How to paint bathroom tiles like a real pro

Painting bathroom tiles is a cost-effective way to update your bathroom without the need for a complete renovation. This project can give old, outdated tiles a fresh, new look but requires specific steps and considerations to ensure a durable and aesthetically pleasing finish. Here’s an in-depth guide on how to paint bathroom tiles, along with tips to help you achieve the best results.

Preparing to paint

1. Choose the Right Paint: For bathroom tiles, you need a paint that can withstand moisture, frequent cleaning, and temperature changes. Epoxy-based paints are most recommended for tile painting due to their durability and water resistance. You can also use latex paint if it’s specifically formulated for tiles and bathrooms. Additionally, a urethane-based primer is crucial for ensuring the paint adheres well to the tile surface.

2. Gather Your Supplies: You’ll need the following items:

  • Urethane-based primer
  • Epoxy or specially formulated tile paint
  • Fine-grit sandpaper (400 to 600 grit)
  • Painter’s tape
  • A high-quality paintbrush and a small foam roller
  • Cleaning supplies (e.g., trisodium phosphate (TSP) or a degreasing cleaner)
  • Drop cloths or plastic sheets to protect surfaces

3. Clean the Tiles Thoroughly: Start by cleaning the tiles with a degreasing cleaner or TSP solution to remove any soap scum, mildew, or grease. This step is crucial for ensuring the primer and paint adhere properly.

4. Sand the Tiles: Lightly sand the tiles with fine-grit sandpaper to create a slightly rough surface, which helps the primer and paint adhere better. Wipe away the dust with a damp cloth and allow the tiles to dry completely.

5. Tape and Cover: Use painter’s tape to protect any areas you don’t want to paint, such as trim, faucets, and edges. Cover sinks, tubs, and floors with drop cloths or plastic sheets.

Priming the bathroom tiles

  1. Apply Primer: Using a high-quality brush or foam roller, apply a thin, even coat of urethane-based primer to the tiles. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding drying times before applying a second coat if necessary.

Painting the bathroom tiles

  1. How to paint bathroom tiles in CanadaPaint Application: Once the primer is dry, apply the first coat of your chosen paint with a foam roller for smooth surfaces or a high-quality brush for small areas or edges. Epoxy paint often provides the best results for tile painting due to its durability and resistance to moisture.
  2. Apply Multiple Coats: Depending on the paint type and color, you may need to apply multiple coats to achieve full coverage and the desired color depth. Allow each coat to dry thoroughly before applying the next, according to the paint’s drying time instructions.
  3. Drying Time: After applying the final coat, allow the paint to cure fully. This process can take several days, depending on the paint type. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended curing time.

Tips for a flawless finish

  • Ventilation: Ensure good ventilation in the bathroom during and after painting to help the paint dry and cure properly.
  • Quality Over Quantity: Invest in high-quality primer and paint designed specifically for bathrooms or tiles to ensure a durable finish.
  • Patience is Key: Don’t rush the drying and curing process. Taking your time will result in a smoother, more durable finish.
  • Regular Maintenance: Clean painted tiles regularly with non-abrasive cleaners to maintain their appearance and prevent damage.

Choosing the right paint

  • Epoxy Paint: Known for its durability and moisture resistance, epoxy paint is ideal for bathroom tiles. It provides a hard, glossy finish that stands up well to frequent cleaning.
  • Latex Paint: Some latex paints are formulated for use on tile and other surfaces in high-moisture environments like bathrooms. Make sure the product specifies it is suitable for bathroom tiles.
  • Primer: A urethane-based primer is essential for ensuring good adhesion of the topcoat to the tile surface.
  • Tip! Know which of the best paint brands in Canada are available.

Painting bathroom tiles is a viable option for refreshing your bathroom’s look without the expense and hassle of re-tiling. By carefully preparing the surface, choosing the right products, and applying the paint according to the manufacturer’s instructions, you can achieve a new look for your bathroom that will last for years to come. Given the economic challenges currently facing Canada, where everyone is looking to avoid unnecessary expenses, opting for renovations over buying new can often be a more practical choice.

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