How to Paint Railings and Spindles

The little details make a big difference in creating the perfect look for your home. Refinishing the railings and spindles on your porch takes some time but in the end, you’ll find the work is worth it. Your local Ace is a great place to start your project — we have the paint and all the tools you need, and we’re right in your neighborhood.


  • Royal Interior/Exterior Porch + Floor Paint
  • Primer
  • Roller covers and frames
  • Paintbrushes
  • Paint trays and liners
  • Drop cloths
  • Painter’s tape
  • Stir stick
  • Paint scraper
  • Wire brush
  • Sanding sponge
  • Wood putty
  • TSP Hard Surface Cleaner

Prep work makes all the difference for this kind of project. Inspect the areas you’re going to work on and scrape away any loose paint, then go over everything with a sanding sponge to get all the surfaces nice and smooth and to reduce the sheen of the previous paint job. Fill any larger holes with wood putty and seal up any gaps with caulk. Don’t forget to sand down the putty once it dries. Lastly, give everything a good cleaning with TSP Hard Surface Cleaner, rinse thoroughly and give it time to dry.

For your finish, use Royal Interior/Exterior Porch + Floor Paint. It delivers excellent durability, making it the perfect choice for exterior painting. Prime the wood putty, as well as any patches of bare wood, before you start to help create a consistent finish.

When painting a railing, you’ll have a lot of different surfaces to cover, so the best thing is to start at the bottom and work your way through in sections. When you reach a spindle, work your way up, applying paint to the three sides, and then move on to the next. When you’re done with the row, go around the railing to paint the fourth side.

When you reach the underside of the top rail, do the bottom edge first and work your way to the top. Make sure to catch any paint buildup on the spindles and even it out to avoid any drips.


Save space by storing extra paint in mason jars for future touchups.

Detail work like this takes some time and effort, but in the end, you have a beautiful accent to your outdoor space that you can be proud of. Your neighbors at Ace have the right paint and expert advice to help make it happen.

If your home was built prior to 1978, check for lead-based paint before you sand or scrape any painting surfaces. Call 1-800-424-LEAD or log on to for more information.


High Hiding White

(Ready-Mix Color)


royal exterior satin

Source: Ace Hardware’s