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How to Prepare a Concrete Wall for Painting

By Kimbry Parker ; Updated September 21, 2017
Preparing concrete walls for paint is necessary for a successful paint job.
grey concrete wall background. image by wrangler from Fotolia.com

If you are tired of looking at the dreary gray color of a concrete wall, consider painting it. A couple of coats of paint will work wonders to spruce up your room or outdoor space. A concrete wall must be properly prepared prior to painting. Failure to do so may result in the paint not adhering properly.

Apply a concrete patch to any holes or cracks. Run a putty knife back and forth over the area to smooth out the patch. Allow the patch to dry thoroughly according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Mix a solution of a 1/4 cup of trisodium phosphate and one gallon of warm water in a bucket. Use a sponge to wash the walls with the trisodium phosphate solution. Work from the bottom of the wall towards the top, and rinse and wring out the sponge often. Allow the walls to dry completely before proceeding.

Apply a coat of concrete latex primer to the wall. Pour the primer into a paint tray with a liner and use a 3/8-inch nap roller to apply the primer. Overlap your roller strokes to ensure no area of the wall is missed. Allow the primer to dry completely before applying paint.


Things You Will Need

  • Concrete patch
  • Putty knife
  • ΒΌ cup trisodium phosphate
  • Bucket
  • Sponge
  • Concrete latex primer
  • 3/8-inch nap roller
  • Paint tray with liner

About the Author


Kimbry Parker has been writing since 1998 and has published content on various websites. Parker has experience writing on a variety of topics such as health, parenting, home improvement and decorating. She is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Arts in organizational communication.