How To Repair Peeling Paint on a Hardie Board- Complete Guide

The James Hardie board siding is guaranteed to be an exquisite all-rounder package that provides durability, quality, authenticity, and the finest protection for your home’s exterior. In addition to that, it is also eco-friendly, fire-resistant, and is designed to offer excellence and glamour, hence being labeled as one of the world’s most popular and leading brands of house siding and backer boards.

However, if you are already using Hardie board sidings and have experienced problems with the paint peeling off the board, you’ve come to the right place! Peeling paint can be caused by numerous reasons such as moisture seeping into the surface, low-quality paint, painting boards when they are damp, placing the boards too close to the ground, etc.

Identifying what’s damaging your Hardie board’s paint is one of the first and many things we will help you out with throughout this article. Keep reading to discover what to avoid and what to go for concerning paint peeling issues on your fiber cement sidings.

What Kind of Paint Can I Use on a Hardie Board?

Hardie boards are usually long-lasting and will not need fresh paint for an extended period. But for maintenance reasons, the right choice of paint and the proper application will go a long way to keep the paint fresh for almost up to twenty years.

Unpainted Hardie boards or fiber cement sidings are usually prepped up before being shipped to customers so they can be painted as soon as they’re installed. A few things to keep in mind before painting the boards include:

  • Cleaning any dust, mildew, stains, or mold left on the boards.
  • Cleaning the boards with water pressure.
  • Letting the boards dry properly.
  • Painting the boards within the first 90 days of purchasing and installation.

And for coming to the most important part, to answer the question, 100% high-quality acrylic paint or acrylic latex paint should be used on your fiber cement sidings. Apply 1 to 2 coats of paint and work from top to bottom.

Do I Need to Use Primer on Hardie Board?

Moving on to the next question, whether you need to use a primer on your Hardie board or not depends on the type of board you purchase. The unpainted Hardie fiber cement sidings are shipped primed and can be painted right away after installation. But if you have purchased or plan on purchasing the ColorPlus® Technology, the baked-on color is guaranteed to be UV-resistant, more durable, and will require less maintenance.

If you have purchased the unpainted fiber cement sidings or plan on purchasing them, we would suggest going for a high-quality exterior acrylic masonry primer such as Sherwin-Williams Loxon Masonry Primer for increased resistance and durability.

Can I Use Spray Paints to Paint on Hardie Board?

The short answer is yes. You can use spray paints to paint on your Hardie boards but keep in mind that the surface needs to be properly cleaned and primed before you proceed to do so. Look out for any build-ups, dirt, dust, mold, and mildew, and let the boards dry thoroughly after cleaning them.

We would advise you to incorporate both spraying and brushing. This process works by applying paint first and then using a brush or roller to absorb and spread out evenly for a smoother finish. Back rolling after spray painting results in a more delicate surface and limits roughness or cracks on the surface.

Can I Paint on Hardie Boards with Oil-Based Paints?

No. James Hardie advises against using anything oil-based on their boards. Especially if the boards are new, oil-based paint should be avoided entirely as it is designed to be applied on wood rather than fiber cement sidings. Using anything oil-based on Hardie boards can cause the surface to crack or prevent the paint from adhering properly. In addition to that, it can also result in roughness on the boards.

Since oil also reacts with a high pH substrate (cement boards being one of them), it is better to switch to acrylic paint to avoid frequent maintenance and achieve better finishing!


As mentioned before, there could be several reasons why you're facing problems regarding the paint peeling off your exterior.

James Hardie boards are generally guaranteed to be state of the art and are up to the standards of most customers. Their attractiveness, durability, sustainability, promising quality, long-lasting protection, less maintenance, and ability to withstand almost all weather conditions are all the reasons for anyone to choose the renowned brand.

But if you do end up having to deal with paint peeling off the boards, try to identify the cause before taking any action. In most cases, the cause is the boards absorbing excessive moisture from somewhere, which causes damage to the paint. Another reason for paint peeling could also be the paint being of low quality. Low-quality paint on unpainted Hardie boards often tends to peel off at some point due to weather conditions or other environmental factors as it is not sustainable enough. Lower quality paint on Hardie boards also requires more maintenance. Other causes include dryer vents, error in installation, ice dams, and standing water (leading to excessive moisture).

If it is not a problem associated with water, we suggest scraping the paint off the affected section, sand, prime, and then repainting with a flexible, high-quality latex-based paint. Keep in mind to clean the boards properly and remove the excess discharge or build-up before painting!

Target the cracks and flush out any dirt with high water pressure. Another vital thing to keep in mind is letting the boards dry completely before painting them; otherwise, the paint will look chalky and rough. As we know, it sounds like a hassle, but it needs to be done!

Peeling Paint on Fiber Cement Siding 

When it comes to Hardie’s fiber cement sidings, peeling paint is one of the most common problems faced by people. Many homeowners fail to recognize the problem caused by improper installation of the fiber cement sidings. For solving this problem, manufactures have added more detailed and prolonged instructions to make it easier for homeowners to set up their fiber cement sidings and not have to face any more problems regarding peeling paint.

How To Repair Peeling Paint on Hardie Board? (A Step-By-Step Guide) 

Since we have already discussed in length the causes of paint peeling on Hardie boards, let us take some time to devote this next bit entirely to solving this problem.

Before we dive into the repairing part, we would like you to acknowledge that we only start with the repairing after finding the cause and fixing it. If it is a water problem, make sure to take care of the water problem and then proceed to the repairing part.

Below is a step-by-step guide for repairing peeling paint on Hardie boards! (an important step to take before painting)

  • You could start by scraping the whole paint off or sticking to scraping the paint off the affected area. Scrape the peeling paint off with a paint scraper. Try not to be too hard with the scraper as it could damage the boards underneath.
  • After you’re done with scraping off the loose paint, take a wire brush and rub it across the surface to remove remaining and excess dirt.
  • The third step is to use a special putty included in every repair kit as a patch which is then evened out on the boards. Apply the putty with a putty knife.
  • After letting the putty dry thoroughly, get ready to sand the boards. By sanding, you’ll blend the patch into the surrounding parts of the board.
  • Lastly, check how smooth the surface is by running your hand over the boards. Apply primer and get ready to paint your boards!

The Best Paints for Hardie Boards

Now that you know how to fix peeling paint on Hardie boards let’s get down to two of the best products to use on Hardie boards or fiber cement sidings.

1) Vinyl Renu 5 Gallon-Siding Restoration Kit

The Vinyl Renu 5 Gallon-Sliding Restoration Kit is the first of the two products we’ll be talking about. This instant and effective kit gives dull surfaces a long-lasting smooth, and shiny finish. It needs little to no maintenance due to its ability to last up to 10 years. It is sustainable and protects the surface from all sorts of weather and environmental conditions.

The Vinyl Renu 5 Gallon-Siding Restoration Kit is also eco-friendly and has no odor due to the absence of toxic solvents in its ingredients list. This product is also easier to use than paint and can be used on various exterior surfaces, including metal siding, aluminum siding, cement board, vinyl siding, stucco, fiberglass, and more!

The Vinyl Renu 5 Gallon-Siding Restoration Kit also comes with a complimentary premium concentrated cleaner!

2) James Hardie ColorPlus Technology Touch-Up Paint Kit

James Hardie ColorPlus Technology Touch-Up Paint Kit 16 oz. (Arctic White)
  • Kit includes: 1 16 oz. Touch-Up Paint, 4 fl. oz. Edger, 1 Nail Concealer, 3 Tips for Edger,...
  • James Hardie ColorPlus Technology Touch-Up provides a multitude of color variations for to match...
  • Note: Color will not be an acceptable color match until 24 hours after application

The James Hardie ColorPlus Technology Touch-Up Paint Kit is the second product we would advise you to use!

Manufactured by James Hardie, this touch-up paint kit guarantees to give your ColorPlus Technology a smooth matte finish. It is specifically designed to resist peeling, chalking, fading, cracks, and aging of color. It is also an excellent concealer that hides any marks, cracks, and spots on the surface.

The James Hardie ColorPlus Technology Touch-Up Paint Kit is a game-changing product that offers excellent quality and a beautiful finishing coat that will last for days on end.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

1) Can A Hardie Board Be Repainted?

You can repaint a Hardie board, and it is advised to do so. Repainting a Hardie board makes it more sustainable, conceals stains and marks, and increases its durability.

2) How Do You Fix Peeling Paint on Siding?

Peeling paint on fiber cement sidings is a common issue many people face and is mainly caused by improper installation of the sidings. This can be fixed by following the proper installation procedure as per the instructions provided in the manual. Sidings can also be repaired appropriately and repainted as a more effective way to fix them.

3) How Do You Repair Hardie Board Damage?

Hardie boards can be damaged due to many reasons. They can be repaired by first scraping the loose paint off, sanding, and then priming the boards for painting.

4) Can You Paint Over Peeling Paint?

If it is a small area, you can easily scrape off loose paint, prime the surface, and paint over it. If the surrounding areas are not loose, this process will work just fine.

5) Will PVA Stop Paint Peeling?

Yes, PVA can help stop paint from peeling. But it also needs to keep in mind that it shouldn't be applied before painting. Scrape off loose paint and water down the PVA before applying.

6) Do You Have to Scrape the Paint Off Before Painting?

You do not have to remove all the paint off before repainting. Only scraping off loose, flaked paint or areas where the paint has worn off will work fine too.

7) Should You Sand Old Paint Before Repainting?

Sanding old paint is unnecessary but an important step of the repairing process as it ensures that the paint goes on smoothly and the rough areas are correctly coated.

8) How Do You Remove Old Peeling Paint?

Removing old peeling paint is relatively simple. All you need is a paint scraper or a putty knife to scrape off the loose paint. The paint should be scraped off cautiously as not to damage the board underneath.

9) What Is the Easiest Way to Scrape Paint?

The easiest way to scrape paint is to use a paint scraper or a putty knife. Target the areas with loose or flaky paint and start scraping the paint from different angles for maximum cleanliness.


In conclusion, repairing peeling paint on a Hardie board is nothing complex. The steps and information provided within this article are guaranteed to not only repair your Hardie board but increase its sustainability and give it a more polished and refined look than before! You need to follow the small guide included in this article, and you are good to go.

Last update on 2023-02-08 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Leave a Comment