June 24th, 2024

When it comes to painting your home, the garage is a purely functional space. It's where you park your vehicles, store your seasonal items, and keep your tools or any other items that you're not quite sure where to keep. However, the paint color and type of paint you choose for your garage are pretty important! There are a few things you'll want to consider before you just grab any old of paint.

Is painting a garage a good idea?

Improved Appearance: A fresh coat of paint can dramatically enhance the look and feel of a garage space, making it feel cleaner, brighter, and more like a usable living/working area rather than just a utilitarian storage space.

Protection for Walls

Paint helps protect the garage walls from scuffs, stains, and damage over time. This maintains the condition of the walls and makes the space easier to keep clean.

Increased Lighting

Lighter paint colors, especially white or light grays, can make a garage feel more open and bright by reflecting more light. This can be helpful if the garage has limited natural lighting.

Better Organization

Painting the walls a lighter, uniform color can make it easier to see and organize items stored in the garage. Contrast this with unpainted, dingy walls that can make clutter blend in.

Increased Home Value

A well-maintained, neatly painted garage interior can be a selling point that adds value to your home when it comes time to list.


First of all, you want to think about how you use the space. Is it merely a storage area, or do you spend time there working on various projects? Do you park your vehicles inside? Or do you use your garage for other things, such as an at-home gym space or an extra room? All of these things should be considered when you're choosing the right color and finish of the paint.


If you mainly use your garage for storage, white or beige is a good choice. These colors keep your garage looking clean and functional. If you've got a good organizational system in place, these classic neutral tones can serve as a great backdrop for color coded bins, different types of shelving and cabinets, and can help make it easier to find things.

However, if you use your garage as more of a workspace or to park and work on your cars, bright white might not be the best choice, as it definitely shows every little speck of dirt and grime. In this case, you're better off going with a slightly darker neutral, such as gray or tan. These colors will help to hide dirt and scuff marks better, and they add more visual interest to the room, which is nice if you're spending a lot of time working in your garage.

Now, if you use your garage as more of an extension of your living space, you can have more fun with your color choices. Whether it's a games room, a home gym, or just a space to hang out, you'll want to choose colors that make the room seem a little brighter, since most garages don't tend to have much natural light. Consider softer shades of blue or green, or white with warmer undertones of yellow or blush to make the room feel a bit warmer.

garage interior paint color -wow 1 day painting - yellow garage interior

Of course, as with any room, you can always experiment with darker or brighter colors if you wish, but keep in mind that these colors will need to work in a space that doesn't get much natural light. Check out our blog post on painting dark rooms for more inspiration.


The condition of your garage is super important when it comes to choosing the right type of paint. The first thing to look at is what type of surface you're working with. Not all garages are fully finished with drywall and insulation, so the type of surface can be different from garage to garage.

What is the best paint for a high-moisture garage?

If you've got drywall or concrete, go with the same type of traditional water-based interior paint you use in the rest of your home. However, if you have metal surfaces, use an oil-based paint.

garage interior paint color -wow 1 day painting - teal garage interior

The temperature and humidity of the room are also important. If your garage is climate-controlled, you're safe to use regular interior paint on the walls. However, if your garage is not insulated or is prone to higher humidity, look for a paint with a mildewcide additive that helps make it resistant to mold growth.

Lastly, you'll want to think about durability. This ties back to how you use your space. If you're using it for storage, as a workspace, or to park your vehicles, a semi-gloss or a gloss finish might be a better choice. Though these finishes reflect light and might show imperfections on your walls a bit more, they are harder and more durable, easier to clean, and are more resistant to scuffs, marks, and moisture. On the other hand, if your garage is more of a living space than a work space, you can go with a more matte, eggshell, or satin finish which will do a better job at hiding imperfections and absorb more of the light.

garage interior paint color -wow 1 day painting - clean and bright garage interior

What kind of paint should I use to paint a garage?

Before we can do the fun part and talk about color, you’ve got to understand some of the factors that might affect your garage interior paint job. Garage walls have quite different conditions to other rooms in your house, maybe most comparable to an unfinished basement.

  • Latex paints are easier to apply and clean up, but may not hold up as well in a garage environment exposed to oils, chemicals, and moisture. Look for a 100% acrylic latex formula.
  • Oil-based paints offer better durability and resistance to stains and wear, but require more work for application and clean-up. They can also have stronger fumes and take longer to apply.
  • Exterior paint for more resistance to UV damage, fading and weathering. Interior paints might do the trick if it’s well-insulated and dry.
  • Satin or semi-gloss sheen paints tend to be more scrubbable and easier to clean compared to flat finishes. They also are better at reflecting light and repelling water.

Do I need to prime garage walls before painting?

In a majority of cases, we recommend priming garage walls before painting.

Unless you own a new-ish house or have recently undergone a renovation, many garages are sensitive to humidity compared to interior walls. Your garage likely has cement or brick walls instead of drywall. These are all factors where priming can help with adhesion, sealing and stain blocking.

Should garage interior paint be flat or satin?

Every garage is different, but usually, the high-moisture environment means we recommend a satin finish to repel moisture, easy cleaning and durability.

Here are some pros and cons of each type of paint for the interior garage so you can better decide which is best for your space.

Flat (Matte) Finish:

  • Provides a smooth, uniform appearance with minimal sheen
  • Hides imperfections in the wall surface better than glossier finishes
  • Less reflective, creating a more muted, subtle look
  • Good for covering up any existing wall blemishes or unevenness
  • Easier to touch up than satin or semi-gloss finishes

Satin Finish:

  • Has a soft, velvety sheen - more reflective than flat but less than semi-gloss
  • Easier to clean and more durable than flat paint
  • Shows wall imperfections more than flat finishes
  • Provides a richer, more polished appearance
  • Tends to be more scuff and stain resistant

During a consultation, we are happy to take a look for ourselves an give a recommendation.

Is oil or latex paint better for garages?

For residential garages, latex (waterborne) paint is recommended over oil-based. Latex paint is easier to apply, has lower odor, faster drying and still have great durability. However, if you’re dealing with a particularly damp garage or painting over metal, an oil-based paint is more appropriate.

How to choose a garage interior color

You first need to answer the question of what the primary function of your garage is. If you tend to use your garage as a home gym or a workshop, you might want to consider bold and bright energizing colors. But if you’re mostly going to house your vehicle and boxes of Halloween decorations, you might want to keep it light and simple so it’s easy to see what’s being stored there.

This is probably a room where you’ll want to remove dark colors as it will make it feel smaller, darker and will show way more dust than a lighter color. But it might make it feel like The Batcave, which is pretty cool if that’s your vibe. Just get ready to dust the place regularly.

Should your garage interior be the same color as your house?

The garage interior paint color does not have to match the house interior or exterior, but it shouldn’t clash with either color.

This creates a cohesive look that ties the garage into the home's overall aesthetic, without making the garage feel like a bland extension.

Try using a lighter or darker shade of the main house color with enough contrast to help create some dimension. You can also try incorporating an accent color from the house exterior and incorporating it in the garage interior paint color.

What is the most popular color for garage walls?

Most people go for a shade of white or light grey to help brighten the dark space, make it easy to see whatever is in storage and make the room feel more open should it host your home gym, workshop, drum set or anything else! Try to pick a tone that compliments the other colors, interior and exterior, near the garage — again, making white a natural choice for most people.

Are you ready to transform your garage?

Whether you just need a touchup for your current space, or you're considering a full-on garage makeover, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING is ready to help! We can help you choose the right color and the perfect type of paint to use in your garage, and we'll have your freshly painted space ready for you in no time!

To get started, book your free, no-obligation estimate today!


  • Interior Painting