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Using Paint Stored in Freezing Temperatures

By: Danny Lipford
Old paint that has separated due to freezing.

Old paint that has separated due to freezing.

Rachael asks: We have a couple of gallons of paint that were stored outside during freezing temperatures. Can we still use the paint?

Don’t use latex paint that was stored in freezing temperatures, since freezing can cause a chemical reaction which may keep the paint from performing well.

Oil-based paint is more tolerant of colder temperatures, but don’t use it if the paint contains clumps or grit.

Remember, when in doubt, throw it out! Watch this video to find out more.

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Print   Video Transcript

Danny Lipford: Rachael asks, “We have a couple of gallons of paint that were stored outside during freezing temperatures. Can we still use the paint?”

You know, it really depends on what type of paint you’re talking about. If you have some leftover latex paint, well, that can really be problem. Because when it freezes, it has a chemical reaction that causes a separation.

And even though you may stir it, the problem is it may not perform well once you use the paint. Particularly, how well it adheres to the surface that you might be painting—whether it’s cabinets, trims, or walls.

So, that’s one of the things that you have to be careful of. And when you open the can and you’re stirring it, make sure there’s no clumps or grit in the paint.

Now, oil-based, it’s a little bit more tolerant to colder temperatures. But still, when you’re stirring it up, if you see any of that grit, or any type of clumps, you want to discard it.

You’d hate to spend a lot of time doing a nice paint job, only to have the paint let you down.



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