How To Paint Vinyl Shutters

Shutters on windows are kind of like mascara on your eyelashes – it just looks better! I took my vinyl shutters down last June when we put on a new roof. 

And sadly they have been sitting in my garage since then. Yikes! So my naked house was begging for her shutters back. After talking to a few roofers and people at Lowes the consensus was that spray paint was the best option. 

So turning to my trusty brand of choice, I called Krylon to ask which paint they would recommend. They said Krylon Outdoor Spaces because it has some UV protectant and weather resist properties to it. 

The way my house is situated the front of my house gets pounded by the sun daily. I have a feeling this project will be on the list every few years.

Adding curb appeal


Mark the back of your shutters with where you took them down from.  Unfortunately, the roofers who took mine down didn’t do this so it was a major pain in the butt to figure out what shutter went where.

Also, double check and make sure that the back of your shutters doesn’t say something like “Do not paint shutters.” There are some shutters that are not paintable and will say so on the back.

With a spray nozzle on my hose, a plastic bristle brush and some Dawn I scrubbed and rinsed the shutters well and then I set them in the sun to dry and sit overnight. 

The next day I wiped them with a tack cloth and busted out my spray paint. 

12 shutters took about 8 cans of spray paint.

how to paint faded shutters
Krylon Outdoor Spaces Black

Spraying vinyl shutters with this paint was a little different than I am used to spray painting. I know watching me spray paint is kind of like waiting for water to boil but if you want great results and you are taking on this project I would suggest you watch the video below. You need to spray it a certain way to avoid streaks.

You can tell from my mistake on the left that you can’t just attack it with spray paint–you have to be a bit methodical about how you paint them.


The video below shows you how I spray painted them to get superior results.

I love how the black shutters give my house and little more contrast.  It also is the perfect canvas for pops of color added by flowers or wreaths.


With a large ladder and the sun pelting down on us my husband and I hung them last weekend.



I still have to paint my front door. Since it is inset I am not sure if a color would even be that noticeable. Plus I love my screen door on the front because of the awesome cross breeze we get so I am torn. 

What would you do?

If this is a project you want to tackle now or in the Fall, Pin It for later to refer back to. 

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  1. You also want to make sure they are paintable shutters. My SIL tried this – she actually had a professional paint them, and once they were installed they looked great… until they started to run, ALL down their new vinyl siding. It was a mess. We just redid our house and I looked into painting ours and found out there are “paintable” vinyl shutters that you should use if you want to actually paint them.

    Your house looks so much better with shutters – I think it just really finishes off the look! And don’t you love panel shutters? They are so much more sophisticated than louvers. When we replaced ours I went with panels and am so happy with the result.

  2. Love the look of the shutters! Have you thought about painting your screen door and door to house the same color? That might look really great. I wouldn’t get rid of the screen door-they are the best for breezes and keeping bugs out.

  3. OK, i painted my front door and now it squeaks when i open it. I did paint the sides. can i fix this??

  4. Looks great! Thanks for the tutorial. Just out of curiosity, for six pairs of shutters, how many cans of spray paint did you use?

  5. I don’t see why you can’t paint the screen door and the front door to match. I would paint them a lighter/brighter color so it looks more inviting. My neighbor has an inset door and just installed a beautiful new black front door, but it just looks like a giant black hole and isn’t welcoming at all. Your house does not look like a giant black hole, but I think a new color would spruce it up. 🙂

  6. Yay, you did the post! And a video to boot. Ok so why can’t we just spray paint them all in “Turbo”
    Thanks for the tips and the type of spray paint used. I am dreading this task but my shutters look really bad and need a fresh coat. I was always wondering what was missing from your house and now I get it. It looks awesome and I love the black instead of the “other” color. Thanks again. Lesley

  7. They should be unless they specificially say on the back do not paint. I didn’t prime because I was going to a darker color and I wasn’t worried about coverage. And yes it covers without primer.

  8. I agree I am just concerned about painting the handle and it not holding up well (the screen part that is). We will see. I would love to add a pop though.

  9. I have definitely thought about it. I am just concerned about the handle part and the paint not holding up well on that. I supposed I could always clear coat or something. I am guessing that is what I will probably end up doing because there is NO WAY I am taking out my screen.

  10. I would paint the trim of the screen door black also — maybe paint the door itself a cream?

  11. Wow, huge improvement. That is so interesting, I would have never guessed spray paint. Not just for crafts and small projects!

  12. I would paint the front door red. We have several houses in my neighborhood with red doors and black shutters and it makes a great combo. Maybe more of a brick red than an apple red. I’d also paint the screen door frame black or replace it with a door with a black frame if it can’t be painted. Love the new shutters. Mine are currently a bluish green color and I’m chomping at the bit to change them to deep eggplant.

  13. Buy a retractable screen door…it disappears when not needed. Then the entrance door can be a color focal point. Sarah

  14. Hey Beckie —

    Love the black shutters…I painted my screen door a couple years ago, but it doesn’t get much sun (it’s held up great…I “magic eraser” it to clean it. Yours looks like metal (frame)? It should spray paint, too? I used to have a pearl gray house with black shutters and I painted my door a barn/brick red color…got lots of compliments…enjoy your blog’s ideas! Thanks.

  15. Kimberly, thanks for your two cents. My door itself gets no sun at all so it should be good. I think I am going to tackle this project soon.

  16. Beckie – thanks so much for the tutorial! I’ve been debating this project for a while now and was stuck on how to determine if mine are paintable. As for your front door, I’m joining the chorus of red. I painted mine last year Chocolate Cosmos. Strangely, it’s just the right red. Got this idea from Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick. As for your screen door, are you just interested in painting the frame? if so, I would match it to the front door color. Another idea (if you choose to leave the door as is) would be to paint the screen itself. You can use a stencil for this. There are a lot of painted screens on older homes here in Baltimore. Thanks for a great blog! You have so many great, doable ideas!

  17. Beckie – here’s a link to get you started:

    Although landscapes and very elaborate paintings are mostly what you can find here in Baltimore, I was thinking more of a motif, like a Greek key or scroll, etc. for your front door screen. The nice thing about painted screens is that you can see out but no one can see in!

  18. Hello, I decided to paint my shutters this weekend. I used valspar outdoor spray paint. First coat came out perfect, second coat came out streaky even though I used the same method of spraying. Parts are shiny and other parts are dull (like I want). Any clue why this happened? Did you use 2 coats? Thanks for any advice on how to fix this!

  19. Hi about the streaky finish on the second coat with spray paint. I was told this was from humidity. I have had that happen several times on craft projects. Also I was told to wait to spray a second coat after several days. Krylon recommended their Fusion Plastic paint for my vinyl shutters said this was made especially for vinyl. I will be painting mine this weekend.

  20. Wow that looks really great! I am going to run home and ask my husband if our shutters are actually damaged so we NEED new ones, or if I can just spray paint them!! We have vinyl siding so our case might be that the actual shutters are coming out because the “peg” that goes into the vinyl is broken. If that is the case I might just have to get new ones. RATS!

  21. Good luck with yours. Mine didn’t streak when I sprayed up and down and I only did one coat. But Krylon is definitely the experts for sure.

  22. I suspect that had more to do with the quality of the paint that was used, rather than the shutters.

  23. Rub a bar of soap around the edges where the paint is sticking. Use BAR soap, not liquid soap.

  24. I am reading that it is not good to paint shutters darker than they already are (more specifically black) because it would cause more heat build up on the shutter making the vinyl contract. Since this was awhile ago can you share how they have held up? Have you noticed any of the paint cracking? I would really like to paint my slate blue shutters black, but am worried by what I am reading online.

  25. Hi Sarah,
    I actually read the same thing but decided to go for it since I already felt like eggplant was a dark enough color. I haven’t had any issues, and they have held up perfectly. I have no paint cracking whatsoever, and the front of my house gets beaten down with sunlight. I hope that helps with your decision.

  26. I saw on Pinterest a tip for spray painting door hardware for outdoors. Remove and clean the hard ware. Lightly sand it. Use two coats of an automotive spray primer that retards rust. Then use two coats of a metal safe spray paint intended for outdoor use. The posting didn’t say anything about using a final coat of sealant, but I bet it would help. I plan to do this to three locksets. Good luck.

  27. This is a dumb question, but I am a single mom. How do you take the shutters down? Are they hinged, screwed, or what? I don’t see what is holding them up.

  28. Helpful video, and the results look splendid. I’m currently preparing to paint my shutters (haven’t took them all off yet) no doubt your panel shutters look beautiful on your home, I have a brick rancher and think the slotted/vented shutters suit my house better. They are plastic shutters and I want to paint them gloss red. With that being said, should I take the spray paint approach? And what is your opinion on red shutters on brick home? Thanks.

  29. I think red would go great with brick. I might try for a satin finish rather than a glossy since they are harder to clean and will dull faster. I do think spray paint is the way to go on existing shutters.

  30. I love the red door idea, I had a red front door in an old home of mine. Did you know that red front doors are suppose to bring good harmony to the family 🙂

  31. What kind of finish did you use… glossy, matte? we are about to replace our siding and spray paint our shutters black, but i’m not sure what finish. thanks!

  32. It looks awesome, and I’m planning to do the same thing. What sheen do you recommend. I was thinking a satin, but I’m not sure.

  33. Whoops. Just saw your comment to Robbie. I suppose the next question then is to go with a satin or semigloss on the door…

  34. Hehe, no problem. I haven’t painted my door yet, but I will probably go semi-gloss when I do so it is easier to clean.

  35. Nice job painting your vinyl shutters. I’ve been considering spray painting ours and was wondering how your paint has held up so far. Still looking good? Thanks.

  36. Hi! found you through Pinterest! I am looking forward to painting my shutters, but my dilemma was a gallon a paint with a paint sprayer or spray paint. I cannot find the Krylon Outdoor Spaces paint anywhere, do you remember where you got it? Or if it’s still produced?

  37. Hi Sam, Yes, it is still produced. If you go to any Sherwin Williams store, they can special order it for you. Let me know if you need any more help.

  38. Do you know if Krylon makes “non-standard” colors in the outdoor spray paint that i could order? I would like to spray paint my beach house shutters a deep teal but I am guessing the exact color isn’t readily available as spray paint in the big box stores. Thanks for the video. For some reason, the audio isn’t playing on my iPad, but I am assuming the min point is to ensureth nozzle is aligned to the direction in which you are spraying (predominantly vertical). Is that right?

  39. Amy, I found out that you can use any Krylon paint since they are all made for outdoors nowadays. However, if you are nervous about it, you can always coat it with a spray outdoor sealant. Hope that helps!

  40. Keep the screen door! In addition to painting my shutters (from cranberry to black), I also had to do my storm door … a whole different animal!

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