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Can I Paint over Ceramic Tile? Bay Area Painting Info !

Can I Paint over Ceramic Tile? Bay Area Painting Info

As far as wall and floor surfaces go, few building materials are as durable as ceramic tile. Many kitchens and bathrooms here in the Bay Area still have ceramic tile from half a century ago, and it looks just like it did the day it was installed! The problem, however, is that while the tile has endured, our sense of style and our preference for color have changed. This leaves Bay Area homeowners wondering, “Can I paint over ceramic tile?

Yes! It is definitely possible to paint over your ceramic tile in order to update the look of a room without the massive project of replacing the tile. However, there are some limitations to this:

  • Don’t paint floor tile in areas that receive a lot of foot traffic. This paint will wear out before long, leaving the floor looking worse than it did when the tile was unpainted.
  • Don’t paint ceramic tile in high-moisture areas, such as shower walls, tub surrounds and kitchen backsplashes. The moisture can cause paint failure with surprising rapidity.

How Do You Paint Ceramic Tile?

MB JESSEE, an experienced Bay Area painting contractor, recommends beginning every DIY paint job with a good cleaning of the surface. No paints will adhere to a dirty surface as effectively as they will to a clean one. For ceramic tile, scrub with an abrasive cleaner, then rinse off the surface and allow it to dry thoroughly.

The next step in painting your ceramic tile is to buff it with a synthetic grit sandpaper to remove the gloss. This can be done by hand, but an orbital sander will get you faster and more thorough results. Make sure to use a dust mask, as with any sanding project, and use a gentle grit (180 or higher) to avoid scratches that will show through the paint.

Wipe down the surface with water now, removing the dust, and you are ready to begin painting your ceramic tile!

Begin with a good quality primer. This will make all the difference in ensuring your paint will look great, do don’t skip this step! You could use Kilz adhesion primer or Sherwin Williams urethane bonding primer. Make sure you follow the directions regarding how many coats to use, and how long to let it dry.

Now you are ready for the fun part! Choose your topcoat and paint it on, watching the new color transform your tired old ceramic tile! It’s best to choose a semi-gloss sheen so that you have a scrubbable, durable coating that will hold up to reasonable washing and moderate wear. If you do want to do this is an area exposed to more water, you could try Rust-Oleum’s tub and tile refinishing paint.

As with any of your Bay Area painting projects, MB JESSEE would love to have an opportunity to serve you by repainting your ceramic tile. We can advise you on the best products and techniques for your specific situation, and we can even help you choose the colors that will work best in your space!

MB JESSEE is a reliable, well-established house painting company serving the San Francisco Bay Area, including Contra Costa, Hillsborough, Piedmont, Oakland Hills and more.

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Customer Reviews

“Julie, by the way, I have never been so impressed with the service of a painting job before! It was like magical elves came and painted our walls without us having to do a thing! It looks amazing and just wanted to let you know how happy we are. Thanks”

— Anja
Piedmont

“I can't say enough about how courteous and professional my foreman was. He was on time every morning and arrived cheerful and ready to go. He is highly organized and very thoughtful. He was extremely careful and respectful when moving my belongings - a mature professional.”

— Nora Robinson

“I cannot imagine finer painters--and I have worked with many. They work exceptionally hard. It is a joy to see their workmanship!”

— Alicia R.
Oakland

“My entire experience with MB Jesse was very professional. The crew were very friendly and super accommodating of my ridiculous schedule and geriatric pets in the house. The finished product, which was pretty much my entire house, far exceeds my expectations. Would definitely work with them again!”

— Heather Jordan

“MB Jessee painters are stellar! As a designer I've worked with numerous companies over the years, and MB Jessee is a top-notch firm. From the first phone call to the final clean up, every person is courteous, professional, and hard working. The owner, Matt, is a charitable leader who has instilled his team with integrity and honesty providing the customer with a first class experience at a fair price with a paint job that is guaranteed to last. I highly recommend MB Jessee. Thank you Matt and your STAR crew-Daniel, Rigoberto, Vicente, Edy, Pedro, and Mario, for a job well executed! Cynthia Brian, ASID, Starstyle® Productions, llc”

— Cynthia Brian
Morgan, CA

“Our paint crew did a great job and the foreman, Gersson was exceptionally great to work with. He was always available to answer questions, good at problem-solving, very patient, kind, and highly professional with great customer service. We definitely recommend this company, and Gersson and his crew.”

— Andrea Y.
Berkeley, CA

“Julie,Just to let you know I am very appreciative of your crew catching the plumbing/mold problem. It was very astute of them. I wanted to let you know that again your crew has done excellent work here, please pass this along to Mr. Jessee. There are some bumps in the road here, but the painting and your crew has not been one of them. Their work is the only thing going right currently, and this crew is very nice and respectful. It is much appreciated. Thank you again.”

— Beth
Oakland

“In September, MBJessee finished painting two sides of our 3-story condominium building (six owners). We were impressed by the professionalism of the company and every one of its workers, Matt Jessee couldn't have been more helpful in planning the project. His painters were well-trained, easy to communicate with and eager to please. In addition to painting the stucco, they made extensive repairs on windows and frames, which will save us considerable money in the future. They finished earlier than anticipated, with as many as five men working on the job, and the scaffolding came down the next day. All of us were delighted with the results. Now my husband and I are looking forward to having MB Jessee paint our own apartment later this month. Matt and Gustavo (who will be our crew leader again) have explained how they will work to make the painting proceed smoothly while we're living here, and they have been endlessly patient with our protracted decision-making process. If you look at their website, you'll learn that MB Jessee is an exemplary company that takes good care of its workers as well as its customers, and contributes public service projects to the community. All in all, we can't recommend MB Jessee highly enough.”

— Jayne W.
San Francisco, CA

“In all the years I've worked with MB Jessee, I'm always so impressed by your crews. They are so respectful of everything--you never even know they're there! Except that the paint looks amazing when they're gone. We've had one showing of our home and already have an offer. I'm sure it is because the paint looks so beautiful.”

— Erin T.
Pleasant Hill

“The kitchen looks NEW! You guys are amazing.”

“I love the article in the paper on your company. Thank you for supporting our community by painting at the Claremont Middle School. Thanks!”

— Carla Banks

“Matt, Julie & Ricardo, I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank the three of you for the wonderful job you did in hosting the SFBA NARI Chapter Meeting on Wednesday evening. Everything was perfect from beginning to end. Members and guests alike walked away with a truly positive experience. The "painter for a day" and the cookies in the paint cans were an absolute brilliant touch and received rave reviews. What a wonderful way to do such positive marketing. Thanks again for a truly memorable experience for our members and guests. You are valued as a NARI member.”

— Judy Tufo, SFBA NARI Executive Director