How To Paint Your Patio Slabs

Painting your patio slabs may seem like an odd task. But when you think that you’d happily paint outdoor walls and possibly even indoor wood flooring or tiles, it does make sense.

Whether your slabs are looking weathered and old, or you simply want to apply some colour to your garden, using paint is a fantastic way to do a quick makeover. But as with any painting task, you need to prep and do the job correctly first time.

This includes ensuring the surface is clean and free of debris before you get started. You can’t paint over dirt and dust; it won’t look right and will start to flake immediately once dried.

To do this, hiring a pressure washer from Speedy is a great idea. It will remove all of the grime on the surface of the patio, smoothen out the appearance and also clean the patio slabs. This means the paint will go on better and will also be the correct end colour once dried.

Anything from dirt to grease to algae will affect the end result of the paint, and a pressure washer is the easiest way to remove anything which shouldn’t naturally be there.

You also need to assess the material of your patio slabs. If you have smooth slabs, a roller will be good for application. However, if your slabs are rough or porous, a brush will be better. Even if you use a roller for most of the application, a brush will help to get into any small areas.


What you need to paint your patio

We’ve split this up into three stages: the PPE required when carrying out DIY, the tools to prepare for the job and the tools to carry out the job.

You need to wear PPE and clothing which will protect your skin from the force of the water, the paint and any fumes. This includes:

  • Eye protection
  • Ear protection
  • Mask
  • Protective clothing (including boots)

Then, you need a clean surface to paint on, free of moss, dirt, and algae. To prepare your surface, you need:

The pressure washer should remove any dirt which shouldn’t be on the slabs, but a dedicated cleaner may dissolve moss or algae which is ground in, or materials such as oils.

When painting the patio slabs, you should use:

  • Primer
  • Dedicated exterior paint
  • Roller
  • Dedicated exterior paint brush
  • Sealant

If you use a roller, try to get one with a long handle to avoid reaching and bending too much.


How to paint patio slabs

Step 1: Do the prep work

You need to remove everything from your patio, brush and clean your patio slabs, and wait for them to dry. You can do this in stages, say if you don’t have space to remove all the furniture completely. However, it will be easier to jet wash all in one go.

Using a power wash will also remove any old flaking paint, if you've previously tried to decorate.

Then, cover any areas you don’t want to get paint on. You may have a fence or wall which you need to cover with masking tape or sheeting, for instance. Also, protect windows and doors from paint splashes.


Step 2: Prime

Some exterior paint advertises itself as self-priming but remember that your patio slabs are a high-traffic area. From people walking on them to the rain and wind battering them, your paint will go through a lot.

So, prime. Apply a thin coat and leave it to dry before moving on to the paint.


Step 3: Paint

Mix the paint really well. Start at one corner and move in one direction, in thin layers. Completely cover the patio with one coat of paint, and then repeat once this is dried if you need a second coat.

  • SPEEDY TOP TIP: Try stencilling, using a dedicated stencil to paint a pattern on the painted patio slabs. This is modern and something unique


Step 4: Seal

Dedicated sealant is great for creating a top layer on the paint which will ensure it is weather-proof, dirt-proof, and easy to clean.

Wait 24 to 48 hours before walking on the patio or replacing furniture.


How long do I have before I need to repaint?

Correctly prepping your patio and correctly painting the stones could mean that the paint lasts for 3-5 years. If you do need to then repaint the patio, remove all traces of the old paint before starting with a clean slate.




Thank you for reading our Speedy blog, we hope you found this guide on how to paint your patio slabs inspiring!

If you are new to using a pressure washer to clean a patio, then check out our How-To Clean a Patio with a Pressure Washer blog before you start painting.

Plus, there are plenty more tips and how-to guides where this came from, please visit our Skills and Projects page.

You’ll find all the power tools and hire equipment you need right here, why not start planning your next DIY project today and open a Speedy account online or in-store for all your tool hire needs.


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