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Painting Interior Brick the Right Way

by | Sep 1, 2020 | Interior Design, Interior Painting

Summer is quickly coming to an end in Portland and many of us are spending much more time in our homes than normal.  Many of us have had to work from home and maybe doing so for a long time.  With that in mind, it’s a very popular time to upgrade your personal space to help make time at home more enjoyable!


An Intro to Painting Interior Brick

So you have bricks in your home that you think are outdated or they just don’t go with your personal style.  Brick fireplaces were very popular 50 years ago but tend to age the look of a home today.  Customers ask me all the time if bricks can be painted and the answer is yes!  If done correctly you can paint bricks and they can look great and be any color you choose.


How to Paint Brick

Anytime you paint bricks that have never been painted before you need to start by cleaning them very well.  We like to use a cleaner called TSP mixed with water and a scrub brush to clean bricks.  Of course, you may not be able to get them perfectly clean but do the best you can.  After cleaning the bricks you should wait a few hours to make sure they are completely dry before you proceed with primer.

If your bricks were painted previously you can paint over the existing paint as long as it is in good condition and not peeling.  I prefer to use an enamel paint in a fairly high sheen to it can be cleaned similar to your doors and millwork.  You can apply paint with a heavy nap roller cover and brush or you can apply with a sprayer.  The sprayer may make the finish a bit better and more consistent.

If the bricks have not been painted previously you will need to apply a masonry primer before painting.  The masonry primer is a fairly thick primer that will help fill small holes in bricks and grout and will help with adhesion when you apply the paint.  We do not recommend trying to paint bare bricks and grout without a primer coat.
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Key Considerations with Painting Brick

If you are painting fireplace bricks and the fireplace gets extremely hot you could have problems if the paint is too close to the heat.  In most cases, we don’t have a problem with this but if you have a wood stove or a wood fireplace and you like to get them very hot it can be an issue.

Painting your bricks white could be an issue if you burn wood in the fireplace as it can show more smoke damage if the fireplace does not vent well.  If you have a gas insert this will not be an issue.


Painting Interior Brick Summarized

So, the next time you find yourself heading to Google to type in “interior painting portland OR” you can save yourself the hunt and get a free estimate from Absolute Painting!

If you need any help or advice on painting bricks please reach out to us and we can help you to choose the right primer, paint, and materials you will need to do the job.  If you think it is above your skill level we are more than happy to help!

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