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When Is It Too Hot To Paint Your Exterior?

Is painting your home’s exterior on your spring or summer to-do list? Whether you plan to paint your home’s exterior, a deck, or a fence, you may be wondering, when is it too hot to paint? In this blog post, we’ll break down the best temperature to paint outside and what the optimal conditions are. 


What Is The Best Temperature To Paint Outside?

When it comes to outdoor painting projects, temperature plays a significant role in the results you’ll achieve. Both the air temperature and the temperature of the surface you’re painting impact the application and longevity of the paint. When you see an optimal painting temperature on a manufacturer’s label, they are referring to both of these temperature elements. 

Typically, most paint products should be applied at temperatures of 35 degrees Fahrenheit and rising or 50 degrees Fahrenheit and rising. The exact temperature depends on the formulation of the product. If you’re looking for more information on painting in colder temperatures, check out our blog post about painting in the winter

On the other end of the temperature spectrum, most paint products apply best up to around 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Again, be sure to read the manufacturer’s label to determine what temperature that specific paint should ideally be applied at, as they can all differ. It’s also important to consider the humidity of the air, as that can greatly impact paint drying time. Optimal humidity levels should be between 40%-50%. 


When Is It Too Hot To Paint Outside?

The time of year and temperature greatly impact how painting projects are approached and tackled by professional painters. Here at Oak City Coatings, we approach our painting projects in a few different ways depending on the temperature and time of year. 

In cooler weather, we start painting later in the day and focus on painting the sunny side of the house where the air and surfaces are dry and warm. 

On the flip side, when the weather is warmer, such as during the middle of the summer, we will start painting bright and early in the morning before the temperatures start to rise and the sun starts beating down. We’ll take a long lunch break during the hottest part of the day and then stay at the job site later in the day to paint on the shady sides of the house. By structuring our day this way, we can help mitigate the effects of the heat, both for our workers and the quality of the paint job. 


What Temperature Should You Stop Painting?

Many homeowners wonder, is it ok to paint in 90 degree weather? When the temperature reaches this index, is it too hot to paint outside? While there’s no hard and fast rules on this, we like to use the “touch test.”

A crucial factor to be aware of is how direct sunlight impacts the temperature of the surface, whether that is the exterior of a home, a deck, or a fence. When the sun hits a surface like this, the temperatures can soar quickly, causing the paint to flash dry. This prevents the paint from leveling properly and can result in a streaky, uneven surface. 

A good way to determine if it is too hot to paint is to touch the surface you want to paint. If you’ve ever felt the side of your house or deck in direct sunlight in the heat of the summer, you’ll know how hot it is, to the point that it can burn your hand. As a general rule of thumb, if you can’t keep your hand on the exterior surface due to the burning hot temperatures, it’s too hot to paint. 

While it’s definitely ideal to paint in warmer temperatures, it’s important to take into consideration just how hot it is. In order to achieve the best results and a long-lasting finish, pay attention to the temperature, humidity levels, and the optimal application temperature listed on the paint product. Use the “touch test” to determine if it’s too hot to paint. By timing your painting sessions strategically, you can achieve the professional finish you’re looking for to enhance your home’s exterior. 

If you’re ready to tackle your next exterior painting project this spring or summer, we’d love to partner with you! Visit our contact page to book a complimentary consultation with our team of professional painters to discuss your goals, needs, and timeline!


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