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Can I Use Exterior Paints For The Inside Of My Home?

While thinking about ways to save money on your next painting project, you may consider using exterior paints for the inside of your home. The answer is yes - but there are a few things you need to keep in mind.

In this blog post, Two Coats Painting & Staining will discuss the pros and cons of using exterior paints for interior painting and some tips for getting the best results.

Tougher Ingredients:

A significant benefit of using exterior paint for interior projects is that it is generally cheaper than interior paint. This is because exterior paints are designed to withstand the elements, typically made with tougher ingredients. However, this also means that exterior paint can be more challenging to work with - especially if you're not used to painting in high temperatures or humidity. If you're planning on using exterior paint for an interior project, we recommend doing a test patch first to ensure it will work in your specific environment.

Gloss Level:

Exterior paint generally has a higher gloss level than interior paint. This can be beneficial if you want a shiny finish, but it can also make touch-ups more difficult. If you're planning on using exterior paint for an interior project, we recommend choosing a semi-gloss or high-gloss finish to make touch-ups easier.


It's also important to note that exterior paint often contains VOCs (volatile organic compounds) that can harm your health. These VOCs are released into the air as the paint dries, which is not an issue outside.

However, inside they can cause headaches, dizziness, and other respiratory problems. If you're using exterior paint for an interior project, we recommend choosing a low-VOC or zero-VOC variety to minimize your risk of exposure.

Drying and Curing Time:

Many exterior paints require exposure to sunshine while drying and curing. However, there is a sweet spot since too much sun can cause peeling, poor adhesion, and cracking while painting.

Most exterior paints already have an extended drying time, ranging from a few days to a month. When you apply exterior paint indoors, the drying and curing time frames become unpredictable.

Less solar exposure and unrestricted ventilation might cause outdoor paint to cure and dry slowly. A longer drying time might increase the off-gassing phase, causing more VOCs and odors to be released into the air.


There is one more thing to consider before utilizing exterior paint indoors. It's oil-based. As a result, it is far more explosive than interior paint. Paint is not a common cause of a house fire. Nonetheless, it is essential to consider where to apply exterior paint to eliminate potential hazards and create a safe living environment.

Final thought:

Interior and exterior paints are formulated differently to achieve different results. Using the right product for the job is best to avoid problems down the road.

Contact a professional painting contractor such as Two Coats Painting & Staining if you're unsure which paint is best for your project. We can help you select the right products and ensure a lasting finish.

When you need interior or exterior paint in Buford, GA, you can count on Two Coats!

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