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Paint a brick wall

Paint a brick wall

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Painting a brick wall is a good DIY job because there is wait time in between steps so you can schedule the process.

To some people a brick wall is an eye-catching feature in a room; to others it’s an eyesore. While exposed, blotchy brick may be an authentic, rugged look that adds character to a room, others see a rough surface that detracts from the surroundings. An inexpensive trick we learned from designers of commercial spaces is to paint it.

Painting a brick wall is a good DIY job because there is wait time in between steps so you can schedule the process. First, wash the brick with a detergent solution, then rinse it to remove any residue and let the surface dry. Next apply a masonry sealer or primer to prevent the porous brick from absorbing the paint and improve the paint’s adhesion. We use a good quality latex paint for two topcoats; the first was applied with a wide brush to work the paint into the pores of the brick, followed by a final coat with a heavy nap roller.

A painting contractor will charge $205, which includes labor and material, to paint a 10-by-8-foot-high wall. This is a small job, with drying time in between so it requires two trips for a contractor. You have to pay a premium to get a painter to do it; another reason to do it yourself for $75, which includes primer and paint. You’ll pocket a nice 63% saving.

Depending on the porosity of the bricks and grout you may need a third application of paint for an even finish.

To find more DIY project costs and to post comments and questions, visit

Pro Cost — DIY Cost — Pro time — DIY Time — DIY Savings — Percent Saved

$205 — $75 — 6.3 — 6.5 — $130 — 63%

©2020 Gene and Katie Hamilton. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.


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Q: Tim, I have a big decision to make and need your help. I love the look of colored brick for paving, including my driveway, sidewalks and patio. The issue is I’ve started to pay attention to older installations of colored concrete paving brick and many look faded. Why is that happening? Some look horrible, especially at a restaurant I patronize. I don’t want my investment to look faded in a few years. Do I have alternatives, and is there a way to restore the color of faded concrete brick pavers? —Mary Chris F., Tampa, Fla.

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