How to paint metal fences: cleaning and repainting 🖌️

Wie lackiert man Metallzäune: Reinigung und Neuanstrich 🖌️

Metal fences and railings, as well as other outdoor metalwork, require regular care and maintenance to prevent wear and tear. A new coat of paint can last for years if it is applied correctly and certain steps are followed during the painting process.

Here's how to properly clean and repaint fences and other metalwork.

Why maintain metal fences?

Iron is durable and will last for years with regular maintenance. But where the paint is worn, contact with water and air can quickly lead to rust and deterioration. When iron corrodes, it expands up to ten times its original size, which can cause the paint to crack.

How to clean and paint properly

Regular maintenance of hardware such as railings and gates is essential to prevent rust and deterioration caused by exposure to air and water.

You need:

  • Steel brush
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint thinner as a cleaner and a cloth (important: Do not use soapy cleaners or scouring milk. (These are made from fatty acids and are therefore not suitable for dissolving fat.)
  • Masking tape, newspapers
  • Metal protective varnish
  • Brush, Paint roller or airless spray gun 
  • possibly. Knee pads, safety glasses, dust mask and work gloves

1) Brush off old paint

Use a steel brush to remove any loose and old flaking paint. This is important because the new color will not blend with the existing one. All rusty areas should be sanded thoroughly.

2) Remove moss and weeds

Scrape off moss and lichen and remove weeds. Trim back all vegetation that comes into contact with the railing

3) Prepare for painting

Existing paintwork must be roughened with medium-hard sandpaper to achieve good adhesion for the new paint. Wet sandpaper prevents the paper from “clogging.” Wet sanding is also advisable as it reduces dust. For a perfect finish, rub around the edges

4) Remove grease and dirt

Wash the railing thoroughly with a clean, damp cloth and the cleaner. This removes dust, dirt and greasy deposits. When the railings are completely clean, use a new cloth and plenty of water to rinse away the cleaner

5) Protect plants from paint splashes

To protect the plants around the fence, cover them with cardboard. Sticks that you press alternately into the ground on both sides are practical for attaching cardboard.

6) Make final preparations

Use painter's tape to tape off everything that should not be painted. For larger areas such as  brickwork and columns, use old newspapers with tape.

Check the weather forecast: A warm, partly cloudy day is best; Do not paint if wind or rain is forecast and avoid the months of November to February as it is usually too cold and humid for the paint to cure properly. Most paints should not dry below 10°C.

7) Apply new coats of paint

Spray, roll or brush Apply a new coat of paint. Do not use too much polish at once and distribute it evenly to prevent noses and drips.

Two thin layers are more effective than one thicker one. Allow the first coat to dry for 24 hours before starting the second.

Find the tried and tested 3in1 metal protective paint and everything else that will help you achieve the best result in our Farbenlöwe shop. Your fence can soon look like new!

Please also note our helpful application instructions.

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