How to Paint Aluminum Patio Furniture

Are you tired of seeing your old and worn-out aluminum patio furniture? Do you want to give it a fresh new look without spending a lot of money on new furniture? Painting your aluminum patio furniture is the perfect solution!

How to paint aluminum patio furniture is a great way to refresh your outdoor space and extend the life of your furniture.

How to Paint Aluminum Patio Furniture

Whether you’re aiming to restore an old, weathered set or simply change the color to match your evolving taste, painting aluminum can be an easy and rewarding DIY project.

This guide will walk you through the steps to achieve a durable and attractive finish. From preparation and priming to painting and sealing, you’ll learn everything you need to know to give your aluminum patio furniture a professional-quality makeover.

What Will You Need?

Before you begin your project, gathering all the necessary materials and tools is important. Here’s a list of things you’ll need:

  • Aluminum-safe primer
  • High-quality spray paint designed for metal surfaces
  • Paintbrushes (if needed)
  • Drop cloth or newspaper to protect your work area
  • Sandpaper (medium grit)
  • Tack cloth or microfiber cloth
  • Gloves and safety goggles

Once you have everything ready, it’s time to start prepping your furniture for painting.

10 Easy Steps on How to Paint Aluminum Patio Furniture

Step 1: Preparation

The first step in any successful painting project is thorough preparation. Start by cleaning your aluminum patio furniture to remove any dirt, grime, or old paint that could interfere with the new paint’s adhesion. Use a mild detergent mixed with water and a scrubbing brush or sponge to clean the surface. Rinse thoroughly with water and allow the furniture to dry completely.

Next, inspect the furniture for any signs of rust or corrosion. If you find any, use medium-grit sandpaper to sand the affected areas until the surface is smooth and rust-free.

Use Medium-grit Sandpaper

Be sure to sand any rough or chipped paint areas as well to ensure an even finish. After sanding, use a tack cloth or microfiber cloth to wipe down the furniture and remove any dust or residue.

Now, it’s time to protect your work area.

Lay down a drop cloth or newspaper to catch any paint drips or overspray, and make sure you’re working in a well-ventilated space to avoid inhaling fumes. Once your furniture and work area are prepped, you can move on to priming.

Step 2: Priming

Priming is a crucial step to ensure proper paint adhesion and long-lasting results. Choose an aluminum-safe primer designed for metal surfaces. Shake the can well to mix the contents thoroughly.

Hold the spray can about 10-12 inches away from the furniture and apply a light, even coat. Using multiple thin coats rather than one thick coat to avoid runs and drips is better.

Allow each coat to dry as per the manufacturer’s instructions before applying the next one. Once you’ve primed the entire surface, let the primer cure completely before moving on to the painting stage.

Step 3: Painting

Apply the Paint Like the Primer

Now that your furniture is primed, it’s time to paint. Select a high-quality spray paint specifically designed for metal surfaces.

Shake the paint can vigorously for a few minutes to ensure the paint is well-mixed. Apply the paint like the primer, holding the can about 10-12 inches away and using light, even strokes.

Again, multiple thin coats will yield the best results. Allow each coat to dry according to the paint manufacturer’s instructions before applying the next one. Be patient and thorough to achieve a smooth, even finish.

Step 4: Sealing

Apply a clear sealant to protect your beautifully painted furniture from the elements and daily wear and tear. Choose a sealant designed for outdoor metal surfaces. Similar to the priming and painting steps, spray the sealant in light, even coats from a distance of about 10-12 inches.

Allow each coat to dry completely, as per the manufacturer’s recommendations. This sealing step is essential for prolonging the life of your newly painted aluminum patio furniture.

Step 5: Curing

After applying the sealant, it’s important to let your furniture cure fully. Curing times can vary based on the products used, so refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines.

Generally, it’s advisable to let the furniture sit undisturbed for at least 24-48 hours. This ensures that all layers—the primer, paint, and sealant—are set and bonded properly, providing a durable finish.

Step 6: Inspect and Touch-Up

After the curing period, inspect your furniture for any missed spots or areas needing touch-ups.

If you find any blemishes or uneven areas, lightly sand them with fine-grit sandpaper and wipe clean with a tack cloth. Reapply paint and sealant to the touched-up areas following the same steps—light, even coats and thorough drying time.

Taking the time to ensure a flawless finish will make your project look professional and last longer.

Step 7: Reassemble Your Furniture

If you had to disassemble any parts of your aluminum patio furniture for painting, now is the time to put everything back together. Carefully reattach any screws, bolts, or other hardware, making sure not to scratch the new paint job. Tighten all connections for stability and check that all moving parts function smoothly.

Step 8: Add Cushions and Accessories

Now that your freshly painted furniture is ready for use consider adding new cushions or accessories to complete the look.

Choose colors and patterns that complement your newly painted furniture and enhance your outdoor space. Well-coordinated accessories can elevate the aesthetic appeal and comfort of your patio setup.

Step 9: Regular Maintenance

With a Mild Detergent

Establish a regular maintenance routine to keep your aluminum patio furniture looking its best. Clean your furniture periodically with a mild detergent and water to remove dirt and debris.

Inspect for any signs of wear and address minor touch-ups as needed. Additionally, consider applying a new coat of sealant every couple of years to maintain its protective barrier against the elements.

Step 10: Enjoy Your Revitalized Outdoor Space

With your aluminum patio furniture repainted and looking brand new, it’s time to enjoy your revitalized outdoor space. Whether you’re hosting a barbecue, reading a book, or simply relaxing in your garden, take pride in the effort you’ve put into refreshing your furniture.

Not only have you saved money by avoiding new purchases, but you’ve also extended the life of your existing pieces, making your outdoor area more inviting and enjoyable for years to come.

By following these simple steps, you can easily transform your dull and worn aluminum patio furniture into a vibrant and attractive piece for your outdoor space.

5 Additional Tips and Tricks

  1. Choose the Right Primer: Before painting, using a primer designed for metal surfaces is crucial. This will help the paint adhere better and prevent peeling over time. Look for a rust-inhibiting primer if your furniture is exposed to the elements.
  2. Clean Thoroughly: Ensure the furniture is free from dirt, dust, and grease. Use a mixture of water and mild detergent to scrub the surface, and let it dry completely before applying any primer or paint.
  3. Sanding for a Smooth Finish: Lightly sand the aluminum surface with fine-grit sandpaper to create a rough texture for the primer to adhere to. Wipe away any sanding residue with a clean, damp cloth.
  4. Use Spray Paint for Even Coverage: Spray paint designed for metal provides an even and smooth finish. Hold the can about 12 inches away from the surface and apply light, even coats to avoid drips and runs. Allow each coat to dry thoroughly before applying the next.
  5. Protective Topcoat: Once the paint has dried, apply a clear protective topcoat to seal and protect the painted surface from scratches and weather damage. This will extend the life of your beautifully painted patio furniture.
Apply a Clear Protective Topcoat

With these additional tips, you can achieve a professional and long-lasting paint finish on your aluminum patio furniture.

5 Things You Should Avoid

  1. Skipping the Primer: Avoid the temptation to paint directly onto the aluminum surface without using a primer. Skipping this step can lead to poor paint adhesion and rapid peeling and chipping of the paint.
  2. Painting in Harsh Weather Conditions: Do not paint your patio furniture on extremely hot, cold, or humid days. Adverse weather conditions can affect the drying process and the overall finish of the paint.
  3. Using the Wrong Type of Paint: Avoid paints not specifically designed for metal surfaces. The wrong type of paint can result in a lacklustre finish that doesn’t withstand outdoor conditions.
  4. Applying Thick Coats of Paint: Avoid applying thick layers of paint in a single go. This can cause drips, runs, and an uneven finish. Instead, apply multiple thin coats, allowing each coat to dry fully before adding the next.
  5. Neglecting the Drying Time: Ensure you do not rush the drying process between coats or before using the furniture. Neglecting adequate drying time can compromise the durability and appearance of the paint job.

By avoiding these common pitfalls, you can ensure a smooth and professional paint finish on your aluminum patio furniture that lasts for years.


Taking the time to properly prepare, paint, and protect your aluminum patio furniture can yield beautiful and long-lasting results. By meticulously following the steps of choosing the right primer, thoroughly cleaning, sanding for a smooth finish, using spray paint for even coverage, and applying a protective topcoat, you can ensure a durable and professional-looking finish.

Additionally, by avoiding common mistakes such as skipping the primer, painting in harsh weather, using the wrong paint, applying thick coats, and neglecting drying times, you can sidestep issues that could compromise the quality and longevity of your paint job.

With these comprehensive guidelines on how to paint aluminum patio furniture, your aluminum patio furniture will not only look stunning but be well-protected against the elements for years to come.

Photo of author

Adrian Green

Adrian is a woodworking hobbyist and has loved Woodworking since he was 10 years old. Back then in childhood, his father used to have a furniture shop. He used to help his dad and learned a lot from him about how to fix woodworking furniture, basic carpentry knowledge and also about how to work hard and take care of business. He enjoys woodworking as a hobby. He loves the feeling of creating something with his own hands, and the satisfaction that comes from seeing his finished products used by others.

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