Can red brick be painted white? (2023)

Asked by: Elian Grant

Score: 4.9/5 (44 votes)

Just because your fireplace came with an old-fashioned red-brick facade doesn't mean you need to keep it that way. If the cozy traditionalism of bare brick doesn't suit your aesthetic, you can transform the look of the whole wall by painting the brick white.

How do you make red brick white?

Project Summary

  1. Clean the brick gently and thoroughly.
  2. Remove all lingering paint from the paint surface.
  3. Tape and cover any surfaces you wish to protect.
  4. Prepare the whitewash—a 50/50 solution of water and white latex paint.
  5. Apply the whitewash via brush or rag.

Is it bad to paint brick white?

Painting brick is a great way to upgrade curb appeal and increase your home's value. Using a dark color like slate grey or even a classic white can create a major visual impact when painted correctly. Provides protection from the elements.

Is painting brick a bad idea?

Most brick was never intended to be painted,” says Crocker. ... Brick that's chipping, deteriorating, molding or in overall poor condition is always a bad candidate for paint. Paint blocks the natural pores in the brick's surface, which can cause existing problems to become exaggerated over time.

What kind of paint do you use for red brick?

For interior and exterior brick, many experts recommend semi-gloss or gloss paint, as either type accentuates detail and, compared with other paints, is easier to clean as time goes by.

43 related questions found

What paint do you use on brick?

For exterior bricks, use elastomeric and 100 percent acrylic latex paints. They will make your exterior wall more durable than the rest. You could apply two coats for more durability. You could either use a roller or a brush to paint the brick area.

What is the best paint for interior brick?

Acrylic latex paint, or a paint specifically formulated for masonry, is your best option. Acrylic latex is the best for both exterior and interior brick because it is highly resistant to mildew and moisture. A semi-gloss or gloss paint is a good choice for both as well because it's easy to clean.

Is red brick out of style?

Like other types of masonry, brick is a high-quality cladding that never seems to go out of style. It's more expensive than steel, vinyl, wood, or composite siding and it's always in demand. Some of today's finest homes boast brick cladding, but it's not hard to find homes with painted brick if you look around.

Does brick need to be primed before painting?

No matter whether the brick you're painting is old or new, interior or exterior, you absolutely must use a primer. "You want a primer that will 'bite' into the brick; the better it can wrap around those pores and get into all the nooks and crannies, the better the paint will adhere," says Villar.

Does painted brick hold up?

A coat of paint can give a layer of protection to the brick, as long as you remember that once you paint the brick, it will need to be repainted every few years to maintain an effective level of protection. ... Brick is porous, and the pores can hold dirt, debris, and moisture.

Is painting a house white a bad idea?

But white will never be a bad choice.

Something to consider if you're thinking about selling: A national survey conducted by Sears Weatherbeater Paints a few years ago found that almost 40 percent of those polled said they would choose white for the exterior of their home.

Is it better to paint or stain brick?

You may ask yourself, “is staining brick better than painting?” The short answer is yes, it is. Staining is more robust and can lead to your brick exterior looking great for many years. Painting may seem like a classic option, but it is outdated for your brick exterior.

Does white brick get dirty?

It's time to make a change! Bright whites will show dirt and may not be the best choice if you're living on a busy street corner. Just like any home, a bright white will need pressure washed on a low setting to maintain the freshly painted look.

Can you white wash brick?

When you know how to whitewash brick, you can give a brick wall or fireplace a contemporary makeover. You can make your own whitewash by mixing latex paint and water. To get a historic look, use premade limewash, which is also an environmentally friendly approach.

Is whitewashing brick permanent?

You have to make sure to mix the paint, or the white wash coverage will be come lighter. It can be difficult to get the right coverage, and you might have to whitewash several times. It's permanent. Once you start going, There is no turning back!

Can you undo whitewash brick?

Read the label and use the specific primer suggested for unpainted brick or wood. But remember, you will be scraping off some of this paint in years to come. You'll never scrape off whitewash!

Do you need special paint for bricks?

Brick paint: Only buy paint designed for masonry, stucco, or bricks, as this contains latex, which is necessary for filling in the porous texture of the brick. Brick primer: It's also advised that you only buy a primer specifically for brick surfaces, as this also contains much-needed latex.

Can you paint brick with a roller?

Paint rollers make excellent interior and exterior priming and painting tools, especially when working on brick walls or fireplaces, which can be difficult to cover completely. While on smooth walls almost any roller cover will do, a textured surface like brick calls for a roller cover with a nap that's at least 1”.

Can you use concrete paint on brick?

It works on concrete, bricks, drywall, stucco, and brick surfaces, and you can apply it with a brush, roller, or sprayer. For cleanup, soap and warm water will take care of the job.

Is red brick timeless?

When paired with white paint, red brick material can create a timeless look. It applies in any white hue, started from the clean one to the warm with a yellow undertone.

What is the cheapest type of brick?

One pallet of bricks contains about 510 pieces. Extruded brick, that is made through a mold, is the least expensive and most common product.

Is a red door dated?

The red door is becoming dated. ... It's eye catching and fun for Valentine's Day; however, in 2019, opt for a beautiful blue, black, or natural wood door.

Should you paint brick fireplace white?

On the surface, it's enticing: That ugly fireplace surround could become a high-style, bright white fireplace surround if you just slap some paint on it! Not so fast. Painting interior and exterior brick surfaces is not a simple task. ... A high quality paint job will help to protect exterior brick from the elements.

How do you paint over a painted brick wall?

Apply a coat of latex paint over the brickwork, using a thick-pile roller, only after the primer has completely dried, advises Architectural Digest. Exterior bricks need to breath; exterior latex paint provides a porous skin that allows moisture to escape or wick from the underlying substrate.

How do you make painted brick look natural?

Dip a sponge in water and wring it out. Dab the sponge in the marbled paint, then dab it on a paper towel to wipe most of the paint off the sponge. Lightly pat the sponge on some of the bricks in a random way to provide a more natural color variation.


Can you change red brick to white? ›

The good news is that there is a way to rejuvenate your red brick. You can paint them! This is a technique called whitewashing. You cover traditional brick and mortar with a whitewash solution to get your desired look.

Can you paint over red brick? ›

You shouldn't be afraid to use paint on brick. It can be used to complement interior and exterior color schemes, or to hide old, weathered and beaten bricks.

Is it a good idea to paint brick white? ›

The best brick paint colors for your home

White painted brick is the most popular color for painted brick, by far. It looks fresh and clean. And it won't fade in the sunlight over time.

How much does it cost to paint red brick white? ›

The price for a whitewashing project can range from $110 to $200 per 250 square feet for the paint plus rollers, brushes, and a ladder. This project will cost around $0.45 to $0.80 per square foot. Whitewash is the application of diluted white paint applied to your brick surface.

How long does white paint last on brick? ›

If the brick is painted correctly, a mineral based paint can last 20 years on a brick surface.

Why do people paint red brick white? ›

Brick is naturally porous, so when left unpainted, dirt and debris can become trapped and difficult to clear away. Painted brick provides a smooth surface that is much easier to clean with occasional power washing.

What is the downside of painting brick? ›

Cons: Maintenance: Painted brick requires regular maintenance, including touch-ups for chipped or peeling areas and regular cleaning for lighter-colored painted brick. Limited lifespan: Paint can start to bubble, blister, chip, and peel within a few years.

Is it better to whitewash or paint brick? ›

Whitewash preserves the natural texture of the brick while bonding tenaciously to any masonry or coarse wood surface. Some people use paint that they thin out with water to create a similar look but it does not give quite the same result.

Will painting brick devalue your home? ›

Huge visual impact — Painting brick gives your house a whole new look and can even add to your home's value by upping your curb appeal. It sets it apart from your neighbors' homes and looks unique with a more uniform effect than unpainted brick.

Is white painted brick trendy? ›

It's trendy to paint a brick house white. Some homeowners are jumping on the bandwagon painting their more dated red brick, for example, a more contemporary white.

Is it expensive to paint brick white? ›

Whitewashed brick is a popular trend that gives your home exterior a rustic or vintage look. By applying diluted white paint to the brick, you really let the material's texture show through. Costs for whitewashing a 2,500-square-foot brick house range from $2,225 to $4,000.

Is painting brick a good idea? ›

"Masonry paints are meant to adhere better to brick and be more breathable," Sidler says. You'll likely have to pay a bit more, but it's worth it. With the right materials, painting your brick is definitely a project you can tackle as the homeowner, though it won't be a done-in-a-weekend chore.

What paint is best for red brick? ›

Some of our favorite colors to pair with red brick are Jogging Path SW 7638, Row House Tan SW 7689, Granite Peak SW 6250, Retreat SW 6207, Acier SW 9170, Dovetail SW 7018, and Rushing River SW 7746. You can see that all of these colors are muted and earthy which makes them perfect options for red brick.

Is white painted brick hard to maintain? ›

Once you paint your house, there's no going back (at least without a major headache). In fact, painted brick requires regular maintenance--touch ups for chipped areas, cleaning on lighter colored brick, and fresh coats every so often. Moreover, painting your brick traps moisture and doesn't let the brick breathe.

Is whitewashing brick out of style? ›

Whitewashed brick is fairly easy to identify. All the brick is covered in a thin layer of translucent white or grey paint that allows you to see the brick underneath. Whitewashing brick is very quickly going out of style.

Is painted brick out of style? ›

Is painted brick going out of style? Ask any exterior design expert, painting brick is not going out of style any time soon. Painted brick is here to stay as new homeowners prefer this modern look over traditional unpainted brick exteriors. Likewise, you can always change the color of your brick siding if you'd like.

Is it better to spray or roll paint on brick? ›

We recommend using a sprayer. This will cut down on work time, will make it easier to get into all the joints, and will be much easier overall. But make sure to spray at all angles to make sure the paint gets into all of the nooks and crannies of the brick.

What is it called when you paint brick white? ›

What is whitewashing? It's a technique of applying watered-down paint. Whitewashing covers the brick with a translucent white coat. Whitewash allows the texture of the brick to show through, while covering most of its red color.

How long will painted brick last? ›

A good paint job on brick can last about 15 to 20 years in the proper condition. If you notice that the bricks are in proper shape and don't affect the look of your house, you don't need to repaint it.

What color is best to paint brick? ›

When choosing a color to paint your brick home, consider white, light gray or pale blue for a bright, fresh look, or black or charcoal for a dramatic curb appeal boost. Before painting a brick house, you should thoroughly clean the surface and fill any small cracks in the mortar.

Is red brick out of style? ›

Is red brick out of style? Like many types of masonry, red brick is a timeless addition to the home that never goes out of style.

What are the pros and cons of white washing brick? ›

Pros and Cons of Whitewashing Brick

Whitewashing brick is typically inexpensive, can be done with paint lying around the house, and the wash is typically easy to apply and dries quickly. Cons of whitewashing masonry include: A diminished, natural-looking appearance.

Do you seal brick before whitewashing? ›

Do you need to seal whitewash? You don't necessarily need to seal your whitewashed brick. That said, sealing the paint will protect it from scratches and damage, which means less maintenance time in the future. To do so, start with a low-sheen sealant designed for brick, concrete, and tile.

Does whitewash damage brick? ›

It's an accessible way to add interest to your house, and it doesn't damage the brick or masonry surface.

Do I need to seal brick before painting? ›

Brick and cement are porous and absorb water. Therefore, before painting, a layer or two of masonry sealer should be applied. A roller can be used for this task, and it will typically take from four to 12 hours for the surface to dry.

Does painting brick make it crumble? ›

Once the brick is dry, it is time to use a sealant. Using sealant is very important because bricks are porous, so they hold moisture. Moisture can get trapped inside the paint and cause the brick to crumble over time if you fail to use sealant.

What color of brick is timeless? ›

Timeless, classic red bricks. Red is the most traditional color of brick and is ideal for traditional architecture such as colonial style homes. Red brick are extremely versatile too, and can be used on towering city office buildings and sports stadiums.

Is it cheaper to Limewash or paint brick? ›

Limewash is a type of whitewash that can be used on masonry and gives a softer look than paint. It's also less expensive and easier to apply than paint.

What is the best Sherwin Williams paint for exterior brick? ›

If you're looking for a paint that was specifically designed with brick in mind, look no further than Sherwin Williams Loxon. Loxon is a concrete and masonry coating that offers fantastic weather protection.

What are the benefits of painting brick? ›

Paint stops water from getting into the brick. It also keeps it from fading in the sun. Paint makes it easier to clean. Paint helps keep dirt and debris from sticking to the brick.

What is the best white paint for red brick house? ›

Keep your whites creamy with brick. Consider a warm off-white such as SW Alabaster or a very light greige such as SW Shoji White. It will look white outside. A clean or crisp white will look harsh.

Can red brick be painted gray? ›

Choosing the best paint colors that compliment red brick can be a challenge. Talk creamy white, greige, sage green, blue, teal, and gray.

How do you change the color of red bricks? ›

To update or change the look of exterior red brick walls, stain the brick with an iron oxide-based brick tint or penetrating masonry stain. Bricks, like ceramic tiles, are clay-based blocks that are formed, fired and then cooled.

Is it possible to change brick color? ›

Changing the color of your brick is possible through various methods such as limewashing, brick painting or staining. Masonry stain is an easy option that involves testing the brick's absorption, cleaning the surface, selecting a color, applying the stain, and sealing the brick.

How much does it cost to change brick color? ›

Expect to pay an average of $1 per square foot to stain brick, including labor and materials. Typically, prices range from $0.70 to $1.90 per square foot, depending on the stain quality, brick condition, and exterior accessibility.

Is whitewashing brick permanent? ›

Whitewashing with paint provides a brighter and smoother finish with a range of colour options than a Limewash formula. It can also work on surfaces that have already been painted, but the wash is a permanent finish.

Is it a mistake to paint brick? ›

While the value may increase because of curb appeal, painting brick can cause issues. Paint can trap moisture and damage the brick in the long-term. It also can appear dirty and need to be power-washed, unlike unpainted brick.

How much does it cost to white wash brick? ›

Whitewashing Brick

By applying diluted white paint to the brick, you really let the material's texture show through. Costs for whitewashing a 2,500-square-foot brick house range from $2,225 to $4,000.

Can you spray whitewash on brick? ›

You can use a lime whitewash solution on porous surfaces like brick, stone and concrete, indoors or out. The dissolved limestone actually calcifies onto brick surfaces to create a durable finish.

Does painting over brick devalue home? ›

Bottom line: If you live in a low-moisture region and you choose a neutral color, painting exterior brick shouldn't have a negative impact on your home's resale value. In fact, the improvements to your homes curb appeal is likely to increase the value.

What are the cons of painting a brick house? ›

Painting Exterior Brick: Potential Cons to Consider

After you paint your brick house, you can't go back to its original brick exterior. The process of even trying to remove paint from brick can be very costly. The good news, you can change the paint color as often as you'd like. Moisture can cause paint to chip.


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