There are two reasons why it makes sense to take the way you store your paint seriously:
- You’re almost guaranteed to need additional paint in the future for the occasional touch-up.
- The highest-quality paint isn’t exactly cheap, so why let it go to waste?
Anyone who’s ever tackled DIY painting themselves will probably know how the whole paint-storage thing goes. You put some paint away, forget about it entirely, return to it after several months, discover it’s gone rock-hard in the meantime and throw it away. Buy more paint, store the leftovers, the same cycle repeats and so on.
The thing is though, it isn’t particularly difficult to look after any quantity of paint indefinitely. It’s simply a case of putting a little more thought into exactly how you store it away. And of course, correctly storing and utilizing as much of your paint as possible is also far more environmentally friendly than discarding it!
So if you’re planning to go about an interior paint job of any kind in the near future, here’s a quick overview of a few tips on how to store it properly for any period of time:
Keep The Container Closed
First up, it’s worth remembering that while ever the can of paint is open and exposed to the air in its surroundings, the quality of the paint is deteriorating. As such, it’s a good idea to only ever take out as much paint as you need at that particular moment, keeping the container tightly sealed at all other times. The whole idea being that the more effectively you prevent the paint coming into contact with the air, the longer it will last.
Keep The Container Clean
In order to preserve the quality and consistency of the paint long-term, you are going to need to create an airtight seal. Something that becomes difficult or even impossible when the can or container is caked in dry paint. While it can be challenging to say the least, you nonetheless need to invest as much effort as necessary in keeping the container as clean as possible at all times. Wipe the rim while the paint is still wet and try to avoid any kind of damage that could have a detrimental effect on the seal.
Use A Sensible Container
If the original paint can itself is too dirty, too damaged or too big to store the leftover paint, think about transferring it to a different container. Of course, this also means choosing a sensible container that’s both safe and able to provide the airtight seal you require. Even a good glass jar with a firm-fitting lid can get the job done.
Protect The Surface
However you store your paint, chances are there will still be a certain amount of air between the top of the paint and the lid of the can/jar. Even this small amount of air has the potential to have a detrimental impact on the quality and consistency of the paint. As such, take a leaf or two from the books of the experts and place a small piece of wax paper or aluminum foil directly on the surface of the paint. This will help preserve its consistency and prevent a skin forming on the top.
Store Somewhere Safe
Last but not least, you’ll also need to think about somewhere safe and appropriate to store your paint. In most instances, the manufacturer will recommend of storing excess paint in a ‘cool, dark and dry’ place, which shouldn’t be hard to find. The greater the extent to which the paint is exposed to extreme temperatures, bright lights and so on, the more likely it is to degrade in terms of consistency and quality. It’s also advisable to only ever store paints and other substances below eye level, just in case something unexpectedly leaks when you reach to retrieve it.
Of course, there isn’t a paint in existence that has a genuinely indefinite shelf life. Nevertheless, the highest-quality paints on the market really can last a surprisingly long time, maximizing value for money and long-term convenience. It’s simply a case of ensuring they’re stored away strategically, rather than simply being thrown in your garage and forgotten about!
If looking for any further tips and tricks on how to paint like the pros, we’d be delighted to hear from you. Contact a member of the Homm CPS team today for an obligation-free consultation.