Best exterior primer

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Best exterior primer

best exterior primer

Subscriber Account active since. When you buy through our links, we may earn money from our affiliate partners. Learn more. Before we get to our recommendations, here are some things to keep in mind.

Latex-based exterior paints are generally the best choice for outdoor painting projects like a home's walls and trim. Latex paints dry quickly, imperfections caught during the process are easy to clean, and latex paint expands and contracts well with seasonal temperature changes. However, it will bubble and peel if applied over existing oil-based paint.

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As for the finish, it's mainly a matter of aesthetic choice, but there are a few things to note. Gloss paints are the most resistant to damage and the easiest to clean, but a gloss finish shows imperfections and looks out of place when used on a larger scale. Gloss or semi-gloss paints are ideal for window trim and doorframes, while semi-gloss is a good choice for exterior doors, provided the door to be painted is in good condition.

This is also a good choice for brick, as it helps seal the porous material. Flat paint finishes are generally less popular for exteriors these days, with one exception: Older homes, or those with a fair amount of wear-and-tear and imperfections on the exterior regardless of age, can benefit from the flaw-masking ability of flat paint finishes.

Flat paint probably won't last as long as glossier options, but it can make the place look better in the shorter term, and it's easy to touch up. Although these products are still recommended, we are currently revisiting them and researching new ones for a future update.

Top 10 Best Exterior Primers of 2020 – Reviews

With a guarantee to last for a decade or longer — even in the harshest of weather conditions — Behr Premium Plus Ultra Exterior Paint and Primer in One is prized for its excellent durability. But its versatility is equally impressive: You can apply this exterior paint to wood, vinyl, trim, doors, and even outdoor furniture, and it can be used at temperatures as low as 35 degrees Fahrenheit.

Behr Premium Plus Ultra Exterior Paint and Primer in One is a good choice for use with older, worn, or damaged surfaces, and it can be applied directly over rusted metals or worn woods. Whether applied using a brush, a roller, or a paint sprayer, this blended paint and primer leaves a clean, even finish that completely masks the surface below. Pros: Excellent durability, works on myriad surfaces, clean and even finish despite what's underneath.

Depending on the type of material, a single gallon of KILZ can coat up to square feet of surface — up to square feet if it's highly porous. And if you need to apply a second coat, you won't have to wait long: The paint dries to the touch in about two hours and is ready for a second coat in just six hours.

Many users reported that the paint has great durability and longevity, even many years after it was applied.Primers may be the most boring coatings that painting contractors apply.

But if you don't prime bare wood properly, you could end up with a very dissatisfied customer. Using the right primer in the right situation can make the difference between washed-out color with visible stains or a bright and durable finish. When it comes to exterior wood, primer is crucial. Without it, paint doesn't stand a chance against the chemistry of bare wood. Most jobs involving sizable expanses of uncoated exterior wood are encountered in new construction.

That means siding and trim. The siding is most often cedar lap, or sometimes fir or pine plywood, or even cedar shingle. Wood, especially cedar, holds a lot of chemicals, some which flow to the surface and right through several coats of exterior paint. A topcoat on bare siding would in short order reveal "cedar bleed" as tree tannins escaped the wood. In addition, escaping moisture is liable to cause a finish paint to peel from most types of wood in a relatively short time if primer is not used first.

The job of the primer is to act as an intermediary between the wood substrate and the topcoat. It should seal, hide, and bind wood fibers to make the surface more uniform. This allows the paint to adhere more tightly to the surface. In other words, when you apply an enamel topcoat to a primed door, you are applying the paint to the primer, not to the wood. A good primer also improves the topcoat's ability to resist surface moisture and the resulting mildew, a feature that is key in the Pacific Northwest and the Southeast.

Choosing your primer There are just about as many primers to choose from as there are substrates to coat. All primers are made to penetrate and bond. But some can do more, such as hide colors of previous coatings, while others might hide less but do better at blocking emerging stains.

The type of surface and the external environment dictate which type of primer to use. For example, Revnew says, if the enameled door receives the wrong type of primer one with high hiding qualities but lower adhesionthe primer could fail, taking the enamel finish with it. There are primers for plastics, concretes, drywall, old paint and any other surface you might encounter.

However, the primer selection narrows somewhat when you're looking for something designed specifically for exterior wood. The first breakdown of choices falls into the two basic categories that all painters know — cleanup with soap and water or with solvent.

However, a closer look shows that it's more complicated. And the wide variety of formulas based on linseed oil, alkyd, and acrylic ought to quash anyone's idea that primers are nothing more than low-grade paints. Acrylic latex products are gaining market share in primers just as they are in finish coatings. Matt Crawford, architectural services representative at Kelly-Moore Paints, says that acrylic technology has made such improvements in the water-based coatings that these primers have "made for better performance and service life compared to oil and alkyd wood primers.

Acrylic sealing primers, usually percent acrylic, hide stains and seal tannins.

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Some acrylics seal out moisture and mildew or block odors as well. The primer market in some regions of the U. For example, in many parts of California, the VOC limit on coatings has eliminated many oil- or alkyd-based wood primers unless formulated specifically to block tannin staining. That means alkyds are acceptable for new cedar and redwood siding, but not, for example, previously painted interior surfaces.

This is a percent acrylic line of primers that offer stain blocking.Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

Painting something outside is one of the most tricky home improvement projects you can do. Exterior paint has to stand up to the punishment of sun, rain, wind, and other weather once it dries. To even put it on in the first place, you need a few hours of good, calm weather to paint and let it dry.

If you have never used exterior paint or you aren't sure what kind to use for your next outdoor project, there are a couple things to consider before deciding which paint to use. To find the right exterior paint, you first need to know what surface you are painting. Exterior paints can usually work on many types of surfaces, but they may have limitations or different preparation and application techniques. Most paints will either be for siding, walls, and fences, or different types of flooring and ground surfaces.

You will also have to choose between latex and oil based paint. Latex is easier to work with and can dry in as little as two hours in good weather.

Exterior wood siding painting preparation - tips, tools, how to guide

Oil based is usually more durable, but can take longer to dry. To help you find the perfect paint for the job, we researched the best exterior paints on the market right now. No matter the color and no matter the finish, Benjamin Moore has been producing some of the finest and most dependable paint for over a century.

In fact, the company was recognized in J. So, what is the top outdoor paint from this top-of-the-line brand? Their Aura Exterior collection. Plus, Aura is highly durable, lasting years without fading, cracking, or peeling, so it can end up saving you money in the long run.

The paint is self-primingpercent acrylic, and available in four finishes—flat, low-lustre, satinand semi-gloss. Depending on the finish you choose, one gallon can cover between to square feet.

Keep in mind that Aura dries very quickly, setting to re-coat in just four hours. However, it is offered in-store all across the country. Out of 23 tested products, Consumer Reports named Premium Plus Ultra the top exterior paint, beating out brands that cost nearly twice as much. The affordable price sounds even better considering that one gallon covers roughly square feet.

On top of that, some customers say it took just a single coating to meet their standards. You can also purchase the paint in a five-gallon option that saves more dollar for dollar. Premium Plus Ultra is designed with Nanogaurd technology, making it extra resistant to sunlight, moisture, and stains, so it will glisten like new for years after use.

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The best exterior paint

Exterior paints have improved significantly in recent years. As a group, they're now more durable and less prone to cracking and fading, which means they should hold up for several years. To determine which paints are likely to last the longest on a house, CR's test engineers paint pine panels and place them on the roof of our headquarters in Yonkers, N.

They set the boards to face south and tilt them to intensify the effects of sun and weather. The results give us a sense of how paints will look after nine years on a house. And performance doesn't necessarily correspond with cost. Zones that are sunny, hot, and dry require a paint that resists cracking and fading. Warm, humid areas call for mildew resistance.

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Desert homes and urban dwellings need paint that resists dirt. Upgrading your home's exterior? We also test replacement windowsroofingsidingand wood stains. And access over 9, products and services rated. For updates, feel free to follow me on Twitter haniyarae. Sign In. Become a Member. Remember Me. Not a member? Need further assistance? Please call Member Services at By Haniya Rae. Last updated: February 27, Sharing is Nice Yes, send me a copy of this email.

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The 9 Best Exterior Paints of 2020

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Learn more. The most important part of any paint job is called surface preparation. That means that the surface has to be properly primed as well, as the primer is what bonds the substrate and the paint together. There are several things that primers do, which paints aren't really designed to do. Quality paints are designed for coverage.

best exterior primer

An unprimed surface causes serious problems with the paint being able to cover well. Most substrates used in construction are porous, so some percentage of the paint soaks into the substrate and is not available to provide cover and weather protection.

The more porous the surface is, the less paint remains on the surface to cover and protect from the weather. Primers are designed very different than paints; with the main goal of soaking into the substrate and sealing it. By doing that, they make it possible for the paint to stay on the surface, where it can provide the most protection to the building. Another reason for using primer is that not all substrates are compatible with all paints, or even with any paint at all.

Aluminum, for example, doesn't bond well with any paint. By using a special aluminum primer, you create a chemical bond with the aluminum substrate, providing a good surface for the paint to adhere to. Properly primed aluminum will allow the paint to last for years longer than applying paint directly to the aluminum substrate. Some primers also provide a stain hiding capability, which is often necessary when repainting a home.

It is not the color of these stains that causes the problem, but rather the fact that these stains actually seep through the new paint, staining it. A sealing primer dries fast enough to prevent that, trapping the stain in the substrate.

When picking a primer, you have to be cognizant of the reason you are priming. For new construction, this is usually to promote good adhesion and long paint life. Those reasons can apply to repainting as well, plus the problem I just mentioned about stains. You must also be sure to understand the substrate you are painting over, as that makes a huge difference in primer selection.

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This is a synthetic shellac primer. The great advantage to that is the fast dry time of shellac, not allowing the stain an opportunity to soak into the primer.This fast drying latex primer really does a good job on exterior wood surfaces that are uneven with varying porosity levels. It provides excellent durability and protects your wood very well against the elements.

Also, it is great value for your money. Shop now at Amazon. We think the KILZ General Purpose is the best exterior wood primer for those who want a fast drying latex primer that is specifically designed for outdoor use and it works very well on wood. The biggest reason we really like this primer is because it really does a great job in sealing in porous surfaces like wood and provides excellent adhesion. Also, it has pretty good coverage as 1 gallon of this stuff can cover about square feet.

It can be topcoated in about an hour with latex or oil based paint. The XIM Peel Bond Exterior Wood Primer is the best exterior wood primer for those who want to paint over cracked and weathered surfaces such as wood outdoors. This stuff does an excellent job in creating a perfectly bonded, sealed, and smooth surface for latex topcoats. It is also a great penetrating primer that seals in the pores in wood.

We also like the color indicator to help you know when you can paint. It goes on milky white and then dries clear. When it is clear, you can go ahead and apply topcoats. Overall, we just to say that this primer helps reduce cracking and peeling due to its excellent filling and sealing properties.

best exterior primer

It also bridges low areas in just one pass. We really like the Rust-Oleum RockSolid and think it is the best exterior wood primer for those who want a product specifically designed for exterior wood surfaces. It can be applied to both damp or dry wood.

One of the standout features is that it is really good at adhering to weathered and worn out wood that has previously been coated already without the need to sand down or strip the old coating. This is a low-VOC exterior wood primer that has very little odor. Also, we like the fact that it works with pretty much any topcoat.

Best Exterior Paints From Consumer Reports' Tests

Finally, just know that it dries to the touch in just one hour and takes up to 2 hours of dry time before applying any topcoat. And yes, we certainly do love KILZ products, especially on wood.KILZ is a well known and trusted brand.

Its Premium Primer creates smooth surface hiding unwanted stains. However, priming should be a part of any serious painting job. I think KILZ Premium is the top overall primer for you, but you may continue reading to find a primer that meets your needs.

After that, we will continue with some general information on the subject. This makes it a really good choice for softwood surfaces. It is also less likely to raise the grain of the wood. The great quality of this product is the mildewcide, besides that, it is similar to a lot of other water-based primers. You can also consider this option for color-changes since it has excellent adhesion properties and will adhere well to old paint.

Zinsser is a brand that is a part of the Rust-Oleum family of paints and primers. Shellac-based primer can be thought of as heavy-duty stuff. If your main concern is covering up stains and sealing odors on new or painted wood surfaces, then shellac is the way to go.

Keep in mind that shellac-based primers have a high odor and the most amount of volatile organic compounds VOCs. Your room has to be well ventilated if you are going to be in an enclosed space. This is an excellent primer that has a lot of good reviews. While no product is perfect, this one does offer plenty of advantages. The most distinctive feature of this product is its ability to lock out stains and odors or to lock them in, if you prefer.

best exterior primer

This can be a definite advantage for some projects, such as those that involve pets or small children. In some cases, people use this product as a sub-coat underneath their flooring. This does a great job of keeping odors and stains from getting through the paint. This is a water-based product, but it performs more like an oil-based product in some ways. This gives it some of the advantages of both products.

It is tough like an oil finish but offers the easy cleanup of a water finish. There are a few little problems with this product, even though it is very good overall. Most of the negative reviews focus on two problems: A short shelf life and a tendency to be too thin. Many people say that they have to use more coats than normal to get the same results. To be honest, the short shelf life is the only serious problem. Because this product is meant for high-durability use, you should probably be using multiple coats anyway.

The primer comes in two color choices: flat white or flat grey. This product has a good consistency and excellent quality, so you could use it as a standalone color for your wooden projects.


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