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Keystone Travel Trailer Painted Exterior
Keystone Travel Trailer Painted Exterior
DIY Tutorials

How to Paint an RV Exterior

Project
Refurbish
Room
RV Exterior
Cost
$300
Skill Level
Intermediate

Follow the step-by-step instructions below on how to paint your RV exterior. Also, find links to all the recommended paint products.

Instructions

1
Step

Wash your camper’s exterior to remove any dirt/road grime. Also, be sure to remove all decals from areas that you plan to paint. Never paint over decals. I recommend using a decal remover tool to remove any decals easily.

To remove decals:

  1. Use a heat gun to heat the decal so that you can pull off the vinyl by hand.
  2. Remove any remaining decal residue with a cloth and Goof Off.
Camper Exterior Redo
Camper Exterior Redo
2
Step

Caulk. Make sure all the joints do not have any gaps or cracks in the caulk. If they do, be sure to re-seal them before you begin painting. Reference the steps on this post: How to Reseal an RV

RV Flex Pro Caulk Seal
3
Step

Tape/Mask off any areas that you do not want to be painted. Use the masking paper to block off larger areas from overspray.

Painting a Camper
Painting a camper exterior
4
Step

Sand down all areas of the camper that you plan to paint. Use an 80 grit sanding block and lightly sand the exterior to create a smooth surface.

How to paint a camper
5
Step

Wipe down the exterior with acetone and a microfiber cloth to remove any oily residue that might prevent good adhesion. Then, wipe the area down again with a damp microfiber cloth to ensure there is no dust.

6
Step

Prime. Using a paint sprayer, apply one coat of primer. The primer is an important step to allow for proper adhesion. It also helps unify the surface and allows for good paint coverage.

Remember: Never paint in direct sunlight or on windy days. Be careful not to stir up dust.

7
Step

Paint. Using a paint sprayer, apply one coat of paint. Try to keep a wet edge and go in smooth horizontal movements with the paint sprayer.

Painting a camper
8
Step

Scuff. Allow the paint to dry, then lightly scuff the painted surface with a scuff pad. Then, wipe down the entire surface again with a clean damp cloth to remove any dust particles

9
Step

Recoat. Apply another coat of paint. If the paint still looks uneven after drying, scuff once again and apply another coat of paint.

10
Step

Clearcoat. Using a paint sprayer, apply one coat of clear coat. The clear coat will give your paint that finished look and protect the paint from chipping and fading.

11
Step

Remove all painter’s tape and masking paper. Once the paint has fully cured according to the Dupli-color instructions, buff the surface to enhance the paint’s look. Enjoy!

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