Painting over vinyl wrapped MDF

by Chris
(Wiltshire, UK)

I hope you will tell me I can do it.

I bought a vanity unit online which was supposed to be grey but is more like taupe to me. I decided to paint it to match the rest of the bathroom but the manufacturer said that it couldn't be painted as it is vinyl-wrapped MDF

I am really tempted to try it, first priming with Ronseal all surface primer, which I have successfully used even on glass, and, just in case, doing the side panel first which will hardly be visible once it is installed. It has a finish which looks a bit like wood grain.

Does anybody know what is likely to happen? Has anybody successfully done this? Any advice would be much appreciated.

Many thanks

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Mar 31, 2017

by: Shawn

Hi Chris,

As long as you use a primer, that can go over the vinyl, your paint should stick. Most solvent based primers tend to do the trick, in this case though, I would purchase a primer that's made specifically for wallpaper applications. Ronseal might work, as it's recommended for plastic, not sure on that as it looks to be a water based product.

Also, as you have mentioned, apply the primer on an small inconspicuous area first. Once the primer has dried, according to its specifications, try vigorously scratching it off with your finger. If it adheres your ready for paint.

If you want to be extra careful then apply two coats of primer along with two coats of solvent based paint. Be sure to lightly sand between each coat.

With all of that said, I would think that a water based paint would probably work just fine though an oil or alkyd based paint (solvent) would likely be much more durable.

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