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How to Paint Vinyl Shutters

Ask This Old House painter Mauro Henrique helps a homeowner properly clean and paint her vinyl shutters


  1. Start by creating a template, numbering the shutters, and labeling them on the template, so it’s easier to keep track of which ones went where.
  2. Remove the shutters from the house. Number them with a marker in the back as you go.
  3. Rinse all the shutters with a garden hose. Then, mix together the detergent with water in a bucket. Use a scrubbing brush in the cleaning solution to clean off the shutters. Rinse the shutters off a final time after scrubbing.
  4. After the shutters have dried, lay them out on a drop cloth.
  5. Prime the paint sprayer using a bucket. Then, spray the paint evenly across all the shutters, overlapping by 50% with each pass. Apply 2 coats.
  6. Allow the paint to dry before hanging them back up.
  7. Touch up all the screw heads for the shutters with a little bit of paint and the paint brush.

Mauro washed the shutters using a biodegradable cleaner, in this case Simple Green, mixed with water to remove the dirt.

Mauro chose an exterior paint in Hale Navy for the shutters, manufactured by Benjamin Moore.

Other materials for this project including respirators and drop cloths are available at home centers and paint suppliers.