How to Paint Your Pressure Treated Wood White for Your Front Porch

Traditional painting methods don't work on pressure-treated wood because of the chemicals used to protect the wood from rot and pests.

To get a satisfactory finish you must apply an acrylic primer to the pressure-treated wood and then wait two to three months before painting it. The wait allows excessive protective chemicals to ooze out, lowering the moisture level and improving paint adhesion. After you've waited enough time, you can paint your front porch woodwork white or any other color you wish.

Apply an acrylic primer to the pressure-treated porch woodwork as soon as possible after the wood has been installed. Use a regular paintbrush to apply a 100 percent acrylic primer designed for pressure-treated wood. Wear protective gloves. Wait for the first coat of primer to dry before applying the second layer.

Wait two to three months before painting the wood. Attempting to paint the wood before this time has elapsed will result in a poor finish because the paint will not adhere.

Paint the pressure-treated wood with a latex or oil-based paint suitable for exterior woodwork and pressure-treated wood. Use a 3-inch paintbrush and paint in the direction of the wood grain. Apply two to three layers of paint, allowing drying time between each coat.

Things You Will Need

  • Acrylic primer
  • Paintbrushes
  • Paint or wood stain


  • Consider painting the porch with a white wood stain, because stains often produce a better finish than paint.


  • Always wear protective gloves while using primers and wood stains.

About the Author

Adrian Grahams began writing professionally in 1989 after training as a newspaper reporter. His work has been published online and in various newspapers, including "The Cornish Times" and "The Sunday Independent." Grahams specializes in technology and communications. He holds a Bachelor of Science, postgraduate diplomas in journalism and website design and is studying for an MBA.