How to Paint a Plywood Floor

Painting a plywood floor is a great way to give your home an upgraded look without the upgraded price. Plywood floors can easily be painted at minimal cost and virtually anyone who has painted a wall before can paint a floor with optimal results. When painting a floor, take some additional steps to ensure you'll get a finish that will survive years of wear and tear from foot traffic.

Things You'll Need

  • Paintable wood filler
  • Sandpaper
  • Sponge
  • Bucket
  • Primer
  • Brush
  • Roller
  • Oil-based paint
  • Paint tray
  • Clear urethane

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Fill in any cracks or uneven areas with a paintable wood filler and allow it to dry.

Sand the areas that were filled in until the surface is smooth and even.

Make sure the floor is clean and free of any debris. Take warm water in a bucket and wipe the entire surface down with a sponge. Allow it to thoroughly dry.

Pour the primer in a paint tray and apply it with a roller. Start in one corner and work your way out, being careful not to paint yourself into a corner. Use a brush to get close to corners. Allow the primer to thoroughly dry.

Pour paint into a paint tray and apply with a roller, using the same technique used for primer application. Allow the paint to thoroughly dry.

Apply three more coats of paint, allowing ample drying time in between coats.

Apply three thin coats of clear urethane, using the same technique used for paint and primer and allowing ample drying time in between coats.

Tips & Warnings

  • Applying primer and clear urethane are key to ensuring the finish will last.
  • Be careful not to apply primer, paint or urethane too thick. More thin coats are better than fewer thick coats.
  • Oil-based paints work best for flooring applications.
  • Be sure to use a non-yellowing clear urethane, which will be stated on the product.
  • Always work in a well-ventilated area.
  • Allow urethane at least 24 hours of drying time before walking on floor and at least 72 hours before subjecting the floor to heavy foot traffic.


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