store interior house paint

  • How to Easily Store Interior House Paint

    It’s funny, but when people ask the question, “How do I store interior house paint?” they aren’t really asking the right question and that question is: How should I store interior house paint information? Maintaining paint information is the important consideration when storing any latex or water-based interior paint for future use. Here are some quick and simple tips that the pros use to help you get started.

    You’ll Find Your Interior House Paint Information on The Can and On the Receipt

    The paint information will include the following: the paint manufacturer’s name, the paint grade by product name, the paint color, and the paint sheen.

    The Manufacturer’s name is easy: Sherwin Williams, Benjamin Moore, Behr, or several other nationally produced and recognized paint brands that you will see featured with the company logo on the front face of the paint can. The paint grade by product name is very important because all paints are not created equal, and it is therefore never recommended to try and substitute one paint grade for another.

    For example, Sherwin Williams and Benjamin Moore have several grades of paint that vary in quality and performance. The paint grade by product name will be spelled out in large letters on the front face of the paint can. On a Sherwin Williams can, you may see Pro Mar 200, Duration, Super Paint, or Emerald in large letters on the paint can. On the front label of the paint can, you will see spelled out the type of paint sheen such as flat, satin, semi-gloss.

    Look at the Sticker

    The paint color will be found on a printed sticker affixed to the silver paint can lid and this is a treasure trove of information because it will contain everything, not only the manufacturer’s name, paint type (latex, interior), paint grade (interior Super Paint), color name, but the color formula and the tint base as well, which in many instances is vital information to have at hand.

    Any paint manufacturer will keep store records of your own purchases and the store records for any painting contractor you may hire. If you need to, you can have the store retrieve those records for up to several years after purchase date. But trust me, having the original can with the original formula can’t be beat for the purpose of buying new paint for touching-up or repainting. MAKE SURE that each paint can is labelled as to where it goes within the interior such as Main Floor Bedroom or Family Room or baseboards and doors. Develop your own labelling system to ensure there is no confusion.

    Keep the Paint Cans Clean

    To preserve the information stored on the cans as explained above, it is very important to keep the cans clean during the painting process so that any printed information on the can face or can lid is not covered with slopped over paint. Additionally, clean the cans during and after the painting process plays a significant part in successfully storing the paint for future use. A very smart practice, whether a DIY project or if you’ve hired a painting contractor, is to take photos of the front paint can and the paint can lid then create a file.

    Store Interior House Paint

    Interior paints should be kept in an environment that remains between 60 and 80 degrees, Fahrenheit. Naturally, this would suggest an inside area like a storage closet, utility room closet, or shelf. Also, make sure the paint can lid is evenly and tightly secured to the paint can. If the paint can is clean, the paint can lid should tightly affix itself to the paint can with no gaps or fissures present.

    A good way to affix the paint can lid is to align the paint can lid with the paint can until snugly fit, place a rag over the paint can lid and gently tap the edges of the paint can lid with a light hammer or rubber mallet. Repeat the process a couple of times and remove the rag and inspect the lid. The lid should be tightly adhered to the can creating a flush surface and now the paint can is ready to be stored for future use.

    How Long Does Interior House Paint Last?

    There’s no clear and absolute rule for this but to help answer that question let’s first ask this question: How long after the original paint job can the paint be touched up? That’s the real question, isn’t it. Answers will vary anywhere from six months to two years. Why such disparity? Let’s take a quick look at what factors can make interior paint touch-ups problematic.  

    1) Application Method. If the paint was applied with a roller, brush, or a paint sprayer, the original application method will affect future touch-up.

    2) Temperature. Walls have various temperature differences throughout the year, and this can affect the appearance of the touch-up paint.   

    3) Environmental Factors. These are huge. The following factors are just some that can play a problematic role when applying touch-up paint to previously painted interior surfaces. Sunlight/UV rays, cooking oils, pet dander, humid or dry atmosphere, carpet fibers, marijuana smoke, human skin (yes, I know, but it’s true; you can look it up), heating vent discharges, and just general airborne impurities will all cause problems with touch-up paint matching the existing paint.

    4) The original paint that has been sitting in storage is composed of water, pigments, binders, and extenders. These constituent elements will separate over time causing the stored paint to alter from its original state.


    Here’s one of the best things that anyone can do to enhance the longevity and promote the touch up capacity of any stored paint: Shake it up! Sherwin Williams and Benjamin Moore have mechanical paint shakers and they will shake any of their brand of paints for free. If you have a one-gallon can or a five-gallon bucket, have them shaken about every six months. It’s fast and easy because you can have multiple cans or buckets shaken each time you visit your local Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore store. Just add it to your errand list. Done. And while you’re there, check out new colors for any future projects.

    Time for Touch-Ups

    O.k., even if your paint was shaken say, three months ago, before attempting any touch-ups have the paint shaken, again. Apply a small amount of touch-up paint to a small area in a wall corner or on the wall down near the baseboards. Or, if you are touching-up baseboards or doors, same thing; find a remote area to apply the touch-up sample. In this event, if the touch-up paint (and/or paint sheen) does not match up, it won’t be readily visible as if you tried this in the middle of the Living Room wall. Now you decide: does the color and sheen of the touch-up paint match up with the existing paint?

    Keep in mind, as discussed previously, the method of application of the original paint will affect the appearance of the touch-up paint. If this was a DIY project, then you will know the method(s) of application. If you hired a Painting Contractor, method of application should be disclosed in the contract, or the Painting Contractor can e-mail you the method of application information such as the following. METHOD OF APPLICATION: roller using lamb’s wool ¾’ inch roller skin; two (2) full and separate coats of paint applied. You will now know, that to stand a better chance of successful touch-up painting you will need to apply the touch-up paint using a roller.

    Free Advice

    We at TSP love to share our knowledge and expertise with our Colorado neighbors, so give us a call and we will gladly do our best to walk you through the touch-up process, answer questions, and offer suggestions. Also, feel free to use our Web Inquiry form with questions you may have.

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