How To Paint Metal Siding On A Mobile Home

Metal Siding Profiles

Metal siding is made of an aluminum sheeting that’s usually 8’x4′ and formed with different profiles, or design patterns. The wave design was a popular profile.

Metal panels are typically installed vertically on a mobile home with seams going up and down. Using metal on a mobile home made perfect sense back in the day – it was a definite improvement over the older leatherette and muslin siding that the first trailers had.

A popular mobile home metal siding profile.
A popular mobile home metal siding profile.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Metal Siding

Like anything, metal siding has a few disadvantages but the benefits far outweigh them. There’s a reason the material has been used so extensively on so many products.

The best advantage of metal siding is its longevity – it can last for decades. Metal siding doesn’t rot or rust and it can’t be damaged by bugs or critters. It’s also lightweight and easy to install.

The major disadvantages of metal siding are denting and fading. Some formulas of metal will oxidize and cause a chalk-like coating over it. We’ll explain how to fix that below.

While metal siding doesn’t rust, the screws going down the belt rails that hold the siding onto the home will rust. You’ll need to use a de-rusting agent and a hard bristle brush to remove the rust before you paint.

Metal Siding Lasts Forever

With regular cleaning and maintenance and an occasional paint job, you can make your metal siding last well over 40+ years. I know because my 1978 single wide has its original siding and it still looks good!

These 3 examples of how to paint metal siding on a mobile home all look amazing. One homeowner used brushes and rollers and Behr Paint, one used a Sprayer and Valspar, and one used Rust-Oleum spray paint. All had great results.

Read our guide to mobile home siding here. 

What Color Should I Paint My House Exterior?

Every home is unique, which means every home’s color and appearance will vary, too. Choosing the right color for your exterior depends on more than just your personal preferences. For example, you should generally try to choose a color similar to the current look of your exterior to save money and paint on extra coats. You should also avoid deep colors or use them only on accents. This is because they require more coats to get the color just right.

Darker colors may also seem enticing, but they tend to fade faster due to the elements. Using lighter, neutral colors is usually the best way to go. That way, you can use those splashes of fun or dark colors on other exterior features such as doors, window sills, trim, and more.

When it comes time to paint your exterior, you should think about your interior aesthetic, too. While the two don’t have to be identical, it is a good idea to allow the colors to complement each other. This provides a sense of harmony as people move through your front door and into your home.

If the sale of your home is potentially on the horizon, it is important to consider what colors attract potential buyers. Repainting a home’s exterior is an expense most new homeowners do not want. Whites, grays, and natural woods are the best way to go, with white and off-white topping the list of exterior paint colors that attract buyers. These colors provide the exterior of your home with a fresh, clean, and updated look, no matter its age, making it more attractive to potential buyers.


Other Painted Siding Examples

We’ve shared many homes with metal siding that has been painted. This colorful Malibu mobile home is a stunner:

This home painted her metal siding with blues and maroon trim:

Low-Income Home Repair Loans and Programs to Help Mobile Home Owners in Need

Read about this 1955 Ventoura mobile home. 

Does Paint Hold Up On Vinyl Siding?

It’s true, but only if you do it right. If you wish to cover a house, vinyl siding can offer you a good rate of wear and tear on a modest fee. In general, siding is not subject to damage after repeated painting. When it comes to maintenance, using pressure washes every two years does not provide any benefits.


Now that we’ve learned how to paint the outside of your house, it’s time to get to work! Once you’ve finished your outside job, get some ideas for indoor summer themes by reading this article. It’s never too late to change your home’s look.

Frequently asked questions

How long does it take to paint a house?

Painting a house takes 4 to 5 days on average, including cleaning, preparation, and painting. Painting time depends on the home and crew size, weather, and prep work required. Smaller homes may take 1 to 2 days. Larger houses or homes needing repairs may take 7 to 10 days.

How often should you paint your house?

A house exterior should be painted every 5 to 10 years on average. Exterior paint may last up to 20 years or as little as 3 years, depending on the location, climate, siding type, and paint type and quality. Southern- and southwestern-facing walls wear faster due to increased sun exposure.

How often to paint a house
Siding type Repainting schedule (years)
Aluminum 5 – 10
Brick 3 – 20
Cement fiberboard 10 – 15
Stucco 5 – 7
Vinyl 2 – 10
Wood 3 – 7

When is the best time of year to paint a house exterior?

Late spring, summer, and early fall are the best times to paint a house exterior. Painting in the fall or early winter is ideal in southern states that stay warm year-round. Optimal painting weather is warm and dry.

Painting contractors in colder regions often offer discounts in late fall or early winter.

How much does it cost to paint an exterior commercial building?

Painting a commercial building’s exterior costs $1 to $6 per square foot. Exterior commercial painting may require additional equipment and special scaffolding, depending on the building size and number of stories.

How much does it cost to test and remove lead paint?

Houses built before 1978 may require lead paint testing and removal.

  • Lead paint inspections cost $300 to $600.
  • EPA-approved lead paint testing kits cost $10 to $40.
  • Removing lead paint costs $8 to $15 per square foot.

What is the difference between interior and exterior paint prices?

Interior paint prices are $15 to $50 per gallon. Exterior paint costs $30 to $80 per gallon and is formulated to withstand weather exposure, and resist dirt, moisture, and UV rays.

How to prep for an exterior house painting job?

Follow these steps to prepare the exterior and create an ideal surface for a long-lasting paint job:

  1. Cover surrounding plants and water features with drop cloths. Remove them daily to prevent damaging the plants.
  2. Hand clean or pressure wash all paintable surfaces.
  3. Scrape off loose and flaking paint and fill any holes or dents with caulk.
  4. Repair and sand any damaged siding.
  5. Remove old caulk from windows and door trim and replace with paintable exterior caulk.
  6. Allow all surfaces to dry.
  7. Prime bare areas or the entire surface if needed.
  8. Allow each coat to dry before painting the next coat.

Still have questions? Ask a painter. View Pros

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Generally, taking on a task like painting a mobile home is going to take time and a good amount of willpower. And that’s exactly what Geneva and her husband “Buzz” had.  On her blog, My Heart’s Song, Geneva explains that, when they first purchased their mobile home, the first thing she thought of was painting the exterior. Which is why she didn’t waste any time in getting on the project.

Because she and her husband couldn’t get a professional power-washer to come to wash the house, they cleaned it themselves, by hand, with a brush. They also started out painting their house by hand but found that it was too difficult. Subsequently, they switched to an airless sprayer and were extremely happy with the results.

Cost of House Painting by Location

Paint and primer will likely cost the same no matter where you live, but labor is another story. For one, hourly labor rates will be higher in big cities than small towns. Higher rates obviously make a higher overall cost of professional painting. 

What’s more, the weather where you live could make the job take longer. Climate factors like humidity, extreme wind, or high temperatures will usually make painting more difficult. A job that takes longer can raise your labor costs just as much as higher rates can. 

How Much Does A Simple Paint Job Cost?

In basic cases, the best way to paint is very few coats, because synthetic enamel paints are the only way. Painters aren’t typically meant to paint areas outside of one’s visual vision, such as the hood’s insides. Depending on the type of phone you use, the costs can range from $300 to $900.


By most accounts, exterior painting is a job best left to the pros. Based on national average prices, you can expect to pay between $2,191 and $4,505 for professional painting for an average-sized house. With labor and material, the rates will be about $1.25 to $4.17 per square foot to be painted. 

Even though you might end up with a messier paint job, you still have the option to paint your own house. You could save thousands of dollars compared to hiring a pro, and the larger your home is, the greater your savings will be.

Main Photo Credit: Vlad Chețan / Pexels

Jordan Ardoin is a writer and indoor plant enthusiast hailing from Florida. In her spare time, she enjoys chasing her two cats around the house and trying to keep her houseplants alive.

Cost to repaint a house by type

Repainting a mobile home or townhouse costs $1 to $4 per square foot or $750 to $4,300 on average. Repainting costs more if the existing surface is in poor condition, and additional repairs and prep work are required.

Cost to repaint a house by type
House type Average cost
Mobile home $750 – $4,200
Townhouse $1,000 – $4,300
Standard house $1,700 – $6,800

Cost to repaint a townhouse

Painting a townhouse costs $1,000 to $4,300 on average, depending on the size, siding type, and the number of stories. Painting a townhouse only includes the front and back walls because most townhomes share one or both sidewalls with neighboring units.

Cost to paint exterior of mobile home

Painting a mobile home exterior costs $750 to $4,200 on average. DIY painting a mobile home costs $250 to $750, depending on the size, siding condition, and paint type.


  • How much does it cost to paint the outside of a house?

An average range for exterior house painting costs is between $1.50 and $4 per sq.ft. and can be higher or lower depending on your location and the condition of your home. For the average 2,500 square foot home, you can expect to pay between $3,750 and $9,750.

  • How long does it take to paint the exterior of a house?

This depends on the size and layout of the home and the number of painters on the job. On average, it can take three to four days to paint the average 2,500 square foot home with a team of two or three painters.

  • What kind of paint do you use to paint outside of a house?

You can use oil, latex, or acrylic latex paint that is made for exterior use. Paints made with 100% acrylic resins will be your best bet for exterior paint jobs because they are the most flexible, breathable, and durable.

  • How many coats of paint does the exterior of a house need?

This will depend on whether you are using a primer 2, what the existing color is, and what the final color will be. It can also vary by the condition of the siding. One to three coats may be needed.

  • Is it better to roll or spray exterior paint?

Many professionals choose to spray as it is faster and easier, providing better coverage. However, some paint brands are better applied with a roller. Spray painting is more expensive than using a roller, ranging from $40 and $60 per hour and painter.

  • What is the best finish for exterior house paint?

The most popular finish for exterior house paint is eggshell. This is because it isn’t too dull like a flat or matte finish but also not too shiny like a high-gloss finish. Eggshell paint is easy to wash and can hold its own against seasonal weather changes. It is also easy to apply and won’t show streaks once dry.

  • How much does it cost to paint the exterior of a 2,000 square foot house?

This depends on the type of siding you have and if your home is ground level only or has two or three stories. On average, it will cost between $3,000 and $7,700 to paint a 2,000 square foot home.

  • What is the best time of year to paint the exterior of a house?

Either spring or fall is typically the right time of year to paint a home exterior. You want to avoid rain or snow at all costs, as well as weather that is either too hot or too cold. The ideal temperature is between 65º and 75º.

  • How much does it cost to paint a mobile home exterior?

The cost to paint a mobile home exterior averages about $2,750 to $4,000, depending on the size of the house. You’ll most likely want to use either oil-based or latex-based paints that are made specifically for exterior applications. You may also need to use a primer beforehand to get the paint to stick.


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