Preparing and Painting Exterior Fiber Cement Siding

Preparing and Painting Exterior Fiber Cement Siding

Preparing the Siding

Tools Needed:

  • Deck/Siding Sprayer
  • Goggles
  • Mold/Mildew remover
  • Household bleach
  • Medium bristle brush (non-metal)
  • Wire brush
  • Sandpaper or sanding pads
  • NIOSH-approved dust mask
  • Cementitious patching compound
  • Putty knife
  • Flexible Caulk
  • Window glaze
  • Rust reformer (for exposed nail heads)
  • Primer

Preparation Steps:

  1. If mold exists:
    1. Wash surface with mold/mildew remover as per label instructions.
    2. Rinse remover off surface using low-pressure washer or garden hose.
  2. Clean siding with a low-pressure hose or a medium bristle (non-metal) brush. Allow the surface to thoroughly dry before painting.
  3. Lightly scrape areas of house where loose paint exists with wire brush.
  4. Sand scraped areas to smooth edges.
  5. Remove/replace any failing and/or old caulking as well as window glazing.
  6. Remove rust from exposed nail heads, counter-sink and spot prime.
  7. Repair any damaged siding with cementitious patching compound.
  8. Prime over patched and repaired areas as well as any areas where bare siding is exposed.

Note: Depending on the current color and new color, it may be recommended to prime the entire surface prior to painting.

Painting the Siding

Tools Needed:

  • Drop cloth(s)
  • Masking tape
  • Masking paper or film
  • Paint brushes
  • Cut-in bucket
  • Roller frames and covers
  • Paint trays & liners or 5 gallon bucket & grid
  • Extension handles (for roller frame)
  • Ladders and/or scaffolding
  • Damp rags to “clean as you go”

If Spraying and Back-rolling:

  • Airless sprayer
  • Masking paper or film
  • Spray shield
  • Spray hood
  • Goggles
  • Respirators or dust masks

Brushing and Rolling:

  1. Cover all areas needing to be protected from any paint that might drip.
  2. Work in a top to bottom pattern, applying in accordance with label instructions. Maintain a wet edge for best results. Intermix (BOX) all cans of same color as you go to ensure uniformity of color.
  3. Paint corner to corner, or to good breaks, to ensure color blends together consistently.
  4. Apply a second coat for longest life and most durability.
  5. Wipe up any paint spills or splashes immediately using a wet rag.

Note: If running short on paint, stop at a corner. Try to save some of the remaining paint in the original container to bring in for a perfect match.

Spraying and Back Rolling:

  • Follow the manufacturer’s directions for use of your particular model of sprayer. Miller Paint also rents power sprayers. A store associate will be happy to explain to you the proper use at the time of your rental pick up.
  • Spraying should be done in conjunction with back rolling when necessary. This will ensure that the paint is pushed down into the substrate and that any spray overlap areas will be evened out.
  • Remember to maintain a wet edge while spraying and back rolling.
  • Make sure there is always paint on the roller cover to ensure that paint is not removed from the substrate during the back rolling process. As with brushing, a top to bottom application is usually the best method.
  • Spray pattern should be uniform and applied 12”-18” away from surface.

Features of Miller Paint Sheens:

Flat – Offers a deep, rich look that helps minimize the visibility of surface imperfections by minimizing light refraction.

Velvet – Ideal for projects where a deep rich look is desired yet only a minimal amount of sheen is needed. It reduces dirt pick-up and provides some washability.

Satin – This finish will minimize dirt pick-up and is washable. Best on surfaces free of major imperfections as the higher sheen will tend to show imperfections more.

Semigloss – This high-sheen product is very durable, washable and is perfect for areas that are more susceptible to dirt, grease and moisture. Best on smooth siding, trim, and primed metal surfaces where a higher gloss sheen is desired.

Exterior Paint Selection


Kril is our classic, 100% acrylic, high-build exterior paint. It has strong adhesion, good durability, and exceptional color retention. Kril is formulated to be mold and mildew resistant and is ideal for any commercial or residential building, including those with wood, concrete, stucco, or manufactured siding. Kril’s ease of application makes it the perfect paint for anyone from the average homeowner to the experienced professional. Available in Semigloss, Satin, Velvet and Flat sheens.


Acri-Lite has been the quality standard for exterior painting in the Northwest for more than 50 years. Made from the highest quality acrylic resin, Acri-Lite is our most popular and widely used exterior paint. 100% acrylic, superb adhesion, washability and coverage make it ideal for showcase buildings or any commercial or residential building where the highest level of quality is desired. Available in Semigloss, Satin, Velvet and Flat sheens.


Evolution is our most technologically advanced coating. Formulated with an advanced 100% pure acrylic co-polymer resin for prolonged adhesion, this high solids coating is like nothing else we make. Evolution can be used on properly prepared vertical wood, composite, metal, concrete, stucco, and block. Evolution can be applied heavier than standard exterior paints for better coverage in one application. Evolution saves labor, resources and is covered by our exclusive lifetime warranty. Available in Satin, Velvet and Flat sheens.

Exterior Primer Selection

Kril Primer - 620-0-11

Our interior/exterior 100% acrylic primer primarily designed for use over wood, plaster and concrete. Kril Primer penetrates the substrate to get the best possible adhesion to the widest variety of surfaces. It is our best water-based product for alkaline surfaces. Kril Primer is also available in an accent base for tinting to other colors to aid in top coat coverage.

Stain Blocking Primer - 470-0-11

Our premium interior/exterior stain-blocking primer is designed to seal and block most bleeding types of stains such as tannin, water or smoke damage. This primer has excellent adhesion to most surfaces and may be used on wood, metal, plaster and manufactured siding. A minimum 24 hours curing time and two coats is recommended for severe bleeding.