How to Paint a Kayak – A Step-By-Step Guide for 2021

People want their kayak paints for different reasons. You can paint your kayak if you’re going to hide the scratch or make the kayak look brand new or you may think a little makeover on the kayak is needed.

That’s why I am here to teach you how to paint a kayak.  Furthermore, the lesson is essential for saving money from expensive ways of improving the kayak’s aesthetic beauty and performance.

Here you’ll find the answers on how to paint a plastic kayak and how to paint a fiberglass kayak. You should paint for a kayak yourself; that’s why I am giving the details of the steps here. Before wrapping up the article, I’ll answer some common questions about painting a fishing kayak. So stay tuned.

Why do You need to Paint a Kayak?

Painting a kayak is no longer for increasing the aesthetic beauty, but it needs to improve the performance of the vessel. Scratches are the first problem when we ride on a kayak. Often it hits objects on the water and thus scratches happen. It will turn into potential damage if we let the scratches lay down. Painting a kayak can be done in two ways.

Using a Paint Brush

Using a Paint Brush

Painting with a brush is a time-consuming process. Also, it needs tough skills. If you are a newcomer to painting, then you should avoid large kayaks. A small kayak seems perfect for a beginner. Sometimes you might feel that brush is a better option. Yes, a brush can be a better option if you want to add some detailed designs to the kayak.

Using Spray

Spray painting seems easier than brush painting. You can kayak cover a large area of the kayak in no time. Also, spray ensures an even coat. A spay is not for a novice. Before spraying, you should learn carefully from a person. The spray has some drawbacks. Among them the most important one is, spray wastes more paint as a lot of can’s paints can end up in the air.

UV Damage and Fading

Direct sun exposure, namely UV radiation and warmth , can damage and fade your kayak’s original colors, an equivalent way it does your car. Fresh coats paint combined with a UV protectant spray, will restore your kayak colors.

Don’t Forget About Preparation

Before painting, you should be prepared. That’s why several things you have to know and collect before painting.

  • Several varieties of sandpaper are needed for sanding the kayak. You should collect sandpapers with a grit of between 100-220.
  • As you are going to paint plastic or fiberglass kayak, you should make water-resistant and plastic suitable paints. Caution: standard paints won’t stick on plastic.
  • Fiberglass kayak needs suitable paint other than plastic.
  • For painting, Marine safe spray paint for plastic, acetone, finishing spray paint or wax painting mask are necessary.

4 steps follow How To Paint A Kayak?

Painting a Kayak is the sum of different steps. For a uniform painting, you should follow the steps exquisitely.

Step 1: Removing the Stuff

First, you have to remove all the stuff you don’t want to paint, which means you should remove stuff like the seats, screws, and accessories, etc. also you need to ensure a large area with an excellent ventilation system. If you want to paint in an open area, then you should be careful about the wind. A little wind can mess up the whole process, especially for spray painting.

Step 2: Sand Down on the Kayak and Use Acetone

After preparing the area, the next thing you have to do is, clean the kayak with the dishwasher thoroughly and exquisitely. Make Sure, the kayak is entirely dirt and residue-free. Dry it down completely. Grab the sandpaper and sand down the whole kayak.

If you want to pain partially, then you should sand down the specific area. Now, apply acetone on a clean cloth and make it damp. Wipe the area where you want to pain. Acetone removes oil that prevents the paint from sticking.

Step 3: Start Painting Kayak

It’s time to do the business. Before starting the painting, make sure you have put the mask on. Spray the pain on the surf kayak’s surface as evenly as possible and spray until you find the kayak sun shade you are looking for. Now you can use brush and Stencils for specific designs.

Step 4: Clear Coating and assembling the kayak

For a finishing touch, you should give a final coat for clear finishing spray paint. Now rejoin the seats, nuts, screws, mounted accessories, etc. Finally, after a while, do another cleaning by the dishwasher and wait until dry. Apply wax onto the kayak surface to add an extra protection layer.

kayak spray paint

Kayak Painting Supplies List

  • Marine-grade polyurethane paint
  • 50-100-grit sandpaper
  • painting tape or masking tape
  • Foam paint roller and brush, and spray gun
  • Acetone 
  • A pair of protective gloves 
  • Water hose and water supply
  • Marine Wax
  • Dish washing liquid or detergent
  • Cloths/Rags

how to paint a fiberglass kayak


How can I camouflage paint a kayak?

Are you interested in how to paint a kayak camo? Use a sponge dipped in an identical shade of paint from the base color. This will help you to add a beautiful but straightforward camouflage print.

What do I use for preventing the oily substance from a kayak?

you can use acetone for removing greasy substances. Do not use it on wet surfaces, and you have to use acetone on dry surfaces.


I think you’ve got a proper description of painting a kayak. Also, you can paint on a kayak paddle by using this method. You should be careful about the spray. Do not use without musk, glass, and gloves. Try to spray as fast as possible

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