Basement stairs are the most ignored but the most useful part of a whole house. But if you are aware of interior decoration or damage prevention, you already know how much good it brings after the paint and coat of basement stairs with a suitable paint. Therefore, we’ve picked the best paint for basement stairs for your convenience.
People adopt hardwood, concrete, and tiles for their basement stairs but wooden stairs are the most common. To make the stairs durable, non-slip, and low-maintenance, adopting the best paint for stairs will bring safety to the smaller to aged members of your family.
But before we jump into the primal segment, you need to insert the basics of what kind of paint you use on interior or exterior stairs.
What Kind of Paint Do You Use on Interior & Exterior Stairs?
Knowing the basics about paint keeps you safe and sound from happening any kind of mess and foot traffic. Both interior and exterior stairs need to be painted to last longer and it also enhances the beauty of the house. But to choose the paint, you need to be more focused.
1. Porch and Floor Paint:
Porch and floor paint is made in a way that withstands tough situations, especially on both interior and exterior stairs. The adhesion of porch and floor paint is recommendable. But it is better if you stick to porch and floor paint for the surfaces of stairs only. With its variant color range, this paint appeases a great number of consumers.
It tackles wet surfaces
Provides a glossy finish
Provides diversity in color range
2. Latex-Based Anti-Slip Coating Paint:
It’s so common that a wooden stair gets slippery getting influenced by the weather fluctuations. Therefore, it requires porch and floor paint to resist the slippery texture of the wood. For more suggestions, use latex paint, a type of porch and floor paint, with a water-built polyurethane coating in it.
If you choose oil-based polyurethane, make sure you are keeping up with the maintenance. Because though this kind of polyurethane lasts longer, it has many side effects. Besides taking a long time to dry, this paint carries toxic chemicals that create fume.
This helps to last the paint longer
Provides anti-slip advantage
Can be cleaned with water only
Tackle the bright sun with its superior resistance
3. Semi-Gloss Paint:
A shiny stair looks more sophisticated than the matt-finished one. Besides, sheen paint is durable and can be washed effortlessly. But sheen paint uplifts the imperfections prominently. This disadvantage might trouble you if you like perfection in decorating stairs.
Besides, you need to sand-polish the stairs to remove the remarkable marks of high-dents and claws of pets. Therefore, we suggest you adopt semi-gloss paint. To make the paint premium, add floor paint. You can use the rubber grit as an alternative to floor paint. Sprinkle grits on the coats and it will work like sand. It removes the foot traffic better than even aluminum oxide.
Offers semi-gloss reflection
Endures frequent scrubbing and scratching
Easy to wash
4. Satin Paint and Eggshell Paint:
If you want a significant glossier look, satin paint could be a preferable option for you. Its sheen and velvety texture can be adopted in your basements, hallways, bedrooms, or dining rooms. Besides, the paint can withstand weather changes to a great extent. Read Also: 7 Best Finish for Walnut Table.
Hides the imperfections of the stairs properly
Withstands rough weather
5. Eggshell Paint:
There are some significant matches of eggshell paints with satin paints, except, stain paints are more appreciable for their glossier finish and long-lasting texture. But you can also prefer eggshell paint for an upgraded matte finish with a glossy tint in it.
Withstand moderate traffic areas
Hides stains effectively
More reflective finish
6. Enamel Paint:
Enamel paint is the best use for the exterior if you need high traffic. Besides, you can use enamel paint for interior stairs if you need to protect them from rough wear and tear. Its high efficiency can endure great punishments and provides a rugged finish.
It creates high traffic for the crowded spaces and in adverse nothing can affect it.
This durable paint doesn’t even require primer at first before its application sometimes.
7. Epoxy Floor Paint:
Epoxy floor paint has great coverage capabilities to go with both interior and exterior stairs. Using an epoxy coating for a high traffic surface is an excellent choice. This paint is combined with two useful components. Epoxy resin and polyamine hardener are that two liquid chemicals that help to build epoxy paint.
These two components cure worse-conditioned stairs of interior and exterior
It seals the crack of concrete stairs impressively and helps it cure slowly
Because of epoxy resin, you’ll get a sheen finish stairs
Saves stairs from pet claws, spills, and stains and it is waterproof
8 Best Paint for Basement Stairs Reviews 2023:
For basement stairs, we prefer porch and floor paint as most of them come with 100 % acrylic coating. Also, prefer white semi-gloss paint for long-lasting service or adopt latex paint with water-based polyurethanes in it for anti-slip and a clear natural look to your stairs.
We always look for the top-notch characteristics in paints and found INSL-X SU031009A-01 Sure Step Acrylic Anti-Slip Coating paint as our top pick. This latex paint carries a 100% acrylic formula that copes up with the weather more efficiently. The paint can be used both on concrete and wood after you follow the rules of applying paint on them.
Besides, the paint can seal metal stairs as well. It just needs to be primed properly before applying paint. Sure Step Anti-Slip floor paint deals with the wooden stairs wisely. Its great formula allows it to resist ponding water. In this way, it resists abrasion as well to protect the users. This paint also takes the guarantee of sealing a previously stained stair.
Sure Step Anti-Slip paint has multiple uses. Besides providing solid coating, it puts a flat and matte finish look. This look provides a solid surface not only on the treads of the stairs, but also on patios, walkways, pool decks, and courts. Besides, if you want your stairs to dry fast after painting and easy application, there could be no better option than the Sure Step Anti-Slip flooring paint. But be careful as it cannot withstand heavy rainfall.
What We Liked:
Can tolerate light foot traffic after the application of 24 hours
Takes 4-5 days for a heavy coat and solid sealing
Can seal the concrete and metal surfaces and cracks as well
Easily tackle the high-traffic surfaces
Comes in 7 best ready mixed hues and white
One gallon can cover up to 80-120 square foot area
What We Didn’t Like:
Better not to paint the exterior when there is a chance of heavy rainfall
Requires proper priming, soap-washing, and dirt removal before applying paint
Our second-best choice for the best paint for basement stairs is the FIXALL Skid Grip Anti-Slip Paint. This paint is suitable for both interior and exterior usages. By scheming the hues of your room decoration, FIXALL Skid Grip Anti-Slip paint provides the best possible dark colors.
If you want a maximum grip-finish texture on your surface, then this paint is recommendable for you. It can be used on multiple kinds of surfaces including patios, driveway, walkways, and many more. But before application, you need to prepare the surface accurately. To reduce the risk of high-traffic surfaces, this FIXALL floor paint offers impressive service.
The 100 percent acrylic formula of the paint is so high-textured that it adheres to asphalt, cement, wood, and whatnot! Besides, for a solid resistance of the skid, this paint is an appropriate option for both commercial and personal floors. The fade-resistant hues of Skid Grip allow you to find the best color that lasts for a longer period.
What We Liked:
The advantage of getting 2 bases and 7 different shades of dark and grey hues
Hides the wears and tears of the surface properly
Increases safety by lessening the foot traffic and reducing oxidation
Tremendous adhesion of the paint to the different kinds of surfaces
No chance of fading of the colors and exceeds ADA standards
Ultraviolet exposure formula of anti-slip advantage
What We Didn’t Like:
Only prepared surface works well for the painting
3. KILZ Interior/Exterior Enamel Porch and Patio Latex Floor Paint:
If you want a low-maintenance painting on your basement stairs, then go for the KILZ Interior/Exterior Enamel Porch and Patio Latex Floor paint. Besides, to tackle the fluctuation of the rough weather, KILZ Porch and Patio Floor Paint know their duty pretty well. The latex-build formula resists the weather to affect the surface by scuffing the surface or fading the color.
Moreover, the low-luster enamel effect withstands decks, patios, fools, and other medium-ranged hard surfaces through the changes of the weather. The coating procedure is super fast as it takes only one hour to dry. Recoat the surface again in 5-6 hours. This procedure depicts the best consistent texture of the painting.
To paint the surface it requires some specific appliance and brushes. Use an airless sprayer for a light coat. For intense coating, adopt a polyester/nylon brush or a nap roller cover of the right size. Moreover, the 100 percent acrylic latex texture results differently in smooth and rough surfaces.
What We Liked:
The fastest recovery painting advantage
The pleasure of getting a mildew-resistant feature
Great for use on trellises and trim
Seals cracks and covers remarkable stains on the surface
Protect the painted surface from scuffing, fading, and peeling
An authentic one-gallon acrylic texture that covers 200-300 square feet space of hard space and 300-400 square feet for smooth space
What We Didn’t Like:
Requires specific sizes of brushes or nap roller cover to paint
Not applicable to the places where automotive tires dominate
If you are looking for a kind of paint that is used solely for interior purposes, then the Rust-Oleum 285144 Ultra Matte Interior Chalked Paint would be a great choice for you. This latex-based paint is not mainly for stairs but can be used after mixing stains in it. The vintage color refurbishes the basement stairs which look beautiful.
Besides, it can turn wood, canvas, metal, and concrete into a beautiful piece of art. It carries less toxic chemicals that reduce the chance of bad odor and dry fast. To decorate a piece of furniture, Rust-Oleum Chalked Paint assists the way it assists in painting interior basement stairs. Better not to use it on the exterior stairs.
After a heavy coating, unlike other top-notch paints, Chalked Paint doesn’t ask for much prep. Besides, it leaves a velvety finish that enhances the beauty of the surface. Because it is water-based, it is going to last for an optimum period. It takes little time to dry and less time to be distressed.
What We Liked / Advantages:
Comes with different trending hues to support the consumers’ choices
Asks for minimal preparation and best for a quick application
Doesn’t take more than 30 minutes to dry
One gallon covers 150 square feet at best
The matte finish looks easily distressed
Offers vintage and one-of-a-kind look with each coating
What We Didn’t Like / Disadvantages:
Requires soap for cleaning up
Not applicable for exterior
Requires Rust-Oleum Chalked Clear Protective Topcoat brush for safety
The efficiency of the KILZ L377711 1-Part Epoxy Acrylic Interior/Exterior Concrete and Garage Floor Paint is so evident that we couldn’t help letting it in the list of our high quality paint for the basement stairs. The strong texture of the epoxy paint provides a tough coating on high-traffic surfaces.
To endure every hard surface, the Concrete and Garage Floor Paint has immense capability. Even after the running of heavy tires, the paint doesn’t get faded or scuffed. The water-based paint is formulated in a way that tackles every tough situation with great tolerance. For stairs that are made with concrete, will not get rusted or cracked if they are coated with this paint.
But remember that, this only means to be used on the horizontal surface. Try it on the treads of a stair and floors of your room and see its impressive durability and waterproof texture. The satin finish of the color hides the patches of the surface and makes it smoother. Even the color never gets affected by the oil, gasoline, or constant frictions.
What We Liked / Pros:
Works best on horizontal new concrete and masonry
Get the slate gray and satin-finish look with several coatings
Requires only 2 hours to dry and 4 hours to recoat
Seals the crack and hole of the surface forever
One gallon of the paint can cover 400-500 sq. ft. of space
Great for spaces like garage, porch, driveways, concrete stairs, and more
Many hipsters, following the trends, want to have a great collection of colors, and Diamond Brite Paint 31150 1-Gallon Oil Base All-Purpose Enamel Paint comes with that opportunity. Besides, the paint is applicable for high-traffic areas.
It’s mildew-resistant capability might leave you astonished. The shiny coating of the paint feels top-notch on the stairs. The consistency of the oil-based enamel paint makes the surface tough. But it takes a long time to dry and a longer time to recoat. Besides, oil-based paints are supposed to be more durable. Also, the alkyd finish of the color leaves no stain unhide.
It also defeats the repeated abrasion boldly in both interior and exterior. The colors adhere to the surface of any kind of material strongly. It works perfectly as a sealer and protects the surface from fluctuating weather.
What We Liked (Pros):
The pleasure of getting a professional color quality
Offers 12 different great colors to paint the foot-step
Get 300 square feet of coverage with a single gallon of paint
Helps the wooden stairs from shrinking in fluctuating weather
Applicable also in the industrial floor and furniture
What We Didn’t Like (Cons):
Takes 10-12 hours to dry and 24 hours to recoat
Requires for mineral spirits cleaning before the application of it
The color tends to get yellowish due to the oil-based formulation
To get a crystal clear texture on your surface, go for our next pick, RUST-OLEUM FBA 230031 Varathane Gallons Gloss Waterborne Diamond Floor Finish. This paint knows how to appease the customers by providing strong adhesion to the surface.
This adhesion lets the paint tackle high-traffic floors & basement stairs. As the United States product, this paint comes with quality and consistency. As the color is water-based, it will not get yellowish like the oil-based colors. It withstands the hard surface and stubborn stains but has a strong odor.
Besides, the Varathane Gallon Gloss Waterborne Diamond Floor Finish paint never gets amalgamated with the clingy stain. Rather it hides the remarkable patchy spot on the ground and makes it look crystal clear.
What We Liked:
Resist abrasion, scuffs, and stubborn stains
It covers a crystal clear and elegant finish for sophistication
Provides superior durability
Suitable for hardwood surface
Prominent colors to adapt with the trend
Leaves no scope for household chemicals
What We Didn’t Like:
Has strong odors, so you might not like it
Takes 5-6 hours to dry
8. Rust-Oleum 1979502 Painter’s Touch Latex:
If you are searching for latex paint to paint larger stairs of basements, pick the Rust-Oleum 1979502 Painter’s Touch Latex Paint. One coat of this paint covers a larger space than you think. If a stair is made of ceramic, this paint puts a sheen finish to it.
Besides, wooden stairs require more latex paint. Its water-based formula works almost like acrylic. Also, it doesn’t have a bad odor like other paints. The chip-resisting formula helps to decrease foot traffic as well. As it provides a very thin layer in the first coat, stairs need to be coated several times.
Getting a semi-gloss finish and smooth surface requires some preparations. After fulfilling the requirements, the color lasts for a remarkably long time. It helps to bring a fresh look to surfaces like treads and floors.
One gallon of it and it covers a maximum of 120 sq. ft. area
Dries quickly in 30 minutes for recoating
Provides the same advantage as acrylic paint
Water-based color for durability
Works similarly on both interior and exterior stairs
Fade-resistant and chip-resistant formula
Provides a pretty thin coat
Requires several coating and 180/200 grit sandpaper grit application to turn into black color
How to Prepare and Paint Basement Stairs to Get a Beautiful Finish:
Painting a basement stair is a DIY project if you can find the fun of it. Besides, it doesn’t take long to paint basement stairs if you maintain to look after them. But if it’s left ignored, then it might extract hard labor from you to such an extent. However, follow the steps to paint the basement stairs to get a beautiful finish.
Step 1: Remove Carpet, nails, and materials:
It’s the first and foremost thing before you start to paint basement stairs that you remove the carpet and other materials. After that, find out nails or staples from all over the stair and uproot it with pliers.
Step 2: Fill the Holes:
The next thing you have to do is to fill the gauges using putty. For wooden stairs, take wood filler. Also, make sure for the concrete stairs you are bringing the right formulated epoxy.
Step 3: Decide Your Design and Choose the Colors:
The design should go with your desire. You can adopt trendy looks or vintage appearance of basement stairs. After you decide on the design, choose the colors wisely. Select contrast colors for the treads and risers. Thus the colors help you to have a strong visual representation and resist accidents as well.
Step 4: Bring Porch and Floor Paint:
After that, buy a well-branded porch and floor paint from any home improvement stores. Basically, you’ll find four different types of porch and floor paints there.
Buy the latex-based paint if you want an anti-slip advantage and oil or grease resistance.
For immense durability and scuff resistance, adopt oil-based porch and floor paints.
Epoxy paints will be needed if you want a tough surface and don’t forget to mix the two important liquid components of epoxy paint.
You can also take concrete floor paints if your budget is limited. It is a latex-based paint and as durable as epoxy.
Step 5: Soap-wash Stairs:
Before you paint stairs, sweep them and vacuum them properly. For concrete stairs, use detergent (TSP). For wooden stairs, sand them if needed.
Step 6: Add Necessary Additive:
To make the right formulated paint, buy the skid-resistant and slip-resistant additive from the hardware store. Use a paint mixer for a perfect blend, otherwise, use a stir stick.
Here you can also mix water-based or oil-based stain with water-based or oil-based paint respectively to get your desired tint. Don’t allow water-based paint to mix with oil-based stain or vice versa, because this will ruin your project.
Step 7: Mix Other Ingredients:
This is optional but if you want a durable texture, add a Hard Coat with latex paint. The technology creates a strong bond between the particles and determines durability.
Also, mix Dirt Repels if you want a full guarantee from latex paint to resist debris and stains. Its high-protection features and resins tackle dirt and stains easily.
Step 8: Apply the First Coat of Paint:
While painting the stairs, leave one stair between the two for walking. And coat the remained stairs after the first set of stairs gets dried.
Step 9: Paint the Stairs Again and Dry for the Finishing:
For the second coat of paint, apply the same trick and leave one stair between the two. The second coat adheres to the ground and leaves a smooth and semi-gloss finish after it dries. Use socks or cleaned shoes for the second coat of paint.
Question: What kind of paint do you use on basement steps?
Answer: People paint basement stairs to make them look beautiful but choosing the wrong paint might uphold the imperfections of basement steps. To paint the horizontal treads where you step, choose dark shades of colors and oil or water-based porch and floor paint. It will hide the tears and wear off the treads and give them a semi-gloss look.
Question: What is the best paint for wood stairs?
Answer: For wood stairs, try the porch and floor paint on the treads and handrails. Again, for risers and spindles, choose semi-gloss paint. Choose contrast colors for a vivid visual representation. It will resist accidents to a great extent. Consult experts for a balanced color combination.
Question: What type of stain is best for basement stairs?
Answer: As basement stairs are meant to be used now and then, they require a solid finish and stain. Water-based stain is durable and hides the spots remarkably. On the other hand, an oil-based stain is also durable but gets yellowish over time. You can apply the water-based after the oil-based is dry fully.
Question: Is it better to stain or paint stairs?
Answer: Staining or painting turns stairs into a completely different look. But painting stairs is the most cost-effective way than staining. Though painting requires a lot of preparation before the application, staining is more time-consuming. Therefore, most people prefer painting stairs.
Question: Do you need to seal painted stairs? What is the best protection for painted stairs?
Answer: To protect the new and nicely painted stairs, adopting some steps will make the stairs last longer. If you want your stairs to look new from the beginning seal them with water-based urethanes. Moreover, It’ll help to give a clear look at the paints for years. Avoid oil-based urethane if you don’t want a yellow patina.
Question: What is the best color to paint stairs?
Answer: Paint is the best option to hide the patches and worse conditions of the stairs. But choosing the colors might puzzle you. However, experts say to adopt a green color to paint stairs as it can hide the wear of the stairs significantly. However, for an airy look choose mid-tone shades of vibrant colors.
What type of primer to use for painting basement stairs?
Choosing the right primer for painting basement stairs is crucial to ensure a durable and long-lasting finish that can withstand the unique conditions often found in basements, such as moisture and potential temperature fluctuations.
Wooden Basement Stairs: If your basement stairs are made of wood, an oil-based or shellac-based primer is an excellent choice. These primers provide strong adhesion, block stains, and create a stable surface for the paint to adhere to. They also offer some protection against moisture, which can be a concern in basements.
Metal Basement Stairs: For metal stairs, it’s essential to use a metal primer. Metal primers are designed to prevent rust and corrosion, ensuring that your stairs remain in good condition over time. After applying the metal primer, you can use a paint suitable for metal surfaces.
Concrete or Masonry Basement Stairs: If your basement stairs are constructed from concrete or masonry, an acrylic masonry primer is the recommended choice. This type of primer is designed to bond securely with porous surfaces like concrete, ensuring that the paint adheres well. It also helps to create a moisture-resistant barrier.
Water-Based Polyurethane: To protect painted wooden stair treads, Polyurethane plays a crucial role in extending the lifespan of painted stairs. When applied as a protective topcoat over the paint, it forms a resilient barrier that shields the painted surface from daily wear and tear. This durable coating acts as a shield against scuffs, stains, and moisture, preserving the integrity of the paint beneath it.
It’s never an easy job to just paint your basement stair treads. There are many things to consider including choosing the best paint for basement stairs. Paints come in different types, ranges, and variations. But you’ve to choose what your stairs need mostly. You can also halt the idea to paint and stain the stairs instead. But you must understand if it goes with the theme of your room décor. Paint is the easiest solution for the basement stairs and it requires less time to do. Therefore, inserting enough knowledge about the paint will help your interior or exterior basement stairs look clear for more years.
Hi, I am Rogers Weber, the man behind Solvesonic. I am a mechanical engineer. I use many kinds of tools almost every day at my workplace. I love to write about tools, painting, home improvement, and DIYs. I enjoy helping people to solve their problems through my website. => Follow me on Twitter