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The Dangers of Using Low-Quality Paint

calander Jul 8 , 2020 user-icon Nash Painting

Painting projects are filled to the brim with tough decisions. Even after you’ve figured out which surfaces you plan on painting, which colors you want to implement, and how to go about the work itself, you won’t get anywhere until you choose your paint products. And if you’re on a budget, you may be tempted to go for the cheapest paints available. The problem with this approach, however, is that cheaper paints tend to be of a lower quality than pricier products. But what does low-quality paint indicate, anyway? Whether you’re looking for interior, exterior, or deck paint, let’s go over the dangers of using low-quality paint for your project.

A Flimsy Finish

The two major goals of any paint job are to protect the surfaces in question from harm (i.e. via impact, moisture, sunlight, etc.) and to enhance the appearance of said surfaces by covering imperfections and adding color. Achieving these goals often requires an initial coat of primer and one or two coats of paint. However, because low-quality paint typically contains more solvents and inferior pigments than high-quality paint, more coats are often needed to properly protect and conceal a surface when using low-quality home painting products.

In other words, cheaper paint is usually relatively thin. You can make up for this by applying more coats, but this will obviously require you to purchase more paint. In the end, it might be more economical to simply buy a smaller amount of high-quality paint and only apply one or two coats than to apply three or more coats of low-quality paint, only to still potentially end up with a flimsy finish.

Low-Quality, Low Durability

Low-quality paints aren’t just thinner than high-quality products, though -- they are also worse at bonding to surfaces due to inferior resins. Resins are the primary binding agents found in paint, helping the paint adhere to a material more strongly. This adherence is not only key in achieving proper application and even coverage -- it also determines durability, or how long the paint sticks to the surface. As a surface naturally expands and contracts, takes on moisture, and otherwise gets worn down, the paint will either stick with it or lose its bond. This outcome largely depends on the quality of the resins. Therefore, using paint with poor resins is a recipe for peeling, cracking, and flaking in the near future, especially exterior house paint, which is wide open to environmental threats like thermal shock, sunlight, rain, wind, etc.

Environmental and Health Hazards

Lastly, low-quality paint can also be bad for the environment and for one’s health. While most modern paints are far safer and less toxic than formulations of long ago, not all paints are created equal. Cheaper paints might contain a significant amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), for instance, because the process for removing these compounds or keeping them out of the production process can be costly. In abundance, these VOCs can cause irritation in the eyes, nose, and throat, shortness of breath, fatigue, skin problems, and more.

Of course, VOCs are more of an issue for interior house paint products where there is less air circulation and more close human contact. That said, VOCs found in exterior paint can harm animals, plants, and other environmental entities as well. Many high-quality paints contain few or zero VOCs.

To Sum Up…

Low-quality paints might cost less than premium products, but they don’t provide as much coverage, they chip and peel much faster, and they might even yield negative health and environmental effects. So, whether you’re preparing for a DIY painting project or hiring residential painting services, make sure the paint being used is of high quality. It might cost you a bit more in the short-term, but it will save you time and money in the long run. That’s why here at Nash Painting, we only use the highest quality paints on the market.

To find out more about us, our services, and our values, call us at 615-829-6858 today!