How To Repaint Exterior Wood Trim Like A Pro

The paint you did on the exterior wood trim starts peeling off and it gets old. Now, you need to repaint the exterior trim to bring back life to it and improve the overall look of your house. 

But repainting the exterior trim, especially the high places like the second-story or the window is a typical task. It requires a lot of elbow grease and time to repaint the outside wood trim

However, this guide on how to repaint exterior wood trim will make the repainting workflow a lot easier. We will introduce you to 7 simple steps to repaint the exterior trim with ease & quick. So, let’s get started right here. 

How To Repaint Exterior Wood Trim

How To Repaint Exterior Wood Trim: 7 Simple Steps

Painting exterior trim that is peeling will be a daunting & time-taking project. But the following 7 steps will make the repainting workflow simple & fast. 

1. Prep Work

When it comes to any painting project, it’s all about the prep work. Preparing exterior wood trim for painting is like cleaning a piece of canvas every artist does- before painting a new art. How smooth the finish of the repainting result will depend on how well you do the prep work. 

The prep work includes: vacuuming exterior wood trim and scraping any loose paints. You can also use sandpaper to sand down those areas nicely and smoothly. It takes at least 15-20 minutes to clean the exterior wood trim for the average home. 

Note: You may notice some rotted wood and wood epoxy. You may need to repair or replace the woods depending on the condition of your exterior wood trim. 

2. Apply A Primer 

Once you have done the prep work, it’s a good idea to use an exterior primer. We recommend you get a primer that can hold the new finish paint. If you want to use paint and primer in one, use an exterior primer on damaged areas. 

3. Wipe Down 

After doing all the preps work and applying a primer, make sure you wipe down those areas. It will assure you there is no dirt and debris for the primer or the finish paint to grab onto. 

Note: Follow the paint level directions to remove the dirt or chalk buildup, not by wiping the surface.

4. Remove Any Stuff Surrounding the Trim

Don’t forget to remove any materials like the flag holder if you have got on your exterior trim. It makes your painting workflow a lot easier and gives you a crisp and smooth finish. Once you complete the repainting jobs, put the stuff back into its place. 

5. Apply Caulks 

Caulking the exterior wood trim is a must before repainting it. It will seal the wood trim and prevent the moisture from getting behind the trim boards. Therefore, caulking the trim will ensure the paint you are going to apply will last and prevent the wood trim from rotting. 

Before applying the caulks, ensure you remove the older caulks. Then, get a high-quality silicone latex paintable caulk and apply it on the wood trim. You can use a caulking gun to apply the caulk. 

Note: Leave the caulked area for an hour or more to dry. 

6. Choose The Right Paint 

Choosing the right paint is important to repaint your exterior wood trim. Ensure you choose a high-quality paint that blends your existing home decor and will last for years to come. 100% acrylic paint will be your go to paint that will give a smooth & breathable finish. 

7. Apply Paint 

It’s time for the DIY painters including you and me to repaint the exterior wood trim. Of course, it’s a time-consuming workflow. But the end result will surprise you by giving a new look to your home. 

If you want to repaint the entire exterior wood trim by yourself, using a synthetic brush will be your best trait. It’s the fastest way to paint exterior trim. When you finish the first coat, let it dry. Then, take a look at the paint. If the primer is bleeding through it, give a second coat of the paint to add depth to your exterior trim.  

How To Paint High Exterior Trim

It’s a pain in the neck for DIYers when it comes to any painting project, like painting the very top of the house if it’s two-story-high. Well, ladder leveler is the painkiller that will help you reach the high exterior trim. Just set the ladder and climb on it to reach & repaint the exterior trim that is high. The best part is you can adjust the ladder with a leveler for every surface, no matter if it is even or uneven. 

It just takes a few seconds to adjust this ladder for an incline or uneven surface. In short, you can reach and paint the high exterior trim by climbing on an extendable ladder with a leveler. 


Can you paint over old exterior paint?

Yes, you can paint over the old exterior paint if the existing paint is of the same type and the condition of your wall is good. On the other hand, if the surface is wood, you must sand it down. Then, you need to apply a primer as well as caulk the area. Next, you are ready to apply a coat of high-quality paint to bring back life to your exterior paint. 

Do you need to sand exterior trim before painting?

Yes, you need to sand exterior trim before painting. Use an electric sander to sand down the surface to make it smooth and even. It will help you apply the paint smoothly and nicely. Therefore, how smooth the paint finish will depend on how well you prepare the surface. And sanding down the exterior trim will make the surface smooth & even. 

Do I need to prime exterior trim before painting?

Yes, you need to prime the exterior trim before painting. It’s important because it seals the wood grain, makes the surface smooth, and enhances paint adhesion. Yes, priming the exterior trim may seem extra work. But it will save you time and paint later. It will hold your paint finish and help you get a smooth finish. 


Of course, repainting your exterior trim will require a lot of time & effort. But it will reward you with giving a new look to your home once you complete the painting projects. 

Just follow the 7 repainting steps we mentioned to give a breathtaking look to your exterior wood trim. You don’t need to spend a lot of bucks to hire a professional if you follow our guidelines. 

Happy Repainting Workflow!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *