using spray paint on switch plates
Kristina Davis

Can you spray paint light switches? You may have this question if you notice those switches are no longer as beautiful as they once were.

Maybe, you think those switches no longer go with your existing décor. But, that is when you have to decide if you want to buy new ones or if is it safe to spray paint light switches?

So, really, can you spray paint light switch covers to simply avoid buying new ones?

Yes, you can paint light switches and covers but you have to handle the process carefully and pick the suitable paint for metals or plastics.

Painting Vs Buying New Switch Plates

buying new switch plates or painting

Once you decide it is time to change those switch covers, you will need to choose between buying new and repainting the ones you already have.

If your switch plates are worn out or broken, it is generally advisable to replace them.

But, a wonderful option to update the look of your switch plates without breaking the bank is to paint them if they are in good enough shape.

Regardless of the option you select, it is important to find switch plates that match the aesthetic of the rest of your home. You may acquire switch plates that are both attractive and practical with just a little hunting around.

Fact: Plastic switch plates and covers are usually quite durable and last around five years, but you can make them last longer by painting.

Can You Spray Paint Light Switches or Not?

can spray paint or not

Yes, it actually makes a lot of sense to paint light switches because of its many benefits.

For instance:

Improved Aesthetics

One benefit is that it can improve the overall look of a space.

Light switches are often an eyesore that detracts from the aesthetics of a room. A fresh coat of paint might make them look more uniform with the surrounding walls or trim.

Improved Lifespan

You may prolong the life of light switches by painting them.

Scratches, chips, and discoloration on light switches are inevitable after prolonged use. A fresh coat of paint might help forestall these problems and preserve their appearance for a lot longer.

More Economical

Last but not least, instead of buying new light switches, you can paint them and save money. Just consider your new décor and repaint your switch covers accordingly.

Important Things to Consider

While painting light switches, it is essential to observe all necessary safety measures. Before removing the switch cover, make sure the power is off. 

Similarly, it is a good idea to cover any electrical components with insulating tape.

How Do Your Paint Light Switches Like a Pro?

painting the light switches like a pro

One of the most unappreciated opportunities to add style to your home is in the form of light switch covers.

Many homeowners disregard them because they believe they have no bearing on the aesthetics of the place.

That is not true. In fact, painting the light switch covers is a simple way to inject some character into a room simply by changing the way they look.

It is normally pretty safe to spray paint light switch covers. But there are a few things to think about first. 

Handling the Paint Job Safely

In spite of the fact that spray painting light switch covers are not inherently dangerous, there are several measures you should take to protect yourself and others. 

painting the switch with safety

Find the Right Place to Do It

The first rule of spray painting is to do it somewhere with plenty of fresh air.

Spray paint contains toxic fumes that can be ingested, thus proper ventilation is essential. Air can be circulated more effectively by opening windows and doors or using a fan. 

Find the Right Safety Gear

A second piece of advice is to always use safety equipment.

Using gloves and goggles is recommended when working with spray paint due to the potential for skin and eye irritation.

You should also protect your lungs by using a mask or respirator. 

Follow the Instructions

Lastly, use the spray paint according to the instructions on the container.

Those guidelines inform you how much time to allow between coats, how far away from the surface to hold the paint gun, and how long to wait before touching the paint. 

Getting Ready to Spray Paint Light Switches

cleaning using dry cloth on switch cover

Once you have everything ready, you need to prep the switches to get started.

Here is how to proceed: 

Clean Switch Covers Properly

At the outset, you should wipe down the light switch covers and ensure they are dry.

To eliminate dust and dirt, a moist cloth should be used. The use of a degreaser is recommended if the coverings have become oily. 

Use the Right Paint for the Job

Pick the best paint especially formulated for plastics or metals. Paints of this sort are developed specifically for use on plastics and resist chipping and peeling. 

Thankfully, you can find them in many colors and finishes, such as glossy, matte, and satin.

Fact: Going with an oil-based primer is a good idea because it prevents flaking and scabbing and creates a uniform surface. 

Pick the Right Color

Make sure the color you pick works with the rest of the room. If you are having trouble deciding on a shade, take into account the following:

  • Choose a color that will stand out mostly in white or neutral settings.
  • Use a neutral color to counteract any other bright hues in the room
  • Go with timeless white or black when confused.

Sand Properly

It is recommended that you sand between each application of paint. This means that you should ideally sand the covers when applying the primer – do it between two consecutive coats.

Repeat the same between two coats of paint. An old sanding paper of 220 grit can do in a pinch.

Do not ignore this step because any paint bubbles or blemishes can be removed with light sanding. 

How to Spray Paint Light Switches?

As paint’s gloss and color tend to separate with time, it is important to fully mix your paint before using. Be sure to shake the container and stir it with a stick before use.

paint spraying the light switches

Similarly, it is a good idea to use a roller with a nap size of 1/4 inch and a separate, small paint tray for each color while working on smooth surfaces.

It is fine if the first layer is not completely covered, so do not worry about it. You can always clean those inner corners using a brush. 

An Important Consideration

You should take extra precautions for the first week or two after painting.

Unless you want to risk ruining your beautiful paint job, you should wait for it to fully cure before moving furniture or other objects back into the room.

Fact: Do not forget light sanding between coats, as it can eliminate bubbles and thin out thick places, resulting in a faultless finish. 

Protect the Surrounding Area

In order to prevent paint from getting on adjoining furniture and flooring, it is essential to cover the area around light switches before painting them.

surround the light switch with tape

Here are some precautions you may take when painting light switches: 

Cover with Paper

Protect the adjoining surfaces with a drop cloth or newspapers. This will prevent paint from dripping or splattering onto the surfaces below. 

Use Painter’s Tape

Painter’s tape can be used to conceal the exposed edges of light switch plates. This will lessen the likelihood that the actual switches will get painted. 

Clear the Area

To avoid painting over or otherwise damaging nearby furniture or other things, move them out of the painting area. 

Consider a Spray Paint Tent

A spray paint tent is an excellent investment if you plan on utilizing aerosol paint. It is a temporary shelter that can be erected around the painted area.

Using the tent, you can contain and prevent overspray from going on other things.

Fact: It always helps to have some paper towels or a damp rag handy so you can quickly wipe up any messes. 


Can you spray paint light switches? Yes, you certainly can, and it is usually pretty safe to do. In fact, spray painting the covers is a simple and fast way to give your home a unique touch.

As long as you use common sense and work according to the manufacturer’s guidelines, it should be fine to do so.

Light switch covers are a blank canvas that, with some paint and imagination, may be transformed into an eye-catching design element.