Built and primed a shed yesterday, rained overnight. Paint today?
August 18, 2019 5:37 AM   Subscribe

The shed is made of lumber and plywood. The primer was Zinsser 1-2-3. It's small enough that we can towel it off, but I think it rained pretty hard and the shed is in a shady spot, so I don't know how much water the wood might have absorbed in spite of the primer, and conditions continue to be pretty humid. Temperatures are about 65F now, high of about 75F.
posted by lakeroon to Home & Garden (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Wait until you are certain the wood is bone dry. The consequences of waiting are inconveniences. The consequences of going ahead and painting before the shed is dry can be mould, horrible appearance, wood rot and premature demolition.

If it never fully dries because it never stops raining before now and the winter you still shouldn't paint until it does. Putting paint on damp wood will not protect the wood, it will just make for a bad paint job. Protect your shed from moisture until it the climate cooperates, using tarpaulins or your shower curtain, or drop sheets.

Of course if you do go ahead and now have a good window of opportunity to get the paint on it will probably be okay. The risk is not an absolute but a percentage. You will not necessarily have a shed speckled with mildew. But you could, so it is better to resist the temptation to run out there and announce, "Finished it in a weekend!" Try to cultivate the mindset, "I didn't just rush it up on the weekend, I took my time and did it properly."
posted by Jane the Brown at 5:48 AM on August 18, 2019 [6 favorites]

Was the primer dry before the rain came? Zinsser sets-up a pretty solid barrier. If it was dry before it rained, I doubt the wood absorbed any moisture (so long as all exposed areas were thoroughly primered, of course) If the wood did absorb moisture, you should be seeing signs that the primer is starting to lift off from the wood.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:06 AM on August 18, 2019

Response by poster: Yes, primer was on 3-4 hours before the rain.
posted by lakeroon at 8:31 AM on August 18, 2019

If you're using water-based paint and the surface isn't currently dripping water, there no reason not to paint. You temps are fine for it. The paint might ever so slightly thin a tiny bit. This is not an issue.
posted by humboldt32 at 1:17 PM on August 18, 2019

If the wood is wet, and you put an impermeable membrane (paint) over it, when it warms up, the water will want to exit as vapor, blowing the paint off.
We have no end of guys that run around with pressure washers and paintbrushes giving houses a 2-3 year paint job. They pressure wash the house to get the loose paint off, and then come back in a day or two and paint.
There's no real way to fix it but letting the paint weather off and then doing it right. I'm living the woe right now, I bought a foreclosure and the bank had had it painted.
posted by rudd135 at 2:31 PM on August 18, 2019

Response by poster: I’m marking the question resolved because we decided to go ahead and paint. I should have known opinions would be divided, just like they are on the internet as a whole! There is a speed element here for reasons not given in the question.
posted by lakeroon at 3:39 PM on August 18, 2019

« Older Hair lightening for the fragrance-sensitive   |   Best video camera under $100? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.