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Painting Your Gutters: The Complete Guide

Most homeowners want to keep the outside of their house looking neat and presentable, which may involve painting, sealing, staining or varnishing fences, replacing old window frames, or deep cleaning the patio. Gutters can sometimes be forgotten in the quest for home improvement, but a coat of paint can go a long way when it comes to refreshing the exterior of your house.

Whether your gutters have lost their original protection or you simply want to tie them into a broader colour scheme, painting them isn’t as difficult as you might think. However, it’s important to choose the right type of paint for your gutters, as well as follow a few key steps to make sure your paint stands the test of time.

Can You Paint Guttering?

Cast iron gutters can and should be painted regularly. While some homeowners may choose to paint their gutters themselves, the process can be complex and professional help is usually recommended to get the job done properly.

Is Painting Gutters a Good Idea?

As long as it’s done properly, cast iron gutters benefit from being painted – and not only in appearance. Choosing paint that’s designed to weather the elements can keep your gutters protected, staving off signs of rust or UV damage, which can keep your gutters in better condition for longer.

However, it’s worth remembering that paint will need to be maintained. Even high-quality paint will start to deteriorate or flake after a number of years, so you need to be prepared to keep on top of maintenance. Consider touching up areas that are starting to wear down while cleaning your gutters to keep the job more manageable.

What Do You Need to Paint Gutters?

In order to paint gutters, you’ll need to have some key tools and materials on hand, these may include:

·        Gutter paint that’s suitable for the material you’re painting on

·        Primer 

·        A natural bristle paintbrush

·        Sandpaper, a paint scraper and wire brush

·        Gutter cleaning supplies

·        Dust sheets and PPE such as masks and gloves

Painting Cast Iron Gutters

Cast iron gutters can and should be painted regularly as it is the paint that protects it from the weather, so adding layers of paint will add protection and keep it lasting longer.

Choosing Metal Gutter Paint

When choosing paint for your cast iron gutters, it’s best to choose paint that’s specially formulated for this purpose. If you’re not sure which one to pick, speak to a professional before making a decision and check out this guide.

Preparing Your Cast Iron Gutters

Before painting your cast iron, you need to clean it thoroughly. This means dislodging any debris as well as washing away tougher build-ups of dirt. You can do this with a gentle soap and cleaning brush.

Next, you should sand your cast iron gutters before priming and painting them. Sanding helps to remove peeling paint before you add your layer of primer.

Primed or Pre-Painted Metal Guttering

If cast iron gutters are painted incorrectly, you run the risk of problems such as rust developing more quickly. The simplest solution is to buy ready-painted gutters, but if you’d prefer to paint them yourself, transit-primed gutters are the next-best solution.

Painting your gutters before installing them also makes the painting process easier, as you won’t need to do it while up a ladder or be left waiting for the right weather.

Painting Gutters: Key Takeaways

It’s possible to paint your gutters as long as you choose the right paint and follow the right preparation steps. The UK weather makes this more tricky. Always make sure your gutters are in good condition and don’t need replacing before painting them. Clear blockages and replace any damaged parts of your guttering first.


Can you paint over guttering? Not all types of guttering can be painted over, but cast iron can. However, it’s usually a good idea to strip off any existing paint before adding a fresh coat.

What kind of paint do you use on rain gutters? Most cast iron rainwater systems (gutters & downpipes) should be painted with oil-based gloss paint over a metal anti-rust primer undercoat. You always need to prime and undercoat (sand your gutters before painting). Always check that the paint you choose is suitable for the material your gutters are made from e.g. metal.)

Do you need to sand gutters before painting? Cast iron gutters should be sanded before painting, as this will give you a good adherence and smooth, long-lasting finish.

Should you paint gutters with a brush or sprayer? It’s best to paint your gutters with a natural bristle brush, as this will give you more precision over where you spread the paint. It can sometimes be hard to reach crevices with a sprayer, and you may waste paint going over sections again.

How do you paint rusted gutters? If your cast iron gutters have rusted, treat the rust before painting. Try scrubbing the rusted areas with a wire brush before cleaning and drying them. Next, apply a layer of primer with anti-rust properties before adding your paint layer.

Can you paint gutter downspouts? Painting downspouts is just as possible as painting guttering. Simply make sure you have the right type of paint, clean and prepare your downspouts, and paint them in the same way you would your gutters.

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