Best Outdoor Metal Spray Paint

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Last updated: August 24, 2023

A Detailed Review and Ratings for The Best Outdoor Metal Spray Paint for Your Project

Best outdoor metal spray paint

When painting outdoor metal, it’s extremely important you choose the right spray paint. This is because not every spray paint is meant for the great outdoors. 

Some products may peel, crack, or swole up when exposed to harsh conditions like rain, snow, and UV light. 

The best outdoor metal spray paint doesn’t only beautify the item but also protects it from environmental hazards. This ensures the paint job maintains its color for an extended period of time. With so many brands out there, it can be difficult to find such products. 

After much research and testing, we’ve compiled a list of the best spray paints currently available for outdoor metals. We’ve also included a buying guide to help you make an informed decision.

Can You Spray Paint Outdoor Metal?

Yes, you can as long as you use a spray paint that is compatible with the metal. Spray painting outdoor metal is so much faster than painting with a brush. Sometimes, the paint may include a primer, which means you don’t need to prime the metal.

What Paint is Best for Outdoor Metal?

The best paint for outdoor metal is usually oil-based or hard-wearing enamel paint. You can also use water-based acrylics, but they are not usually as durable as oil-based paints. 

Although enamel takes a longer time to dry, it is extremely durable and performs better at lower temperatures and against moisture. 

It is also resistant to stains, chipping, and abrasion, making it perfect for the great outdoors and heavy-duty applications.

Things to Consider When Buying Outdoor Metal Spray Paint

Color & Finish

One of the first things you should consider when choosing an outdoor metal spray paint is the color. Outdoor metal spray paints come in various colors, ranging from neutral to trendy colors. 

Some products may only be available in white and black, while others offer a wider color selection. You can choose from any of these options depending on your preferred option.

In addition to color, also consider the type of finish. Different sprays have different types of finishes. These include satin, matte, gloss, metallic, etc. Since you’re painting metal, most of the time, you would want to choose a metallic finish.

Drying Time

Typically, spray paints takes less time to dry compared to regular paint. However, some products, especially oil-based or enamel paints, take longer to dry than others. 

If you’re in a hurry, consider choosing one that dries to touch in under 30 minutes, or apply various methods to make spray dry faster. This will allow you to apply all the coats on time and complete the project faster. 

But generally, it’s better to wait for any amount of time as long as it guarantees a durable finish. 

Versatility

Even though you’re looking to paint outdoor metal, sometimes, it’s better to choose a product that is not limited to only metals. This way, you won’t need to purchase another can anytime you want to paint a different item. 

Luckily, most of the items mentioned here are not limited to just outdoor metals. They can also be used for wood, ceramic, and even plastic.  

Make sure to check the label just to be sure before using it on any surface. 

Durability

If you’re purchasing spray paint for outdoor metal, then it needs to be durable. By durability, we mean you want something that won’t wash off when rained on or fade when exposed to harmful UV light. Since we’re dealing with metal, it’ll also be great if the paint offers rust protection. 

Don’t worry if you are not sure whether you can tell which type will last longer, we’ve also done a review on the most durable spray paint for metal to make your selection a breeze.

Top 8 Best Outdoor Metal Spray Paint

1. Rust-Oleum High-Performance Enamel Spray Paint – Best Overall Spray Paint for Outdoor Metal

The Rust-Oleum High-Performance Paint is an oil-based enamel formula, which easily makes it the most durable option out there. Enamel paints are known to offer the toughest finish, which makes them ideal if you are looking for something that will last. 

With this spray, you get an industrial-grade finish that can withstand weathering and other harsh conditions. 

The paint is also rust-resistant, so it’s the perfect cover for metal surfaces exposed to the elements. It can be used on both ferrous and non-ferrous metals, as well as other materials like wood, concrete, and masonry. When used on metals, it resists corrosion, chipping, and abrasion and doesn’t fade easily.

The aerosol comes with a high-output spray tip to enable you to spray comfortably and cover more areas in less time. The tip sprays at any angle, even upside down, allowing you to reach difficult areas.

The paint dries to touch in 15 minutes and recoats within an hour, allowing you to complete the project faster. Most oil-based products take longer to harden. 

It’s highly recommended you sand the surface if it has any old paint before applying the new paint. Use several light coats instead of one heavy coat to avoid drip or run. 

Allow the paint to dry completely before handling. This will prevent scratches and ensure the color is weatherproof and “permanent” and doesn’t get washed off in the rain. 

Each bottle is 15 oz. and covers up to 14 square feet. 

To prevent big blobs of paint on your work, which may occur if you press it too hard, test spray on a scrap material before spraying the main project. It’s also a good idea to shake the can vigorously for a minute or two before starting to avoid splutters. 

You will get the best results by following the instructions on the label. And not rushing the job. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Sprays in all directions.
  • It can be used indoors and outdoors.
  • Provides quicker coverage, thanks to the high-output tip.
  • Suitable for heavy use environments.
  • Attractive gloss finish.
  • Rust resistant.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • Has a strong odor.

2. Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch – Best for Outdoor Metal Furniture

The Painter’s Touch is another high-quality paint that adheres well to metal. It provides excellent hide and covers really well, getting into every tight corner. 

As implied by the name, the paint covers twice as fast as most spray paint – thanks to its Double Cover Technology. It does this without compromising on the quality of the paint job. It goes on smoothly with no drips or runs and can be used on a number of surfaces, including metal, wood, masonry, plastic, and plaster. 

The spray is available in various colors, so you’re not limited to only one choice. You can apply it alone or pair it with other monotonous colors, depending on the look you want to achieve. 

Each color provides a fresh, new look and comes in different sheens, from satin to gloss. 

You can also purchase one can if you’re painting a very small project. But we highly recommend the pack as it contains six cans, which is better in most cases. You get a discount, and you won’t have to purchase another can too soon. 

The paint can be used on both interior and exterior surfaces, so it’s perfect for outdoor metal. It’s chip-resistant and provides a long-lasting finish. 

It takes 20 minutes to dry to touch, which allows for quick project completion. However, after the last coat, you must wait at least a day for it to fully cure. 

Each aerosol can is 12 oz and covers up to 12 square feet.

The paint is oil-based, so it contains a significant amount of VOCs. So, you need to use it in an open space with good ventilation. The smell isn’t bad like most oil paints, but it’s still noticeable, so make sure you wear a respiratory mask.

The can tends to clog if you don’t shake it properly. So, endeavor to shake it before spraying and frequently while on the job. In case it does get clogged, remove the tip and clean it with mineral spirits. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Easy to use (great for beginners).
  • Affordable price.
  • Features a comfortable spray tip.
  • Provides excellent coverage and long-lasting protection.
  • Suitable for different surfaces.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • The nozzle gets clogged easily.

3. Krylon Fusion All-In-One Spray Paint – Best for Versatility

The Krylon Fusion delivers the best-in-class adhesion and can be used on various materials, including metal, wood, PVC, and even plastic. It also comes with rust protection, which makes it ideal for outdoor metals.

The spray includes both primer and sealant, which means you can use it independently. You don’t need to apply a separate coat of primer or sealant. This reduces your time on the job, which is great if you’re in a hurry. 

However, if you do insist on using a primer, then we highly recommend the Rust-Oleum Adhesion Promoter. This should only be applied after you’ve cleaned the surface.

It takes 20 minutes for the paint to dry, and it’s usually ready to be handled within an hour. You should apply the next coat within the first two hours; otherwise, you have to wait for 48 hours.  

We recommend 2/3 thin coats of paint, but you can apply as many as you want until you achieve the desired shade. To ensure it dries properly, avoid working in humidity conditions (above 60 percent). Also, the temperature should be around 55 to 75 percent.

The current color is satin black, which provides a modern, sleek look to any project. It also hides any flaws on the surface. There are other colors and styles to choose from, including gloss, hammered, and textured finish. 

The spray can is the standard size (12 oz) and covers up to 25 square feet. It has a big button tip that can spray at any angle, even upside down, without any clogs.  

It’s worth mentioning that this Krylon spray paint is oil-based, so it has a strong smell. Endeavor to use outside and have a paint thinner around, such as lacquer, for cleanup. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Very forgiving (difficult to mess up).
  • Dries fast.
  • It can be used on different materials.
  • Comes with a primer included.
  • Wide color selection.
  • Best versatile spray paint

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • A bit pricey.

4. Rust-Oleum Stops Rust Hammered Spray Paint – Best for Rust Prevention

The Rust-Oleum Hammered Spray Paint provides a beautiful hammered finish that hides surface imperfections well. It’s great for indoor or exterior surfaces that don’t require a lot of shine. 

The paint is oil-based, which makes it highly durable. In fact, it actually contains metallic flakes, unlike many similar options. It also provides rust protection and is resistant to chipping and abrasion – another reason it’s perfect for spray painting metal used outdoors.

We found it very easy to use, and the coverage is great when properly applied. The spray nozzle has a wide finger pad to reduce finger fatigue.

Each aerosol is 12 ounces and covers up to 15 square feet, which is quite impressive. 

It takes about 2 to 4 hours to dry to touch, so you must not be in a hurry. It’s best to apply a metal primer before painting. Also, we recommend spraying lightly to avoid drips or runs. Perhaps, using light coats will give you a raw-metal look. 

Unlike other sprays, you don’t need a lot of coats to get good coverage. In fact, fewer is usually better. Two light coats are usually enough in most cases. Again, ensure the primer is completely dry before applying the paint. 

Also, ensure humidity is low (below 40 percent) and temperature is above 70 degrees F; otherwise, it will take longer to dry, which might affect the paint job. 

The paint has a very strong smell, so you want to use it outdoors, where there’s plenty of ventilation.

There are many colors and styles to choose from. Each color is meant to create a different metallic effect, such as gold, bronze, copper, and so on. 

The present color, black, is classic and will fit most projects, while the finish type is hammered. The hammered spray is great for hiding surface imperfections. 

Overall, we are satisfied with the quality of the paint. It works well for primed surfaces and provides long-lasting protection against rust and other environmental hazards. For the price, it comes highly recommended.

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Protects against rust.
  • Covers very well and dries quickly.
  • Reasonably priced.
  • Suitable for a variety of materials.
  • Resistant to chipping, fading, and abrasion.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • Takes longer to dry.

5. Rutland Products 80 Hi-Temp Spray Paint – Best for High-heat Conditions

The Rutland Hi-Temp is a flat black spray paint that holds up well to heat. It is very easy to use and has a good deep black color that looks great on grills and fireplaces. 

As the name suggests, it’s specifically designed for metals that are frequently exposed to heat. This includes your old grill or stove; it is capable of withstanding temperatures up to 1200 degrees F without peeling or blistering. 

The paint comes out smoothly and leaves a nice matte finish. Make sure to scrub off any rust on the metal surface before painting.

The paint doesn’t require a primer, which is great as this saves you time. However, make sure the surface is dry and free of dirt and rust before using the paint. 

Besides having high heat resistance, the finished product is also resistant to rain, snow, and other harsh conditions. It doesn’t flake or fade easily. 

Unlike most high-heat spray paint, it has no odor or burning smell. However, it’s not food safe, so only use on the outer layer of items.Β 

The paint works on virtually any metal, including steel, aluminum, cast iron, galvanized steel, etc.

Although it has low VOCs, it doesn’t smell as strong as most spray paints for metal. But the smell is still very noticeable, so only use it in a well-ventilated area, ideally outdoors. If you’re using it indoors, make sure the window is open.

To apply the paint, follow the instructions on the label. Use thin coats and avoid spraying too close to the surface to avoid drips or pooling. 

Overall, the paint is great for bringing a brand-new look to items that are frequently exposed to high temperatures. It adheres well to metal and doesn’t require a primer. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • No need to apply primer.
  • Quick-drying time.
  • Protects from UV light and high temperatures.
  • Doesn’t peel or fade easily.
  • Easy to use.
  • High-quality spray paint.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • Not food safe.

6. Rust-Oleum 285217 Roof Accessory Spray Paint – Best for Roof Accessory

Another spray paint that works well for outdoor metal is the Rust-Oleum Roof Accessory Spray Paint. This one is specifically designed for roof accessories but can be used for other surfaces, not just metal.

It offers excellent durability and can withstand harsh weather conditions, which makes it perfect for outdoor use. But it’s also applicable indoors. 

Like other Rust-Oleum paints, it covers pretty well, and the color blends nicely with the roof. 

According to the cap, the color is supposed to be weathered wood/brown. However, some people said it’s more gray than brown. We found it to be a bit darker, but it’s still perfect for roofs. 

One way you can reduce the shade is to spray lightly and use fewer coats. Having said that, if you’re not satisfied with the color, you can still use it for something else. As earlier indicated, it also works on wood and plastic. 

The spray is easy to use and goes on smoothly with no drips, runs, or streaks. 

You have to be careful not to get it clogged. This usually happens when you don’t shake the can before and during use. So, make sure to shake vigorously when starting out and frequently while painting. 

Besides its excellent coverage, the paint dries very quickly. Specifically, it dries to touch in 20 minutes and covers up to 12 square feet, allowing you to complete the project faster. 

When used correctly, it provides excellent durability and doesn’t peel off easily. It’s an oil-based formula, so it’s also resistant to chipping, corrosion, and weathering.

The final product has a matte sheen. So, it’s soft, flat, and non-reflective, perfect for hiding flaws on the surface. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Covers well and blends with the roof.
  • Provides rust protection.
  • Resistant to chipping and abrasion.
  • Provides superior coverage and hides imperfections.
  • Suitable for indoor and outdoor projects.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • Color might appear darker.

7. Krylon ColorMaster Paint and Primer

The Krylon ColorMaster is great when you need to protect outdoor metal from fading. It dries to touch in only 10 minutes, which makes it perfect if you’re in a hurry. 

Though the paint is targeted toward automotive parts, it will adhere to any surface, including metal. 

It covers really well, thanks to its Covermax Technology. All you need is just one or two light coats of paint to get a smooth, even finish.

Luckily, the paint comes with primer included, so it doesn’t require a separate coat of primer. But we still recommend priming for better adhesion and coverage.

The spray tip is designed to ensure comfortable spraying. You don’t need to apply too much force to get the content out. The cap is a bit smaller than expected, especially for people with large fingers. However, the smaller size makes it easy to direct the fluid. 

The paint comes out evenly with no blobs or splatters as long as you use it correctly.

It dries to touch in only 10 minutes, which is great if you’re in a hurry to complete the project. 

You don’t need to wait all day to apply the next coat; you can apply several coats quickly. However, ensure each coat dries completely before you apply the next one to avoid bubbles and crackles appearing on the finished product. 

Factors like humidity and temperature will ultimately determine the exact time it takes for the paint to dry. 

It’s always a good idea to check the local weather forecast before deciding to paint on any day. Ensure humidity is low, and remember to shake the can before you begin any project. 

After spraying, don’t be in a hurry to use the item. Leave it for a day or two. 

It’s best to use the paint outside so to reduce the impact of the fumes. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Suitable for metal, wood, plastic, and more.
  • It can be used for interior and exterior surfaces.
  • Dries very fast.
  • Provides excellent coverage.
  • Doesn’t require a primer.
  • Features a comfortable nozzle.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • A little pricey.
  • Has a strong smell.

8. Krylon Colormaxx Spray Paint

The Krylon COLORmaxx is another durable option that works for both indoor and outdoor metals. It comes with a primer included, which reduces the amount of prep work required to use the paint. It does this without compromising the quality of the paint job. 

The paint adheres to different surfaces, not only metals. And provides superior coverage and durability. You can use it on wood, wicker, glass, paper, fabric, most plastics, and more. 

It works for both DIY and craft projects.

Each aerosol is the standard size (12 oz) and covers up to 25 square feet.

It takes about 20 minutes for the paint to dry to touch. It might take longer, depending on the weather condition and whether you use thick or thin coats. 

To ensure the paint dries properly and on time, use when humidity is low (less than 60 percent) and at temperatures (55-75 degrees F).

You will find more information about the drying time and recoat window on the product label.

Like most Krylon products, the aerosol is designed for comfortable handling. It features a wide spray tip to minimize finger fatigue and spray in any direction.

Besides providing the best-in-class adhesion, the paint also maintains its bright color for a long time and doesn’t fade easily. It protects against rust – another reason it’s perfect for outdoor use. 

The paint is oil-based, so the odor is pretty strong. Make sure to use outside and wear a breathing mask. The good thing is that the smell disappears as it dries. 

The paint is available in a variety of colors and finishes, so feel free to choose the best match for your project. 

What We Like πŸ‘

  • Multiple color selection.
  • Comes with primer built-in.
  • Suitable for different materials.
  • Provides rust protection.
  • Sprays smoothly and evenly.

What Could Improve πŸ‘Ž

  • The cap might be hard to remove.

Tips for Spray Painting Outdoor Metal

  • Make sure to spray in a well-ventilated space, ideally outdoors, to reduce the impact of harmful spray paint fumes. Wear a respiratory mask to protect your lungs and gloves to cover your hands.
  • Follow the instructions on the spray can to paint metal. Make sure the paint is suitable for painting metal surfaces.
  • Unless you are using a product that contains a primer, always endeavor to prime the metal before painting. Remove rust or old paint with a wire brush.
  • For the best results, paint when the humidity is low (40% or less) and the temperature is moderate (around 70 degrees F).
  • Don’t spray too close to the surface or too far from it to avoid drips and overspray. Maintain a distance of 6 to 12 inches, and always keep your hand moving.
  • Use light coats of paint rather than a heavy coat to keep the paint from dripping or running

FAQs – Best outdoor spray paint for metal

How many coats of spray paint on outdoor metal?

This depends on the texture of the metal surface and the look you’re after. Generally, you will need at least 2-3 coats of paint for most applications. You can apply more, especially if you’re trying to achieve a certain level of sheen. As always, make sure each coat is completely dry before applying the next one.

How long does it take for spray paint on outdoor metal to dry?

This depends on the brand. Most spray paints dry quickly, usually between 10 to 30 minutes. The recoat window might be different for each product, but it typically takes at least 24 hours for the paint to fully cure. Factors such as the weather condition and thickness of each coat will also affect the drying time.  

How long does outdoor metal paint last?

This largely depends on the type of paint, brand, and how well you prepared the surface. For instance, enamel paints offer the most durability and can last up to 3-5 years outdoors. In general, with good prep work, most spray paint will last for at least a year.

Do I need to prime outdoor metal before painting?

Yes, we highly recommend priming the metal before painting. This will help the paint to adhere better and ensure you get an even coverage. Some spray paints come with primer included. If you’re using one of such products, then you can skip priming.

Do you need to sand outdoor metal to spray paint?

This depends on the condition and texture of the surface. If the metal has any rusty areas, then it’s a good idea to sand off the rust before painting. Likewise, if the surface is very smooth, sanding it to a dull finish will help the primer/paint adhere better.

Is spray paint permanent on outdoor metal?

Most outdoor metal spray paints, especially enamel, and epoxy, are made to be permanent and will last for years if the paint is correctly applied and the surface is prepared properly. One of the best ways to increase the durability of the paint job is to apply a clear sealant.

Content Summary – Best spray paint for outdoor metal

There you have it – the best outdoor metal spray paint. 

Choosing the right spray is essential for any DIY project, especially when it involves outdoor metals. The products reviewed above don’t only adhere to outdoor metal but also provide protection from harsh environmental conditions. 

Each product has its advantages and disadvantages, so make sure you take your time to go through them before deciding on the best one for your needs. 

Overall, with proper prep work, you should not go wrong with any of the paint. Each will ensure your project looks its best and lasts for the longest period. 

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