Best Primer For Wood Furniture

If your planning on upcycling wooden furniture or transforming your kitchen cabinets with paint. The first paint product you will need is a paint primer. So what is the best primer for wood furniture, the answer, my personal favourite Zinsser Bin Shellac Primer.

What Is A Primer Paint

Primer paint is the first coat of paint applied to a surface. It increases adhesion and provides a uniformed base for all other coats of paint. Primers are excellent at sealing porous surfaces (bare wood, mdf, plywood), reducing the number of top coats of paint required.

Paint primer is available in water based, oil and shellac. I mostly use a water based primer, Zinsser Bullseye 123 Primer for daily use.

On furniture, varnished surfaces, kitchen cabinets, (wood, veneer, laminate) I use Zinsser Bin Shellac Primer. Shellac primers are also outstanding at covering stubborn stains, (water, crayon, felt tip, smoke, oil).

Related article: How To Paint Over Water Stains

What Kind Of Primer Should I Use On Wood

Most primers are suitable for wood, choosing a suitable wood primer hinges mostly on your objective. For painting trim, (skirting boards, architrave, window sills, doors). A water based primer would be ideal, easy to use, touch dry in under an hour. Rollers and brushes can be cleaned using water.

Shellac primers are the toughest paint primers on the market with unparalleled adhesion and stain blocking properties. When would use a shellac primer?

  • Bare wood where there are multiple knots or evidence of tree sap
  • Varnished or waxed surfaces
  • Wooden furniture and kitchen cupboards
  • Melamine and laminate surfaces
Best Primer For Wood Furniture

Zinsser Bin primer used on kitchen cabinets

Your primer coat lays the foundation for your top coats of paint. Failing to apply the correct paint primer can lead to the top layers of paint failing, (bubbling, peeling, scraping off).

Can You Put Primer Over Paint

Primer paint is excellent creating an even, uniformed base for further coats of paint. Areas of fresh filler, stains from untreated knots and flaking paint can all ruin your top coats of paint. By applying a primer over previously painted surfaces, most common paint issues can be avoided.

Depending on the previous issues with the original surface would determine what type of primer would be required. For instance, yellow staining from knots that were seeping through the paint would need to be treated with Zinsser Bin Shellac Primer.

Did you know that primer can be used to solve a common problem when trying to paint matt over silk emulsion. In an earlier article painting matt over silk emulsion I explain how to stop paint cracking on walls and ceilings.

How Many Coats Of Primer Should I Use On Wood

In most cases you will need to apply 2 coats of primer to wood that has not been previously painted. If for example your transforming wooden furniture, kitchen cabinets, doors etc, then 2 coats of primer paint is necessary.

All bare wood, (skirting boards, architrave, molding, window sills) would require 2 coats of primer. If there are alot of knots evident, then opt for a shellac primer instead of a water based primer.

What primer is best for mdf? Due to its porous surface, either an oil based or shellac primer is best to use on mdf.

Best Primer For Wood Furniture

1: Water Based | 2: Oil Based | 3: Shellac Based

Water based primers dry in under 1 hour, shellac primers dry in 20 mins, oil primers can take up to 2 hours.

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Disclaimer

This blog is a personally written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

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