9 Things You Need to Know Before Painting Your Vinyl Windows

9 Things You Need to Know Before Painting Your Vinyl Windows

One way to change the look of your windows is by changing the color. When window replacement isn't an option, DIYer's look for creative ways to change the look of their windows. For some, removing grids is an option, so is adding or removing blinds or curtains, and the most adventurous look into painting their windows. Run a quick search through Pinterest and you'll find lots of examples of homeowners painting their window frames. 

Paint gives you the power to change the look of your windows and easily adapt to new design trends. Right now, black window frames give homes a moody and timeless feel. It's a trend that suits multiple architectural styles. However, mistakes with your painting job could leave you spending the money you were hoping to save.

With lengthy manufacturer times on new windows, as well as the expense, painting vinyl windows in your home may be tempting. Unfortunately, it's not as straightforward as you may think. Before you embark on this DIY project, take some careful preparation and care.

9 Things You Should Know Before Painting Your Vinyl Windows

Replacing windows is a costly endeavor, so many homeowners would rather apply a lick of paint for a fresh and modern look. Before you haphazardly start painting, read these "need-to-know" tips for painting vinyl windows.

Use the links below to skip ahead:

  1. Paint Doesn't Easily Adhere to Vinyl
  2. Regular Use Can Result in Chips and Scratches
  3. Painting a Window Can Jeopardize Its Functionality
  4. You Cannot Restore Roughened Vinyl to Its Original Condition
  5. Your Color Choice Matters
  6. Painting Can Void the Manufacturer's Warranty
  7. Sherwin Williams Has the Appropriate Paints and Primers for Vinyl
  8. Replacement Windows Provide High-quality, Factory-finished Options
  9. A Bad Paint Job Can Affect Your Home's Resale Value

1. Paint Doesn't Easily Adhere to Vinyl

Vinyl is the world's most versatile plastic. It is desirable for many consumer and industrial products↗ for its durability and ability to withstand abrasion, moisture, rust, and corrosion. Due to these critical properties, the paint will not adhere to vinyl. Even with vinyl-friendly paints, you will need to apply a primer first. A primer ensures better adhesion for your color of choice. 

2. Regular Use Can Result in Chips and Scratches

Windows in most homes aren't frequently opened. Many of us regularly run our air conditioning or heating throughout the year and only occasionally do we open a few of our many windows. Unfortunately, the windows you paint will eventually experience scratching, chipping, and peeling especially those that get more frequent use. Your painted frames may need regular touch-ups.

3. Painting a Window Can Jeopardize Its Functionality

High-quality vinyl windows open and shut securely. Adding a new layer of paint to tracks can have an impact on the ease of use. The increased friction may even make it difficult to open. Is there anything more frustrating than struggling for fresh air? Most people don't paint their vinyl windows but it is common with wood windows. If you've ever lived in an older home with original wood windows, you may know the pain of trying to open a window that's been painted shut. Be extra careful to prevent this problem.

4. You Cannot Restore Roughed-up Vinyl to Its Original Condition

Before adding primer to your vinyl window, you will need to sand it down to create a rough surface. This means you are permanently damaging the vinyl and its smooth and durable surface. While the purpose is to restore it with primer and paint, you can never restore vinyl to its original condition. Once you've sanded it down, there is no turning back.

5. Your Color Choice Matters!

Dark frames are popular now, and many homeowners with white or beige frames are reaching for the darker hues. Before you go down the rabbit hole of Pinterest↗ inspiration, keep in mind that dark colors attract heat and lead to warping or cracking of the vinyl frame and glass. 

6. Painting Can Void the Manufacturer's Warranty

Are your windows still under warranty? Often, making any changes to the window after it leaves the factory will void the warranty. Read over any documents or reach out to the manufacturer if you have any questions. 

The manufacturer's warranties vary but you can expect at least some coverage on window parts like glass, frame, finish, and hardware. If anything were to happen to your window after you repainted it, then expect to pay for those costs yourself. If your windows are currently in good condition and you don't plan on replacing them any time soon, consider whether voiding the warranty is worth the change in the window's aesthetic.

7. Sherwin Williams Has the Appropriate Primers and Paints for Vinyl

If your windows are susceptible to a lot of direct sunlight, then you may want to consider high LRV (light reflective value) colors or Sherwin-Williams VinylSafe® paint colors

8. Replacement Windows Provide High-quality, Factory-finished Options

Replacing vinyl windows is a worthy investment. Rather than painting the windows in your home, get a quote from a manufacturer for their high-quality options. If this means saving up for a few months and waiting for the right time, then do that. In the end, you'll have a finish that you're happy with, a valid warranty, and you won't have to do the job yourself. 

9. A Bad Paint Job Can Affect Your Home's Resale Value

Compromising the integrity of anything in your home will stand out to potential buyers in the future. Changing the color of your windows may be tempting to keep up with trends, but sacrificing the resale value of your home may hurt later down the line.

Painting Vinyl Windows - Final Thoughts

Painting the vinyl windows in your home is possible. If you're meticulous, that is! If you're pressed for time, impatient, or regularly skip steps in tasks, maybe leave this one to the professionals. When you consider the costs and effort of painting windows versus replacing them, you may find that the latter is more desirable. 

Replacement windows are worth the wait. They're factory-finished, come in various colors (even dark tones), and the warranty will be intact. 

Live in Texas? Schedule a consultation with one of our team members at Brennan Enterprises and receive a written estimate for your replacement window project.

 

 

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