How to Waterproof Painted Wood? Complete Guide

There are a lot of reasons to waterproof painted wood. Maybe you just finished painting your deck, and don’t want it to start peeling off after the first rainstorm. Or maybe you’re repainting an old piece of furniture and don’t want it to warp or peel.

In any case, waterproofing painted wood is a smart move, and today we’re going to show you how to do it. First, let’s take a look at why waterproofing is necessary in the first place.

What Is Wood Paint?

Wood paint is a type of paint specifically designed for use on wood surfaces. It is usually made from latex or oil-based paints and typically contains pigment, binders, and solvents. Wood paint can be used to protect wood surfaces from weathering, staining, and damage, as well as to improve their appearance.

Generally, there are three types of wood paints: primer, finish, and stain. Primer is designed to provide a base layer of protection and adhesion for finish and stain coats. Finish paint is the final layer of paint that provides color and durability. Stain is used to change the color of wood without completely covering it.

Wood paint is available in a variety of colors, sheens, and finishes. The type of paint you choose will depend on the look you want to achieve and the level of protection you need. For example, if you are painting a piece of furniture that will be used outdoors, you will need more durable paint than if you are painting a picture frame that will be used indoors.

Additionally, the color of wood paint can be customized to match any décor. For example, white paint can be used to create a crisp, clean look, while black paint can be used to create a more dramatic look.

What Is Wood Painting?

Wood painting is the process of applying paint, varnish, stain, or a similar finish to the wood. It is a popular form of home decoration and can be used to enhance the look of the furniture, cabinets, floors, and other wooden surfaces.

Wood painting is relatively simple and does not require any special skills or techniques. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when painting wood, such as the type of paint to use and how to prep the surface.

Generally, any type of paint can be used on wood. However, oil-based paints are the best choice for painting wood furniture or cabinets because they provide a durable, long-lasting finish. Water-based paints are also an option, but they are not as durable as oil-based paints and may require more frequent touch-ups.

It is important to sand the wood before painting it. This will create a smooth surface that the paint can adhere to more easily. If the wood is not sanded, the paint may chip or flake over time.

When painting wood, always start with a primer. This will help the paint to better adhere to the surface and also provide a more even finish. Once the primer is dry, you can then begin painting with your chosen paint color.

Wood painting is a great way to add color and style to any room in your home. With a little time and effort, you can transform dull, boring furniture into something that is truly unique and eye-catching.

How to Waterproof Painted Wood 

Painted wood is a beautiful addition to any home, but it can be tricky to keep it looking its best. Waterproofing your painted wood can help protect it from the elements and extend its life. There are 3 main sealants that can be used to waterproof painted wood – paste wax, polyurethane and polycrylic.

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Paste wax

It is a type of wax that is used as an adhesive or sealant. It is made from a mixture of resins and oils, and is available in both liquid and solid form. Paste wax can be used on a variety of surfaces, including wood, metal, and glass. It is often used to protect furniture from scratches or water damage, and to seal envelopes and other paper products.

Paste wax is easy to use and can be applied with a cloth or brush. It dries quickly and does not need to be buffed or polished.

Paste wax is available in a variety of colors, including clear, white, and brown. It can also be scented with a variety of fragrances.

How to Waterproof Painted Wood Using Paste wax?

Paste wax is a great way to waterproof your painted wood projects. You can buy paste wax at most hardware stores, and it’s easy to apply. Just rub it on with a soft cloth, let it dry, and buff it off. Your project will be water-resistant and protected from scratches.

Step 1: Clean the surface

Before you start, make sure the surface is clean and free of dirt and grime. You can use a mild soap and water to clean the surface, or you can sand it lightly with fine-grit sandpaper.

Step 2: Apply the wax

Apply a thin layer of paste wax to the surface using a soft cloth. Rub it in a circular motion until the entire surface is covered.

Step 3: Let it dry

Let the wax dry for about 40 minutes. Once it’s dry, buff it with a clean, soft cloth to bring out the shine. Additionally, you can apply a second layer of wax for added protection.

Step 4: Enjoy your waterproofed project!

Your project is now waterproof and protected. Enjoy!


It is a polymer composed of repeating urethane units. It is a thermoplastic or elastomer. Polyurethane polymers are formed by reacting a di- or triisocyanate with a diol or water.

Polyurethane products have many uses, including the following:

  • Flexible foam used in upholstered furniture, car seats, and mattresses
  • Rigid foam used in insulation and as structural elements in buildings
  • Elastomers used in tires, shock absorbers, and hoses

How to Waterproof Painted Wood Using Polyurethane?

To waterproof your painted wood, you will need to use a product called polyurethane. This is a clear liquid that you can apply to your painted wood to create a waterproof barrier. You can find polyurethane at most hardware stores.

Step 1: Clean the Painted Wood

Before you can apply the polyurethane, you will need to clean the painted wood. Use a mild soap and water solution to wipe down the wood. This will remove any dirt or debris that could prevent the polyurethane from adhering properly.

Step 2: Sand the wood

Once the wood is clean, you will need to sand it. This will create a smooth surface for the polyurethane to adhere to. Use a fine-grit sandpaper and sand the wood in the direction of the grain.

Step 3: Apply the Polyurethane

To apply the polyurethane, pour a small amount into a paint tray. Then, use a paintbrush to apply the polyurethane to the wood. Work in small sections and brush the polyurethane on in the direction of the grain.

Allow the first coat of polyurethane to dry for four hours before applying a second coat. Once the second coat is dry, your painted wood will be waterproof.


This is a type of water-based polyurethane. It is less toxic than other types of polyurethane, making it a good choice for use on projects that will be used by children or pregnant women.

Polycrylic can be used on both finished and unfinished wood surfaces, and it will not yellow over time like some other finishes can. It is available in both a clear finish and a variety of colors, so you can choose the perfect look for your project.

Polycrylic is easy to apply with a paintbrush or roller, and it dries quickly to a hard, durable finish. It can be sanded and wiped clean with a damp cloth, making it a great choice for high-traffic areas like kitchen table and chairs.

Polycrylic can also be used on other surfaces like metal, glass, and ceramic tile.

How to Waterproof Painted Wood Using Polycrylic?

Painted wood can start to show wear and tear after a while, especially if it’s exposed to moisture. To help prolong the life of your painted wood, you can waterproof it using polycrylic.

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Step 1: Start by sanding the painted wood with medium-grit sandpaper to rough up the surface. This will help the polycrylic adhere better.

Step 2: Wipe down the wood with a damp cloth to remove any dust from sanding.

Step 3: Apply a thin layer of polycrylic to the wood with a paintbrush, making sure to get into all the crevices.

Step 4: Allow the polycrylic to dry for at least 2 hours before applying a second coat.

Step 5: Once the second coat is dry, you can sand it down with fine-grit sandpaper to make it smooth.

Step 6: Finish up by wiping down the wood with a damp cloth.

Pros and Cons of Waterproofing Painted Wood

In order to make sure that your painted wood surfaces do not suffer any water damage, you might consider waterproofing them. But is this really necessary? And if so, what are the pros and cons of doing so? Let’s take a look at both sides of the issue.


  • Extra Protection for the Wood

One of the main advantages of waterproofing painted wood is that it provides an extra layer of protection for the wood. By sealing off the pores in the wood, you can help to prevent water from seeping in and causing damage. This is especially important if your painted wood surfaces are exposed to the elements or are located in high-moisture areas, such as bathrooms or kitchens.

  • It Makes the Surface Easier to Clean.

Another advantage of waterproofing painted wood is that it can make the surface easier to clean. Waterproof sealers help to repel dirt, dust, and other debris, so you won’t have to work as hard to keep your surfaces clean. This can be a real time-saver if you have painted wood floors or other large surfaces.

  • Enhances Paint Color

In addition, waterproofing can help to enhance the paint color and prevent fading. By sealing off the wood’s pores, you can create a barrier that helps to protect the paint from UV rays and other environmental factors. This can keep your painted wood surfaces looking fresh and new for longer.

  • Help You Sell Your Pieces Faster.

If you’re a painter who sells their pieces, waterproofing can be a great way to help you sell your paintings faster. Many buyers are hesitant to purchase painted wood pieces because they’re worried about the potential for water damage. But if you can show them that the piece is properly protected, you may be able to convince them to buy it.


  • Sealants Amplify Imperfections

One of the main disadvantages of waterproofing painted wood is that sealants can amplify imperfections. If there are any cracks, chips, or other damage to the surface of the wood, sealing it will make these imperfections more visible. This can make your piece look less attractive and could even affect its value.

  • Waterproofing Requires a Lot of Prep Work

Another downside of waterproofing is that it requires a lot of prep work. In order to properly seal the wood, you’ll need to sand it down, clean it thoroughly, and then apply the sealant.

This can be a time-consuming process, especially if you have a large surface to cover. Generally speaking, the more prep work that’s required, the less appealing the project becomes.

  • Removing the Paint Sealer is Hard.

If you ever decide to remove the paint sealer, it can be very difficult to do. Once the sealer has been applied, it creates a strong bond with the wood. This makes it nearly impossible to remove without causing damage to the wood.

So, if you’re not sure that you want to waterproof your painted wood surfaces for the long term, you might want to think twice before doing so.

How to Waterproof Painted Wood for Outdoor Use

There are a few different ways you can do this, but one of the best is to use a sealant. This will create a barrier between the paint and the elements, protecting it from moisture and UV damage.

Applying a sealant is relatively easy, but you will need to make sure that the surface is clean and dry before you begin. Once you have done this, simply apply the sealant according to the manufacturer’s instructions. You may need to wait a few hours for it to dry completely before you can use the painted wood furniture or trim.

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If you are looking for a more permanent solution, you can also waterproof your painted wood by painting it with a waterproofing agent. This is a good option if you are planning on using the furniture or trim outdoors on a regular basis.

Just be sure to follow the instructions carefully so that you do not damage the paint.

Either of these options, your painted wood should be protected from the elements and last for many years to come.

What can be used to Waterproof Painted Wood for Interior Use?

Painted wood is a popular choice for interior trim and furniture, but it can be tricky to waterproof. Painted wood is especially susceptible to water damage, so it’s important to take extra care when waterproofing it.

There are a few different options that can be used to waterproof painted wood, including sealants, varnishes, and waxes. Each option has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to choose the right one for your needs.

Sealants are a good option for waterproofing painted wood, as they provide a durable barrier against water. However, sealants can be difficult to apply, and they often need to be reapplied regularly to maintain their effectiveness.

Varnishes and waxes are both good options for waterproofing painted wood, but they have different benefits. Varnishes provide a more durable barrier against water, while waxes help to protect the paint from damage.

Both varnishes and waxes can be applied easily, and they don’t need to be reapplied as often as sealants.

When to Seal Painted Wood

The best time to seal painted wood is after the paint has had time to cure. Curing typically takes about two weeks, so it’s best to wait at least that long before applying a sealer. Generally, you’ll want to wait until any paint fumes have dissipated before sealing as well.

If you’re not sure whether your paint is cured, you can test it by doing the fingernail test: press your fingernail into the paint surface. If the paint dent that your fingernail makes pops back up, it’s not cured yet and you’ll need to wait a little longer.

Once you’re sure the paint is cured, you can go ahead and seal it. Doing so will protect the paint from damage and wear, and it will also make it easier to clean in the future.

Can you put water seal over painted wood?

Yes, you can put water seal over painted wood. This will help to protect the paint from wear and tear, and it will also help to keep the wood itself from rotting or decaying. Water seal can be applied to both new and old painted wood surfaces.

Generally, it is best to apply water sealer with a brush or roller. You can also apply it with a sprayer, but you will need to be careful not to over-apply the sealer.

If you do, it can cause the paint to blister and peel.

Moreover, before applying water sealer, you should make sure that the painted wood surface is clean and free of any dirt, grease, or other debris. Once the water sealer has been applied, it is important to let it dry completely before using the surface.

Can you apply waterproofing over paint?

Applying waterproofing over paint can help to protect the paint from weather damage and extend its lifespan. However, it is important to note that not all paints are compatible with all waterproofing products, so be sure to check the manufacturer’s recommendations before applying any type of waterproofing.

In general, it is best to apply waterproofing after the paint has had time to cure, so that it can fully adhere to the surface.

Additionally, if you are applying waterproofing to an exterior surface, be sure to also apply a sealant over the top of the waterproofing to further protect it from the elements.