10 Best Exterior Primers 2020

Gareth Otwell Reviewed by Gareth Otwell | Last Updated:

After analyzing 880 products, scanning 3985 reviews, spending more than 36 hours of research and speaking with our test users, we think the Rust-Oleum 286258 Primer is the one of the Best Exterior Primer on the market.

Rust-Oleum 286258 Primer – Best Overall Exterior Primer

Rust-Oleum 286258 Primer
  • Interior/Exterior use on new or previously painted drywall, concrete, wood, masonry, metal and glossy or difficult surfaces
  • Water-based formula seals uniformly and will stick to surface without sanding
  • Dries to the touch in just 30 minutes, ready to recoat in 1 hour and covers up to 100 sq. ft.
  • Has excellent stain blocking resistance and can be used over any oil or latex topcoat
  • Gray color of primer works great under vibrant, vivid colors saving time and money by improving hide and coverage of deep topcoats

KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer – Premium Pick

KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer
  • This powerful stain-blocking water-base formula seals surfaces, helps to achieve a uniform finish, hides stains and previous colors and offers excellent adhesion to most interior and exterior surfaces.
  • KILZ Premium offer just the right consistency for a smooth and level finish that seals porous surfaces and fills in small imperfections. It features mildewcide protection to prevent mildew and mold.
  • With excellent adhesion for most surfaces, use on interior and exterior drywall, plaster, woodwork, paneling, masonry and brick. Ideal for high-humidity areas including bathrooms and laundry rooms.
  • Use for color changes, to seal light to medium stains and to minimize surface imperfections caused by texture and porosity differences. For heavy stains, please consider KILZ Max primer.
  • This is a 5-gallon bucket of KILZ Premium High-Hide Stain Blocking Latex Primer/Sealer in white for interior and exterior surfaces. Covers approximately 300-400 square feet per gallon.
  • Use KILZ Premium under or over latex or oil based paint. Use on properly prepared surfaces free of dust, grease, chalk, mold, rust and peeling paint.
  • Zero VOCs, low odor and easy clean up with soap and water makes it safe to use in occupied homes and work spaces.
  • KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend  Rankings.

KILZ General Purpose Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer – Best under $50

KILZ General Purpose Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer
  • This fast-drying latex primer and sealer is specifically formulated for outdoor use to minimize problems caused by surface texture and porosity differences.
  • KILZ General Purpose Primer seals porous surfaces and offers excellent adhesion for most exterior surfaces.
  • Use on almost all exterior surfaces including stucco, wood, masonry and brick. Not recommended for flooring, glossy surfaces, mold- and mildew-prone surfaces, or for stainblocking.
  • It's ready to brush, roll or spray and can be topcoated after one hour with latex or oil-based paint.
  • This is a 1-gallon can of KILZ General Purpose Exterior Latex Primer Sealer for exterior surfaces in white. Covers approximately 300-400 square feet per gallon.
  • Use on properly prepared surfaces free of dust, grease, chalk, mold, rust and peeling paint. Mix well before using. Apply with brush, roller, or spray.
  • KILZ General Purpose Exterior Primer Sealer dries to touch in 30 minutes and dries to recoat in one hour.
  • KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend  Rankings.

KILZ Exterior Siding

KILZ Exterior Siding
  • A good exterior paint offers coverage and protection against the elements, while adding beauty to outdoor structures. This is an all purpose exterior paint resists cracking, peeling and blistering.
  • This paint features a unique water/oil base formula for exceptional adhesion, versatility, and longevity in varied conditions.
  • Use on vertical exterior wood surfaces as well as masonry, stucco, and sanded glossy surfaces. Remove mildew, peeling paint, mill glaze, loose wood fibers, dirt, and debris before painting.
  • This paint dries to the touch in 2-3 hours. Allow 6 to 8 hours of drying prior to recoating.
  • This is a 1-gallon can of KILZ Exterior Siding, Fence, and Barn Paint in white. Ideal for vertical exterior surfaces.
  • Coverage varies by porosity from approximately 200 square feet per gallon on porous surfaces to u 500 square feet per gallon on smooth, nonporous surfaces.
  • Keep a wet edge and always back-brush or back-roll during all application methods. Paint can be sprayed, brushed, or roll on.
  • KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend  Rankings.

KILZ Adhesion High-Bonding Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer

KILZ Adhesion High-Bonding Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer
  • A good bonding primer is essential to ensure that topcoats adhere to tough-to-paint surfaces. High adhesion primer increases painting possibilities by bonding to a wide range of surfaces.
  • KILZ Adhesion is a unique latex primer developed to bond securely on slick surfaces where a traditional water or oil-base primer will not adhere.
  • Bonds to tough-to-paint surfaces including Kynar, PVC, Formica, vinyl, glass, tile, glazed brick, chalky paints, glossy finishes, fiberglass and metals. Topcoat with either latex or oil-based paint.
  • Use on most interior and exterior surfaces where a secure bond is critical. This problem solving primer can be used under epoxies, lacquers, and products containing Xylene or other solvents.
  • This is a 1-quart can of KILZ Adhesion High-Bonding Interior/Exterior water-based Primer in white. Covers approximately 300 square feet per gallon.
  • Use on properly prepared surfaces free of dust, grease, chalk, mold, rust and peeling paint. Mix well before using. Apply with brush, roller, or spray.
  • KILZ Adhesion dries to touch within 30 minutes and ready to recoat in an hour.
  • KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend Rankings.

Zinsser 03504 Cover Stain Interior/Exterior Oil Primer Sealer – Best Budget Exterior Primer

Zinsser 03504 Cover Stain Interior/Exterior Oil Primer Sealer
  • Cover stain, QT, Oil based stain killer primer/sealer
  • Adds extra shine to your product
  • Manufactured in United States
  • High-hiding formula blocks most stains and helps seal water, smoke and nicotine stains
  • Sticks to interior and exterior surfaces and sands easily
  • Great for new construction, remodeling or repainting work and priming small projects
  • Dries-quickly on interior surfaces and helps provide enamel undercoating performance
  • Use on exterior surfaces to help deliver full penetration and flexibility on surfaces

KILZ 2 Multi-Surface Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer

KILZ 2 Multi-Surface Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer
  • A good primer makes paint stick better to surfaces, makes paint color truer, and lets you use less paint. KILZ 2 blocks mild to medium stains, hides previous colors, and has a mildew resistant film.
  • KILZ 2 Latex blocks mild to medium staining from water, grease, ink, pencil and felt marker and is ideal to hide previous colors. It seals porous surfaces and offers strong adhesion for new paint.
  • Use this versatile primer-sealer-stainblocker on interior/exterior surfaces including brick, painted metal, properly prepared glossy surfaces, drywall, paneling, stucco, masonry, plaster and wood.
  • Use for interior/exterior walls or ceilings with mild to medium stains. Top coat with latex or oil-base paints. For tougher interior/exterior jobs, consider KILZ Premium primer.
  • This is a 1-gallon can of KILZ 2 Latex Water-Based Primer, Sealer, and Stainblocker for interior and exterior surfaces in white. Covers approximately 300-400 square feet per gallon.
  • Use on properly prepared surfaces free of dust, grease, chalk, mold, rust and peeling paint. Mix well before using. Apply with brush, roller, or spray.
  • KILZ 2 dries to touch within 30 minutes and ready to recoat in an hour.
  • KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend  Rankings.

KILZ L220101 KLEAR Multi-Surface Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer

KILZ L220101 KLEAR Multi-Surface Stain Blocking Interior/Exterior Latex Primer/Sealer
  • This high-performance clear primer is formulated to bond and seal porous and chalky interior and exterior surfaces with a tough, flexible, and breathable clear coating.
  • KILZ Klear is an alkali-resistant clear primer and sealer. It helps protect topcoats from "hot" alkali found in masonry, cement and plaster and can be applied to fresh concrete with pH less than 13.
  • Incredibly versatile, KILZ Klear primer can be used to seal porous surfaces and promote adhesion with a transparent flat finish that is particularly effective for same color painting.
  • Use for sealing drywall, plaster, wood, galvanized, aluminum, architectural plastics, masonry and brick. Soap and water cleanup and dries fast - ready to recoat in 1 hour.
  • This is a 1-gallon can of KILZ Klear Multi-Surface Latex Transparent Primer, Sealer, and Binder. It creates a tough, flexible clear primer film. One gallon covers 300 to 400 square feet.
  • Use on properly prepared surfaces free of dust, grease, chalk, mold, rust and peeling paint. Mix well before using. Apply with brush, roller, or spray.Recommended Application Temperature: 50-90
  • KILZ KLEAR dries to touch within 30 minutes and dries to recoat in an hour.
  • KILZ has been making premium primers and paints for 40 years. KILZ was named Paint Brand of the Year in 2015 in the Harris Poll EquiTrend  Rankings.

Rust-Oleum 272479 Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Plus Spray Primer

Rust-Oleum 272479 Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Plus Spray Primer
  • Interior/exterior use on new or previously painted Drywall, concrete, wood, masonry, metal and glossy or difficult surfaces
  • Oil-based formula seals uniformly and will Stick to surface without sanding
  • Dries to the touch in just 30 minutes and covers up to 12 sq ft
  • Has excellent stain blocking resistance and can be used over any oil or Latex topcoat
  • Provides a smooth, White finish and; is designed to block imperfections with only one Coat

Rust-Oleum

Rust-Oleum
  • Use for a variety of indoor and outdoor project surfaces including wood, metal, plaster, masonry or unglazed ceramic
  • Water-based acrylic formula is low odor, resist chips and provides long-lasting protection
  • Covers up to 120 sq ft and dries to touch in 30 minutes for quick project completion
  • Flat finish minimizes surface imperfections, goes on smoothly and provides excellent base
  • Prior to application sand surfaces with 180/200 grit sandpaper, then wash with a degreaser, allow the surface to dry and apply paint
  • Indoor/Outdoor durability
  • Increases adhesion and durability of finish coat
  • Cleans with soap and water
  • Apply to bare or painted wood, metal, plaster, masonry or unglazed ceramic
  • Fast-drying

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