Painting when its Cold

Phil vonMassow Knowledge Base

Painting when its cold
How cold is too cold? It depends on the substrate and the product.
Recommend temperatures for acrylic exterior paint is 10F with overnight temperatures not dipping below 10F for 48 hours.
Most paint manufacturers have low temperature exterior paints.
Special low temperature acrylic paint can be applied to surfaces with temps between 3C and 5C.
But REMEMBER – 1/temperatures should not dip below the recommended level for at least 48 hours and 2/air temperature and surface temperature are very different and many surfaces can be colder than the air. . . for example metal substrates could be several degrees cooler than the air temperature.

What about caulking?
Most single component polyurethane and silicon sealants are moisture cure and will cure by reaction with moisture vapour in the air. Therefore, colder temperatures will extend the curing process.
At temperatures below 4C, these sealants will perform perfectly if the following application TWO rules are followed:
1. Primers & sealants should be warmed for 24 hours prior to application. Running heaters in your storage trailer and keeping material at room temperature will ensure proper flow and application of the material.
2. Clean any dew or frost from the substrates with MEK which works much better than alcohol in cold weather.