In order to choose high quality paint for your exterior paint project, you need to know exactly what a can of paint consists of in terms of ingredients. Don’t be swayed by lower prices; when it comes to exterior paint, you truly get what you pay for. Instead of comparing prices, compare the paint’s anatomy.

Here are the four main ingredients to pay attention to when you’re paint shopping:

1. PIGMENTS

What they are: Pigments are finely ground particles that make the paint thick and able to hide whatever surface it’s covering. These are not to be confused with colorants, which are the tints added to produce your dream paint color.
What to look for: Paints that include the pigment titanium dioxide. Yes, it’s more expensive. However, you don’t have to apply multiple coats, which can save you money in the long run.

What to remember: The better the pigments, the better the coverage.

2. RESINS (OR BINDERS)

What they are: Resins bind the pigments and colorants to whatever surface they are covering, and hold them in place once the paint dries.
What to look for: Paints that are 100% acrylic. Acrylic paints cling to the surface better, creating a finish that lasts longer and is more resistant to peeling and blistering.
What to remember: Better resins make for a better bond.

3. SOLVENTS (OR CARRIERS)

What they are: Solvents are the liquid part of the paint that act as a vehicle for the paint to go from the brush to the surface. They evaporate as the paint dries and are either oil or water-based.

What to look for
: Paints with a higher percentage of solids (pigments and resins) than solvents. Aim for a balance of 45%, or higher, solids and 55%, or lower, solvents.
What to remember: The higher the percentage of solvents, the more that evaporates when the paint dries, leaving a thinner film of paint.

4. ADDITIVE

What they are: Additives are the chemicals that give the paint specific properties, such as thickeners or mildew resistance.
What to look for
: Paints that prevent foaming when stirred, or thickeners that give a thicker, more even coat of paint.
What to remember: Make your paint specific to your needs.

And finally, check out what kind of warranty the paint has. The general rule of thumb is higher warranty equals higher quality. The bottom line is, we all want to save money, but paint is not where you want to pinch your pennies. Buying the good stuff up front saves you money and time in the long run. Contact our painting contractors for more information about which paint to use for your home.

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