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How to Waterproof Waterbased Paint

What is water-based paint, exactly? The team at House Beautiful explains that water-based paint is made from pigments, tints and binders that are dissolved in water. Oil-based paint components are mixed into oil instead. Water-based is also referred to as latex paint and painters like its fast drying times and color retention qualities. These paints can absorb water when they are still wet, and become water-resistant when dry.

More About Paint Types

Water-based paints are usually best for interior and exterior walls, especially those that are exposed to a lot of moisture. This would include the outside walls of a home, kitchens, laundry rooms and bathrooms. When these painted surfaces get dirty, you can usually clean them easily with soap and water. This kind of paint is also more resistant to UV light, has little odor and comes in a large variety of colors. It is simple to apply, is inexpensive and does not crack as easily as oil-based paints.

Other kinds of paint on the market include acrylic and emulsion paint. The main difference between acrylic and emulsion paint is the paint’s components. Emulsion is a type of water-based paint, as explained by experts from House Beautiful. It has acrylic or vinyl added to it to make it more durable. Painters often use it for ceilings and walls, because it has added durability. It is sold in many different finishes, such as matte, silk, eggshell and glossy.

Acrylic paint is chemical-based and, like other chemical-based paints, it becomes water-resistant when dry. Its pigments are combined with acrylic resin and acrylic polymer solution. It applies well to interior and exterior wood, metals and masonry. It also has excellent color retention and is resistant to mildew.

Enhancing Water-Resistant Paint

Water-resistant paints can repel some moisture, but they are not 100-percent waterproof. There are some paints that claim to be waterproof, and they may have waterproofing paint additives on their lists of ingredients.

However, if you are not sure if the paint is truly waterproof, the safest method is to apply a primer beforehand and a sealant over the paint after you are finished. If you do not want to use a paint sealant, you can look for a waterproofing paint additive to add in.

Since acrylic paint is not waterproof either, it also needs to be sealed to prevent moisture from seeping in. An added bonus of using additives and sealants is that they prevent the color from fading and increase the surface durability. When shopping for these, make sure to buy the right kind for the type of paint you are using. Do not use an acrylic sealant on a water-based paint.

More About Sealants

The team at Better Homes & Gardens explains that the main purpose of sealants is to make porous surfaces become non-porous. Sealants provide clear, invisible protection against water damage, UV light, dirt and freezing temperatures. You will need to paint the sealant on after the paint is dry, which will require extra time if painting over a large surface. For this reason, many painters choose to incorporate waterproofing additives to their paint. The type of paint will dictate the type of additive you need; as in using sealants, do not mix paint types and additive types. The additive will have directions on the container, and there should be a ratio of additive to the amount of paint. You can mix the paint and additive in a separate bucket per the manufacturer’s instructions.

Things You Will Need

  • Waterproof paint

  • Sealant

  • Primer

  • Additives