The best fence paint to use in your garden

Brush up on your fence paint knowledge 🖌️

Best fence paint

by Lily Anderson |

Sometimes we neglect the things to which we should be paying more attention. That's right, we're talking about our garden fences. Having a fence that is treated correctly will preserve it for years to come and will reduce maintenance costs.

Not only will it save you money in the long run (because without the proper treatment, fences will rot and need replacing), it’s also an activity that you and the family can do together. Well, if you have older kids and willing teenagers anyway. If they won't help, well it's an excuse to get out of the house for a good few hours.

It might not be the most exciting task, but instead of staring at a patchy panel, you can have a fence that looks brand new. We vote for the paint job!

Many different tools will help you achieve this and we'll talk about a few of them in this article. So, whether you're looking to paint, stain or treat your fence with a wax coating, we're certain we'll find the right paint and tools for you.

We've rounded up the best fence paint to use in your garden and also if you've got metal gates or fencing that you think might need a bit of touching up.

Don't forget, as with all paint jobs, to make the end result is the best it possibly can be, preparation is key. If you're painting a new wooden fence for the first time, you're in luck, you can go for any colour you so wish. However, if you're painting over a fence that has been left, colour matching or going a shade darker may be your only option.

Make sure you clean all fence panels the best you can, you can do this with a pressure washer, making sure you give each panel enough time to dry out. Then you may need to get rid of any rough or peeling bits of wood, either by sanding down or picking it off. This will ensure that you'll have your fence looking brand new and as good as it possibly can.

Painting a fence can sometimes be a nice quick job, but more often than not it's a long drawn out affair. However, when you see the results, you'll realise it's all worth it!

The top 3 best fence paints shortlist:

Editor's Pick: Water Based Shed and Fence Paint

Best affordable option: Ronseal 5L One Coat Life

Best pigment: Cuprinol Garden Shades Willow Exterior Paint

Related: The 13 best patio cleaners for every surface

Can you use fence paint on decking?

It is not advisable to use paint intended for your fence on the decking for the simple reason that fence paint is not designed to withstand foot traffic. Unfortunately, this means that the paint will wear quickly, with minimal durability.

Is it better to stain or paint a fence?

There are ups and downs with both painting and staining your fence.

Staining will give you a more natural finish and will enhance the look of an already beautiful wooden fence. Stain also requires less maintenance than paint but comes at a higher cost.

On the other hand, the paint sits on top of the fence and is best if you're looking to completely transform the colour and look of your fence. The painting will also give you the option of multiple bright colours that can give your garden a complete revamp. In terms of cost, paint is also more cost-efficient in the short term.

Can I paint my side of my neighbours fence?

No - legally, you'll have to ask the owner of the fence for permission before making any changes to it.

How do I paint a fence?

Is it your first time tackling painting a fence? DIY can be daunting if you don't know EXACTLY what you're doing. Make sure that you're fully prepared by watching this amazing step-by-step video from B&Q.

We especially love the tips on protective clothing and the importance of a protective sheet.

For more ideas and advice visit the B&Q website

Fence painting accessories

Harris 5-inch Seriously Good Shed & Fence Brush

Harris 5-inch Seriously Good Shed & Fence Brush

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Painting panel after panel can be an arm- and mind-numbingly boring process. Take some of the strain out with a proper brush like this one from Harris, which we've picked because it promises it won't leave bristle behind like this cheaper version.

Key info:

• Comfortable handle

• No-Loss bristle tech

• Can be attached to a pole for reaching tricky spots

Review: "Quality piece of kit. Good to use and easy to clean. Will last for ages."

Wagner Fence & Decking Paint Sprayer

Wagner Fence & Decking Paint Sprayer

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If you've got a lot of panels to cover or are just completely done with manual painting and want a better finish than you could manage with a brush, this Wagner sprayer can cover a 1.8x1.8 metre fence panel in less than two minutes. It doesn't even need fancy sprayer paint.

Key info:

• Suitable for all solvent or water-based fence paint, oil, stain, varnish, wood preservatives and treatments

• Atomises the paint for a deep and even single coat

• Horizontal, vertical and detail nozzle settings

Review: "This is amazing! I once lost 2 days of my life painting a fence. Beyond me, why I didn’t purchase one of these. Easy to use, does the job in half the time - quicker! Nice finish. It takes a bit of practice to get the feel of it - you need a bit of rhythm to get the paint even. Dries well. Would absolutely buy again."

What to read next:

The best petrol lawnmowers for larger UK gardens

Best cordless drills for home DIY projects

The best garden furniture

The best wood paint: from fence panels to furniture

Lily Anderson is a writer at Bauer Media, where she tests products for titles such as Heat, Closer, What’s the Best and Mother&Baby.

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