Q: The rails around my pool are ugly and showing rust. I’ve searched but haven’t been able to find a finish specifically intended for these types of rails. What is the best pool railing paint, and where can I get it?
A: I don’t know of any finish specifically designed for this purpose; however, if you’re looking for a pool railing paint, you don’t have to go any further than your local home improvement or paint store. An enamel will work just fine for this, as long as it’s specifically formulated to resist the corrosive effects of chlorine.
If you’re planning to paint your actual swimming pool or the surrounding deck and walkway, you have to use a finish specifically made for this purpose, such as Deck Kote pool paint or a similar product that will hold up against chemicals and abrasion. This isn’t as critical on rails, which tend to support any sort of durable oil-based enamel.
Just remember, if the swimming pool rails are metallic and showing rust, you must seal the oxidation or it will make its way through the paint. Apply an iron-oxide primer before adding your first coat of pool railing paint. I’d also recommend scrubbing the rails with a degreasing cleanser to ensure that adhesion problems do not occur.
On the other hand, if the rails are wood, you can use an acrylic primer and a durable water-based acrylic pool paint.
Jim Dugan has over 20-years of experience as a professional contractor.