can help to fill in the grain. As a result, you will get a smooth surface for the finish coat.

Primer also helps to seal the surface to prevent the wood grain from soaking up paint.

7. Paint the Wood

chalk painting over stained wood
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Painting stained wood white or any other color of your choice is possible after applying the primer. Always apply two coats of paint for a better result.

Chalk paint over stained wood is also worth trying. It can give your old furniture a matte finish that denotes a French country look.

If you use a paint containing primer in it, you can just skip the previous step.

8. Reassemble the Pieces and Accessories

painting over stained wood exterior
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After applying two coats of paint to the whole pieces and let them dry, it is time for you to reassemble them together and replace the hardware and accessories to where they belong. That’s it!

See the design ideas for two-tone cabinets for more inspirations.

You can follow all the above painting over stained wood steps. It is not that hard, is it? With a little bit of your elbow grease and a weekend, you can do it yourself. Happy trying!

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