If you’re looking to paint the interior or exterior of your home, you want to invest in a paint product that’s made to last. Perhaps you’ve noticed that some paints are warrantied for 10 or 20 years while others are only warrantied for five. The longer-lasting paints usually cost more, so it’s tempting to just reach for the cheaper can and assume that everything will be fine. Before you stock up on budget paints, consider some of the important factors that can impact paint quality.
All Paints Are Not Created Equal
There are numerous factors that determine how long a paint will last, especially on the exterior of a home. For instance, water-based paints hold up much better than their oil-based alternative because they naturally stretch. Oil-based paints remain stationary and are therefore more prone to cracking and peeling when changing weather conditions cause the siding to expand and contract.
A five-year paint may be water- or oil-based, but it usually doesn’t offer much in the way of premium ingredients like high-quality pigments or abrasion-resistant coatings. Paints with these types of protective formulas tend to have longer warranties because they really do last longer.
What Sets Premium Paints Apart?
Though water-based paints offer greater durability, these paints themselves can vary drastically in quality. All paints consist of solid polymers known as binders, which are used to hold the pigment (color) in place. The binders in a water-based paint may consist of 100 percent acrylic, vinyl acrylic, or another acrylic compound. Higher-quality binders provide greater color protection and a longer-lasting paint job, so a truly premium paint will use a superior binder like 100 percent acrylic.
It’s also important to consider the ratio of pigment to solid. The binder is your solid material, and the pigment represents your color in liquid form. A premium-grade paint may consist of as much as 45 percent solids, while a cheaper five-year paint may contain less than 30 percent solids.
Finally, premium-grade paints typically contain helpful additives for enhanced protection and longevity. These additives may include thickeners for denser brush strokes and surfactants for faster adhesion to the surface. When it comes to paint, it’s almost always worth it to spend a bit more. The results will save you a great deal of money in the long run.