How To Paint Wooden Chairs Without Sanding? – Beginner Guide

Painting is one of the best ways to reform an old wooden chair. It’s an affordable method to revive your old furniture instead of purchasing a new one. But, sanding can be a painful process because it’s time-taking, creates and a big mess, and leaves you tired.

There are chances that you don’t own a sander. Or you don’t want to invest in a new one. Or maybe the structure you want to paint is too intricate for a sanding device. So, don’t think about the sander because you can paint a wooden chair without sanding it. Let’s learn how.

How to paint wooden chairs without sanding?

We will discuss step by step process to paint a wooden chair without sanding.

Step 1: Choose a functional chair and clean it.

Pick a structurally sound wooden chair that can work as a functional piece of furniture for many more years to come. Clean the structure using a cleaner or soapy water to remove all its dirt accumulation and grime. This step provides a clean finish to your chair, which will be helpful later.

Use a heavy-duty cleaner like Savogran TSP-PF. The first step is to wear gloves and then clean the chair using TSP. Then, rinse off the structure with clean water to make sure there are no residuals.

Step 2: Apply liquid sand deglosser

The next step is to use a deglosser if you don’t want to use a sanding tool. This product is an alternate to sanders but contains chemicals and eye irritants. So, wear rubber gloves and apply the liquid all over the chair using a clean cloth. Do not use steel wool or any other abrasive item to apply the deglosser.

Wait for the designated time after you apply the liquid. The waiting period differs according to the deglosser. So, make sure you follow the given instructions.

Step 3: Prime

The next step is to prime your wooden chair. Most of the beginners have this question in their mind, do I need to prime wooden furniture before painting? For this process, yes it’s required. But, some of the other methods do not need a primer.

You can choose any of the wooden paints, but we are using latex paint here. This paint is available in a lot of colors, but it’s not long-lasting. So, a primer will make sure that the paint stays on the wooden chair for long. Try a high-quality bonding primer like KILZ L211101. Rust-Oleum 3554 is also great.

Choose a good quality primer, but make sure it’s compatible with TSP. Some of the primers are not suitable to be used with TSP. So, we suggest that you read the description before purchasing an adhesion sealer or primer.

Step 4: Paint the chair

Great job, you have successfully followed all the steps that will ensure long-lasting and attractive latex paint. Do not skip any of the above-mentioned steps because if you don’t clean, degloss, or use the prime, then the paint will be nothing less than a slippery fil on your chair. Keep in mind that paint cannot do well alone. If you want high-quality results, then spent time following the right process, so that you can enjoy all the benefits of your hard work.

The wooden chair needs only one layer of primer, but paint coats should be two. So, if you are using latex paint, then apply two of its layers on the wooden chair. You can choose the color as per your choice. Try to choose semi-gloss or gloss variants as they are the most durable paints. For instance, Rust-Oleum 1974730 is one of the best latex paints for a wooden chair.


Other ways to paint a wooden chair without sanding

Use chalk paint

Chalk paint is one of the best ways to paint a wooden chair without sanding. This paint is preferred by most users because it offers a gorgeous finish and needs no special treatment before application. Plus, you don’t have to be very careful about the brush strokes. Clean the piece of furniture and then apply two layers of chalk paint on it.

Use mineral paint

Similar to chalk paints, mineral paints do not need any primer or sanding. Clean the chair using soapy water of TSP-PF and paint it. If you are painting a high gloss or laminated chair, then apply an adhesion for the paint. For instance, you can try the Fusion Ultra Grip.

Use milk paint and bonding agent

A bonding agent works as a primer and helps the milk paint to stay on your wooden chair or any other furniture. Prepare the paint and mix equal parts of the bonding agent. Keep in mind that this agent is only required on the first coat.

Use a bonding primer

A high-quality primer does not need sanding and it sticks to the wooden furniture or any other glossy surface including metal, glass, and tiles. A top-notch primer might be expensive, but it’s worth your attention. As we used a primer in latex paints, you can follow the same.

Use a deglosser or liquid sander

Like we used a primer while painting the wooden chair, you can also do it to avoid sanding. Apply this liquid on the chair and it does the needful. This liquid smells due to some chemical reactions. So, choose a well-ventilated area to apply it. Apply the liquid sander on your wooden chair following the included instructions and paint it.


Helpful tips

  • Cleaning the wooden chair using TPS will remove all the dirt and grime, but we recommend you read the instructions before applying any cleaning product.
  • Test the liquids or paints you want to apply on the wooden chair. Do it on a small area and let the primer or paint dry. Try to scratch the paint after 24 hours. Does the paint hold its position? If yes, then you can use the paint.
  • Apply all the chosen products in light and thin coats, not thick and heavy layers.
  • Do not choose any work area beneath the sun or direct sunlight as these factors can fasten the drying process, which will not offer favorable results.



Can you paint over varnished wooden chair without sanding?

Now we know how to paint a wooden chair without sanding. However, we are talking only raw wood here. What about varnished wooden chairs? Yes, you can paint them without sanding. However, following two steps to prepare the structure.

Deglosser and primer are the two liquids you need to prepare the chair for painting. Deglosser will do the work of sander. It’s fast and easy to apply. The primer will hold the paint for a long.

What kind of paint do you use on wooden chairs?

Latex paints are one of the most popular options for wooden chairs and other furniture because it’s easily available everywhere. This paint is available in low or no VOC (volatile organic compound), which is best for indoor areas. Plus, latex paint dries fast.

Apart from latex paints, you can also try chalky paint that’s best for antique chairs. For a bit thinner texture, you can try milk paint. Acrylic paint is also great, but it’s suitable for small projects like picture frames, console tables, and similar pieces.

What is the best paint for dining room chairs?

The best paint for kitchen furniture is non-toxic acrylic or latex. Choose gloss or semi-gloss versions. It might take some extra steps to apply these paints, but the result will be beautiful.

What is the most popular color to paint furniture?

White is the most popular color for furniture. It is generally used in two-tone effects, which looks great in any house décor.


Final talk

The above method is perfect for painful wooden chairs without sanding. But, all the pieces of furniture are not built alike. So, what looks beautiful on one structure might not appear great on another one. So, if the test fails, then try to find an alternate primer or paint. Otherwise, all your hard work will be wasted if the paint starts peeling off after a while.

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